Flax Bread Recipe, A Skin Friendly Bread Substitute

Giving up bread is probably one of the hardest dietary changes for many acne patients. Most people in Western cultures have grown up eating bread. As food it’s easy, convenient, portable and fast, and that’s why we are so addicted to it.

Unfortunately bread can be a real disaster for your skin. As far as your body is concerned most breads are not that different from sugar. The carbohydrates are digested and absorbed quickly, and in people with insulin resistance this can cause insulin spikes, which of course makes hormonal acne go crazy. Most bread also contains gluten, which can be a problem for some people.

Luckily there are bread substitutes that give you the taste and feel of bread (or thereof) without harming your skin. Today I wanted to share one such recipe with you: flaxseed bread. One of the best things about this bread is that you can go from raw ingredients to warm bread at hand in just 15 minutes. This version of flax bread also tastes fairly similar than ‘real’ bread. Another good thing is that you can do this in a microwave oven – a real plus if you live in a part of the world where ovens are not that common.

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 cup flaxseeds
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs (I use omega-3 eggs to improve the fatty acid balance)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 tbsp vanilla (I used liquid vanilla extract)

And here’s what you do with them:

  • Grind the flaxseeds and chop the walnuts
  • In bowl #1 mix all the dry ingredients
  • In bowl #2 beat the eggs lightly and mix with the other wet ingredients

Until you get something like this.



Flax bread step 1

Then combine everything in bowl #3.

Flax bread step 2

Grease a microwave casserole or another microwave safe dish (I use olive oil). The dish should be about 8 inch in diameter, so that when you pour in the mixture it doesn’t get too thick, or deep (0.5 to 1 inch is good). Pour everything into the greased dish. I have some dish made of silicone, it’s oven and microwave safe.

Flax bread step 3

Nuke with full power for 5 to 6 minutes. And you should get something like this.

flax-bread2

flax-bread3

flax-bread1

You can also try adding some cinnamon to give this a bit of a different flavor.

This recipe yields about 10 servings. Here are the nutrition facts for a single serving (according to nutritiondata.com):

  • 173 kcal
  • 15g fat
    • 2g saturated fat
    • 4.4g omega-3
    • 3.6g omega-6
    • 7g carbohydrates
    • 5g protein

And here’s the food summary from nutritiondata.com

Flax bread nutrition facts

As you can see, this bread is 72% fat and only 15% carbs, and most of the fat is either mono- or polyunsaturated, so this is very good for blood sugar and insulin levels. Not to mention that it tastes good and is ready in 15 to 20 minutes.

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About Me

Hi, I am Acne Einstein(a.k.a. Seppo Puusa). I'm a bit of a science nerd who is also passionate about health. I enjoy digging through medical journals for acne treatment gems I can share here. You can read more about my journey through acne and how I eventually ended up creating this.

References

19 thoughts on “Flax Bread Recipe, A Skin Friendly Bread Substitute

  1. Does the recope call for a cup of ground flax seeds? Because i have the already ground flax seeds., thanks.. Eager to try it out! Looks yum

    • When I measured the cup I used whole flaxseeds. I don’t know to how many cups of already ground flaxseeds that translates to, but I suppose it will be quite a bit more than just a cup.

      I wouldn’t recommend using preground flaxseeds as the delicate fatty acids are exposed to oxygen and light and probably degrade quite quickly.

      I have to say this is pretty yummy. It has replaced oatmeal as my breakfast of choice 🙂

  2. Hey,

    Awesome blog, Seppo!

    I made a little experiment with Green Tea after reading your blog last night. I had about 20 bags of it and definitely noticed the impact! So, many thanks for sharing the knowledge. I hope the other readers will give it a try too.

    Now, I found this post very useful as well, but I wanted to boost the amount of carbs a little bit, so I replaced the Walnuts with Quinoa (1 cup Qui, 1/2 cup Flax). At first I was a little sceptical as the whole mix started to reek while I was blending/mixing it. However, the smell was pretty much gone after microwaving the dough, and the bread actually ended up tasting good!

    Once more, great stuff and thank you! Oh the Omega-3 post was very informative too. Respect!

    -Uusi Lukija

    • Glad to hear you like the blog!

      First time I made this bread I was surprised how good it tasted. I like to eat this with liver sausage/liver pate.

      Thanks for sharing your variation of the recipe. For me, one of the main attractions of this recipe is the relatively low carbohydrate content. I can still have some convenient and easy to eat food without overloading my body with carbohydrates.

  3. Heh, yeah I totally get the attraction for low carbohydrate content. In fact, I should have gone with your recipe too, since I had a little breakout yesterday after blasting my body with all those carbs. ;D

    I’m so used to eating large amount of them in one meal because taking Zinc allowed me to do so for a long time. Now, I have quit taking this supplement for various reasons, so I guess I have to learn to be more patient with my carb intake.

