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Flax Seed Pudding for Digestion

You are looking for simple and easy ways to improve your digestion. What better way to do this than with the foods you eat?

Flax seed pudding can help with digestion! Not only that, this powerful little seed can make a difference in other areas of your health.

You can learn more here, and find a few delicious recipes so that you can prepare your own flax seed pudding.

Let’s get started.

Flax Seed Benefits For Digestion

Four tablespoons of flax seed provide 8 grams of dietary fiber. Flax seed contains soluble and insoluble fiber. Both of these types of fiber have their own special properties that can help with digestion. 

Soluble Fiber

Mucilage gums make up most of the soluble fiber in flax seeds. This type of fiber absorbs water to form a gel which can bulk and soften stool. Anyone who has suffered from constipation knows that softening stool is a good thing. 

Insoluble Fiber

Insoluble fiber also increases stool bulk. This sends a message to your colon that it is time to move things along. Both soluble and insoluble fiber are good for decreasing transit time, or the amount of time that what you eat hangs around in your gut.

Other Flax Seed Health Benefits

Basic Nutrition

Just four tablespoons of flax seed has 8 grams of dietary fiber, 6 grams of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), 152 mg of vitamin E, 222 mg of potassium and over 5 grams of protein. Flax seed also gives you smaller amounts of most of the B vitamins including folate, biotin, calcium and a handful of minerals.

The recipes below give you more than four tablespoons of flax seed per serving.

Cardiovascular Health

Flax seed is the richest plant source of α-linolenic acid (ALA). ALA is the essential omega-3 fatty acid, which you need to get through food because you can’t make it in your body. You can metabolize ALA into EPA and DHA, the omega-3s commonly found in fish oils.

You also need omega-6 fatty acids, however too much of these can have an inflammatory effect. Omega-3 fatty acids tend to be anti-inflammatory. The ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 is important. Research shows a ratio of 4 (omega-6) : 1 (omega-3) is protective for cardiovascular disease, and lower ratios are beneficial for other health conditions (1). 

The omega-6 to omega-3 ratio in flax seeds is approximately 3:1, which is well within the healthy range to protect against inflammation.

There are numerous studies in both animals and humans showing that adding flax seed to the diet can lower blood levels of total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol.

Phytoestrogens

Flax seed contains lignans, a polyphenol that is present to some degree in nearly all plants. (2)  Flax seed has a lot of lignans – 800 times as many as some other plants.

The main lignan in flax seed is secoisolariciresinol diglucoside (SDG).  SGD is converted by gut bacteria to other lignans called enterodiol and enterolactone. These lignans are phytoestrogens with weak estrogenic properties.

Phytoestrogens can bind to estrogen receptors and exert weak activity that can actually block the effects of real estrogen in some tissues. This is why lignans are being studied to see if they are beneficial in fighting hormone related cancers (3).

Amino Acids for Mental Health

All proteins are made up of substances called amino acids. There are nine amino acids we need to get in our food. We can get all these essential amino acids from animal products, but it is more difficult to achieve this with plants. 

Flax seed has one of the best amino acid profiles, similar to that found in soybeans. They are rich in the aromatic amino acids that drive neurotransmitter synthesis, like phenylalanine and tyrosine. (2)

These aromatic amino acids are the building blocks for substances like dopamine and serotonin that are necessary for good mental health.

Metabolic Health

Studies show that people with diabetes who supplement with ground flax seed have been able to reduce their levels of fasting blood glucose and HbA1c. This may be partly because of that same lignan, SGD, which inhibits an enzyme that helps to synthesize glucose in the liver (4).

The fiber in flax seed also helps to slow down the release of glucose into the bloodstream after eating, and makes you feel fuller so that you eat less.

Is Flax Seed Gluten Free?

Flax seed does not contain gluten. In fact, flax can work beautifully in your gluten free recipes because of its ability to absorb water and add moisture to baked foods.

Flax Seed vs Linseed

Both flax seed and linseed are basically the same thing. The name linseed comes from the Latin word for flax – Linum usitatissimum.

Linseed is used more often to refer to the seed when it is used in manufacturing and animal products.

Flax Seed Pudding Recipes

Because of the mucilage gums that I talked about earlier, flax seed pudding tends to have a slightly slippery texture. I don’t love that in a pudding, but I have found that adding slightly more flax seed than most other recipes call for gives the pudding a better consistency. Chocolate helps too! Enjoy this selection of recipes.

Maple Cinnamon Flax Seed Pudding

Cinnamon maple flax seed pudding on a decorative pottery plate.

