Flaxseed and the Grey Parrot

by Monica Gonzalez

 

  

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Organic Brown Rice with Flax Seeds sprinkled on top.History: Flax is a blue flowering crop grown on the Prairies of Canada for its oil-rich seeds. The seeds of flax are tiny, smooth and flat, and range in color from light to reddish brown. They serve a variety of purposes, including baking and other food uses.

People have eaten flaxseed since ancient times. Taste:  A pleasant, nutty flavor is one reason. Good nutrition is another.  Because of its link to good health, flaxseed is fast becoming a new food in many diets.

 Benefits:  To restore the balance between Omega-6 and Omega-3 essential fatty acids in your African Grey’s diet, you may want to include Flaxseeds every day.

  • Omega 3 fatty acids can reverse the damage that Omega-6 causes. Using a well-balanced ratio will ensure a healthier, fuller life with your feathered companion.

  • Omega 6 fatty acids can be found in corn, sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, and soybeans. A high intake of Omega 6 is known to cause clotting, constriction of the arteries, and a high risk of heart disease in humans and birds.

  • Omega-3 oils known to reduce heart attacks, diminishes allergies, clots, treat depression, improves diabetes, and shows potential in fighting cancer, especially hormone-sensitive cancers such as breast and prostate.

  • Diets rich in Omega 6 fatty acids and low in Omega 3 fatty acids have been known to cause low serotonin levels in the brain, which in turn causes depression. This can explain some of the behavioral issues we see today in birds like aggression, plucking, etc.

Flaxseeds are the richest commonly available seed source of alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3's). Eating whole flaxseed rather than flaxseed oils because you get the whole package: the protein, fiber, minerals and phytochemicals along with the omega-3.

Flaxseeds are also the best source of the phytochemical lignan. Flax contains 100 times the concentration of lignan as wheat bran, the second best source. Lignan is documented to have anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral and anti-cancer properties.

NOTE: Offer flaxseeds in small amounts to your bird’s healthy diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and other seeds. Flaxseed contains cyanogen, which can act to keep the thyroid from taking up enough iodine, but in small amounts is completely harmless. I sprinkle Flaxseed on my birds fresh food daily.

Flaxseed Raisin Bread Recipe

  • 1 1/4 C Water
  • 2 T Oil
  • 2 1/4 C Bread Flour
  • 1/4 C Ground Flaxseed
  • 1/2 C Wheat Flour
  • 1/4 C Sunflower Seeds
  • 1/4 C Brown Sugar
  • 1 1/2 t Salt
  • 2 1/2 t Yeast
  • 1/2 C Raisins (unsulphured)
  • 1/2 C Chopped Nuts

Bake on Wheat Cycle of Bread Machine.

NOTE: Do not use Bread Machines that have nonstick coating. Teflon is lethal to birds.

 

 

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