Our favorite superfood comes from flax, one of the oldest fiber crops in the world - known to have been cultivated in ancient Egypt and China. Also called 'linseeds,' flaxseeds are a rich source of micronutrients, dietary fiber, manganese, vitamin B1, and the essential fatty acid alpha-linoleic acid, also known as ALA or omega-3. They are so powerful that King Charlemagne of the 8th century believed so strongly in the health benefits of flaxseed that he demanded his loyal subjects eat the seeds and passed laws to make sure of it. The Latin name for flax is Linum usitatissimum, which means "the most useful," and we couldn't agree more. Omega 3's are considered essential because they are necessary for human health and your body can't make them on its own. You need to get your Omega 3's through the foods you eat and flax is the perfect way to add them to your diet. And, flax seeds are one of the best plant-based sources of omega 3's available. Plus, a recent study from Penn State University suggests that plant-based omega 3 sources such as flax are likely just as effective as the well-publicized marine sources in preventing cardiovascular disease.