Cholesterol May Be Lowered Using Flax Seeds

CHINA — Researchers in China, who conducted a review of research studies, say a diet that includes flaxseed may help lower cholesterol levels.

The review of 28 studies, which involved more than 1,500 people, found cholesterol reduction linked with eating whole flaxseed was stronger in women than men.

Study leader Dr. Xu Lin of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Shanghai says one tablespoon daily of whole flaxseed or flaxseed oil is usually associated with reductions in total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, the “bad” cholesterol — particularly post-menopausal women, more than men, and in people with higher cholesterol concentrations at the outset.

However, the whole flaxseed did not appear to significantly alter trigylceride levels or affect the amount of high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, the “good” cholesterol.

Flaxseed is considered healthy for the heart because it contains high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, fiber and alpha linolenic acid.

The review was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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