How to Use Flaxseed Oil for Weight Loss

Weight loss FlaxBoth flaxseed oil and ground flaxseed can help with weight loss in ways that most people wouldn’t expect and it has nothing to do with dieting.

Ahead is a look at how flax can help suppress appetite, improve metabolism, regulate blood sugar and insulin, enhance digestion and increase thermogenic fat burning.

Diets Don’t Work

The most important thing to remember when you want to lose weight is do not diet. It simply does not work.

In fact, it’s more problematic than that. When you significantly reduce the amount of food you eat on a diet you are telling your body there will be a period of restriction and training it to conserve energy and store fat.

It gets worse. Even after you come out of a diet, you’ve taught your body to become more efficient at storing fat.

Very few people actually lose much real body fat on a diet that starves them. Instead, any weight lost is primarily water loss and some muscle wastage. And invariably they end up putting it back on and weighing even more several months later.

There is a much better way to go about reaching your ideal weight, though any fat reduction program should always keep in mind the importance of the omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acid ratio in your diet.

Weight Loss and Omega-3

Flaxseed oil is over 50% omega-3 alpha linolenic acid. That’s a fat, but in contrast to the misinformation most of us have been fed about weight loss, healthy fats like omega-3s help us lose weight, not gain it. In fact, it would actually be far more difficult to lose weight without a good intake of omega-3 fatty acids in your diet.

The alpha linolenic acid found in a high quality flaxseed oil like this one I use is an essential fatty acid (EFA). Your body needs it to function correctly but cannot make it itself. You have to get it from your diet and most experts seem to think we’re not getting nearly enough of it.

Omega-6 fats like linoleic acid are also considered essential, but modern Western diets are generally very high in omega-6. In fact, it’s quite likely we are getting far too much of them.

The ideal ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 is said to be at least one to five, preferably even one to two. The average American is estimated to be consuming a ratio of around 1 to 20 in favor of omega-6 fats.

This dramatic imbalance in our intake of the essential fatty acids, that are involved in so many vital processes at a cellular level within our body, is theorized to be a major factor in a variety of health issues and diseases.

Inflammation conditions such as cardiovascular problems, arthritis, asthma and skin diseases are commonly discussed, but some also believe they may play a role in the current epidemic of obesity.

Flaxseed Oil and Fat Storage

The EFAs in flaxseed meal and flaxseed oil are essential nutrients. Our body needs them and will actually stimulate more hunger when it doesn’t have enough of them.

Unfortunately, most of us are not very good at recognizing hunger after we have already eaten as a request by the body for nutrients, rather than more empty carbohydrates.

Simply getting a higher level of nutrition in your meals, by eating foods that are rich in important nutrients like superfoods, will often result in weight loss for many people.

Having healthy ground flaxseed in a meal like this or taking flax oil when you eat usually increases satiety — that feeling of satisfied fullness after eating. But its benefits for weight loss don’t stop there.

Flaxseed oil and especially the ground meal slows down the digestion of a meal, leading to a gentler rise in blood sugar and therefore insulin.

Insulin is the hormone responsible for, amongst many other things, fat storage. When we have a high carb meal with no fiber or essential fatty acids to slow down its digestion, our blood sugar can spike dramatically.

This stimulates fat-storing insulin to correct the blood sugar rise. Not only do you feel tired and lethargic as insulin goes to work, it is also converting the excess carbohydrates in a heavy meal to triglycerides and shuttling them away to the fatty adipose tissue around your hips, waist and belly.

While too much saturated fat and any hydrogenated or manufactured trans fat is unhealthy, with the abundance of simple carbohydrates in most Western diets, it is these that are just as, if not more likely, to be responsible for weight gain than dietary fat alone.

Healthy fats, like those found in flaxseed oil, actually help counteract this process. So don’t avoid all fats if you want to lose weight. Just choose healthier ones and cut right back on the processed carbohydrates that flood your body with fat-storing insulin.

If you would like to understand the type of foods that really cause weight gain and how to use the right kinds of fats to stop feeling hungry and stimulate thermogenic fat burning, then take a different approach to weight loss.

Getting to your ideal weight isn’t about counting calories or excessive exercising. It’s not about eating less and you shouldn’t be constantly hungry. It can actually be as simple as eating the right foods at the right times to ramp up your metabolism for a more effective kind of weight loss.

Flaxseed Oil, Metabolism and Fat Burning

Taking flaxseed oil regularly is believed to improve metabolism and increase thermogenesis (fat-burning). Thermogenesis is a very beneficial process for weight loss wherein specialized brown fat cells increase their fat-burning capabilities. Ironically, one of the best ways to stimulate thermogenesis is by eating more essential fats, like those found in flax.