Maple Cinnamon Flax Seed Pudding

Elizabeth Quinn, MS, CNS®, FMCHC, LDN
This is a basic version of flax seed pudding lightly flavored with maple syrup and cinnamon. You can use another sweetener if you prefer, or dress it up with other foods like chopped pecans.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes
Course Nutrition For Your Gut
Cuisine Pudding
Servings 2 serving

Ingredients
  

  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons ground flax seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1-2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk

Instructions
 

  • Whisk together flaxseed, cinnamon, salt and maple syrup in a medium bowl.
  • Add almond milk and continue whisking until thoroughly mixed.
  • Wait 5 minutes, and then stir again to distribute the flax seeds.
  • Pour into a small jar or glass bowl. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours.

Notes

You can substitute any other plant based milk for the almond milk. Or go for it and use cows milk.
Keyword flax seed pudding

Chocolate Coconut Flax Seed Pudding

A bowl of chocolate coconut flax seed pudding on a bright scarf.

Chocolate Coconut Flax Seed Pudding

Elizabeth Quinn, MS, CNS®, FMCHC, LDN
Chocolate makes everything better!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes
Course Nutrition For Your Gut
Cuisine Pudding
Servings 2 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons ground flax seed
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk

Instructions
 

  • Whisk together the flaxseed, cocoa powder, salt and coconut flakes in a medium sized bowl.
  • Add maple syrup and vanilla and mix into a smooth paste
  • Add the almond milk and whisk until thoroughly mixed.
  • Wait 5 minutes, and then stir again to distribute the flax seeds.
  • Pour into jar or glass serving bowls. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours.

Notes

You can substitute any type of milk for the almond milk. Omit the coconut flakes if that is not your thing. You can dress this up by sprinkling it with chopped nuts or cacao nibs.
Keyword flax seed pudding recipe

Peanut Butter and Honey Flax Seed Pudding

Peanut butter flax seed pudding with scattered peanuts and a small jar of honey.

Peanut Butter and Honey Flax Seed Pudding

Elizabeth Quinn, MS, CNS®, FMCHC, LDN
Get your fiber in the most comforting way. This pudding is like a peanut butter and honey sandwich. You can substitute the milk of your choice for almond milk. You can also use another type of nut butter if you don't eat peanuts.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes
Course Nutrition For Your Gut
Cuisine Pudding
Servings 2 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons ground flax seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons smooth or crunchy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk

Instructions
 

  • In a medium sized bowl, combine ground flax seed and salt. Stir to combine.
  • Add peanut butter and honey, and blend together well.
  • Add the milk and whisk until thoroughly blended, and all the lumps have disappeared.
  • Let mixture stand 5 minutes. Then mix again to distribute flax.
  • Pour into serving containers. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, until firm.
  • Serve with extra chopped peanuts and drizzle with honey.

Notes

Dress this dish up with some sliced bananas, chocolate chips or strawberries.
Keyword peanut butter flax seed pudding

Other Ways to Use Flax Seed

Here are some easy ways to add flax seed to your daily meals.

  • Sprinkle ground flax seed on cereal, oatmeal or salads.
  • Add ground flax seed to soup as a mild thickener.
  • Add ground flax seed to a smoothie.
  • Sprinkle ground flax seed over cut up fruit or cottage cheese.
  • Substitute ground flax seed for a portion of bread crumbs in recipes like meatloaf or salmon cakes.
  • Experiment with adding ground flax seeds to cookie dough or muffin batter.
  • Add a teaspoon of ground flax seed to your favorite salad dressing.
  • Make a parfait. Layer flax seed pudding with coconut yogurt, berries and chopped pecans.

Final Thoughts 

The fiber content of flax seed can really help to improve your digestion. Flax also contains a whole spectrum of other essential nutrients.

Cardiovascular health, hormones, mental health, and blood glucose control can all benefit from flax seed.

If you are on a gluten free diet, this is your perfect food. I hope you enjoy trying the flax seed pudding recipes, and some of the other ideas for boosting your nutrition with flax seed.

Would you like to know more about foods that can improve your digestion? Click the button below to schedule a free phone call and find out how to work with me.

1 thought on “Flax Seed Pudding for Digestion”


  1. Flax seeds

    are truly nature’s tiny powerhouses! Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and antioxidants, they offer a myriad of health benefits. I love incorporating them into my morning smoothies for an extra nutritional boost. The versatility of flax seeds makes them a staple in my kitchen – from adding them to yogurt to using them as an egg substitute in baking. It’s amazing how something so small can have such a big impact on well-being. Great blog post on the wonders of flax seeds

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