Hemp seeds

Hemp seeds are a type of food item that requires a special attention. They have a lot of nutritional value and health benefits. How do these seeds boost health?

Table of Contents

What are hemp seeds?

Hemp seeds are seeds of the plant Cannabis Sativa. This plant parts have substances such as THC or tetrahydrocannabinol to alter the mind. But the seeds do not contain this substance and are free of the mind-affecting actions.

These seeds are small and brown in color. They contain a lot of nutrients such as healthy fats, fiber, proteins, and antioxidants. Nutritional scientist, Joanna McMillan recommends people to have these seeds in ample. She puts it in the category of superfoods.

Hemp seeds
Hemp seeds (Source: Pee safe)

What do these seeds contain? How do they help the body? Know the actions of these seeds on heart, brain, joints, and skin.

Nutritional value

These seeds contain a lot of proteins. This is as much as that in soybeans. 30 grams of these seeds have 9.46 grams of protein. It is a complete protein containing all nine essential amino acids. Animal meats have complete proteins in them. But not many plant based foods contain them.

But hemp seeds are an exception and hence a good option for vegans and vegetarian food eaters. Moreover, these seeds contain arginine, an amino acid that converts in the body to nitric oxide. And nitric oxide is a vasodilator that relaxes the blood vessels and lowers blood pressure. Thus, the load on the heart reduces and it protects the heart.

Hemp seeds
Nutritional value (Source: Nutramilk)

These seeds have a lot of healthy fats loaded into them. They have omega-3 fatty acids with a good ratio of omega-3 fatty acids to omega 6 fatty acids. They are rich in essential fatty acids: alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). A 2015 animal study revealed that adding these seeds to a hen’s diet resulted in eggs with higher omega 3 fatty acids in them. The saturated fats in them is less and there is no trans fats in them.

The shell of the seeds is high in fiber. However, even without the shells, 3 tablespoons of the seeds provide 1.2 grams of dietary fiber. Additionally, they contain vitamin E, niacin, riboflavin, folate, thiamine and vitamin B6. These seeds are also a rich source of calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus as well as potassium. All of these nutrients make it a highly healthy food. One should incorporate them in their daily diet.

Health benefits

The seeds provide the consumer with a lot of benefits for health. A study in the journal Food chemistry revealed that their extract has antioxidant properties due to the cannabidiol content.These phytocannabidiols protect the nervous system and fight body inflammation. Moreover, they boost the immune system of the body. Therefore, the seeds are beneficial in Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, neuropathic pain, and also in seizure disorder in children.

Hemp seeds
Health benefits (Source: Lybrate)

The arginine and omega 3 fatty acids protect the heart. They can reduce body inflammation and thus help in joint health. The polyunsaturated fatty acid, gamma linolenic acid (GLA) was responsible for this positive effect. Animal studies show these benefits but human studies had inconsistent findings.

Also, they prevent chronic conditions of heart, blood vessels, liver and pancreas. Through this action, they also clear skin of acne and atopic dermatitis.

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They are also effective in rheumatoid arthritis. But the benefits were not always seen. One can add these seeds to oatmeals, yoghurt, cereals, smoothies, salads, baked foods etc. One can use whole seeds, ground seeds or split seeds. All forms taste good. Also one can make hemp milk from whole seeds at home.