Flaxseed oil may not be as popular as other cooking oils, but it is one of the healthiest. Also known as linseed oil, flaxseed oil is extracted from the seeds of the Linum usitatissimum plant, one of the oldest cultivated crops on the planet. 
A highly nutritious oil, flaxseed oil is rich in heart-healthy omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, as well as powerful antioxidants. Thanks to these beneficial components, flaxseed oil offers many amazing health benefits, such as supporting healthy, glowing skin and optimal immune health.
The beneficial properties of flaxseed oil make it an excellent addition to your arsenal of natural ingredients.
A brief history of flax
Flax, also known as linseed, is a food and fiber crop that is grown in the cooler regions of the world. Flax is native to the area extending from the eastern Mediterranean region to India. Historians believe that flax was first cultivated in the Fertile Crescent, a boomerang-shaped region in the Middle East that was home to some of the earliest human civilizations.
In ancient times, flax was grown primarily for use in linens. In fact, burial chambers dating back to around 3,000 B.C. depict flax cultivation and bear traces of having once contained clothing made from flax fiber.
Flax was first introduced to the United States by colonists, primarily to make fiber for clothing. But as the country grew and more buildings were constructed, the need for flaxseed oil increased as well because the oil was used in paint. The demand for flax meal for livestock and poultry feed also skyrocketed during that period. As a result, the flax processing industry in the U.S. prospered immensely in the 18th century.
By the 1940s, however, cotton had almost entirely replaced flax as a commonly used fiber in the United States. As a result, flax became nearly extinct as a commercially grown crop. Fortunately, in the past decade, manufacturers have developed a significant number of products that make use of the plant for the health food market. The renewed interest in flax as a food source is due to multiple studies that show how flax can provide a variety of health benefits.
Today, flax is generally grown for its seeds or fiber. Most commercial operations in North America grow flax plants for the seeds, which can be sold whole or ground to make meal or pressed to make oil. In the U.S., flax production occurs mainly in North Dakota, which planted 200,000 acres of flax in 2020. That same year, the state’s total flax production exceeded four million bushels.
Health benefits of flaxseed oil*
Flaxseed is packed with dietary fiber and healthy fats, such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Since our bodies can’t make these fatty acids, we must get them from foods like flaxseed. Aside from being sold whole, flaxseed is also processed by cold pressing to obtain flaxseed oil. In addition to being rich in healthy fatty acids, flaxseed and flaxseed oil are excellent sources of powerful antioxidants, such as vitamin E. Antioxidants are compounds that scour our bodies for highly reactive molecules called free radicals. Free radicals are byproducts of metabolic activities, meaning they are naturally generated by our bodies. But at high levels, they can cause oxidative stress, which can damage healthy cells and their components. 
Given the amazing nutrient content of flaxseed, it’s no surprise that flaxseed and flaxseed oil have been linked to a number of health benefits. Here are some of them:
- Support healthy cardiovascular function
Many oils are held in contempt because they are bad for the heart, but not flaxseed oil. That’s because flaxseed oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, a key family of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). There are three main omega-3 fatty acids – all of which can be found in flaxseed oil. These are eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
ALA is said to be good for cardiovascular function as it supports healthy blood pressure levels that are already within the normal range. ALA also helps maintain normal heart rhythm and heart pumping.  Flaxseed oil contains more ALA than whole or ground flaxseed. 
In addition, flaxseed oil contains high amounts of the amino acid, arginine, which the body converts into nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is a gas molecule known for supporting healthy blood pressure levels that are already within the normal range. 
- Support healthy digestive function
Incorporating flaxseed oil into your daily routine is a great way to keep your digestive system running smoothly. That’s because the omega-3 fatty acids in flaxseed oil can help you support a healthy and diverse gut microflora, according to a study published in the journal Scientific Reports. 
The digestive system is home to trillions of microbes, many of which are beneficial because they play a key role in digestion. Gut microbes use a large repertoire of enzymes that break down complex carbohydrates from foods into glucose, which your cells use for energy. Therefore, it’s important to keep a healthy gut microflora. One of the ways you can do that is by using flaxseed oil in your meals. 
- Support healthy immune function
Essential fatty acids like omega-3s can support your body’s healthy immune responses. In fact, studies show that immune function is heavily influenced by the balance between your omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acid levels.  Fortunately, flaxseed oil is a good source of both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, so adding it to your diet is beneficial for your immune health.
Since a large part of your immune system is located in your gut, flaxseed oil can further support healthy immune function by feeding beneficial gut bacteria. One of the main jobs of these bacteria is to ensure that your digestive system is running smoothly. According to a 2017 review published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences, the omega-3 fatty acids in flaxseed oil can serve as food for good gut bacteria. 
- Support healthy eye function
Omega-3 fatty acids play a crucial role in the healthy functioning of cell membranes, including the ones in your eyes. According to a study published in the journal Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science, DHA, in particular, is important for good vision. 
But since there are only a few dietary sources of DHA, it can be difficult to get sufficient amounts of this essential fatty acid. Luckily, flaxseed oil is a good source of DHA. By incorporating flaxseed oil into your daily routine, you can easily support optimal eye function.
- Support healthy bones
According to a 2009 study that appeared in the International Journal of Food Safety, Nutrition and Public Health, flaxseed oil can support optimal bone health and bone mineral density. The researchers of the study attribute that benefit to the presence of omega-3 fatty acids in the oil, which they believe plays a key role in protecting the processes of bone matrix formation and mineralization. 
