8 Hemp Seed Benefits
Hemp seeds are a versatile and rich source of nutrients used for centuries to support health. Technically a seed, hemp can be turned into butter, eaten raw, or pressed and turned into oil.
If you are looking to incorporate hemp seeds into your diet, understanding the benefits they offer can help you know what to expect.
Keep reading to explore the various health benefits of hemp seeds and learn the answers to critical questions about incorporating this nutrient into your wellness routine.
Where Do Hemp Seeds Come From?
Hemp seeds originate from the hemp plant, Cannabis sativa. This is the same species as the cannabis used for health and recreation, but hemp seeds will not make you high and do not contain any of the mind-altering or psychoactive effects.
Hemp seeds do not have mind-altering effects for two reasons. Firstly, hemp plants contain less than 0.3% of the cannabinoid THC, which is far from enough to make you feel anything. Secondly, there are no cannabinoids in the hemp seed itself, and cannabinoids are the component that interacts with your body’s internal endocannabinoid system to produce therapeutic effects.
Hemp hearts are hemp seeds that have had their outer shell removed. Products like hemp milk, hemp oil, and hemp protein are usually made from hemp hearts. Hemp seeds have more protein than flax chia seeds and contain various nutrients that can potentially boost your health.
How Do Hemp and CBD Differ?
Distinguishing hemp seeds and CBD can be confusing, so it’s important to know how they differ.
CBD is a compound found in all cannabis plants that supports overall wellness, especially by balancing mood and inflammation.
There are different types of cannabis plants, one of them being hemp. Hemp plants contain higher levels of CBD and almost zero THC, while other cannabis plants have less CBD and more THC, the psychoactive cannabinoid that gets you high.
Hemp seed oil is distinct from CBD oil in that hemp seed oil results from cold-pressing the hemp plant's seeds, which naturally don’t contain CBD, THC, or any other cannabinoids. On the other hand, CBD oil is made from an extract of the cannabis plant’s flowers, leaves, and stems that is later combined with a carrier oil.
Does Hemp Make You High?
Though hemp comes from the cannabis plant, it will not make you high.
The psychoactive compound found in cannabis, THC, is not present in significant enough quantities in hemp plants, seeds, or any hemp products to produce psychoactive effects. Additionally, CBD does not make you high even at the highest doses.
And, as we’ve mentioned a few times, there aren’t any cannabinoids in hemp seeds at all — i.e., no CBD, THC, CBN, etc., in hemp seeds. Those are all in the “green” parts of the plant.
What Are the Health Benefits of Hemp Seeds?
Hemp seeds are packed full of nutrients and can be used in various ways to support and maintain health. These little seeds are rich in fiber (both soluble and insoluble fiber), protein, and essential fatty acids like omega-3s. The various benefits of hemp seeds, mixed with their versatility, make them a healthful addition to any diet.
1. Rich in Nutrients
Hemp seeds are rich in nutrients and protein, containing all nine essential amino acids, the building blocks for proteins. Because so few plant-based foods have complete protein sources, hemp seeds are a nutritious addition to vegan and vegetarian lifestyles. Hemp seeds also boast an incredibly high quantity of fiber, which helps support your overall health.
2. Heart Support
The presence of omega-3 fatty acids is believed to support heart health and potentially reduce the risk of heart disease and arrhythmias. With hemp seeds being so high in omega-3 fatty acids and other amino acids, they offer a great source of support for your heart.
If starting your morning routine with a heart health boost sounds appealing, try the Super Porridge by Kroma Wellness. Packed with nuts, hemp seeds, and superfoods, this cinnamon and coconut porridge will boost your morning routine and support your heart in the process!
3. Meat-Free Protein Source
Because hemp seeds are a complete protein source, they offer a delicious, nutty substitute for meat-based proteins. Hemp seeds are also rich in iron, the mineral that makes the protein in your red blood cells.
Iron deficiencies are common in plant-based eaters. Hemp seeds can offer a healthful and meat-free way to boost your iron content.
Kroma’s OMG Cookie Butter contains hemp seeds alongside chocho plant protein and raw almond butter for a delicious snack that is sure to help fuel your body. Full of antioxidants, healthy fats, and plant-powered protein, you can feel energized and ready to take on the day ahead.
4. Digestive and Gut Support
If your body isn’t getting enough iron, you could experience gastrointestinal upset, fatigue, and weakness. That’s because iron carries oxygen from your lungs and circulates it through your body. Hemp seeds offer a great source of iron, which can support your digestive health and blood cell production.
Additionally, hemp hearts contain vitamin B1, or thiamine, which helps your body process carbohydrates into energy.
5. Skin Support
If you are looking to support your skin through diet, hemp seeds may come in handy. Acne and atopic dermatitis (AD) can be caused by chronic inflammation.
Because hemp seeds contain soothing agents, they can be useful in addressing chronic inflammation. Further, hemp seeds can support skin health because they contain omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
Additionally, hemp oil can be used as a moisturizer for your skin. Hemp oil is an emollient, meaning it leaves your skin feeling soft and moisturized.
