Doctor's Note

What if your diet is packed with plants? See last week’s video, Plant-Based Diets For Breast Pain. 

I’ve previously hailed flax in videos such as:

So nice to see a professional medical association prioritize safe, natural therapies! See my video series that includes Medical Associations Oppose Bill to Mandate Nutrition Training to see the mentality here in the States. Do Doctors Make the Grade? Unfortunately, Doctors Know Less Than They Think About Nutrition. This is largely due to the lack of Medical School Nutrition Education, though there is also The Tomato Effect.

Speaking of safe and natural, the subject of my next video is Does a Drink Of Water Make Children Smarter?

For more context, check out my associated blog posts:  Treating Breast Pain with Diet and Treating Breast Pain with Flax Seeds.

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  • eatyourbroccoli

    6 months ago my endocrinologist doc strongly recommended statins because of my high cholesterol,atherosclerosis and Berkeley heart lab lipid profile. I responded that i will make lifestyle changes recommended by Dr Greger to become vegan instead. He strongly opposed my preference and dutifully noted in writing his prescription and my refusal to adhere (a CYA letter-Cover Your Ass)
    Now six months later I’m 40 lbs lighter, my triglycerides and cholesterol are now within the low end normal range, my glucose levels have normalized and the Berkeley lipid profile indicates a tremendous shift away from the bad (small ldl lipids) that build as atherosclerosis.
    Go vegan, eat your flax and chia,
    Take your d3,b12,magnesium, probiotic,coq10, eat garlic and of course…eat your broccoli!
    Thanks Dr G !!!!

    • Plantstrongdoc

      Thanks for sharing! The science presented by Dr G combined with anecdotal stories from “real people” are very inspiring! May I ask – did you also drop the oils? Did you go 100% plantbased or “just” 98% to get these great results?

      • eatyourbroccoli

        We went 100% plant based and dropped all cooking oils. Within a couple of weeks my/our palate(s) totally adjusted to the change. We now steam vegetables or sauté in a low sodium veg juice.
        Nuts, seeds and avocado are probably the biggest source of dietary oils we consume.

    • I like your name “eatyourbroccoli”.

    • Thea

      eatyourbroccoli: That is SUCH an inspiring story!!! Thank you for taking the time to share it. That kind of story keeps us all going.

      • eatyourbroccoli

        TY Thea ! Greger Rocks !

    • Way to go. Thanks for sharing.

    • Richard Hachem

      Great story! I’d really like to know what your doctor said after seeing your results.

  • David A

    It could be that Canadian doctors recommend flax seed partly because so much of it is grown in that country. But be warned. Canadian flax is contaminated with GMO and banned in Europe and Japan.

    • Plantstrongdoc

      With this argument doctors in the US should recommend steak instead of statins, the english doctors should recommend bacon and the german doctors should recommend sausages with sauercraut….;-) Could be that the canadian doctors just know the science

    • David, thanks for the head’s up regarding GMO flax seeds, I purchase organic flax seeds at the local cooperative. It sounds like, based on your article and other sources that because organic flax seeds are organic, they would not be GMO. Having said that, thanks again as I’ll be sure to make sure that my friends and family purchase organic flax seeds.

  • airtec

    Ground flaxseed gives me a terrible headache. I’ve experimented to isolate the cause and I have no doubt it’s the flaxseed. I’m convinced of the health benefits of flax but at the cost of chronic headache, its not worth it to me. My question is, are there a percentage of people that experience headache when using flax, while others have no side effects? I can eat walnuts for the omega 3.

  • eatyourbroccoli

    Oops. I forgot to mention in my earlier post that 1-2 tablespoons of flax in our morning veg powder/veg protein smoothie very likely contributed to my wife’s lessened periodic monthly breast pain.
    Any research/comments out there regarding the pro/con effects of flax for males?

  • eatyourbroccoli

    (response to PlantstrongDoc) We went 100% plant based and dropped all cooking oils. Within a couple of weeks my/our palate(s) totally adjusted to the change. We now steam vegetables or sauté in a low sodium veg juice.
    Nuts, seeds and avocado are probably the biggest source of dietary oils we consume.

