If you haven’t noticed yet, more and more people are including hemp seeds in their regular diets. Lately, hemp seeds, commonly referred to as “superfood” have been turning up almost everywhere. With this article, we will take a look at a few of the benefits of eating hemp seeds and what you should consider when buying them.
In case you are wondering, hemp seeds come from Cannabis Sativa, the hemp plant. Yes, they are extracted from the same species as marijuana. That being said, hemp seeds are a different variety. With these seeds, there is only a minimal trace of THC. That is the compound found in marijuana that produces the mind-altering state people receive from smoking pot. Because hemp seeds have very little THC, you will not get high from eating them.
Hemp seeds are great for protein
There is a ton of protein found in these tiny little seeds. Hemp seeds that have been hulled are over 30 percent protein. This means, by weight, you will receive just as much protein from hemp seeds as you would from eating lamb or beef. Health professionals have recently begun recommending Americans to eat more protein from plants due to research demonstrating this can lead to a longer life by improving health.
Hemp seeds not only give a lot of protein, but it’s also a complete protein. By complete protein, it means the protein is made from amino acids. Some of these amino acids can be made naturally by the body. That being said, others are commonly known as “ essential amino acids,” which are not naturally made by the body. The only way we are able to get them is through our diet, the food that we eat. While many of these essential amino acids can be found in animal proteins, the same can’t be said with a lot of plant proteins. Because of this, hemp seeds need to play more of a significant part of our diets.
Full of other nutrients that are good for you
One of the reasons why hemp seeds are being considered a superfood is they are full of several nutrients that are beneficial for our body. Potassium, vitamin e, iron, magnesium, calcium, iron, essential amino acids, essential fatty acids, plus many others.
There is a very long list of the potential benefits to our health from hemp seeds. The fatty acids they provide can be used to improve eczema and other conditions affecting the skin (1). There is also research that has been completed showing these fatty acids can be of assistance in reducing symptoms of menopause. The anti-inflammatory properties found in hemp seeds help improve our immunity, improve the health of our bones, and aid us in cellular recovery (2).
Last but not least, if you are regularly eating hemp seeds that have not been shelled, you are taking in a lot of fiber. In most cases, regardless of how healthy a person is, some extra fiber is something all of us could use. This increases the health of our digestive system, as well as reducing the risk of developing serious issues such as diabetes and obesity.
Hemp seeds may increase how long you live
The improvement of your cardiovascular health is one one the most promising benefits you will get from eating hemp seeds. In short, this could play a part in saving your life and helping you live longer. If cardiovascular health isn’t something you already think about, it is time for you to start. In the United States, for both men and women, heart disease is the leading cause of death, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The nutrients and fatty acids found in hemp seeds are able to play a role in lowering the risk of heart disease. The seeds accomplish this by lowering inflammation, reducing cholesterol levels and blood pressure, and fighting against blood clotting.
Eating hemp seeds is also good for the environment
There are more benefits to hemp than simply being good for the human body. Hemp is a product that also provides many benefits to the environment. For starters, it’s naturally able to resist several pests. Because hemp grows densely and vigorously, it can crowd out weeds. Because of this, heavy pesticides aren’t needed to be used with hemp plants.
Also, because of how hardy the plant is, hemp usually doesn’t require very much fertilizer. The environment benefits when fewer pesticides and less fertilizer is used. Along with this, the soil also benefits from the planting of a field of hemp. These plants add nitrogen to the soil and because of the depth of hemp plant roots, the soil and ground are loosened up. Also, many harmful toxins found in the ground are absorbed through the roots of a hemp plant.
On top of all the benefits hemp seeds have both for our health as well as the environment, maybe the best characteristic of all is how good these seeds taste. They naturally have a mild, slightly nutty flavor. This taste is able to be incorporated into many different types of foods. Hemp seeds can be eaten either toasted or raw. They are great when sprinkled over yogurt, added to a salad or smoothie, as well as being used as ingredients in other foods that are baked. The seeds can also be turned into oil, which can then be used in other foods such as a salad dressing.
One question that is often asked is exactly where can someone find hemp seeds? To be honest, you won’t have to look very hard. They can be purchased online, mainstream grocery store chains, and in health food stores. Hemp seeds are grown in smaller, brown hulls. If this happens to be the only way you have tried the seeds, there’s a chance you may have been put off. Hemp seeds are crunchy and may tend to get stuck between your teeth.
That being said, hemp seeds are usually sold shelled. The shelled seeds are commonly called “hemp hearts,” and can be eaten raw because of how soft they are. They are light green or cream-colored. When used in moderation, several people are using hemp seeds to make their diets much more nutritious.
Now that we have looked at a few of the benefits of eating hemp seeds, let’s look at a few things you will want to consider when buying them.
Once you make the decision to purchase hemp seeds, you might be surprised at just how many options you have to choose from. It doesn’t take much to become confused with exactly what it is you are buying. There are going to be many smaller boutique brands you more than likely have never heard of. This doesn’t necessarily mean the product is not as good. It simply means the brand isn’t yet as popular. Here are a few ideas for you to keep in mind.
What kind of hemp seeds should you buy?
What is commonly referred to as hemp hearts, hemp that has been hulled is the hemp seed with the crunchy outer shell already removed. Removing the shell increases the total percentage of protein you will get, along with fatty acids that are considered essential.
It’s also popular to purchase toasted hemp seeds. These are seeds that have been roasted at a high temperature for a varied length of time. You are left with a treat similar to popcorn, great for snacking. Along with toasted or hulled hemp seeds, the seeds can also be used as ingredients to hemp spreads or bars. You will find plenty of choices to choose from, depending on the type of snack you like.
Where are the seeds from?
You will be able to find hemp seeds that are from several different countries. Because of this, you need to find seeds that have been grown in conditions, providing you with the best taste. If you want a hemp seed that is known for having the ultimate quality, you will want to ensure the seeds are coming from Canada. This is caused by the stricter regulations that are enforced by the government in Canada.
That being said, all hemp seeds from the US, Canada, and Europe are more than safe. This is because they are non-GMO. Farmers have restrictions concerning the varieties of seeds based on a list of cultivators that have been approved. Also, hemp seeds do not require pesticides for farming. If the seeds are coming from Canada, Europe, or the United States, you can be sure they are safe for consumption.
How much should the hemp seeds cost?
Just like any other kind of grocery shopping, you will want to have a set budget on what you can spend for hemp seeds. More often than not, the most competitive prices will be with the best brands. Most hemp seed products that have a great recommendation can be bought between $9.00-$23.00 a pound. The size of the packaging and specific brands play a huge role in the variance. This is a great place to start when deciding exactly how much it is you have to spend on hemp seeds.
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