6. Cognition and Focus Support
Hemp seeds have a high CBD, or cannabidiol, content. In a 2018 study, researchers found that the presence of CBD in hemp could potentially have neuroprotective effects in addition to offering support for a variety of neurological conditions.
Additionally, because hemp seeds are rich in CBD content, they can provide soothing agents for inflammation across your body's systems.
7. Energy Support
With hemp seeds containing omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, they offer the energy needed for a boost post-workout or with your healthy breakfast. In combination with hemp seeds' high protein content, fatty acids make them a great natural energy source. This energy can keep you feeling full and energized throughout the day.
8. Weight Management Support
Hemp seeds are protein- and fiber-rich and can support nutrition-based weight management. Hemp seeds also offer a vegetarian and vegan alternative to meat-based proteins. Additionally, hemp seeds can provide the good fats that your body needs in a well-balanced diet.
Are Hemp Seeds a Healthy Fat?
Some fats are beneficial, while others can do more harm than good. Even more, some fats cannot naturally be produced by your body, in which case you need to get these nutrients from your diet.
Hemp seeds are rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids without saturated or trans fats. With an excellent omega-3 to omega-6 ratio, hemp hearts, seeds, and hemp seed oil offer a protein-rich source of healthy fats.
Can I Take Hemp Seed Oil Orally?
Hemp seeds have a rich nutty flavor and are so versatile that they can be incorporated into various meals. You can sprinkle hemp seeds onto a salad or a yogurt parfait, include them in a smoothie, or toast them and place them atop a salad. Hemp seeds provide flavorful and nutrient-rich additions to any meal.
Hemp seed oil can be used like other cooking oils, such as avocado and olive oil. You can prepare and cook meats in hemp seed oil, incorporate it into smoothies, or take one teaspoon of hemp oil by itself. Orally ingesting hemp seed oil can potentially offer the same benefits of topical use.
Raw Hemp Seeds vs. Hemp Seed Oil: How Do They Differ?
Raw hemp seeds are the seeds from the hemp plant and are most often consumed in their shelled form, known as hemp hearts. Hemp seed oil is created by pressing hemp seeds. Both can be consumed safely but are likely to be incorporated into your diet differently.
The primary difference between hemp seeds and hemp seed oil is their form; one is a seed from the cannabis plant, and the other is an oil, like other common cooking oils. Depending on your diet and food priorities, you might be interested in incorporating one or the other.
Can Hemp Seed Oil Be Used Topically?
Hemp seed oil can be used topically and has numerous different benefits. If you have symptoms like dry skin or eczema, hemp seed oil can offer moisture without clogging pores. It can also aid with hydration and potentially regulate oil production in the skin.
The omega-6 fatty acids in hemp seed can provide soothing effects to the skin and encourage cell regeneration. If you have persistent acne or other skin issues like psoriasis, you can incorporate hemp seed oil into your skin routine, akin to other skin oils or serums.
How Often Should I Consume Hemp Seeds?
Hemp seeds are safe to consume every day! Whether you're consuming hemp seeds by themselves or on top of a dish, prioritize hydration to avoid any gastrointestinal upset.
How Can I Incorporate Hemp Seeds Into a Well-Balanced Diet?
Incorporating hemp seeds into a well-balanced diet is relatively straightforward because the seed is packed with nutrients, protein, and fiber and is so versatile.
You can cook with hemp seed oil as you would any other cooking oil, or you can use the seeds in various ways. Sprinkling toasted hemp seeds on a salad or a bowl of cereal, incorporating them into a smoothie, or you using hemp seed milk as a base for oatmeal are all flavorful and healthy ways to introduce hemp seeds into your wellness routine.
How Many Tablespoons of Hemp Seeds Should I Eat Each Day?
Though hemp seeds are rich in nutrients, fiber, and good fatty acids, it’s important to know how much you should be consuming to maintain a well-balanced diet. Because they are so versatile, hemp seeds can really be incorporated into any dish, from a savory avocado toast to a fruit smoothie post-workout.
How Much Is a Serving?
Three tablespoons comprise one serving of hemp seeds. In this small serving size, hemp seeds contain nine grams of protein, a host of other nutrients, and healthful fatty acids. Balancing out hemp seeds with a diet rich in whole foods, vegetables, and fruits will help you stay energized and nourished throughout your daily routine.
Are Hemp Hearts and Hemp Seeds the Same?
Hemp hearts are the innermost part of the hemp seed. The harder outer shell of the hemp seed is often removed to reveal the hemp heart inside, which can then be pressed into oil or used the same as hemp seeds in your diet.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that hemp seeds are an incredible source of omega-3s and omega-6s. These tiny seeds are a small but mighty way to benefit your overall health.
When using hemp seeds, you want to make sure that you’re using the recommended amount. You should also be aware of the difference between hemp seeds and CBD when using either of these products.
Hemp seeds and CBD have very different properties and are beneficial to your mind and body in different ways, so make sure to do your research.
When you are looking for superfoods you can trust, Kroma’s Super Porridge and OMG Cookie Butter are a good start. We focus on the highest quality, most natural ingredients so that you know you are fueling your body properly. Get started with Kroma today for a healthier tomorrow.