Posted by pauline 29 Comments


2 weeks ago, I had the chance to attend the David Wolfe‘s Sydney conference. I was really impressed by his knowledge not only in nutrition but also about heaps of other different subjects.


I learnt many interesting things but one of them was especially important:


Flax Oil is toxic for our liver!


The first thing you need to know is that fake oestrogen’s (the ones found in our food) are dangerous. Ok, this is common sense and you probably already knew that if you are interested in nutrition like I am. But something very interesting is that we can find those in foods you might have everyday! So keep your eyes wide open for those:


1. Soy


Ok, this is not new. But the big majority of people still don’t know that we have to be careful with soy products. We are finally starting to have studies that show us how soy is actually very bad for us and generates breast cancers, thyroid problems, foetus malformations when consumed by pregnant women, etc.

If you are not convinced about the dangers of consuming soy products regularly, I would recommend you to have a look at these 2 articles:


The Dark Side Of Soy by Alternet
Should We Worry About Soya In Our Food by the Guardian


Does that mean you should entirely avoid soy products? YES, especially processed ones like soy milk or drinks.

Fermented soy products like miso and tempeh are ok as fermentation breaks these oestrogen but I would’t recommend to eat them more than once or twice per week.


2. Flax seeds or linseeds


YES! I know, it was a breaking news for me too!

Flax seeds contain toxic oestrogen’s which are increasing our liver toxicity, especially if you eat them crushed or use their oil!

If you are using flax oil regularly, I would highly suggest to switch for hemp oil, which is great, contains all essential fatty acids and tastes better.


3. Tap water


Tap water is containing fake oestrogen’s, which are harmful for our health. Everyone reacts differently to that, some might be very sensitive and others might not feel anything. In any cases, it’s important to be aware of it. Water directly from the spring is definitely the best thing to choose but is not possible for most of us. Bottled water has become a popular option but there are growing concerns about the chemicals from the plastic. So do the best you can with what you have. Filters and ionizers are also hugely helpful.


All these toxic oestrogen are very dangerous for our liver (as they are stored in our liver) and our general health. If you think you have been exposed to fake oestrogen’s or if you just want to detox and support your liver, there is a way to detoxify it – without having to do coffee enemas ;)


The main thing you have to do to detoxify your liver is to have high levels of the metal group in your food intake to help the detoxification process. Vitamins B6, B9 and B12 are great metal donors for example, so you will want to use foods rich in these B vitamins.


Here are the main foods to help you detoxify your liver:


Egg yolk 

You can use egg yolk, as raw as possible to detoxify your liver (the cooking process removes the metals) but be aware that raw egg whites, eaten too often, are not good neither. So the best would be to eat poached eggs with the yolk as raw as possible.


Beetroot juice

Beetroot juice is a great liver detoxifier. Starting your day with a fresh, organic beetroot juice is one of the best things you could do. Mix it with cucumber, lemon, ginger and celery for a great combination!


Goji berries

Gojis are great because they contain high levels of metal as well as good metal donors (Vit B6, B9 and B12). Add them to your breakfasts, salads, smoothies or eat them plain as a snack.


Raw food

Raw foods contains much more metals and vitamins compared to cooked foods, which have a low level of metals and vitamins. Having at least 51% of your food intake raw is great not only to detoxify but for many other benefits such as enzymes and vitamins.


You can also dissolve toxic oestrogen’s found in your water or food by using citrus juice and peels. For example boiling citrus peels with your tea is great to dissolve bad oestrogen and will also help anti-ageing as it’s full of antioxidant!


Share this week’s tweetable: Flax oil is toxic for your liver! Learn why & how to detox @Pauline_Hanuise @DavidWolfe



Have you been using these products regularly or were you already aware of their toxicity? Share in the comments below if you are using them regularly and what alternatives you will start using (or are already using). Share your favourite ones and let’s inspire each other!


