Flax seeds are a staple in our kitchen. Flax seeds, sometimes called linseeds, are small, golden-brown colored seeds that are a very rich source of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids, also called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). The list of benefits is really long but I’ll try to shorten it for the sake of this post.
Benefits of Flax
Improve digestion: One of the most famous benefits of flax seeds are their high levels of mucilage gum content. The mucilage is a gel-forming fiber that is water soluble and helps your intestinal tract. The mucilage can keep food in the stomach from emptying too fast into the small intestine which increases the nutrient absorption. Flax seeds are high in soluble and insoluble fiber which helps support colon detoxification, fat loss, and reduce sugar cravings, oh my!
Healthy skin and hair: The alpha-Linolenic acid (ALA) fats in flax seeds benefit the skin and hair by providing essential fats as well as B-vitamins which can help reduce dryness and flakiness. It can also improve symptoms of acne, rosacea, and eczema.
Lower cholesterol: The soluble fiber content of flax seeds trap fat and cholesterol in the digestive system so it is unable to be absorbed (Source).
Balance hormones: It can be used as an alternative to hormone replacement therapy because lignans do have estrogenic properties. There’s hope for you if you are experiencing menopausal symptoms (Source).
- Promote weight loss: Flax is full of healthy fats and fiber, it will help you feel satisfied and satiated longer so you will eat fewer calories overall which may lead to weight loss. ALA fats may also help reduce inflammation (Source).
Flax Seed Nutrient Facts
- Omega-3 (ALA) 38,325 mg
- Fiber 45.9g
- Protein 30.7g
- Vitamin B9 (Folate) 146 mcg
- Calcium 428 mg
- Magnesium 658 mg
- Phosphorus 1079mg
- Potassium 1366 mg
- Selenium 42.7 mcg
Now, time for the good stuff, the recipe. Honestly, this recipe really does not call for any measuring, seriously. But it does call for a dehydrator and some creativity. If you do not have a dehydrator, you should get one. If you can’t get one, maybe your oven can be set as low 115-120 degrees, then you’ll be in luck!
- 1-2 cups whole, organic flax seed
- 3 cups filtered water
- 2 apples (optional)
- 1/2-1 tbsp pumpkin spice (optional)
- Dehydrator or a low temperature oven
- Non-stick sheets for your dehydrator
- Spatula or crepe spreader, anything will work, but these are fun
*If you don’t like apples, bananas and walnuts are a good alternative.
- In a bowl soak your flax seed in water. Start this step early (like the night before) The flax seed will soak up most of the water. If your flax soaks up all the water, add a little bit more. Your goal is a gel consistency
- In a food processor process your apples. You can add your spices now too. Once it looks like apple sauce, you did a good job and you can stop. 🙂
- Add your apple sauce to your bowl of flax seed gel and mix thoroughly.
- Put your apple-flax mix on your non-stick dehydrator sheet (which should be on a dehydrator rack)
- Using your spatula, spread the mix across the sheet, making sure it’s nice and thin, and there are no holes or gaps.
- Place the rack in the dehydrator, set the temperature to 115 degrees (so the crackers remain raw-not cooked) for 6-8 hours
- Enjoy! They make an excellent coffee replacement in the morning.
They should be called The Constipation Relief Snack…but how appetizing does that sound? And I really shouldn’t use bathroom talk when naming my foods.
Tip: Buy your flax seed whole instead of ground. Ground flax is very beneficial but can go rancid quicker- and we don’t really know how long they were sitting on the shelf before you bought them. Plus, this recipe calls for whole flax as the gel will form better. 🙂 If you want ground flax seed to add to your smoothies, then ground it yourself when you are ready, and only ground what you are going to use. Store the remaining flax in your refrigerator to prevent the seeds from going rancid. Grinding flax seed can be easily done in a food processor or a vitamix.
You can buy flax seed here, or you can buy it in bulk at a health food store.