The flaxseed is a supplement that is a bit of a dilemma really. Does it help in general health or can bodybuilders or weight loss people also use it? Read on!
Flaxseed Oil is confusing. On the one hand there are general health benefits that go so far as to say that it helps in prostate cancer but how does it help in bodybuilding? Will it help me out rep another person or lift more weights? If truth be told, it’s a supplement that does a little bit of it all. By definition, Flaxseed refers to the fats and other beneficial substances found in well, flax seeds. They are available in tablet and/or liquid form, the liquid form being the more expensive one. Flaxseed, like glutamine, is also used for medical purposes, although there are varying views on the credibility of such claims. Still, can’t hurt to take it now can it?
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There are numerous flaxseed health benefits so we must first differentiate between bodybuilding and general health benefits. Below are just some of the general benefits of Flaxseed Oil:
- Reduction of Hypertension- According to greek researchers, Flaxseed oil significantly reduces your blood pressure and can lead to a reduction in hypertension
- Depression- Although Flaxseed doesn’t have a direct effect on depression, Japanese Researchers found that people suffering from depression had a reduction docosahexaenoic and eicosapentanoic acids, the same found in people who did not consume fish, omega-3, or other flaxseed food sources.
- Cholesterol- Again, although flaxseed can’t compete with cholesterol-reducing medication, it can certainly reduce the cholesterol in males, as defined by an Iowa State University study.
- Liver Disease- Both alcohol and steroid abuse contribute to liver disease. Fortunately for you, flaxseed capsules are going to help reduce the chances of liver disease and/or reduce it if you already have it. A 100mg dosage would be of immense help here. So would reaching your drinking obviously.
- Skin Cancer- One of the huge benefits of consuming flax seed is that it can help you regulate your melatonin levels, thereby preventing skin cancer. One study found that mice that received flaxseed supplements were able to reduce melanoma tumors by as much as 63%.
- Prostate Cancer- Another benefit to the male usage of flaxseed is that it may keep prostate cancer at bay. Numerous studies suggest that not only do the flaxseed have the potential to disturb the process of the cancerous cells but can greatly reduce the creation.
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Most important however is that flax seeds contain fiber. In fact, they are complete sources of fiber containing soluble and insoluble fiber. These then also contain a special kind of fiber called mucilage. Mucilage helps in stabilizing blood sugar levels and because it’s a natural laxative, also protects against bowel cancer.
Coming to the really interesting bit, flaxseed can also help in bodybuilding. How? Well for starters it has protein in it, so that’s one thing. Also, flaxseed oil supplements contain ALA or Alpha Lipoid Acid. This increases one’s insulin sensitivity which then means that you can eat more or less carbs which furthermore will help you bulk or cut effectively. Apart from that it contains all of the omega-3 benefits of fat reduction, less muscle soreness and enhanced performance. This quite simply leads to more muscle gains and is one of the reasons to eat more flaxseed. Just don’t go overboard with the dosages.
So the obvious thing here is that you can get your flax seed from flax seeds. How to eat flax seeds although is a good question, a good rule of thumb for anyone to go by is to get a total of 2-3 tbsp of flax seed oil in the whole week. Now of course it’ll be easier to get it via supplementation so if that’s the route you wish to take, there are numerous flax seed supplements available in the market today.
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We’ve always maintained this view that anything in general, if abused, will cause side effects. Sadly, flax seed supplementation or flax seed oil is no different. The verdict on numerous flax seed reviews states that the supplement and oil itself is generally harmless. Anyone who mega-doses can experience side effects and below are just some of the people who should not have flaxseed. As is the case with every supplement, do consult your doctor before consuming anything.
- Pregnant Women should avoid flaxseed oils
- People with bleeding disorders or a history of bleeding disorders
- Anyone going in for surgery
On a lighter note, do remember the fat content flax seed while counting calories otherwise you do risk the chance to go overboard on your fat macros.