hemp_seedsHemp seeds are becoming a very popular superfood among health conscious people. Whether you eat them plain, in cereals, snack bars, shakes or in oil form, they pack a big nutritional punch that should put hemp seeds in everyones diet.

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Essential Fatty Acids
Hemp seeds are made up of 24% protein, include the full range of amino acids and contain a perfect a balance of Essential Fatty Acids or EFAs. EFAs include omega-3 and omega-6, both help us keep a strong and healthy immune system and are responsible for shiny healthy looking skin, hair and nails. In fact, just 2 weeks of 1-2 tablespoons a day of hemp oil will drastically improve the appearance of your skin. For breastfeeding mothers, the EFAs from hemp can be a big help in replenishing the 11 grams of EFAs that are pulled from the mother daily through breastfeeding. The extra EFAs needs to come from a food source as the body does not replenish them on its own.

Amino Acids
Hemp seeds contain all of the 21 known amino acids. Below is a list of each amino acid. in bold you will find the 8 essential amino acids.

  • alanine
  • arginine
  • aspargine
  • aspartic acid
  • cysteine
  • glutamic acid
  • glutamine
  • glycine
  • histidine
  • isoleucine
  • leucine
  • lysine
  • alanine
  • arginine
  • aspargine
  • aspartic acid
  • cysteine
  • glutamic acid
  • glutamine
  • glycine
  • histidine
  • isoleucine
  • leucine
  • lysine
  • methionine
  • phenylalanine
  • proline
  • serine
  • taurine
  • threonine
  • tryptophan
  • tyrosine
  • valine
  • taurine (considered essential for premature babies)
  • histidine (considered essential for children, but not for adults)

Protein
Hemp seeds are composed of over 30% pure protein, making them a great daily source of healthy protein. The protein found in hemp is high-quality edestin and albumin, making them the highest vegan source of this simple protein that’s required for proper immune system function. Hemp protein contains live and intact enzymes which make them easily digestible proteins that easily assimilate into the body. This is also a great alternative if you are allergic to other forms of protein found in dairy or soy. Hemp seeds are also an excellent source of gamma linoleic and stearidonic acid which can be therapeutic for a number of conditions like eczema, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, allergies and more.

Below is a comparison of the amounts of protein found in each popular source of protein.

Soybeans 35.0%
Hemp seed shelled 31.0%
Hamburger beef 27.1%
Blue fish 26.0%
Cheddar cheese 23.5%
Chicken 23.5%
Hempseed — whole 23.0%
Almonds 18.3%
Wheat flour 13.3%
Egg 12.0%
Tofu 08.0%
Rice 07.5%
Skimmed milk 03.7%

 

Fiber and Carbs
The hemp seed is composed of 40 percent fiber which is the highest amount of any grain this planet has to offer. Hemp seeds are comprised of 27% carbohydrates, almost all of which is in the form of soluble and insoluble fiber with a 4-to-1 ratio of insoluble to soluble. Soluble fiber is effective in slowing glucose absorption, slowing gastric emptying and increasing the excretion of bile acid, which helps to lower levels of LDL cholesterol in the body. Insoluble fiber is effective for healthy movement of food through our digestive system. This helps to keep our bowel movements regular as well. Adding hemp seeds to your daily diet will also lower your risk of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. Hemp seeds also contain disease-fighting phytosterols. Studies have shown that hemp seeds, or even hemp milk, may prevent heart disease, many forms of cancer, as well as inflammation-based diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

How can you eat hemp seeds?
Hemp seeds can be eaten raw, ground into a meal, sprouted, made into hemp milk, made into tea, and used in baking. You can also find hemp seed oil which  results from grounding the seed into oil form. This can replace olive oils in salads and other dressings. There are a number of products at health food stores that contain hemp seeds. Next time you are there, check out for cold and hot cereals, bars, bulk raw seeds, oils, milks and butters!

Sources:

http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/gamma-linolenic-000305.htm

http://www.livestrong.com/article/217904-hemp-seeds-health-benefits-or-hype/#ixzz2ML3kMtze

http://www.hempfoods.com.au/


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