What’s cold milled flax?

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Cold-milled flax is a highly nutritious form of flaxseed that preserves all the benefits of the seeds. It is produced without excessive heat or light and is rich in essential fatty acids, protein, lignans, and fiber. It can help combat high cholesterol and constipation and has a shelf life of over 18 months if kept away from heat and light.

Flax is a plant that produces nutritious seeds. When these seeds are cold ground, they are reduced to a convenient and highly beneficial form. Cold-milled flax is produced using a method that lacks excessive heat or light, allowing all the nutritional benefits of the seeds to be preserved. It can be consumed solely for its nutritional benefits or to help combat conditions such as high cholesterol and constipation.

Flax is a self-pollinated annual plant that produces bolls. The capsules contain flaxseed, which is commonly hailed for its health benefits. Although these seeds are nutritious and provide nutrients such as essential fatty acids and protein, a person cannot derive any nutritional value from them if eaten whole. Many believe that cold milling is the best process to use when consuming flaxseeds.

There are a number of ways that flaxseeds can be processed, but they usually come with drawbacks. If the seeds are crushed, the essential fatty oils are lost. If flax seeds are milled, the blades usually generate heat which causes the omega-3s to break down and the remaining portion will only be good for about two days.

However, cold-milled flax involves cutting the seeds without heating the mill blades or allowing them to get hot. This process, often called actual cold milling, reduces flax seeds in the most beneficial way. This is because all the nutrients are preserved, including protein, lignans, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids.

The cold milled flax production process does not actually involve low temperatures. Instead, the flaxseeds are kept at room temperature throughout the process. They are then packaged away from heat and stored away from light. If kept in cool conditions and away from sunlight, cold milled flax can have a shelf life of over 18 months. When flax seed is exposed to excessive light or heat, it tends to go rancid. A turpentine smell or unpleasant taste can usually be taken as indicators that this has happened.

Cold milled flax is commonly organic. It is consumed by many people mainly for the omega-3 benefits. It is also the richest source of lignans, which help balance estrogen levels. In addition to these benefits, cold-milled flax is also believed to be good for boosting the immune system, lowering cholesterol, and fighting constipation.

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