A study in the August 18 issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology discovered that lignans—compounds found in high levels in sesame and flax seeds—can help prevent or slow weight gain over time. Although they are found in a variety of plant-based foods, flax and sesame seeds are especially rich in the compound. The study followed 1,000 women over the course of 10 years and analyzed their urine samples for two specific compounds called enterodiol and enterolactone, which emerge when the gut breaks down lignans in foods. Research concluded that having higher levels of these compounds, and by effect lingans in women’s diets, resulted in less weight gain over time.
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