Linseed oil, also known as flax seed oil or simply flax oil, is a clear to yellowish drying oil derived from the dried ripe seeds of the flax plant (Linum usitatissimum, Linaceae). It is obtained by pressing, followed by an optional stage of solvent extraction. Cold-pressed oil obtained without solvent extraction is marketed as flaxseed oil.
It is a traditional finish for gun stocks, but a very fine finish may require months to obtain. Several coats of linseed oil is the traditional protective coating for the raw willow wood of cricket bats, and thus has a special cultural place in cricket-playing countries.
Fire departments treat the wood handles of hand tools that have metal implements (axes, plaster hooks etc.) on them with Linseed oil as it does not create static electricity, unlike synthetic wood finishes like varnishes.
Linseed oil is also commonly used as a lubricant/protectant for wooden recorders.
Although flax seeds themselves contain lignans, a class of phytoestrogens considered to have antioxidant and cancer preventing properties, the extracted linseed oil does not contain the lignans found in flax seed, and therefore does not have the same antioxidant properties. In fact, flax seed oil is easily oxidized, and rapidly becomes rancid with an unpleasant odor unless refrigerated. Even when kept under cool conditions it has a shelf life of only a few weeks. Oil with an unpleasant or rancid odour should be discarded. Rancid oils contribute to the formation of free radicals and may be carcinogenic. Oxidation of flax seed oil is major commercial concern, and antioxidants may be added to prevent rancidification.
|Typical Fatty Acid Content||%|
Nutrition information from the Flax Council of Canada.
Per 1 Tbsp (14 g)
Flax seed oil contains no significant amounts of protein, carbohydrates, or fibre.
Biohydrogenation, Duodenal Flow, and Intestinal Digestibility of Trans Fatty Acids and Conjugated Linoleic Acids in Response to Dietary Forage:Concentrate Ratio and Linseed Oil in Dairy Cows
Aug 01, 2004; ABSTRACT Duodenal flows of hydrogenation intermediates in response to changes in dietary forage:concentrate ratio (F:C) and...
Relationship Among Trans and Conjugated Fatty Acids and Bovine Milk Fat Yield Due to Dietary Concentrate and Linseed Oil
Feb 01, 2005; ABSTRACT Effects on fatty acid profiles and milk fat yield due to dietary concentrate and supplemental 18:3n-3 were evaluated in...
Milk fatty acids in dairy cows fed whole crude linseed, extruded linseed, or linseed oil, and their relationship with methane output1
Oct 01, 2009; ABSTRACT This experiment studied the effect of 3 different physical forms of linseed fatty acids (FA) on cow dairy performance,...