WHAT IS SECOISOLARICIRESINOL DIGLUCOSIDE?
Secoisolariciresinol diglucoside (also known as SDG) is a lignan and phytonutrient (a group of chemical compounds that occur naturally in plants and have multiple health benefits but are not considered essential to human health) which has strong links with breast cancer prevention. In this article I will be taking a deeper look at secoisolariciresinol diglucoside and its main health benefits.
WHAT IS THE HISTORY OF SECOISOLARICIRESINOL DIGLUCOSIDE?
Awareness of the lignans dates back to the ancient Egyptians who used flaxseed as a food and medicine. However, the lignans were not discovered until relatively recently in 1956. Scientists became particularly interested in secoisolariciresinol diglucoside and the role it had to play in breast cancer prevention during the early 1980s.
WHAT ARE THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF SECOISOLARICIRESINOL DIGLUCOSIDE?
Secoisolariciresinol diglucoside is a powerful antioxidant which can protect your body’s cells from harmful free radicals (dangerous by products that are released into your body’s cells during oxygen related reactions). It is also a phytoestrogen (a substance that regulates estrogen levels and can prevent cancer, prevent heart disease, prevent osteoporosis (reduced bone mineral density) and relieve the negative symptoms associated with menopause).
However, since secoisolariciresinol diglucoside is a very recent discovery there is not enough evidence to confirm its other benefits in humans. The early signs are very promising but more research is required before its health benefits can be confirmed. The list below highlights the potential benefits of secoisolariciresinol diglucoside:
– Possibly increasing cardiovascular health (by protecting the heart from free radicals, reducing high blood pressure and lowering LDL cholesterol levels).
– Possibly preventing and treating various types of cancer (particularly breast cancer).
– Possibly preventing atherosclerosis (a condition where hard plaques form in the artery walls and restrict the flow of blood which ultimately increases your heart disease risk).
– Possibly preventing diabetes.
– Possibly preventing hyperlipidaemia (an abnormally high concentration of fats or lipids in the blood).
– Possibly preventing the accumulation of excess fats in the liver.
– Possibly reducing blood levels of low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (a type of cholesterol which can cause blockages in the arteries and increase your heart disease risk).
– Possibly reducing high blood pressure.
HOW MUCH SECOISOLARICIRESINOL DIGLUCOSIDE DO YOU NEED?
Secoisolariciresinol diglucoside is not classed as an essential nutrient so no official recommended daily allowance (RDA) has been established. However, most sources suggest a daily dose of between 25 milligrams (mg) and 50mg.
WHICH FOODS CONTAIN SECOISOLARICIRESINOL DIGLUCOSIDE?
Flaxseed is the best food source of secoisolariciresinol diglucoside with a 100 gram (g) serving containing 166mg of this lignan. The seeds listed below are also good sources of secoisolariciresinol diglucoside but the exact amounts they contain are not known:
– Pumpkin Seeds.
– Sesame Seeds.
– Sunflower Seeds.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF CONSUMING TOO MUCH SECOISOLARICIRESINOL DIGLUCOSIDE?
Currently there are no reported overdose symptoms associated with secoisolariciresinol diglucoside consumption. However, pregnant women and people suffering from cancer are advised to consult their doctor before consuming secoisolariciresinol diglucoside.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF FAILING TO CONSUME ENOUGH SECOISOLARICIRESINOL DIGLUCOSIDE?
Secoisolariciresinol diglucoside is not classed as an essential nutrient so no deficiency symptoms have been established.
SECOISOLARICIRESINOL DIGLUCOSIDE SUMMARY
Secoisolariciresinol diglucoside is a very recent nutritional discovery so the research on its health benefits in humans is still in the very early stages. However, the research that has been performed is very promising and suggests that this lignan has some serious disease fighting properties. Flaxseed can be purchased from most health food shops and can be easily added to many different meals and snacks. So give flaxseed a try and give your body a healthy dose of secoisolariciresinol diglucoside.
Benefits of Secoisolariciresinol Diglucoside (LiveStrong)
Flaxseed (University of Maryland Medical Centre)
Lignan Gold (BreakThruSeed)
List of Phytochemicals in Food (Wikipedia)
Secoisolariciresinol Diglucoside (Pure Matters)