    • I should clarify that I don’t think carbohydrates are bad as such. Eating a lot of them puts a big insulin load on your body and that can aggravate acne. But in moderate amounts they are ok. I just like to eat less carbs at home since eating out almost always involves carbs.

  4. When I had my only acne free period in 37 years [on Atkins] I kept my carbs at 10g a day. It wasn’t easy restricting like that despite what I read on some sites. And I got constipation and more. So I gave up eventually. I regard this as possibly my worst ever decision. Carbs send my blood sugar way up. I still restrict but since my NAC/Milk Thistle success I am now eating lots of greens. I’ve not counted my daily carbs. I’m also taking liberties with nuts and the odd tomato. Last week i made som tam using 2 tbsp of palm sugar. I know the jury’s out on whether palm sugar/white sugar are as bad for blood sugar but I had no reaction. That might not have been the case if I wasn’t on the MT/NAC, mind.

    Anyway, talking of flax, when I came off Atkins but still watching carbs, I used to use flax meal. It did nothing to beat my constipation [some find it does help] but never raised blood sugar much so I kept taking it. Just add hot water. You could add cinnamon as well. Or, if you can handle fruit [I can’t/couldn’t?], add some blue or black berries. Alternatively [or as well] add whey protein powder[make sure it’s a low carb one]. Flax + protein powder can make a sort of creamy texture which is nice.

  5. I think people with thyroid problems (and some women with PCOS have thyroid problems in addition to acne) should be careful with flaxseed. It’s a great laxative but after eating a little more of it I start having this weird sensation in my thyroid. My cousin has Hashimoto so I’m also at risk. Start with a little bit flaxseed and see the effects first.

    • Yep, flax may be problematic for women with PCOS, especially women who are on the thin side. Apparently phytoestrogens can trick the body into thinking estrogen levels are higher than they actually are, or perhaps bind into estrogen receptors and thus block real estrogens, but without providing the benefits of estrogens. This can aggravate PCOS, and perhaps even hormonal acne, for thin women.

      Stefani from PaleoForWomen.com talks about this, but I have never seen good scientific data to back this up, so I can’t say for sure.

      I had not heard of phytoestrogens affecting thyroid function, but a quick look at PubMed shows this could be real. I found one study that showed a 3-fold increase in developing overt hypothyroidism in hypothyroid patients who consume large amounts of soy.

      https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21325465

  6. Soy also doesn’t agree with my body although small quantities seem to be OK. However, I don’t really like it and I’m happy I have another excuse not to be a vegetarian.
    Seppo, do you think that phytoestrogens could cause acne for some women (and maybe men) because of the effect on the thyroid? After all, it is a very important gland and regulates sex hormones as well as far as I know.
    If you cannot tolerate flaxseed, I think you can try this recipe with coconut instead. I have also seen sweet potato flour and once I had sweet potato bread and it was one of the best things I’ve tasted. I’m not sure sweet potato starch is easily available though.

    • I would rather not speculate on this too much because I’m not that familiar with thyroid and how it affects the rest of the body, which sounds like a massive topic. In Clear for Life I did point out that a handful of studies have shown thyroid hormones can affect sebum production. If I remember correctly higher thyroid activity increases sebum production. But thyroid hormones could very well have other effects that counter the increase in sebum production, so I wouldn’t go as far as to say thyroid affects acne.

  7. Hey Seppo

    I’m so glad I found this article. I gave up bread about 6 weeks ago and have been looking for a substitute. I made this bread and it came out amazing!
    I wanted to say thanks!

    Just had one question I’ve never really had much flax seeds and when searching the Internet some say flax made acne worse and some say its good for skin. I’m so confused about it. Any input? Thanks again

    • Glad to hear you liked it. Most people shouldn’t have any problems with flax seeds. They are quite rich in phytoestrogens, so they may be a problem for thin women with hormonal acne. But other than that they should be ok.

      If you google paleo bread or low carb bread, you should be able to find several options. Many recipes use coconut or almond flour instead of flax seeds.

  8. This was so good. Can I cook it in the regular oven? Is the idea that microwaves are bad for you a myth? I read a Mercola article about it a few years ago.

    • It’s utter nonsense. Microwaves are actually among the safest ways to cook/heat food. They cause less nutrient loss than just about every other form of cooking, with the possible exception of steaming.

      I’m not sure if you can do this recipe in the oven, but there are plenty of similar recipes for oven cooking.

      • Awesome! I guess it was just fear mongering…

        Just made another batch tonight with the cinnamon. Delicious.

        • Unfortunately yes, it’s just fear-mongering against they perceive as modern, man-made or ‘unnatural’. They cherry-pick facts to support their position. They often quote a study that shows microwave cooking destroys something like 70+% of nutrients in broccoli. What they don’t mention that in the study the broccoli was immersed in water. It’s the water that leeches out the nutrient. Steam-cooking in microwave preserves most of the nutrients.

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