Ground flaxseed provides alpha linolenic acid (ALA), which the body converts to the same heart-protective omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon, sardines, and other oily fish. They also provide fiber and are one of the richest dietary sources of lignans, a class of phytoestrogens thought to help protect against breast, prostate, and colon cancers. Whole flax seeds will pass through the body undigested, so you;ll need to grind them first.
Buy fresh flaxseeds, grind them in a blender or coffee grinder that you reserve exclusively for this purpose and sprinkle them in cereal, salads, soups, stews, yogurt, oatmeal, or fruit and vegetable dishes. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container, and use them up within a few days. If the start to smell like oil, they’ve gone bad and should be thrown out.