Flaxseeds are phytoestrogenic and maybe beneficial in modulating oestrogen. Which is one of the main female reproductive hormones involved in the menstrual cycle. Often it is suggested that high oestrogen levels or an imbalance between oestrogen and progesterone may be driving factors in heavy periods, PMS, painful periods and other menstrual issues.

The phytoestrogens found in flaxseeds are plant compounds capable of binding to oestrogen receptors within the body.  They elicit a weaker physiological response than or synthetic oestrogens or those oestrogens made in the body. The oestrogen modulation is due to the phytoestrogens ability to behave differently in pre-menopausal, perimenopausal and post-menopausal woman. Although this action is not entirely understood, the outcome is that phytoestrogens can exert both oestrogenic and anti-oestrogenic effects.

The action of phytoestrogens does receive some controversy and if you are concerned or in doubt it is wise to speak with your natural health care practitioner before adding large amounts regularly to your diet. I do strongly believe in everything in moderation and value the other benefits of flaxseeds. They are also a plant-based source of omega 3 fatty acids and fibre.

Consuming 3 tablespoons of the phytoestrogenic flaxseeds daily may be beneficial for woman with heavy periods, infertility, fibroids, endometriosis, PCOS, PMS and fibrocystic breast syndrome. It is also theorised that a diet high in phytoestrogens may reduce the frequency and severity of some symptoms of menopause, such as hot flushes.

Flaxseeds can be added to cereals, baked goods, smoothies & porridge or used to make this plant-based protein dessert.

4T flaxseeds (whole)
1.5C dairy free milk
1 serve protein of your choice
Stevia to sweeten (optional)

Addition of blueberries/spinach/maca/favourite greens powder optional
Blend until smooth.
Leave to set in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Garnish and serve.

The secret to making this a yummy and popular dessert for the whole family lies in the protein that is used. So, find and use your favourite type of and flavour of protein. I tend to use the Nuzest chocolate and/or vanilla for this recipe.

Natalee Durrant – Naturopath and Medical Herbalist