Hemp is among one of the first plants to be domesticated. It has been grown by humans for more than 12 millennia.
Although hemp is closely related to the Cannabis herb (which is also referred as marijuana), it doesn’t have the medicinal or psychoactive properties of Cannabis.
This is a tall and crude-looking plant that is known for its rich fiber. It is refined into wax, resin, fuel, hemp oil, and even paper is made from it. Even the seeds are full of high amount of nutritional value.
As per Hemp Facts, France is the No.1 producer of hemp (where 70% of all the hemp is produced). China is a distant second with around 25% of the world’s hemp production. Other small producers are Europe, North Korea and Chile.
There are more than 30 nations where industrial hemp is produced. This includes the UK, Canada, Australia, Denmark, Germany, India, Finland, Austria, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Japan, Poland, New Zealand, Romania, Spain, Portugal, Egypt, Russia, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine, Thailand, Switzerland, and Slovenia.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, there is no information about the potential for hemp seeds in the market. But it is expected to remain small just like in the case of poppy and sesame seeds.
Take Raw Hemp Seeds Every Day of your Life
Hemp seeds are considered to be your comprehensive source of protein. They also contain antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and essential fatty acids.
Nutritional Facts of Hemp seeds
4 full tbsp of Shelled Hemp Seed give you 240 calories and the following nutrients:
- Proteins – 15 grams
- Omega 3 – 3.6 grams
- Omega 6 – 11.4 grams
- Saturated fats – 2.1 grams
- Polyunsaturated fats – 15 grams
- Mono-unsaturated fats – 2.7 grams
- Carbs – 4.5 grams
- Fibers – 2.5 grams
- Calcium – 31 mg
- Iron – 2 mg
- Sodium & potassium – 3.8 mg each
- Vitamin A – 1.68 IU
- Vitamin B1 – .58 mg
- Vitamin B2 – .14 mg
- Vitamin B6 – .05 mg
- Vitamin C – .42 mg
- Vitamin D – 956 IU
- Vitamin E – 3.8 mg
Health Benefits of Hemp Seeds
The higher amount of vitamins, antioxidants, trace minerals, and amino acids in hemp seeds are beneficial for our brain. They help our cells by preventing damage to mitochondria and cells from harmful free radicals.
- Promotes healthy vision
- Stronger immunity
- Improved cell growth
- Preventing dry eyes
- Fighting certain forms of leukemia
- Maintaining healthier bones and teeth
- Preventing urinary stones
- Promoting healthier skin
- Promoting healthier reproductive system in men and women
This antioxidant helps in:
- Lowering blood pressure
- Lowering levels of lead in blood
- Promoting healthy eye function
- Strengthening immunity
- Working as natural antihistamine
This is also a strong antioxidant that helps:
- Protect against cell damage
- Promotes healthier skin
- Promotes healthier eyes
- Strengthens immunity
Thiamine or vitamin B1 helps with the following:
- Helping our body create healthier new cells
- Protecting immune system
- Plays crucial role in breaking down simple carbs
Riboflavin or vitamin B2 is also an antioxidant. It helps in following ways:
- Fighting free radicals that cause damage to cells
- Preventing untimely aging and heart disease
- Helping in production of red blood cells, which are required for carrying oxygen in the body
- Preventing migraines (according to many studies)
Pyridoxine or vitamin B6 can help in the following ways:
- Regulation of amino acid homocysteine levels (related to heart disease)
- Reducing inflammation in those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis
Vitamin B6 may affect sleep patterns and mood because it promotes production of serotonin, norepinephrine and melatonin which are stress hormones.
- Maintaining healthy levels of phosphorus and calcium in the blood
- Helping in the absorption of calcium
- Protecting from osteoporosis, cancer, high blood pressure and other diseases
We need polyunsaturated fats (healthy fats) like omega 3 and omega 6.
- Helps minimizes the chances of heart disease
- Reduces risk of cancer
- Reduces chances of autoimmune disorders
- Reduces chances of arthritis
- Reduces risk of inflammatory disorders
- Regulating blood pressure
- Controlling inflammation
- Strengthening immune system
- Regulating blood clotting
- Improving brain function
- Helps promote healthy heart
- Regulates blood sugar
- Reduces chances of stroke
- Helps with weight management and weight loss
- Helps eliminate fungus and yeast from our body
- Minimizes chances of diverticulitis
- Minimizes chances of hemorrhoids
- Gives relief from IBS
- Minimizes chances of kidney and gallbladder stones
- Regulation of melatonin hormone for improving sleep
- Relaxing nervous system
- Improving energy storage in cells
- Promoting production of Insulin such as Growth Factor (The IGF-1 promotes growth and muscular strength)
- Improving flexibility
- Promoting bone strength and integrity
- Re-mineralizing teeth
- Alkalizing body
- Hydrating body
- Providing relief from constipation
- Assisting with diabetes
- Assisting with enzyme function
- Maintaining heart rhythm
- Maintaining muscular function
- Potentially preventing and controlling high blood pressure
- Reducing PMS systems
- Preventing some types of cancers
- Studies indicate calcium and vitamin D helping in protecting from breast cancer (in case of premenopausal women)
- Supports oxygen transport through body
- Maintaining health of blood cells
- Essential for formation of teeth and bone (almost 50% of most bones in body are made from phosphate)
- Supports digestion of niacin and riboflavin
- Supports in transmitting nerve impulses
- Supports kidneys in excreting waste
- Provides energy
- Creates proteins needed for reproduction
- Potentially blocks cancer
- Maintaining fluids and tissues
How To Include Hemp Seeds In Our Food?
- You can add hemp seeds as the perfect alternative for dairy foods. Both hemp ice cream and milk are full of nutrients found in hemp seeds. They don’t cause protein irritation as found in cow milk.
- Include hemp seeds in baked foods and breakfast. Add handful of the seeds in breads, cookies and batter of muffins. They have a natural nutty flavor and can be used in recipes that require other nuts.
- Sprinkle some hemp seeds on your salads for boosting their nutritional value.
- Blend 1tbsp of hemp seed along with your smoothie to add more nutrition (it will not interfere with the flavor).
- Prepare superfood vegan pesto using hemp seeds. You can use it with your gluten-free pasta. You will find it to be delicious if used as a pizza base compared to tomato sauce.