What Is Hemp?
If you’ve heard about hemp before, it may be because of its close relationship to weed. Which brings us to our next question, is hemp the same as weed?
If this thought has crossed your mind, rest assured these two products are quite different. While they both come from the Cannabis sativa plant, hemp CBD products do not create psychoactive effects like traditional marijuana. Understanding the difference between hemp oil vs CBD oil is crucial, as most people commonly give hemp a bad rep because of its ties to marijuana.
What Are the Different Hemp Products Available?
What we love about the hemp plant is that every part has a purpose. Generally speaking, protein can be produced from the hemp seeds, fiber can be made out of the hemp stalk, and oils can be extracted out of the leaves and flowers.
When it comes to the wellness industry, CBD oil has swept the market as one of the most beneficial products that can support the body in a number of different ways. This oil can then be used to create hemp oil, topicals, lotions, and a number of ingestible products.
Another common way people use hemp products in their daily routine is through hemp seeds, or hemp hearts. These tiny seeds can be ingested as is, and serve as an excellent source of plant-based protein. Whole and unshelled hemp seeds look similar to large brown peppercorns. Inside the tough outer layer, you will find a softer, pleasantly chewy inner section. The tender little pieces inside are referred to as a hemp seeds or hemp heart.
Below, we’ll be further explaining the potential benefits of hemp on your health.
Nutritional Benefits of Hemp
Hemp seed hearts don’t slack in the nutrient department, offering an ample amount of macronutrients and several minerals.
The major nutritional benefit of eating hemp seeds is that they are a ‘complete protein,’ meaning that they contain all nine of your essential amino acids (like meat). Therefore, this is the perfect vegetarian, vegan or raw-food protein alternative! Hemp also contains polyunsaturated (cholesterol lowering) fatty acids. These essential fatty acids that come from the hemp seed make it an excellent plant-based protein that can be consumed by all.
In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) claims that an ideal omega-6 to omega-3 ratio is 4:1; hemp has a ratio of 3.75:1. This balance provides the body with health benefits such as optimal skin health, energy production, nervous system function, brain development, heart health, and immune system support.
What else comes with a heaping serving of hemp:
- Contains all 9 essential amino acids (known as a complete protein)
- Omega 3 + Omega 6 fatty acids (heart health, immunity and anti-inflammatory)
- Magnesium (70% of daily requirement)
- Iron (30% of daily requirement)
- Source of fiber (3g per 3Tbsp severing)
- Good source of phosphorous (vital for metabolism, our nervous system, hormone balance, energy)
- Good source of folate (important for women of childbearing age, body cell functioning)
- Vitamin E (antioxidant containing)
- Good source of potassium (heart health, builds muscle, electrolyte)
- Phytosterols (cholesterol lowering)
Though hemp seeds have only recently become popular within the wellness industry, they’re a staple food in many eastern societies and provide excellent value.
10 Ways to Eat Hemp
There are numerous opportunities to get more hemp into your diet. Here are 10 simple ways to incorporate the light, nutty flavor of hemp seeds, milk, and oil into your daily recipes.
- Blend seeds into a smoothie with berries, milk of choice and a splash of maple syrup. Save a few seeds to sprinkle over the top.
- Keep that blender out! Creamy and mild hemp milk is also a wonderful addition to smoothies.
- Lightly toasted hemp seeds make a crunchy, gluten-free coating for fish or chicken paired with a side of adaptogenic mushrooms for an extra dose of nutrition.
- Toss a layer of hemp seeds atop slices of avocado toast.
- Pulse hemp seeds and nuts in a food processor and press into a pie pan for a vegan and gluten-free tart crust.
- Add hemp seeds to pesto for a nut-free take on a classic pasta sauce.
- Cozy up with a hemp milk latte. Whisk espresso or strongly brewed coffee with steamed hemp milk, sweetener of choice and a dash of ground cinnamon, or sprinkle some cocoa in honor of traditional cacao ceremony elements.
- Whisk CBD hemp oil with fresh lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, pepper and a touch of minced garlic for a light and fresh salad dressing.
- Add 1/4 cup of hemp protein powder to your favorite snack bar or energy balls, it will add 14 grams of plant protein to the mix.
- Add a few handfuls of hemp seeds to any recipe for granola or when making baked goods.
Don’t know how to add hemp into your daily routine? Whether you go for a daily supplement or a potent CBD oil, there are many ways to use this powerhouse ingredient on a daily basis!