Flaxseeds are rich in omega 3 fatty acids and contain lignin precursors, which are considered phytoestrogens. Controversy surrounds eating flaxseeds for people diagnosed with breast cancer because of the misunderstanding of what phytoestrogens do in the body. They are actually able to dampen the effects of the body's own estrogen and are considered a first-line of defense for medical therapy of menstrual breast pain. Eating just one tablespoon a day can help extend a woman's menstrual cycle by a day, which helps her have fewer periods over her lifetime. This, in turn, may help lessen her exposure to estrogen and reduce breast cancer risk. Women who are postmenopausal may significantly reduce the risk of breast cancer by increasing consumption of lignans.
Women who have been on antibiotics that kill the good and bad bacteria in the gut, and those who are prone to frequent urinary tract infections may be at a higher risk of breast cancer. The good bacteria in the gut helps to activate the lignin precursors, which help protect against disease.
"In a 2010 study funded by the National Cancer Institute. Researchers took about forty-five women at high risk of breast cancer - meaning they had suspicious breast biopsies or had previously suffered from breast cancer - and gave them the equivalent of about two teaspoons of ground flaxseeds every day. Needle biopsies of the breast tissue were taken before and after the yearlong study. The results: On average, the women had fewer precancerous changes in their breasts after the year of flax lignans than before they started. Eighty percent (thirty-six of forty-five) had a drop in their levels of Ki-67, a biomarker (indicator) of increased cell proliferation. This finding suggests that sprinkling a few spoonfuls of ground flaxseeds on your oatmeal of whatever you are eating throughout the day may reduce the risk of breast cancer."
"Women with breast cancer who have higher levels of lignans in their bloodstreams and diets appear to survive significantly longer." Women who eat flaxseeds may see a rise in their levels of endostatins, which are a protein the body produces to help starve the blood supply to the tumors. This is good news for women of all ages. Please don't be afraid to eat flaxseed.
Flaxseeds need to be milled for the body to be able to absorb the nutrients. You can do this in a coffee grinder or high-speed blender before using. It is best to ground the seeds fresh, if possible, and use right away. Extra flaxseed may be stored in the freezer to help maintain the nutrient content.
Enjoy a couple of teaspoons or tablespoons of flaxseed daily in oatmeal, muffins, bread, smoothies, or many other recipes found in Wendy's Reasonably Raw and Beautifully Raw recipe books.
*Information found in the book, "How Not to Die" by Michael Greger, M.D., FACLM, pgs 193-195
OMEGA 3 BREAKFAST PUDDING RECIPE
Yield: 2 cups
Equipment: high-speed blender
2 bananas, ripe
1 cup purified water
7 Medjool dates, pitted
1/2 cup walnuts, soaked 8 hours and rinsed
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon flaxseed meal
1 teaspoon hemp seed hearts
1/2 teaspoon vanilla or scrape 1/8 section of a vanilla pod
1/3 cup coconut flakes, unsweetened (optional)
1. Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth.
2. Will be warm from the machine after blending a couple of times. Eat warm or cool from refrigerating first.
3. Fruit such as blueberries or other berries would also be delicious as a topping to mix in. Enjoy!