Flax (Linum Usitatissium) , also known as "common flax" or "linseed", is a food and fiber crop cultivated in cooler regions of the world.
Canada is the world's largest producer of oilseed flax followed by Russia, France, and Argentina.
In the U.S. and Canada most commercial flax production involves oilseed varieties of flax in which the seeds will eventually be dried and crushed and used to produce different grades of oil. Flax seeds are small brown, tan, or golden colored seeds that are the richest source of omega-3 fatty acids known.
Sometime between 4000 and 2000 BC flax cultivation became common practice in countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea and in regions of the Middle East. From the very beginning the value of flax was both culinary and domestic since flax could be spun into linen to provide clothing and other textile related products.
The earliest evidence of humans using flax was as a textile from the present day Republic of Georgia dating back 30000years. Evidence exists of a domesticated oilseed flax with increased seed size by 9000 years ago in Syria. Use of the crop had spread reaching Switzerland and Germany by 5000 years ago. In China and India domesticated flax was cultivated by at least 5000 years ago. Flax was extensively cultivated in ancient Egypt, where the temple walls had pictures of flowering flax, and mummies were entombed in linen.. Egyptian priests only wore linen as flax was considered a symbol of purity.
Flax is grown for its oil, used as a nutritional supplement, and as an ingredient in many wood finishing products. Flax is also grown as an ornamental plant in gardens. Flax fibers are used to make linen. Flax fibers are taken from the stem of the plant and are 2 - 3 times as strong as cotton. Flax is grown on the Canadian prairies for linseed oil which is used as a drying agent in paints and varnishes and in products such as linoleum and printing ink.
Flax seed Benefits:
- High in fiber, low in carbs
- Healthy skin and hair - can improve symptoms of acne, rosacea, eczema , and dry eye syndrome
- Weight loss - full of healthy fat and fiber
- Lower cholesterol also gluten free
- Anti inflammatory
- High in antioxidants (Lignans) Lignans are known for their anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties
- Digestive health
- Anti - Cancer - proven fighter of breast, prostate, ovarian, and colon cancers
- High in Omega-3 fatty acids
- Menopausal symptoms
Flax seeds are best consumed ground as our bodies cannot digest the seeds whole to access the nutrients.
Adding Flax seeds in your Diet:
- Add 1 to 3 TBS to a morning smoothie
- Mix a TBS in with yogurt and raw honey
- Bake into muffins, cookies and breads
- Add to granola
- Can be mixed with water and used as an egg substitute
- Sprinkle on hot or cold cereal
- Sprinkle on vegetables
So..... East up ! Enjoy ! I'll show you how.
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