    • Vegangela

      Was it hard dropping the oils?

      • eatyourbroccoli

        Yep. But dropping dead would have been harder.

      • b00mer

        Hi Vegangela,

        Another oil-free vegan here. I dropped oils after already being vegan for some time. One day I decided to try the water saute method out of curiosity, and thought, that was easy! Sauteing and other just random additions of oil while cooking was probably the biggest source of oil in our diets and has been quite easy to do without. I don’t think about it or notice it.

        I still eat avocado when we have mexican, and I do eat nuts but just not as a main meal component (such as a cashew alfredo sauce) and do not snack on them. I use them in an accent or garnish fashion.

        I ended up losing 15 extra lbs I didn’t even realize I had in about a month and a half or so. fatfreevegan and happy herbivore are both good sources if you want to try it out.

  • E Page

    I started taking flax for the other benefits, having no clue it would help with my insane daily breast pain. I did not know the connection of not being in pain anymore until I saw this video. This Vegan thanks you so much!

  • Do hemp seeds have similar benefits to flax?

    • Veganrunner

      Look under browse topics. Those important questions are answered.

  • Im going to give this a try. I tried everything else. Had breast pain for 2years
    cause of my menopause…Had a full hysterectomy 2 years ago.

  • marisa

    so, is it really a “myth” that caffeine causes breast pain?

    • I haven’t come across studies linking caffeine to breast pain. I have not had any patients who have noticed a connection. Through the years caffeine has been linked to many disorders due to other activities associated with folks who drink caffeine. That said if you personally notice a connection it might be a factor for you.

  • Orly

    What about the effect of the phytoestrogens of flax on pregnant women? Is it safe to eat 2-3 spoons of flax a day while pregnant? What about small children?

    Another question is regarding the phytic acid. Is it true that flax is reach in phytic acid that makes it harder for the body to absorb nutrients? Should flax seeds be sprouted?

    • Toxins

      Phytic acid can have a binding effect on zinc and calcium but it also doubles as a potent antioxidant. Flax is not rich in calcium or zinc so I do not see this as an issue. Sprouting flaxseeds can have an extreme increase on the antioxidant content of foods.

  • Ilana

    I haven’t been able to find a good answer to this – which is better, brown or golden flax seeds? (Assuming both are organic and I buy whole and grind myself.)

  • Kate McConaughy

    Thank you so much for this amazing website! Q: Can one eat too much flaxseed? I drink 3/4 cup fresh ground a day, mixed water, cinnamon and honey. I am vegan and drink a lot of water. I feel great at 56 and all my vitals are within healthy range. Thank you.

    • Toxins

      Wow! That’s a lot of flax! In my opinion that seems like alot, as 600 calories each day is contributed solely to flaxseed. Dr. Greger typically recommends 2 tablespoons for the benefits. I do not know of specific studies showing ill effects from consuming too much flax.

  • a belgian

    Canada is great :-)

  • Come to think of it, all my PMS symptoms went away around the time I started eating 2 tablespoons of ground flax every day. Now I have nothing at all that makes me think my period is about to arrive, which is crazy because I’ve always had physical pre-mentrual symptoms. I thought it might have to do with the flax, because I’d read that people use flax in “seed cycling,” which naturapaths use to help women get on a regular menstrual cycle, but this video confirms it.

  • Alex

    Hello Dr. Greger, I have a tasty pancake recipe that replaces eggs with ground flax seed. Is heating ground flax seed safe and healthy?

  • VegEater

    The bad side is that flax seeds make endometriosis worse. They did for me, and I’ve read of it elsewhere as well.

  • hwr8006

    I was just Diogenes with stomach cancer signet ring cell carcinoma, waiting for scan to see how bad or stage. I heard that Cannabis Oil can help with killing the cells simillar to the flax seed which I starting drinking along with apple seeds. At this point I will try any herbal or natural substance.