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This Post Has 29 Comments

  1. Jessica Nazarali says:

    Very interesting post Pauline – so shocking about flaxseed oil!

  2. pauline says:

    Yes I know! When he said the whole auditorium said “what?”
    I think it’s great to be aware of it ;)

  3. Username* says:

    you might want to remove your recipes that contain tofu and flax seed if you are telling people NOT to eat it :)

    • pauline says:

      The recipes containing tofu and flax were already published before I learned they were not very good for your health.
      I am not removing them as it’s up to you to decide what you want to do.
      I am still eating flax seeds from time to time for example. I think everyone is free to choose what’s good for him/her ;)

  4. wwceaton says:

    This is the first time I have seen an article that says flax oil is bad for you. I eat the the organic flax meal in my yogurt. I read so many good things about the seeds whether whole or ground which I wouldn’t do whole anyways we wouldn’t digest them properly. What’s a good replacement for the ground flax meal? I’m looking to flush out any extra estrogen I don’t need.

    • pauline says:

      Yes I know, I was really shocked when hearing that too. But David Wolfe is someone very reliable. I would suggest hemps seeds, definitely. They have all the benefits of flax, even more and are delicious! xoxo

  5. chloeh says:

    I think this is an interesting hypothesis that flaxseed is bad for you. A good reminder that even with supplements and foods we need to be careful that natural does not equal safe.

    However, it is important to look at the medical evidence in the literature that supports the toxic effects of flaxseed. There are no robust studies (even in rats) showing the toxic effects of flaxseed. In fact, flaxseed has been proven to reverse the effects of cisplatin induced hepatotoxicity (liver toxicity due to chemo in cancer patients) because of its intrinsic biochemical/antioxidant properties. Another study showed the benefits of PUFAs (polyunsaturated fatty acids) on protecting the kidney from similar drug induced (anti hypertensive) toxicity. These are just some examples. Food for thought

    • pauline says:

      Thanks for sharing Chloe, This is super interesting. I don’t think there are indeed many studies about that yet. I think it’s based on David Wolfe experimentations and observations. I think the future will tell us.

  6. Danielle Stein says:

    Whoa! Awesome post. I cant believe that about flax oil and crushed flax seed. Thanks for the info! David Wolfe rocks.

  7. Andrea says:

    I have no idea who this supposed expert is. Next thing you know, he’ll be telling people that cotton seed oil and palm oil are good for you!
    The general consensus on flax, especially eaten in its natural state (not as an oil or a supplement), is that it has a positive effect on the liver and on other aspects of health.
    Just a few examples:

    • pauline says:

      Thanks for sharing Andrea.
      David Wolfe is quite well-known for his work but indeed he mentioned the oil especially and the grinned seeds.
      I think whole seeds can still be eaten without any issues. And there are definitely a lot of people/articles saying this is good for you. Personally, I would recommend moderation, like for everything. On my side, I am not using the oil anymore. I just eat the whole seeds occasionally.

  8. Helen says:

    I daresay I was a bit shocked at this also but I have learnt over the years to not take somebody’s word for something – doesn’t matter who he or she is. Does he has proof and where is it. Unless he can cite sources then I will take what he is saying with a grain of salt. I have looked up a few websites and not one of them has come out saying flaxseeds are bad for us. If he can prove it I will listen to him but unless he has some concrete evidence then no thanks. It seems like he is the only one saying it He is only one person and why should I take his word for it. No thanks! Even if he is reliable doesn’t mean he is right.

  9. Andrew says:

    Is there a test or indicator that suggests a liver detox would be beneficial, and is there a similar test that shows the benefit of actually completing the liver detox. A sort of ‘before and after’ measurement? Any suggestions (not suggestion’s ;-) ) gratefully received.

