Health Benefits of Hemp Seeds

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Learn more about the plant-based health benefits of hemp seeds, dive deep into hemp seed nutrition, and learn how to cook with these seeds in your own kitchen at home.

Cooking With Hemp Seeds

Industrial hemp is an agricultural crop grown for many different purposes, including the culinary use of hulled hemp hearts and the creation of the very popular CBD Hemp Oil.

The seeds and the fibers of the hemp plant contain little to no cannabinoids and do not contain the cannabinoid THC. They do, however, contain rich nutrient benefits, similar to other popular edible seeds like chia seeds, sunflower seeds, or flax seeds.

Hemp by-products have traditionally been imported from other countries, like Canada, due to the 100-year ban on hemp agriculture by the US Government.

Now that growing Industrial Hemp is legal in the United States, it is likely that you will see more hemp production arising across the country as more people are embracing cooking with hemp seeds.

What Do Hemp Seeds Look Like?

Hemp seeds are tiny with an unusually soft texture compared to other seeds. They have an almost buttery consistency, making them enjoyable in a variety of different applications.

Hemp seeds have a very mild flavor and may offer some of the characteristic ‘hemp taste’ due to their low terpene content.

It is important to note that this flavor is mild in comparison to the higher terpene content of the cannabis plant, which gives the plant the classic, strong, and pungent odor typically associated with cannabis.

How To Eat Hemp Seeds

Hemp seeds are delicious straight out of the bag, but many popular uses include hemp seeds served on top of salads, popcorn, yogurt, eggs, vegetables and more.

The naturally mild, but nutty taste makes them great to pair with just about anything. You will find many recipes featuring hemp seeds in this post and throughout the site. You can also use hemp seeds to make a creamy and delicious homemade hemp seed milk as featured in this post.

What About Hemp Seed Oil?

The hemp seeds mentioned above are used to make a nutritive hemp seed oil which is a popular option used in modern-day cooking. Hemp seed oil is a nutty-tasting, nutrient-rich oil extracted from the hemp seed that is used as an alternative to olive oil or coconut oil.

It is important not to confuse the culinary Hemp Seed Oil with the medicinal CBD Hemp Oil found on the market today. You can learn more about the difference in hemp oil options here.

Hemp Hearts vs Hemp Seeds – is There a Difference?

No, there is no difference between hemp hearts vs hemp seeds. The terms hulled hemp hearts and hemp seeds are used interchangeably and both represent the same hemp food product pictured below.

The Health Benefits of Hemp Seeds

Hemp seeds are a nutritious addition to almost any diet. They are a great source of protein, vitamins, and minerals that are needed to support a healthy body.

A serving of Hemp Seeds is considered to be 3-tablespoons, approximately 1-ounce, or 30 grams. This serving size nutritional breakdown is:

  • Calories: 170
  • Total Fat: 13 grams
  • Saturated Fat: 1.5 grams
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 10 grams (this includes 8 grams of Omega-6 fatty acids and 2.5 grams of Omega-3 fatty acids).
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 1.5 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 3 grams
  • Dietary Fiber: 3 grams
  • Sugars: 1 gram
  • Protein: 10 grams

Are They A Good Source of Protein?

Hemp seeds are what I consider to be a good source of plant-based protein for those who are adopting a more plant-based diet with 10 grams per ounce.

Unfortunately, protein has no percent daily value, so it is important to use the amount of protein in grams on the nutrition facts label as a guide.

Are THEY Nutrient Dense?

Nutrient-dense foods and beverages contain vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, and other beneficial substances that may have positive health effects.

They are also naturally lean or low in saturated fat and have little or no added saturated fat, sugars, refined starches, and sodium.

This definition places hemp seeds in the nutrient-dense category because they have positive health effects due to the nutrient composition.

Vitamin & Mineral Content

Aside from the obvious beneficial macronutrient breakdown of hemp seeds, they also contain many important nutrients that benefit health.

One serving, or three tablespoons, of hemp seeds, contains:

  • 100% daily value of Manganese
  • 70% daily value of Magnesium
  • 40% daily value of Phosphorus
  • 30% daily value of Iron
  • 30% daily value Thiamine (Vitamin B1)
  • 30% daily value of Zinc
  • 15% daily value of Folate
  • 10% daily value of Vitamin B6
  • 6% daily value of Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)
  • 2% daily value of Calcium

Aside from offering many important nutrients, studies have shown that hemp seeds may help to protect the brain, boost heart health, reduce inflammation and improve skin conditions.

Are They Legal?

Yes, hemp seeds and homemade hemp seed milk is legal to consume in the United States.

Industrial hemp has been recently legalized by the Federal Government with the passage of the Farm Bill in December of 2018 after a nearly 100-year prohibition.

Are Hemp Seeds Cannabis?

Hulled hemp hearts are derived from the federally legal industrial hemp plant, which as a Cannabis plant that contains less than 0.3% THC.

Industrial hemp is grown for its many uses and is not considered to be ‘marijuana’ until the THC content exceeds 0.3%. THC is the main intoxicating cannabinoid found in cannabis.

Is there CBD in Hemp Seeds?

Hemp seeds and nutritive hemp seed oil, extracted from hemp seeds, contain only trace amounts of any cannabinoid, including CBD, also known as cannabidiol.

There is no quantitative amount of CBD present in hemp seeds or homemade hemp seed milk.

These trace amounts are negligible, and would not produce any noticeable effects that can be typically associated with the use of CBD Oil. Click here to learn more about the difference between CBD oil and hemp seed oil.

Do Hemp Seeds Contain THC?

No, hemp seeds, hemp seed oil, and homemade hemp seed milk do not contain any THC.

THC, a cannabinoid known for its psychoactive properties, is not naturally present in industrial farmed hemp. Remember, in order to be classified as hemp, a hemp plant must contain 0.3% or less THC content.

Hemp seeds themselves do not contain cannabinoids, therefore hemp seeds do not contain THC.

Can They Get You High?

Because hemp seeds have negligible, trace amounts of cannabinoids, hemp seeds can not get you high.

Theoretically, consuming large amounts of hemp seeds that have been contaminated by coming in contact with other parts of a cannabis plant could technically introduce enough THC into the body to cause a failed drug test, but the likelihood that someone would be able to consume enough hemp sees to do so is unlikely.

Healthy Hemp Seed Recipes

Delicious and nutritious recipes featuring hemp seeds.

Hemp Seed Drinks, Smoothies & Breakfast Recipes

Delicious drinks and smoothies made with hemp seeds.

Hemp Seed Entrees, Salads & Side Dish Recipes

Delicious entrees and side dishes made with hemp seeds.

Hemp Seeds Desserts & Sweet Treats

Delicious dessert recipes featuring hemp seeds.


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