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Flax Seeds vs Walnuts: Which Is Healthier?

This article explains the key similarities and differences between flax seeds and walnuts, foods from the nuts and seeds group. Read on to learn more about the flax seeds vs walnuts comparison.
Catherine Toledo, Journalist

Written by Catherine Toledo, Journalist. Updated on December 29, 2022.

Flax Seeds and walnuts belong to the nuts and seeds food group, an important group for a healthy diet, as they provide a wide range of essential nutrients, such as protein, healthy fats, dietary fiber, and vitamins and minerals.

In this article, we’ll put a spotlight on flax seeds and walnuts and compare their similarities and differences.

They both provide a variety of nutrients and are relatively high in calories, like other nuts and seeds.

Flax Seeds

Flax seeds (Linum usitatissimum) are small, golden, or brown seeds that have a nutty and slightly earthy flavor.

These seeds have been used for centuries as food and for their medicinal properties and are now gaining popularity as a health food.

Flax seeds are a good source of fiber, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids, making them a valuable addition to a plant-based diet.

They are also high in lignans, which are plant compounds that have been shown to have antioxidant and estrogen-like effects.

There are many ways to incorporate flax seeds into your diet. They can be eaten raw or ground into a meal and can be added to various dishes, including smoothies, baked goods, and even savory dishes.

Flax seeds are also available in oil form, which can be used as a healthy alternative to vegetable oil in cooking.

It is important to note that flax seeds should be ground before consumption, as the whole seeds may pass through the digestive system undigested.

They should also be stored in the refrigerator or freezer to keep them fresh and prevent them from going rancid.

If you want to add more fiber, protein, and healthy fats to your diet, consider giving flax seeds a try. They are versatile, nutritious, and may have various health benefits.

Flax Seeds are an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine).

They also contain a good amount of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and Vitamin B9 (Folate) and some Vitamin K.


Walnuts (Juglans regia) are a type of nut that is native to the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere.

These nuts have a slightly sweet and bitter flavor and are often used in sweet and savory dishes.

Walnuts are a good source of nutrients, including protein, fiber, and various vitamins and minerals.

They are also a good source of healthy fats, including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.

There are many ways to incorporate walnuts into your diet. They can be eaten raw or roasted and are often used in baking or as a topping for salads and other dishes.

Walnuts are also available in various forms, including whole, chopped, and ground into flour.

Walnuts are widely available and can be found at most grocery stores.

They are often sold roasted or raw and can be purchased with or without the shell.

If you’re looking for a tasty and nutritious nut to add to your diet, consider giving walnuts a try. They are flavorful, versatile, and have a variety of health benefits.

Walnuts are an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), and Vitamin B9 (Folate).

They also contain a good amount of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), and Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid) and some Vitamin B3 (Niacin), and Vitamin E.

Flax Seeds vs Walnuts Nutrition

Now that we’ve described the origin, taste, and usage of these foods, we can move to the most interesting part – comparing flax seeds vs walnuts.

This comparison will start by comparing the caloric value of flax seeds and walnuts and their macronutrients and then go more in-depth by analyzing their vitamin and mineral contents.

Flax SeedsWalnuts
Energy534 kcal654 kcal
Carbs28.9 g13.7 g
Sugar1.55 g2.61 g
Fiber27.3 g6.7 g
Protein18.3 g15.2 g
Fat42.2 g65.2 g
Saturated Fat3.66 g6.13 g

Flax Seeds vs Walnuts Calories

Nuts and seeds are generally high in calories; the same goes for flax seeds and walnuts, so you should consume them in moderation.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), a proper serving is one ounce, which is roughly equal to 1/4 cup or 28 grams.

To keep the portions under control, the amounts correspond to one serving size: 14 walnut halves, 16 cashews, 24 almonds, 28 peanuts, or 45 pistachios.

Comparing flax seeds vs walnuts for weight loss, flax seeds are slightly lower in calories, with 150 calories per serving, compared to 183 calories per serving of walnuts.

However, both flax seeds and walnuts can and should be a part of a healthy diet, and neither one shouldn’t be avoided if you’re looking to lose weight. It’s just important to eat them in moderation.

Flax Seeds vs Walnuts Protein

Nuts and seeds, including flax seeds and walnuts, are an important source of plant-based protein.

Flax Seeds offer around 16% more protein than walnuts.