    • pauline says:

      Thanks for sharing Andrew. I don’t know any test like that but I would suggest to have a look at your diet. Do you have caffeine every day for example? How often are you drinking alcohol, sugar, soy based products, etc…
      Also, experiencing regular pain (like cramps) around the liver area is definitely a sign that the liver would benefit from a little rest ;)

  10. Penelope says:

    Arrrgh! No, not flaxseed!!
    I make a superfood cereal with LSA as it’s base!! (as I am gluten intolerant)
    Hopefully the Goji’s and my 80% Raw Vegan diet will offset this down side?
    Keep up the good work xo

  11. Ivy Ferrero says:

    Hi Pauline, I live in Australia and so far I have not been able to find Hemp seed. Can you help me find it? Thank you.

  12. Mel says:

    Thanks for sharing. I have just recently signed up and I am loving your work. I have actually heard this about flax seed oil before from an Australian Chiropractor Dr Jennifer Barham-Florenni and I haven’t touched it since. But because nothing has ever been said since I had just put both on the shopping list. I will now be removing them! Once again thanks and love your work x

  13. Carlie says:

    THanks for this story…flax has sent me to the ER twice with elevated heart rate and high blood pressure and panicky feeling. I cannot even smell it now without a reaction….there are many of us who are allergic, but are also healthy minded…..they stick it in everything now…..

    • pauline says:

      Thanks for sharing Carlie!
      Yes flax is actually toxic and we can definitely react when having it in too high doses, especially the oil, which is very concentrated.
      Most of us still think it’s good for you but I think we should be very careful indeed ;)

  14. travelingbarb says:

    This article has distraught me.. :( I am not too sad about flax seed, but the part about soy. I LOVE EVERYTHING SOY!!! I´m going to read the other links you posted, but are there no “outs” for soy? Is it really every thing that has to do with soy? And regardless of who or what we are? (can you tell? I´m desperate. The struggle between love and health, haha).

    I am very happy to read that line on beetroots though and will be drinking more beetroots (until you publish that they´re bad too and then I´ll cry and complain to you again).

    • pauline says:

      ha ha ha :D No worries with beetroots lovely! You can go ahead with them.
      Soy, especially when it’s highly processed (like soy milk for example), is not that great. That doesn’t mean you should go cold turkey ;)
      Try to find alternatives. Fermented soy – like tempeh – is still alright a couple of times per week for example ;)


  15. David says:

    Hi. Interesting and slightly concerning article re. the flaxseed oil. I’m a cancer patient following a natural treatment which is largely based on Dr Budwig’s cancer protocol. The main part of this protocol is the daily mix of flaxseed oil and quark cheese (or cottage cheese). When mixed thoroughly, the cheese apparently looses all of its casein and lactose, and the two ingredients bring out the best beneficial qualities in the other.
    Details can be found on the Budwig Centre’s website.
    So, at the moment I’m committed to taking quite a high dose of daily flaxseed oil- (6 tablespoons). This protocol has worked well for many and has been the main agent in their being totally healed of many types of cancer.
    I guess I now have to find out if substituting hempseed oil for the flaxseed oil would have the same cancer fighting effect. Any guesses?

    • Timmer says:

      David, hi!… I hope things are going well for you. I just stumbled onto Pauline’s website this morning. I was disturbed by her article on flaxseed oil and left her the following comment [and, oh, by the way, although hemp oil is good, flaxseed oil has a far greater ratio of omega-3's to omega-6's]…

      Wrong, wrong, wrong!!! You are about 180° off when it comes to flaxseed oil. Flaxseed oil (omega-3′s) are electron rich and negatively charged and, thus, have an affinity for attracting oxygen to cells. If there is a perception that flaxseed oil is toxic to the liver, my guess is that it is because that that oxygen is doing its part in clearing up toxins from your body. Those toxic byproducts have to be processed out of your body and will put an extra load on your liver, your kidneys and/or your skin. I highly recommend you read the article on the Budwig Protocol found on – keep in mind that the protocol is more than just flaxseed oil and cottage cheese, it is also about a healthy diet and sunshine.

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