Complementary/Alternative Medicine: This monograph describes a natural or herbal product that is not subject to FDA guidelines for medicines. Patients and clinicians are advised to read package labels carefully to ensure safe and efficacious use.
Flaxseed contains alpha-linolenic acid which lowers serum cholesterol and reduces platelet aggregation. Ten grams of flaxseed contains 4 grams of dietary fiber which also helps lower cholesterol and increases fecal elimination of bile acids. Flaxseed is an indirect food source of lignans which alter estrogen metabolism to produce less active estrogen metabolites. Flaxseed improves renal function by decreasing blood viscosity, reducing serum cholesterol and reducing inflammatory response.
Metabolism and Excretion: Unknown
Use Cautiously in:
GI: diarrhea, bloating, flatulence, nausea
Hemat: increased bleeding time
Misc: allergic reactions
* CAPITALS indicate life-threatening.
Underline indicate most frequent.
Natural Drug Interaction
Note: Flaxseed oil contains the alpha-linolenic acid component of flaxseed, not the fiber or lignan components. It may share the purported lipid-lowering properties of flaxseed but not the proposed laxative or anti-estrogenic properties.
PO (Adults) Hypercholesterolemia–40–50 grams/day. SLE nephritis–15 grams twice daily. Mild menopausal symptoms–40 grams/day.
Whole or ground seeds
Lab Test Considerations:
Monitor serum glucose, triglycerides, alkaline phosphatase, lipid panel, RBC count, coagulation panel, inflammatory markers, hormone panel, and prostate specific antigen (PSA) before and periodically during therapy.
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