Hemp is getting a lot of traction because of its perceived health benefits. It seems like everyone wants to try their hands on products derived from this plant.
What is Industrial Hemp?
Industrial hemp is a non-psychoactive variety of cannabis Sativa which is usually found in the northern hemisphere. Nobody knows how and where it was originated but historical records trace its origins to the Himalayan region in Asia.
There are several varieties of the cannabis plant—cannabis Sativa, cannabis indica, and cannabis ruderalis. Cannabis as a drug and industrial hemp are both derived from the species cannabis Sativa and contain the psychoactive component tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). It contains lower concentrations (less than 1%) of THC and higher concentrations of (cannabidiol), which means it can do a lot good for you instead of getting you high.
What is Hemp Seed?
Hemp seeds, also known as ‘hemp hearts’ (When Shelled), are small brown seeds that are rich in protein, soluble and insoluble fiber, and healthy fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6. These small, crunchy seeds are safe to consume and contain only low traces of THC.
These seeds are high in anti-oxidant effect and are known to improve heart health and reduce symptoms of ailments related to skin and joints. One can get the hemp seeds benefits by adding it in the meals as a whole or consumed in the form of powder for a well-balanced diet.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), roughly three tablespoons of hemp seeds contain about 116 calories and other nutrients mentioned below:
Total fatty acids
Monounsaturated fatty acids
Saturated fatty acids
These seeds are also a great source of vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin E, calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc, etc.
Hemp seeds are readily available as shelled (also called “hemp Hearts”), grounded or split and a special thing about hemp seed is that it can be used in almost all varieties of foods for a healthy diet.
The seed shells act as a bulking agent and add fiber to the diet aiding indigestion.
Nutritional Benefits of Hemp Seeds
- Protein Power: Hemp seeds are valued for being complete protein, containing all 21 amino acids, including all 9 essential amino acids. It’s important to consume essential amino acids through food as our bodies cannot produce them naturally.
- Essential Fatty Acids: Hemp seeds contain an ideal amount of omega-6 and omega-3 essential fatty acids. These fatty acids cannot be synthesized by the body but are required to support a wide range of cellular processes in the body, including the proper function of the heart and brain.
- Full of Nutrients: Hemp seeds are also an excellent source of Vitamin E, zinc, iron, and magnesium. Vitamin E and zinc are potent antioxidants that protect cells against the damaging effect of free radicals. Iron helps deliver oxygen-rich red blood cells throughout the body and magnesium plays a role in hundreds of chemical reactions in the body.
What are the Benefits of Hemp Seeds?
- Hemp seeds have secured their position as a superfood. They not only have a rich nutritional profile but also provide a range of health benefits.
- As a dietary supplement, it provides a blend of simple proteins, rich minerals and vitamins and a perfect balance of essential acids and antioxidants.
- Protects Brain: Hemp seeds help in neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, and neuropathic pain.
- Heart Health: Omega-3 fatty acids that are present in hemp seeds improve the health of the heart and reduce the risk of heart diseases. The seeds also contain high levels of arginine, an amino acid that is converted into a chemical called nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is an essential component for artery and vein dilation and it also helps in keeping the blood vessel walls elastic and smooth.
- Reduces Inflammation: Another benefit of hemp is that the amount of omega-3 and omega-6 present in them can help reduce inflammation. In addition, hemp seeds are a rich source of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), a polyunsaturated fatty acid which may also have anti-inflammatory properties. As a result, this reduced inflammation helps in managing the symptoms of various chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, arthritis, etc.
- Improves Skin: Hemp seeds are a rich source of plant fiber. Plant fibers are believed to help in managing the symptoms of atopic dermatitis (AD) and acne.
- While consuming hemp seeds have several health benefits, one should avoid overdoing it. The healthiest option is to eat an assorted diet that contains a wide range of nutrients.
How to Consume Hemp hearts (Seeds) ?
Our Hemp Hearts (seeds) are available in 150g and 500g packing. These seeds are packed with essential amino acids and can be consumed by sprinkling a spoonful on top of a smoothie, salad, yogurt or cereal.
