Does Flax Seed Oil Have a Role in the Treatment of Dry Eye Syndrome

Flax seed oil is commonly recommended as source high in omega 3 fatty acids; however, is it an efficient source of bio-available omega 3 fatty acids

For strict dietary vegans flax may be the only option of increasing the omega 3 fatty acids, albeit an inefficient one. However, for most people flax seed oil’s role is very limited in the treatment of dry eye syndrome. Flax seed meal on the other hand may have a limited role.

The biggest disadvantages to using flax seed oil is that you can’t cook with it (it is not stable above 160° F), it must be refrigerated and it has a short shelf life. Flax seed meal, on the other, hand can be used as a shortening substitute, has a very high fiber content, has a much longer shelf life and can be used in baking. Therefore, I would only recommend flax seed oil if someone did not like the texture of the flax seed meal or flax meal would be inappropriate in a particular recipe. One of flax seed meal’s greatest advantages is it’s high fiber content therefore, I would recommend flax seed meal in baking to increase our dietary fiber and any ALA converted to the omega fatty acids is just an extra bonus.

In addition, flax seeds are not digested by our bodies and should not be considered as a dietary source of fiber or omega 3 fatty acids. The flax seed’s shell is very hard and must be crushed if our bodies are to utilize it.

Our Recommendation

At Total Eye Care we recommend the triglyceride form of Omega-3 fatty acids for patients suffering from dry eye syndrome. The dosage is 2 capsules twice a day which will provide approximately 2200mg of omega 3 fatty acids. For patients with severe dry eye symptoms they take 2 capsules three times a day with meals. With all of the dry eye syndrome treatments available patients should not be suffering from dry eyes. If you are experiencing any type of ocular discomfort call our office for a dry eye consultation. We are happy to help.

About Total Eye Care

The comprehensive services available from the staff and eye doctors at Total Eye Care allow us to take care of patients of all ages.  We also have an onsite ophthalmic lab to make your glasses quickly and accurately.  Our optical keeps almost 1000 frames in stock to fit any face large or small.  Especially helpful when buying glasses for children is our “bring us the pieces” eyeglass warranty. We are also on all of the major insurance plans.