Flax Hull Lignans


The emerging story on Flax Lignans

Flax Lignans are one of the most overlooked sources of a wide ranging highly beneficial nutritional.  In previous articles we have presented the multiple health benefits of the flax seed and while we knew what the benefits were, we did not know what exactly what was providing those benefits and how.  Research studies are showing that it is actually a component of the flax seed called the lignan that is responsible for some of the benefits derived from the seed.  In fact, the research is showing that if the lignan is separated from the flax seed and concentrated, then the health benefits are magnified.  Research suggests lignans may benefit consumers in the following areas:


  • Prostate health
  • Bone health
  • Breast health
  • Cholesterol levels
  • Reducing symptoms of menopause
  • Heart health
  • Hair loss
  • Type II Diabetes
  • Acne
  • Inflammation
  • Anti-carcinogenic
  • GI tract inflammation


What are Flax Lignans ?

Flax lignans are contained in the hull of the flax seed and are biologically active phytochemicals with apparent anti-cancer and antioxidant potential.  The flaxseed has a particularly rich source of a lignan called secoisolariciresinol diglycodisde (’SDG”).  The SDG is converted by bacteria in the colon of humans and other animals to mammalian lignans, enterodiol and enterolactone.  Because these mimic some of the effects of estrogens, their plant-derived precursors are classified as phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens work by binding to estrogen receptors on our cell membranes, much like the body’s own steroid estrogens do.  By doing so, lignan phytoestrogens mimic estrogen in the body and can be used as an alternative to Hormone Replacement Therapy without the side effects to ease the problems associated with menopause.


Where are the Flax Lignans found ?

Lignans are found in most fiber-rich plants, including grains such as wheat, barley and oats; legumes, and vegetables but by far the flaxseed contains the richest source of Lignans, providing 75-800 times more Lignans than most other plant sources.  But it takes approx. 10 gallons (60 lbs) of flaxseed (or 10 x 96 oz containers) to extract enough of the Lignan SDG  to produce one 5.3 oz container of Lignan concentrate.


Lignan content of selected food


Nutritional profile of Flax Lignan Hulls*
½ tablespoon of flax hull lignans provides :



Total Lignans


(one serving = 5 grams)

Flax seeds

1 oz

85.5 mg


Total fat


Sesame seeds

1 oz

11.2 mg


Lignan Fiber

Up to 150 mg

Curly kale

½ cup, chopped

0.8 mg



350 mg


½ cup, chopped

0.6 mg





½ cup, chopped

0.4 mg


Calories from fat

Total fat


0 grams


½ cup, chopped

0.3 mg


Saturated fat


0 grams

0 grams

Brussel sprouts

½ cup, chopped

0.3 mg



Total carbohydrates

0 mg

3 grams


½ cup

0.2 mg


Total fiber

3 grams


4 oz

0.2 mg



0 grams

Dark rye bread

1 slice

0.1 mg



1 gram

4950 mg full strength Lignans™
223 mg SDG Lignans

Click here for Lignan Research and Dosage


The statements contained on these web pages have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
The products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.