I’ve been using flaxseeds in my smoothies, salads and baked goods for years, and I love the health boost they give me. But now I’m hearing that chia and hemp seeds have more healthy fats, minerals and other nutrients. Should I switch seeds?

While chia and hemp seeds are both nutritious additions to a healthy diet, I still think flaxseeds deliver the most health perks—especially for women over the age of 35. That’s because these tiny miracle workers contain 800 times more lignans than any other food. These plant estrogens target the midlife hormonal fluxes that trigger belly-fat storage, mood swings, fatigue and stress. And in addition to balancing hormones, the fiber and polyunsaturated fats in flaxseeds also help stabilize blood sugar, lower “bad” LDL cholesterol and reduce breast-cancer risk. As a bonus, my followers who add 2 to 4 Tbs. of ground flaxseeds to their daily diet report having glowing skin, thicker hair and stronger nails.

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