Hemp seeds have a nutty flavor, and are a safe substitute for people with nut allergies. These seeds can be dry toasted over low heat to make them even nuttier. Alternatively, similar to almond milk (which is made by blending almonds and water), one can make hemp seed milk which can be used as an alternative to dairy products in various recipes and drinks.
A couple of spoonfuls of these seeds pack a huge amount of essential nutrients. They are easy to cook and eat. It’s best to store them in a cool, dry place or in the refrigerator.
Our Online store HempWorks.in also offers other products such as hemp protein powder which is an alternative to whey protein powder and hemp milk which may be fortified with extra nutrients.
What are the Benefits of Hemp Oil?
Hemp oil (also called hemp seed oil) is harvested by cold pressing the hemp seeds. Although it comes from the cannabis plant, it usually doesn’t contain traces of THC, the psychoactive, intoxicating element in cannabis.
It is a natural source of important nutrients including polyunsaturated fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6 and proteins. It promises a lot of health benefits:
- Skin Benefits: One of the most important benefits of hemp seed oil is its effect on skin. The abundance of essential fatty acids in hemp oil helps in alleviating skin irritations, dry skin, eczema, etc. by offering benefits like anti-inflammation, skin cell repair, moisturizing, balanced oil production, and anti-aging properties. It reduces irritation when applied to the skin because of nutrients like linoleic acid that enable skin repair and regeneration. These nourishing components also have the ability to moisturize the skin without clogging the pores. As a result, hemp seed oil works wonders on acne-prone skin by moderating oil production and reducing the incidence of clogged pores. Hemp oil can also be ingested for skin benefits because of the presence of GLA that aids in skin growth, repair, and inflammation.
- Hair: Hemp oil acts as a deep conditioner for dry and brittle hair. Applying a small amount of oil while conditioning or after a shower can work wonders in terms of moisture and hair growth. The fatty acids present in the oil help moisturize the scalp, adding on to your natural oils. This is the reason why fatty acids are often used in hair products and serums. The omega-3s present in the oil also helps to add shine, tame unruly hair, and give it the required strength.
- Heart Health: In addition to the positive skin benefits of hemp oil, it is also beneficial for a healthy heart. Even when the hemp seeds are cold-pressed for extracting oil, the omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are preserved and these offer cardio-protective effects such as reducing blood pressure, clearing up the veins, decreasing the chance of heart disease, improved heart rate, etc.
- Strong Immune System: Hemp seed oil also helps in boosting the immune system with the help of valuable nutrients. There are various essential fatty acids that our bodies cannot make on their own and we need to consume foods that are rich in these essential fatty acids to maintain good health.
What Are Some of the Medicinal Properties of Hemp Oil?
Well-known for its health and nutritional benefits, Hemp hearts (seed), contains good amounts of protein, fiber, and carbohydrates needed for the body.
Hemp seed oil, formed by cold-pressing hemp seeds, is used in several ways and may work to improve overall health.
1. Heart Health
Hemp seed oil benefits are related to its 3:1 ratio of two essential polyunsaturated fatty acids—linoleic acid (LA) and a-linolenic acid (LNA) that are especially beneficial to the heart. A diet rich in healthy fats (fats which contain polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats) helps in improving insulin sensitivity and stabilizes the rhythm of the heart.
2. Weight Regulation
Hemp oil contains high amounts of dietary fiber. Adequate consumption of fiber keeps the gut clear and helps in weight regulation of the body.
3. Managing Cholesterol Levels
With the presence of β-sitosterols, hemp oil is believed to be more effective oil compared to other vegetable oils (such as soybean, rapeseed, etc.) in lowering cholesterol levels. Also, with the balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, it helps in overall cardiovascular health.
4. Muscle Tension
Hemp oil also helps in relieving general tension in the muscles caused due to stress. With an anti-inflammatory effect on the body, it also promotes recovery from muscle tension due to exercise. Rubbing a bit of hemp seed oil into tight muscles may help release tension and relax the muscles.
5. Fights Free Radicals
Hemp oil contains powerful antioxidants that fight free radicals and reduce oxidative stress (a by-product of too many processed foods, environmental pollutants, and a stress-filled lifestyle).