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Should I Add Hemp Seeds to My Diet?

This article breaks down the health benefits of hemp seeds as well as other useful information about adding hemp seeds to the diet.

Hemp seeds have a ton of benefits that make them one of the most perfect natural foods available. 

The Health Benefits of Adding Hemp Seeds to Your Diet Explained

All About Hemp Seeds

Hemp seeds are derived from the hemp plant. However, they don’t have any narcotic properties though they may contain trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

THC is the compound that causes psychoactive effects in cannabis but not enough to cause any of the same effects when consumed.

Hemp seeds have a nut-like flavor with a creamy taste and it complements a lot of dishes perfectly.

Hemp seeds have more protein than chicken and two times more protein than chia seeds and flaxseeds. 

What Are the Health Benefits of Hemp Seeds?

1. Perfect Balance of Essential Fatty Acids

Hemp seeds have an excellent ratio of 3:1 balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.

Essential fatty acids cannot be produced by the human body and can only be obtained via the diet.

2. Hemp Seeds is a Complete Protein

Hemp seeds are considered a complete protein. Hemp seeds contain a high amount of protein, over 25% of the calories are composed of protein.

They beat chia seeds and flax seeds when it comes to high protein content. 3 tablespoons of hemp seeds provide 10 grams approx of protein. 

3. Hemp Seeds Contains Loads of Essential Amino Acids

The two main proteins contained in hemp seeds include edestin and albumin.

They are easily digested high-quality proteins, which contain large amounts of essential amino acids.

If you’re not a big fan of meat, hemp seeds have the potential to provide the same amount of protein.

4. Hemp Seed Contains Loads of Vitamins & Minerals

Hemp seeds contain iron, zinc, calcium, sulfur, magnesium, sodium potassium, and phosphorus.

Additionally, they contain vitamin A, vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, vitamin D, and a lot of vitamin E.

5. Excellent Source of Fiber

Hemp seeds are an excellent source of fiber. Fiber keeps you full for much longer and aids in digestive health.

Don’t forget to drink loads of water when increasing the fiber in your diet. 

6. Hemp Seeds Boost Immune System

Hemp seeds are high in gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), an omega-6 fatty acid.

GLA is helpful for boosting the functions of the immune system and improving overall health.

High amounts of GLA can also be found in evening primrose oil, borage seed oil, and blackcurrant oil.

7. Hemp Seeds Aid Weight Loss

Hemp seeds can help you feel full for longer much like chia seeds.

Additionally, they also help suppress the appetite thus aiding in achieving weight loss goals.

8. Ideal for Alternative Diets

Hemp seeds are low carb and ideal for paleo diets and carb-conscious diets. Hemp seeds are also suitable for keta and vegan diets.

With such a significant amount of health benefits, you definitely should add hemp seeds to your diet.

Related Content: Hemp Seed Oil Benefits and Uses

Hemp Seeds Nutrition

2 tablespoons of hemp seeds is 90 calories approx and additionally:-

  • 6 grams of fat
  • 2 grams of fiber
  • 5 grams of protein
  • 300 mg of potasium
  • 15% of vitamin A daily needs 
  • 25% of iron daily needs

How to Eat Hemp Seeds

Hemp seeds can be eaten raw, roasted, added to a meal, or ground into a powder and added to beverages.

Hemp seeds are also used to produce hemp seed oil, which is one of the best natural oils for hair.

For more on this, read How to Achieve Silky Hair with Hemp Seed Oil.

Hemp Seeds Recipes for a Healthy Diet

  • Add 1 – 2 tablespoons of hemp seeds to your morning smoothie. Hemp powder or hemp milk can be used as well.
  • Sprinkle a generous amount of hemp seeds on yogurt, cereal, or ice cream.
  • Sprinkle hemp seeds over salads. It blends well with most salad recipes.
  • You can add hemp seeds to pesto. I found this great recipe on Bob’s Red Mill for Hemp Seed Pesto
  • You can use hemp seeds in bakery items such as these Apple-Hemp Muffins.


More Hemp Seeds Recipes

Below are some more great hemp seeds recipes for different types of diets:-

What is the Difference Between Hemp Seeds & Hemp Hearts?

There’s no difference between the two. They’re the same thing when it comes to nutritional value. Some people just refer to them by different names.

Sometimes, they are also called shelled hemp seeds in the case where the hard outer shell has been removed.

Don’t spend too much time trying to choose either one. They’re the same thing.

What Are the Side Effects of Eating Hemp Seeds?

There are no major side effects of eating hemp seeds. However, to avoid diarrhea, hemp seeds should be consumed in moderation. 

Which Hemp Seed/Hemp Heart Brand is the Best?

Hemp seeds are available either whole or already shelled.

It takes some time to shell the whole hemp seeds so unless you need it for something in particular, just go with the shelled variety.

Below are the best recommendations for hemp seeds/hemp hearts:

Manitoba Harvest Organic Hemp Hearts Raw Shelled Hemp Seeds

Food to Live Certified Organic Hemp SeedsFood to Live Certified Organic Hemp Seeds

Terrasoul Superfoods Raw Hulled Hemp Seeds

Bob's Red Mill Hemp Seed Hearts

Bob’s Red Mill Hemp Seed Hearts

Where to Buy Hemp Seeds?

You can find the hemp seed brand recommendations and suitable alternatives at the following online locations:-

Tips for Hemp Seeds

  • Hemp seeds are prone to going rancid quickly so once the pack is opened, store in a mason jar and refrigerate.
  • Always check for the expiry date on the package and make sure you purchase one with an expiry date that’s further down the line.

Additional by-products of hemp seeds include hemp seed oil, hemp milk, and hemp protein powder/flour.

Common Questions About Hemp Seeds

Are Hemp Seeds Gluten-Free?

Yes, shelled hemp seeds are gluten-free. Hemp seeds are also vegan friendly and keto-friendly

Are Hemp Seeds a Complete Protein?

Hemp seeds are a complete source of protein. They make a suitable replacement for protein in a vegetarian diet. 

Hemp seeds are considered to be one of the most nutritious natural food sources available. 

What is the Shelf Life of Hemp Seeds?

The average shelf life of hemp seed is 18 months when stored properly in an airtight container and in the fridge.

As you can see, it’s not a question of whether you should include hemp seeds in your diet but how fast can you add them to your diet!

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