Skip to content
Flaxseed and Sports Nutrition
The following is a summary of a white paper entitled “Flaxseed and Sports Nutrition – A Winning Combination” written in March 2021 by Kelley Fitzpatrick, M.Sc., President of NutriScience Solutions and Editor of

The sports nutrition market is expected to expand in coming years due to increased interest from the general population. Key trends include a focus on exercise for overall wellness and protein as a “super-nutrient.” Sports nutrition products are no longer for athletes only as many active adults are looking to achieve the same benefits.

Flaxseed possesses numerous nutritional qualities that make it excellent for sports nutrition bars, drinks, and supplements. These include omega 3 fatty acids, high-quality protein, and antioxidants—all of which play distinct and important roles in exercise recovery and general health.

Omega 3 fatty acids, high-quality protein, and antioxidants make flaxseed excellent for sports nutrition bars, drinks, and supplements.

The essential omega 3 fatty acid found in flaxseed is alpha-linoleic acid (ALA). ALA contributes to sports nutrition by improving the metabolism of fats which is important for endurance, response time, and muscle repair. ALA also helps to lower the omega 6 to omega 3 ratio. High omega 6 intake alongside low omega 3 intake is common in the Western world. This can lead to an inflammatory state; further exacerbating inflammation brought on by intense exercise. ALA is involved in countless processes in the body and flaxseed contains the most ALA of any food source making it a valuable superfood for athletes and non-athletes alike.

One of the best recovery tools after a bout of exercise is to consume high-quality protein and carbohydrates. Flaxseed is a good source of quality protein due to its amino acid profile which includes glutamine, arginine, and branched-chain amino acids. Consuming flaxseed as a protein source can aid in recovery, immune function, muscle development, and maintenance of lean body mass. As people look for plant-based protein options, flaxseed will carry an advantage in the market.

Strenuous exercise increases oxygen consumption causing a disturbance of intracellular pro-oxidant-antioxidant homeostasis. Oxidative stress results in cell damage and plays a role in numerous disease states. The antioxidants contained in flaxseeds can help to balance this, thus aiding in recovery.

As more people realize that what aids sports performance aids everyday performance as well, the sports nutrition market will continue to grow. Flaxseed has the potential to be a powerful player in this space. Understanding and effectively communicating its numerous health benefits to consumers and manufacturers will be key to its success.

To read our white paper on Flaxseed and Sports Nutrition please click on the link below.

Back To Top