Let’s give it up for flax seeds! Did you know that flax seeds are rich in lignans? Lignans are a class of phytoestrogens, a plant-derived chemical with estrogenic properties. Phytoestrogens, with their estrogenic properties, are able to bind to estrogen receptors found throughout the body. The major phytoestrogen categories are lignans, isoflavones, and coumestans. Lignans can be found in a wide array of foods including, but not limited to:
- Seeds (pumpkin, sesame, flax, and sunflower)
- Whole Grains (oats, barley, brown rice, and oatmeal)
When it comes to women’s health and wellness, lignans have been shown to have the ability to block the effects of estrogen. A study done at the University of Rochester found that women who ate flax seeds during the study had a higher ratio of progesterone to estradiol (one of the 3 forms of estrogen in the body). What does this mean? Well, simply put it means that flax seeds helped balance the ratio of progesterone to estrogen. Given that flax seeds can help to counteract the effects of excess estrogen, regular consumption can help women with a variety of conditions. including but not limited to: ⠀
- Painful menses⠀
Flax seeds provide us with another example of how food can truly be thy medicine! ⠀
Best in Health!