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Flaxseed oil is a rich source of important fatty acids, such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, that the body needs to develop properly. Although it is often used to reduce the risk of heart disease, it may also be effective in treating attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in children. Because the appropriate dose for children has not yet been determined, however, you should talk to a pediatrician before giving a child flaxseed oil.
The University of Maryland Medical center recommends 1 to 2 tablespoons or one to two capsules per day for adults but does not list a recommended dose for children 1. MedlinePlus does not contain a recommended dose for children and notes that the appropriate dose depends on the person's age, general health and other factors, so the appropriate dose is still being studied.
Playing It Safe
The Use of Peppermint Oil in Children
One important consideration when giving a child flaxseed oil is safety. Doses of greater than 30 grams may cause diarrhea and loose stools. In addition, flaxseed oil may increase bleeding risks or interfere with some medications. Talk to a doctor before giving a child flaxseed oil to ensure that it is safe.
- One important consideration when giving a child flaxseed oil is safety.
- In addition, flaxseed oil may increase bleeding risks or interfere with some medications.
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- University of Maryland Medical Center: Flaxseed Oil
- Goyal A, Sharma V, Upadhyay N, Gill S, Sihag M. Flax and flaxseed oil: an ancient medicine & modern functional food. J Food Sci Technol. 2014;51(9):1633-53. doi:10.1007/s13197-013-1247-9
- Ren GY, Chen CY, Chen GC, et al. Effect of flaxseed intervention on inflammatory marker C-reactive protein: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Nutrients. 2016;8(3):136. doi:10.3390/nu8030136
- Okinyo-Owiti DP, Dong Q, Ling B, et al. Evaluating the cytotoxicity of flaxseed orbitides for potential cancer treatment. Toxicol Rep. 2015;2:1014-1018. doi:10.1016/j.toxrep.2015.06.011
- Lowcock EC, Cotterchio M, Boucher BA. Consumption of flaxseed, a rich source of lignans, is associated with reduced breast cancer risk. Cancer Causes Control. 2013;24(4):813-6. doi:10.1007/s10552-013-0155-7
- Ramos CI, Andrade de Lima AF, Grilli DG, Cuppari L. The short-term effects of olive oil and flaxseed oil for the treatment of constipation in hemodialysis patients. J Ren Nutr. 2015;25(1):50-6. doi:10.1053/j.jrn.2014.07.009
- Styrczewska M, Kostyn A, Kulma A, et al. Flax fiber hydrophobic extract inhibits human skin cells inflammation and causes remodeling of extracellular matrix and wound closure activation. Biomed Res Int. 2015;2015:862391. doi:10.1155/2015/862391
- Ibrügger S, Kristensen M, Mikkelsen MS, Astrup A. Flaxseed dietary fiber supplements for suppression of appetite and food intake. Appetite. 2012;58(2):490-5. doi:10.1016/j.appet.2011.12.024
- Cetisli NE, Saruhan A, Kivcak B. The effects of flaxseed on menopausal symptoms and quality of life. Holist Nurs Pract. 2015;29(3):151-7. doi:10.1097/HNP.0000000000000085
- National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Flaxseed and flaxseed oil. Updated September 2016.
- O'Keefe A, Kapur S, Rex G, Watson W. Flax seed allergy in children: an emerging allergen? Allergy Asthma Clin Immunol. 2010; 6(Suppl 2):P6. doi:10.1186/1710-1492-6-S2-P6
- Hackshaw-McGeagh LE, Perry RE, Leach VA, et al. A systematic review of dietary, nutritional, and physical activity interventions for the prevention of prostate cancer progression and mortality. Cancer Causes Control. 2015;26(11):1521-50. doi:10.1007/s10552-015-0659-4
- Carleton AJ, Sievenpiper JL, De Souza R, McKeown-Eyssen G, Jenkins DJ. Case-control and prospective studies of dietary α-linolenic acid intake and prostate cancer risk: a meta-analysis. BMJ Open. 2013;3(5). doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2012-002280
- Setayesh M, Sadeghifar AR, Nakhaee N, Kamalinejad M, Rezaeizadeh H. A topical gel from flax seed oil compared with hand splint in carpal tunnel syndrome: A randomized clinical trial. J Evid Based Complementary Altern Med. 2017;22(3):462-467. doi:10.1177/2156587216677822
- UW Medicine Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine. Medications to avoid before surgery.
- Mount Sinai Health Library. Flaxseed oil.
- Kajla P, Sharma A, Sood DR. Flaxseed--a potential functional food source. J Food Sci Technol. 2015;52(4):1857-71. doi:10.1007/s13197-014-1293-y
- Cockerell KM, Watkins AS, Reeves LB, Goddard L, Lomer MC. Effects of linseeds on the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome: a pilot randomised controlled trial. J Hum Nutr Diet. 2012;25(5):435-43. doi:10.1111/j.1365-277X.2012.01263.x
- Kaithwas G, Majumdar DK. Effect of L. usitatissimum (flaxseed/linseed) fixed oil against distinct phases of inflammation. ISRN Inflamm. 2013;2013:735158. doi:10.1155/2013/735158
- Ward HA, Kuhnle GG, Mulligan AA, Lentjes MA, Luben RN, Khaw KT. Breast, colorectal, and prostate cancer risk in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition-Norfolk in relation to phytoestrogen intake derived from an improved database. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010;91(2):440-8. doi:10.3945/ajcn.2009.28282
Adam Cloe has been published in various scientific journals, including the "Journal of Biochemistry." He is currently a pathology resident at the University of Chicago. Cloe holds a Bachelor of Arts in biochemistry from Boston University, a M.D. from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. in pathology from the University of Chicago.