Given this, it would be beneficial to take the oil or ground flaxseed meal with each main meal of the day if you are trying to lose weight. The page on where to find the best flaxseed oil has some of the best organic and cold pressed oils or cold milled flaxseed options I’ve found.

Ground Flaxseed or Flaxseed Oil for Weight Loss?

Flaxseed oil is very beneficial for losing weight for all of the reasons detailed above. Ground flaxseeds however are a great source of dietary fiber which would help improve digestion and slow blood sugar, and therefore insulin release, even more than flax oil.

While they wouldn’t provide as much essential omega-3 fatty acids, cold milled flax seeds are also an exceptional source of anti-estrogenic lignans that are very important for women as they may reduce the risk of common hormonal cancers.

A good compromise would be a high lignan flaxseed oil like this bestseller with added flaxseed particles, that is still very rich in omega-3 alpha linolenic acid. Ideally though, if you’re serious about weight loss, you could take both flax oil and freshly ground organic flaxseeds daily and get the best of both worlds.


Photo 1 credit with thanks: hill.josh 

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very good infirmation on weight loss and the value of flax


This is some really good information – I understood that I needed to take flaxseed for my omega 3 ( as I am vegan now I don’t use fish as a source anymore ) but was worried that would ruin my diet ( I have shed over two stones so far ).
I will use the oil at my main meal , and incorporate some ground seed into my daily routine and see what happens as I am still just over half a stone away from the top end of my ideal BMI.
I’m looking forward to reading more on this subject.

Jim Dillan

Hi Sarah and thanks for your comments.

Flaxseed oil and ground flaxseeds are especially good for vegetarians, though it’s important to make sure they’re fresh. Cutting right back on inflammatory omega-6 vegetable oils can also help with weight loss and better health in general.


Dear Readers,
first understand the climate of your respective countries. Then go for a strict vegetarian diet. Stop eating packaged foods and all those non vegetarian foods including cow meat, beef etc. Cleanse your body through juices and yoga. Have lots of ghee prepared in the indian vedic procedure. Have organic foods. Stop consuming refined oil at any cost. Go for oil churned from wooden churner. This will help you in eliminating almost all the diseases one may be suffering from. Last but not the least try consuming 50 ml of filtered fresh cow urine (Cow should strictly be of Indian Origin) twice daily once in the morning and once in the evening. This should suffice for anybody’s goodhealth.

Michael S.

When ever I try to lose body fat (especially on my stomach), the only thing that works for me is lowering my carbs. I still perform all my core exercises, but for me to see my abs, I still need to lower calorie and carbs intake. I up my protein and consume more fats (like omega 6 fatty acids and flaxceed oils). Everybody has heard of low carbs, but if they tried to just have steak, chicken, and salad for dinner, they would see a huge difference in a couple of days.


I was pretty sure you were joking when you said use a wooden churner, then when you said to drink. cow urine I was sure of it

Jim Dillan

I absolutely agree Michael and have written about this in many articles like this

Cutting carbs by switching grain based foods to protein, healthy fats and mixed vegetables (excluding potato, corn and similar) is the simplest way to lose weight. There’s no need to starve yourself. Just eat the right kind of foods that don’t spike bloodsugar constantly and store bodyfat.

All the best,


faiza kashif

Can we use this cooking also .plz give me suggestions how I use oil daily thx

Jim Dillan

Hi Faiza,

This page has dosage instructions

You should never heat or cook with flaxseed oil and keep it in the fridge.

Hope this helps,



Hi. Do we have to keep flax seed capsues in fridge to?
The ones we buy in drugstore are they any good?
You are helpful thanks

Jim Dillan

Hi Burnice,

Yes, I would keep them in the fridge. They may be ok but it would be worth cutting one open and smelling it. If it smells rancid I would advise not taking them. I’ve read good reports of the ones in this article though I prefer the bottled liquid.

All the best,



This really helped me.

Where can I but flax seed oil?

If at Wal-Mart, what aisle?

Jim Dillan

Hi April,

The recommended flaxseed oil here is better and cheaper than at wal mart.

All the best,



Hello is it ok can I use flaxseed capsules instead of oil
If its ok how many mg need to use per day

Jim Dillan

Hi Saraj,

1 gram in the morning and 1 gram in the evening is an often recommended starting dose

Check the capsules you have to see how many are needed to reach this.

All the best,



Can I PUT MY GROUND flaxseed in my daily drink of powdered beets and powdered super greens?


Jim Dillan

Hi Phedra,

Yes, this would be a healthy combination that would increase nutrient absorption.

All the best,



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