Scientific: Linum usitatissimum [WikiPedia]
Appearance: Flax is a herbaceous annual. Plants cultivated for seed are shorter than plants cultivated for fibre, and many-branched. The leaves, alternating on the stalk, are small and lance-shaped. The flowers, borne on stems growing from the branch tips, have five petals, usually blue in colour but sometimes white or pink. The fruits are small dry capsules composed of five lobes.
Parts Used: Seed, whole or ground into a meal.
Common Uses: The seeds contain fats and nutrients, and have been used as a food source for thousands of years. Flax seeds have proven to be incredibly versatile throughout history, having seen a wide variety of uses. They are often pressed into flax seed oil and are also made into breads, cereals, and muffins. Flaxseed is a rich source of the omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and is high in a class of phytoestrogens known as lignans. It is also high in dietary fibre, protein, iron, calcium, manganese, thiamin, magnesium, phosphorus, and copper. The seeds can be eaten raw or toasted; added ground or whole to salads, morning cereal, and smoothies; or incorporated into baked goods.
Alternatives and Adjuncts:
Topic Specific Research:
- To be researched
PLEASE NOTE that herbal and other natural products can harm your animals – not all plants are safe and gentle! Do not attempt using any of the ingredients listed, or any other plant matter, without the guidance of a qualified herbalist.