Hemp is a plant grown in the northern hemisphere that takes about 3-4 months to mature .Hemp seeds have a mild, nutty flavour. Hemp milk is made from hulled hemp seeds, water, and sweetener.
Hemp is commonly confused with marijuana. It belongs to the same family, but the two plants are very different. Marijuana is grown to contain high amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the chemical that is responsible for its psychoactive properties. Hemp describes the edible plant seeds and only contains a trace amount of THC and they do not produce a mind-altering effect..
These small, brown seeds are rich in protein[ an excellent protein source for vegetarians and vegans], fiber, and healthful fatty acids, including omega-3s and omega-6s. They have antioxidant effects and may reduce symptoms of numerous ailments, improving the health of the heart, skin, and joints.
Nutritional benefits of hemp seeds
These seeds are full of nutritious compounds, including:
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erestHemp seeds are a complete source of protein, providing all nine essential amino acids[Amino acids are the building blocks for all proteins. The body cannot produce nine of these acids, so a person must absorb them through the diet.],Hemp seeds are especially rich in an amino acid called arginine, which has benefits for heart health.
-Hemp seeds contain almost as much protein as soybeans. In every 30 grams (g) of seeds, or about 3 tablespoons, there are 9.46 g of protein.
- Unsaturated fats
Hemp seeds are a great source of essential fatty acids, such as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), also known as omega 3 fatty acid
The body cannot produce essential fatty acids, and the body must absorb them from the diet as they are crucial for long-term health Also, hemp seeds are low in saturated fats and contain no trans fats.
Much of the fiber in a hemp seed lies in its outer hull, or shell. If possible, purchase hemp seeds with the hulls intact.However, even without the shells, hemp seeds are a good source offiber, with three tablespoons containing approximately 1.2 g of fiber.
Consuming enough fiber every day can:
- reduce the appetite
- help with weight management
- work to stabilize blood sugar levels
- promote the health of the gut
- Minerals and vitaminsHemp seeds contain an impressive array of vitaminsand minerals and are especially rich in:vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium
They are also a good source of iron, zinc, and B vitamins, including:niacin, riboflavin, thiamine, vitamin B-6, folate.
Health benefits of hemp seeds
- Protects the brain
The cannabidiol (CBD)compound found in hemp seeds can help with neurological conditions including: Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, neuropathic pain, childhood seizure disorders
The other compounds in the seeds have anti-inflammatory effects and can also help to regulate the immune system.
- Boosts heart health
The omega-3 fatty acids improve the health of the heart and reduce the risk of issues such as arrhythmias and heart disease.Hemp seeds contain high levels of omega-3s and a healthful ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids.
The seeds also contain high levels of arginine, an amino acid that turns into nitric oxide.Nitric oxide is essential for artery and vein dilation, and it helps keep blood vessel walls smooth and elastic.
- Reduces inflammation
The amount of omega-3s in hemp seeds and the seeds’ healthful omega-3 to omega-6 ratio can together help to 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 effects.
Reducing inflammation may help manage the symptoms of chronic diseases, such as:metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, non-alcohol-related fatty liver disease.
- Improves skin conditions
Atopic dermatitis (AD) and acne can both result from chronic inflammation. The anti-inflammatory compounds in hemp seeds may help. The high omega-3 content in hemp seeds may help to manage and reduce acne symptoms. The high fiber content may help to manage symptoms of AD.
- Relieves rheumatoid arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition. It causes the immune system to attack its own tissues, which leads to inflammation in the joints.
Hemp seed oil is believed to have anti-rheumatic effects.
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.Quick tips for using hemp:
Hemp seeds can be eaten raw, roasted, or cooked with other foods. Hempseed oil has been used as food or made into medicine
- Use hemp seed oil to make a salad dressing
- Sprinkle some whole or ground hemp seeds on salads along with other seeds and nuts, smoothies, poha, oatmeal, porridge or curd
- Add hemp seeds to baked goods such as whole wheat muffins or bread or roti.
Precautions for hemp use
Hemp seeds are safe when consumed in moderation. Because hemp seeds are high in fat, the sudden increase in fat caused by eating large amounts of hemp may cause mild diarrhoea. People with a sensitive digestive system are advised to start by eating a small amount, such as 1 teaspoon, and slowly work up to the serving size of 2 tablespoons.
Hemp seeds inhibit platelet formation and interact with anticoagulant medications, causing a higher risk of bleeding. If you have been prescribed an anticoagulant, talk to your doctor before consuming a large amount of hemp.