Under review: Flax Matters

[flaxseed photo]In my house, we go through a lot of flaxseed.  For years, I’ve been adding flaxseed oil to my smoothies to get the benefits of the healthy fats and omega-3’s, but only recently have I realized how much more I like it in its whole-food form.  While flaxseed oil has a pretty nasty taste that I’m always trying to cover up, ground flaxseed has a nice, nutty flavor that there’s no need to hide.  But mainly, I add ground flaxseed to my smoothies to boost the protein a little—the only other source of protein in my smoothies is hemp protein, and per tablespoon, the hemp isn’t too high on the old protein-ometer.

The problem with ground flaxseed, which you know if you’ve ever left it in your fridge for long, is that it goes rancid quickly.  To avoid this, we grind only small quantities at a time (and it’s a pain).  So when flaxmatters.com sent me these two free, huge bags of Pizzey’s ground flaxseed to try, my first thought (other than being thankful to Kathleen from flaxmatters.com) was that there’s no way I could eat this much flaxseed before it spoiled.  But get this: thanks to the quality of Pizzey’s flaxseeds, theirs has a shelf life of TWO YEARS after opening, and it doesn’t even need to be refrigerated!  Call me impressed.

Pizzey’s flaxseed has the same rich, nutty flavor that is characteristic of good flaxseed, and so far, it’s exhibiting no rancid smell after a few weeks in my pantry.  Another cool thing is that Pizzey’s makes a ground flaxseed product with blueberries in it, and that’s mostly what I’ve been using in my smoothies.  (I’m also trying to get my sister, Christine, to come up with a good blueberry-flax energy bar recipe for me.  Coming soon, perhaps.  Do it, Chris!)

[blueberry flax photo]

Pizzey’s also sent me a box of their Chocolate Omega Bars to try; they’re granola bars with some extra flaxseed in them and chocolate chips on top.

[omega bar wrapper photo]

[omega bar photo]

Let me tell you, Erin and I did a number on that box!  We loved these suckers.  Each bar contains 7 g fat (1.5 g saturated, 650 mg ALA Omega-3), 26 g carbohydrates (10 g sugar, 2g fiber),  and 6 g protein.  So nutritionally, they’re decent; my only problem with them is the ingredient list.  I’m a big fan of Michael Pollan‘s five-ingredient, eat-only-what-you-can-pronounce rules, and these Chocolate Omega Bars violate both of those rules by a good margin.  So while I love the taste, the ingredient list will prevent me from buying these Omega Bars for myself.

You can find out lots more information about the benefits of flaxseed products, some flax recipes, and other fun stuff at flaxmatters.com.  And at Pizzey’s, you can request a free sample.  I have no idea what they’ll send you, but it’s worth a try!

Juice of the day

Erin and I are loving the new juicer!  I “invented” this juice yesterday: green apple + cucumber + lime + celery.  It was so good we had it again today!  Lots more juices coming as we invent them.

[green juice photo]



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  1. I had heard about those bars before and was excited to check them out on the web site, but when I saw the rice crisps had high fructose corn syrup it really turned me off. I know with the flax the digestion of the sugars would be slowed down, but it just seems like the hallmark of a less-than-ideal product
    .-= Evan Thomas´s last blog ..Buttercream Is Just Too Easy =-.

  2. Holy moly I can’t believe the ground flax seed will stay good for 2 years and not even in the fridge! I’m impressed.

    I agree with the can’t pronounce don’t eat rule too. I like to actually know what I’m eating.

  3. That is an awesome BALTIMORE colts glass- I love it! Ok, now that, that is out of the way! I love ground flax. I add it to SO many dishes and think it truly changes homemade granola. Love that this ground flax has a shelf life of two years- very cool! Hope you guys had a great weekend
    .-= Erica´s last blog ..Liberty Tap Room & Body Pump Launch =-.

  4. Wow – going old school with the Baltimore Colts!

  5. Going to have to head out and try some of that flaxseed. I am always looking for a way to get it to last longer. I don’t even mind having to make room in the fridge but two years out of the fridge. YIPPEE!
    .-= Nicki´s last blog ..Antiquing and GNO =-.

  6. Nice reviews! I have teh smae problem with sunglasses. Luckily I found a pair that fits. For me they help prevent headaches after long runs.

  7. That looks like a great juice combo, plus what’s not to like about every ingredient being green?

    I’m definitely going to look into the sunglasses. I have congenital cataracts that make me very prone to glare-induced headaches so I wear sunglasses even when it’s cloudy outside (which makes me look like an evil diva to others!), and I hate the way regular sunglasses either bounce on my face or slide off when I go running.
    .-= Laura Georgina´s last blog ..The Lazy Sunday Taskmistress: Reporting for Duty =-.

  8. Laura M...ski says:

    i feel your pain on the sunglasses…having a small head/face made it HARD to shop for glasses for the motorcycle. i’ve found Oakley makes glasses meant for smaller heads, and if they ever get away from their ridiculous frame sizes, they’ll be my go-to frames again.

  9. I am absolutely an advocate of the less-than-five ingredient list thing, and for those ingredients to be food that we recognize! Be that as it may, still looks tasty 🙂

    I haven’t had flaxseed oil before but I adore ground flaxseeds! They’re super.

    Also nice glasses!
    .-= Sagan´s last blog ..Guest Post: Athletic Therapy =-.

  10. I’m also a lover of flax seed and have started grinding the seeds as I’m making a smoothie, so no danger of rancidity here.

  11. I am new to the flax seed phenomenon, and just picked some up this week. I bought whole flax seeds, but how do I go about grinding them?
    .-= Tara´s last blog ..Sitting Pretty =-.

    • Tara, I just grind them using a coffee grinder. Some people like to have an extra coffee grinder specifically for spices and other non-coffee; I find if I just clean it out each time, it doesn’t make my coffee taste like spices.

      • Matt,
        Thanks so much. I guess I will pick up a coffee grinder this week. Great running shorts article by the way. I got a Garmin for Christmas and am anxious awaiting the snow to melt so I can go on a run (Yes… I am a wuss that doesn’t run in the snow!)
        .-= Tara´s last blog ..Green Thumb? =-.

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