- Support healthy, glowing skin
Flaxseed oil can support healthy, glowing skin, an effect that experts believe is due to the omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids found in the oil. These essential fatty acids are the building blocks of healthy skin cell membranes. They are also important for the production of the skin’s natural oil barrier. In addition, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids help keep the skin hydrated and can even help protect the skin from harmful artificial ultraviolet (UV) rays. 
And while your skin may not be able to fully absorb flaxseed oil through its surface, there are still some benefits to applying the oil topically. Experts say flaxseed oil acts as a soothing and smoothing ingredient, almost like a skin conditioner, when applied topically. 
- Support healthy hair
The omega-3 fatty acids in flaxseed oil can also help you maintain healthy hair by supporting healthy blood circulation in the scalp.  A study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology reported that supplementing with omega-3 fatty acids is a great way to support healthy-looking hair in women. 
Additionally, flaxseed oil is an excellent source of vitamin E, which creates a protective barrier on the scalp to lock in moisture. As an antioxidant, vitamin E also gives hair a strong base to grow from by protecting hair follicles from oxidative damage. 
- Support healthy joints and tendons
At very high levels, free radicals can damage cartilage, the rubbery, gel-like coating on the ends of bones. Cartilage protects joints and facilitates movement, which is why cartilage damage can cause joint-related issues. Free radicals can also damage connective tissues like tendons, which connect your muscles to your bones. Luckily, the omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in flaxseed oil can protect cartilage and tendons from damage caused by oxidative stress. 
- Support reasonable weight management goals
The healthy fats in flaxseed oil can help naturally curb appetite by delaying gastric emptying – the process by which the contents of the stomach are moved into the first section of your small intestine (duodenum).  This can make you feel full for longer and discourage you from snacking between meals or overeating. As such, flaxseed oil can support reasonable weight management goals, especially when combined with a balanced diet and regular exercise.
- Naturally uplift your mood
Adding flaxseed oil to your daily diet can support a happy mood. That’s because the omega-3 fatty acids in flaxseed oil can travel through the cell membranes of brain cells and interact with molecules that play a role in mood regulation, such as serotonin. Serotonin is the key hormone that stabilizes your mood and regulates feelings of well-being and happiness. 
Where to get organic flaxseed oil
While it’s possible to get your daily dose of essential fatty acids from fatty fish and fish-based oils, most farmed fatty fish and fish-derived supplements are contaminated with mercury, microplatsic and other industrial toxins. Fortunately, organic flaxseed oil is not exposed to these contaminants and is naturally rich in healthy fats, making it one of the cleanest and most versatile vegan sources of healthy fats.
The Health Ranger Store recognizes the health-supporting properties of organic flaxseed oil, which is why we’re bringing you Groovy Bee Organic Virgin Flaxseed Oil. Our premium food-grade flaxseed oil contains no gluten, GMOs or fillers and is certified Kosher and organic. More than just a superfood, it can also serve as a carrier oil and an all-natural hair care product.
Groovy Bee Organic Virgin Flaxseed Oil delivers PUFAs, such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, to support healthy cardiovascular, digestive and immune systems. These healthy fatty acids can also nourish and moisturize your skin, as well as protect it from harmful UV rays. Our premium food-grade flaxseed oil is an ideal plant-based source of healthy fats, essential nutrients and potent antioxidants.
Groovy Bee Organic Virgin Flaxseed Oil is cold-pressed to retain maximum nutrition. It is also vegan, non-China and lab tested for glyphosate, heavy metals and microbiology.
How to use organic flaxseed oil
As an extremely versatile oil, organic flaxseed oil can be incorporated into many recipes. Use it in place of other types of oil to make salad dressings, dips and sauces. You can even add a tablespoon or two of organic flaxseed oil to your breakfast or post-workout smoothies to increase your intake of healthy fats and antioxidants. You can also drizzle organic flaxseed oil over your favorite pasta dishes to give them a pleasant nutty flavor.
But keep in mind that organic flaxseed oil shouldn’t be used for cooking because it doesn’t have a high smoke point. This means the oil will degrade and release potentially harmful compounds when exposed to high heat for long periods. 
Outside of the kitchen, organic flaxseed oil may be applied topically to soothe, nourish and soften the skin. It’s also great to use as a massage oil or a bath oil. You can use organic flaxseed oil as a hair mask to maintain shiny, healthy-looking hair. Simply massage the oil into dry hair from roots to tips then cover your hair with a shower cap. Leave it on for 15 minutes, then rinse your hair thoroughly with lukewarm water.
Recipe: Flaxseed oil vinaigrette
Upgrade your salads with this flaxseed oil vinaigrette from The Simple Veganista. It’s incredibly easy to make and is a great way to increase your antioxidant intake.
Ingredients for 8 servings:
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/4 cup Groovy Bee Organic Virgin Flaxseed Oil
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons organic maple syrup (optional)
- 1 Tablespoon stone-ground mustard
- Ground black pepper, to taste
- Kosher salt, to taste
- Combine all the ingredients in a blender.
- Blend until you reach your desired consistency.
- Shake well before serving. Enjoy!
Enjoy the many incredible benefits of organic flaxseed oil by incorporating this nutrient-dense ingredient into your daily routine!
*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to treat, cure or diagnose any diseases.