Flax Seeds have 18.3 grams of protein per 100 grams (or 5.1g per serving), while walnuts have 15.2 grams of protein per 100 grams (or 4.3g per serving).

Flax Seeds vs Walnuts Carbs

Counting carbs can be important for some people for different reasons, including blood sugar control, weight management, or athletic performance.

It’s also important for people on a keto diet, so let’s compare the carbs content in flax seeds and walnuts.

The total amount of carbohydrates is around 53% higher in flax seeds than in walnuts. They have 28.9 grams per 100 grams, compared to 13.7 grams in walnuts.

There’s less sugar in flax seeds than in walnuts, 43% precisely.

One handful of flax seeds (28 grams) contains 0.4 grams of sugar, while the same amount of walnuts contains 0.7 grams.

Lastly, let’s take a look at the dietary fiber in flax seeds and walnuts.

Dietary fiber keeps the digestive system healthy and helps with weight management by promoting a sense of fullness.

With 7.6 grams of fiber per portion, flax seeds are a better source of fiber than walnuts which offer 1.9 grams per portion.

Flax Seeds vs Walnuts Fats

Like the other nuts and seeds, fats in flax seeds and walnuts are a great source of healthy unsaturated fats, naturally cholesterol free, and free of trans fats.

Total fat in flax seeds and walnuts:

  • Flax Seeds: 42.2 grams per 100 grams
  • Walnuts: 65.2 per 100 grams

Speaking of saturated fats, flax seeds are 39% lower in saturated fats.

Flax Seeds and walnuts contain 3.7 grams and 6.1 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, respectively.

Flax Seeds vs Walnuts Vitamins Content

This section will discuss the vitamin content of flax seeds and walnuts.

Vitamins are micronutrients, meaning we need only a small amount. However, they are very important for many processes in our bodies.

Flax Seeds have a higher amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), vitamin B9 (Folate), and vitamin E.

However, walnuts have a higher amount of vitamin B1 (Thiamine), vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), vitamin B3 (Niacin), vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and vitamin K.

Flax Seeds and walnuts contain the same amount of vitamin D, and vitamin B12 (Cobalamin).

The following table shows the exact amount of vitamins flax seeds and walnuts contain side by side, so you can easily compare them.

Flax SeedsWalnuts
Vitamin A020 IU
Vitamin C0.6 mg1.3 mg
Vitamin D00
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)1.64 mg0.341 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.161 mg0.15 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)3.08 mg1.12 mg
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)0.985 mg0.57 mg
Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)0.473 mg0.537 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folate)87 µg98 µg
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)00
Vitamin E0.31 mg0.7 mg
Vitamin K4.3 µg2.7 µg

Flax Seeds vs Walnuts Minerals Content

Minerals are important for our body to function properly. We need only a small amount of minerals, so they are called micronutrients.

Some minerals, like iron, calcium, zinc or, iodine, are relatively hard to get on a plant-based diet, so it’s important to choose your foods thoughtfully. This part of the flax seeds and walnuts comparison focuses on their mineral content.

Flax Seeds are a better source of copper, and manganese than walnuts.

On the other hand, walnuts have a higher amount of calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sodium, and zinc.

Flax Seeds and walnuts contain the same amount of fluoride.

Check out the table below to learn how flax seeds and walnuts compare when it comes to mineral contents.

Flax SeedsWalnuts
Calcium255 mg98 mg
Copper1.22 mg1.59 mg
Iron5.73 mg2.91 mg
Magnesium392 mg158 mg
Manganese2.48 mg3.41 mg
Phosphorus642 mg346 mg
Potassium813 mg441 mg
Selenium25.4 µg4.9 µg
Sodium30 mg2 mg
Zinc4.34 mg3.09 mg

The Final Word

Flax Seeds and walnuts are highly nutritious and excellent sources of plant-based protein and healthy fats.

Although they are relatively high in calories, they are essential to a healthy, plant-based diet and are linked to many health benefits.

Both flax seeds and walnuts are high in specific vitamins and minerals, and including them in your diet will give you the most benefits they offer.

Nuts and seeds are versatile foods, and can be part of any meal or salad, just be sure to eat them moderately, as they are loaded with calories.

Nuts and seeds are versatile foods and can be part of any meal or salad, just be sure to eat them moderately, as they are loaded with calories.


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