Linseed oil comes from the ripened, dried and pressed seeds of the flax plant. It has many uses, including within oils, solvents and resins, as well as in varnish in wood finishing. It is used in the production of linoleum, and can also be taken as an edible oil in capsule form to help with health conditions such high cholesterol, heart conditions, stroke and diabetes.
As a dietary supplement, linseed oil is a source of an essential omega-3 acid known as linolenic acid, which helps to maintain healthy cholesterol and blood pressure levels.
All you need to know about Linseed Oil
What is linseed oil?
Otherwise known as flaxseed oil or flax oil, linseed oil is a yellowish oil that comes from ripened and dried seeds of the flax plant. It can be extracted by pressing, or through solvent extraction. Linseed oil shouldn't be used for cooking because of its high smoke point and chemical changes that occur when it is heated. It is however used in supplement (capsule) form to treat a variety of conditions because of its high omega-3 and vitamin content. If applied to the skin externally, linseed oil is very moisturising, and can help ease dehydration of the epidermis.
What are the health benefits of linseed oil?
Linseed oil is a superfood that is high in omega-3, helping to maintain healthy cholesterol levels. It is also a great source of protein and can help to build muscle mass if you are on a high protein diet, or want to improve bone strength. Linseed meal that is ground is very high in fibre. Linseed oil also has high levels of zinc and magnesium, which help to promote heart health and a well-functioning nervous system. It also has high levels of iron, which helps the body to produce red blood cells.
Is linseed oil good for joint pain?
Linseed and flaxseed oil are rich in ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), and can help with joint inflammation and pain that is associated with conditions like arthritis. Linseed oil contains omega-3 fatty acids that are essential for cell function and structure. It can also aid inflammation due to its high levels of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA).
What are the side effects of linseed oil?
Side effects of linseed oil are rare, but include gastrointestinal discomfort, digestive issues, stomach pain and rashes on the skin. In extreme cases, some people experience breathing problems. If you are on anticoagulants, you should not take linseed oil because of a risk of spiking blood sugar levels and bleeding.