This is a recipe for making a flax seed decoction by boiling the seeds for 20 minutes or more. Flax seeds are known as a mucilaginous food. Meaning when water is added it becomes slimy. Mucilaginous foods have several healing properties notably they sooth and heal membranes and tissues. Flax is a laxative and it acts as an anti-inflammatory. This makes it an ideal food as medicine remedy for long standing constipation, as not only does it help the body to eliminate waste it heals the intestinal tract as well. When consumed it is like a natural lubricant for the digestive tract.
Flax seeds are the richest plant source of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s play an important role in strengthening immunity and cleaning the heart and arteries. Flax seeds feature in many restorative diets for degenerative conditions such as arthritis, heart disease, cancer and osteoporosis.
In oriental medicine there are five elements Earth, Metal, Water, Wood and Fire. Each one relates to a different system in the body. Flax seeds are known to heal the Earth element (the digestive system) as well as the Metal element (immune system). In five element theory the Earth is the mother of Metal. By nourishing the mother we are nourishing the child. By improving our digestive function (Earth element) we improve our elimination system and strengthen our immunity (Metal element). This theory starts to explain the concept that good health begins with the gut.
How to Make a Flax Seed Decoction
Ingredients and Equipment
Organic Flax Seeds
Many Ice Cube Trays
Jar with a lid
- Put two heaped tablespoons of flax seeds into a large (larger than you think) saucepan
- Add 3 cups of water
- Bring to a boil and simmer for at least 15 to 20 minutes. Flax doesn’t seem to understand the concept of simmer. It seems to not reach boiling point or boil ferociously hence the large saucepan required. You never want flax to boil over as it is a very slimy mess to clean up.
- Allow to cool for a few minutes, don’t walk away because if you leave the decoction for too long it congeals into one enormous blob and is impossible to pour into ice cube trays.
- Strain the flax seeds out and pour the liquid into ice cube trays. Please be very careful pouring the very hot decoction. You may want to store enough for a few days in a jar in the fridge.
Using Flax Super Mover Decoction
When using your flax seed decoction (let’s call it goop) for constipated babies (6months+) or toddlers you may need to use 3-5 ice cubes per day or 2-3 cubes per meal until you start seeing the results you need. Your child may be happy to eat it neat or you may have to disguise it in meals. It doesn’t have a strong taste so can easily be added to purees, casseroles, soups etc. You can add it to smoothies or cereals easily as well.
Goop is best consumed warmed or at room temperature. Please don’t feed chilled goop to your child as cold foods can be damaging to an already compromised digestive systems. However if your child will only eat it as a frozen ice block then this is better than not at all. If you decide to store goop in a jar in the fridge (it lasts for several days) you may need to use soup spoons like chop sticks or tongs to separate out the amount you need!
Keep up the daily doses of goop until your child starts to experience a soft, easily passed, daily, bowel movement. If your child has a fissure or anal tear that needs to heal you may need to ensure your child has a slightly higher dose so every bowel movement is extremely soft and passed with no straining so the tissue can repair over 2-6 weeks.
Healing the Imbalance
The main goal of using the goop is to repair and or soothe internal tissue and create regular bowel movements. You don’t want to rely on goop as a long term strategy. Please consider combining food therapy with paediatric Acupuncture (there are no needles inserted) and Chinese Herbs to heal the underlying cause of the digestive imbalance. It is always best to work with a GP as well as a natural health practitioner.
Other Foods that Heal
Chia seeds are like flax seeds cousin. They can be used in combination with goop as another healing laxative. Soak 1-2 teaspoons of organic chia seeds in about half a cup of water. Some seeds will sit on the top of the surface and others clump in the middle so the mixture needs to be stirred a few times over 10 – 15 minutes. Then the mix can be consumed as is or added to foods. Delicious in healthy low sugar cakes, breads, smoothies or can be made into chia pudding.
Fruits that help constipation: Pears, figs, prunes, plums, ruby red dragon fruit, passion fruit, kiwi fruit, berries, paw paw, papaya, stone fruits. Don’t be alarmed if your child passes pink or reddish looking stools after eating ruby red dragon fruit.
Other beneficial foods include flora-enhancing fermented foods such as miso, sauerkraut, yoghurt and probiotic supplements. If avoiding dairy try sheep yoghurt instead of cow yoghurt as the enzymes are different and often more easily digested.
Encourage your child to eat a variety of whole grains, legumes, vegetables and fruits. If possible try to source organic or spray free options.
Foods to Avoid
When treating constipation it is best avoid nuts and nut butters. Try to avoid white flour and heavily processed foods, yeasted breads, refined white sugar and rice. Chocolate is also best avoided in very young children as it upsets their livers. Rice can also be very constipating as it can absorb large quantities of water. A great healing food for diarrhoea though!
Please share your success stories I love hearing about poos!
If you have any concerns always seek medical advice from your GP or nearest medical service.
B.HSci (Acupuncture), BEd, BA, Cert. Zen Shiatsu, Cert. Oriental & Wholefoods Nutrition