More about the Effects of Flaxseed Oil

Commenting on an earlier post, Jack Rusher reports:

Like Anonymous, I’m an MMA [Mixed Martial Arts] enthusiast. My experience with 3 T/day of flaxseed oil have been more or less identical to his. Before: high doses of NSAIDs [non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs] just to survive training, constant soreness and fatigue, etc. After: no joint pain at all, complete discontinuation of NSAIDs, lower frequency and severity of injury.
Dental results: my hygienist made strong comments regarding the improvement of my gums on my first post-flax visit, attributing it to changes in my oral care behavior . . . of which there were none.

6 Replies to “More about the Effects of Flaxseed Oil”

  1. Seth, here’s more anecdotal evidence about the effects of flaxseed oil, but on a different aspect. Before taking flaxseed oil, I rarely would catch things I had knocked over or as they were falling.

    Now, after several months, usually taking 2-3 tablespoons per day, my reflexes seem significantly better.

    Here are 2 typical examples, from yesterday: 1. I brushed a partially full wine glass, sending it wobbling on it’s way to shortly careening off the table. I reached out, calmly, but with what in retrospect seemed like preying mantis-like reflexes, grabbing hold of the glass just before disaster, with only a drop of wine spilling from the incident. 2. I was driving and talking to someone in the passenger seat at the same time. Some folded papers began to fall off the dashboard due to the acceleration. They were not floating but falling like most any solid object. I calmly and casually caught them mid-fall, and placed them in the back seat.

    In both cases, there was a ‘happening in slow motion’ aspect to it, where it seemed I was seeing things happen slower than it would usually be processed.

  2. I’ve already mentioned to Seth the improvement in my pinball scores mere minutes after eating a couple of tablespoons of flaxseed oil. The effect occurs much too quickly to be a metabolic consequence, i.e., conversion from 18-base to 20-base fatty acid, incorporation into membranes. It seems to me it must be interpreted as a drug-like effect, more akin to taking caffeine than tocopherols. I have no idea whether it’s actually the n3 fat involved; flaxseed oil has lots of components.

  3. Why eat omega-3 fatty acids from flax seed?
    Dietary deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids can cause long term damage to human health. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recognized the importance of omega-3 to public health and their importance to coronary health.
    Here is a problem:
    The omega-3 in American diet has decreased gradually over time with the increased consumption of processed foods. On the other hand dietary levels of Omega-6 fatty acids have increased due to consumption of oils that are rich in omega-6 fatty acids. This dietary imbalance of omega fatty acids has created unfavorable ratio of omega 3:omega 6 in our body.
    It is not just the amount of omega-3 consumed but the amount of omega-3 in relation to the amount of omega-6 oils consumed that is important to keep the ratio to a favorable level of 1:4 (omega 3:omega 6).
    Flaxseed provides one of the only non-animal sources of omega-3 that contains significantly more omega-3 than omega-6. About 57% of total oil in flaxseed is in the form of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an Omega-3 fatty acid that is essential for human health. To improve omega-3 levels and ratio between omega 3 and Omega 6, it is important to consume foods that contain significantly higher levels of omega-3 than omega-6. There are very few foods that do that – Flaxseed is one of them.
    The ALA is converted by the body into eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) omega-3s that are found in fish oils. The EPA and DHA are also essential omega-3 fatty acids for human health. The conversion of ALA to EPA and DHA is not a very efficient process in body but remember a diet rich in flax seed, will provide all three omega-3 fatty acids that are essential to healthy human health.

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