With the recent listing of our first hemp protein product in our storeand the fact that many of us in the Curavita office have been using hemp food products for some time, we thought it time to write a post about the health benefits, nutritional facts and other information about hemp protein you might find interesting.
But first, let's take a look at the history of hemp products coming to market in Australia.
Up until November 12, 2017, it was illegal to sell any form or hemp product in Australia. From that day, the Food Standards Code changed, to permit the sale of low psychoactive hemp seed and protein as a food. This means that hemp food products classed as low-THC can be on sale and be sold for human consumption.
Low-THC is defined as hemp seeds and protein that contain less than 0.5% THC, the psychoactive ingredient tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This is the chemical in the plant that gets you high when smoking or otherwise when using marijuana.
As with any new change in legislation that allows the sale of an item in demand, there was a dramatic increase in the amount of hemp food products on the market, including hemp seed oil. The 3 main products are seeds, protein powder and oil.
However this is not to be confused with CBD oil, which still regulated in Australia and can only be sold via prescription by approved suppliers. CBD oil does contain higher levels of CBD.
One of the most common questions we get asked by customers is will consuming protein, seeds or oil get you high. The answer is no. The levels of THC are too low and always must be within the 0.5% THC threshold for any product sold on the open Australian market to the public.
The benefits of consuming hemp products as food were known well before they were legal for sale in Australia. The masses of evidence indeed was one of the reasons the legislation changed and the advocates of the product were rewarded for their efforts.
Hemp seeds contain around 25% protein, which puts them in the same league as soybeans and quinoa. You've also been living under a rock if you haven't heard that hemp seeds also contain all the 9 essential fatty acids including omega-3 and omega-6. The real kicker though is the ratio. The ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 is normally between 2:1 or 3:1 in hemp seeds. Numerous studies have indicated that this is the optimal range for human health.
The two main proteins found in the seeds are edestin and albumin. These are both high quality storage proteins that are digested easily. It also has very high levels of the amino acid arginine.
It is also a high source of fiber, rich in vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium.
Nutritional profile of hemp seeds
There are a plethora of evidence based health benefits of consuming hemp protein, seeds or oils. Studies have shown that the anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects can help the immune system, and potentially help brain function.
Conditions it may improve include Parkinson's disease, alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, neuropathic pain, and childhood seizure disorders. Source: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814618307180?via%3Dihub
The fatty acid content may boost heart health, particularly due to the high levels of arginine, that is metabolised into nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is important for artery and vein dilation.
Other noted health benefits include improvement in skin conditions, such as dermatitis and acne.
OK, so you've purchased some seed or protein.....now what?
Hemp seeds (or hemp hearts) are about the size of a small bean, and they have a nutty, earthy taste.
Adding the protein or seeds to your diet is really easy. If you're using seeds, you can simply add them with your breakfast into your cereal or yogurt. Both protein and or ground seeds can be added to smoothies, and also added to salads. We've even heard our customers using it to mix in with their ground beef to make burgers.
If you're really keen, you can also make hemp milk with the seeds. Other alternatives are adding it to baked goods such as bread and muffins.
Many high level sports people like to combine hemp protein with other supplements, especially if they want to reduce other food for high protein intake, particularly if they are vegan or sensitive to veganism. The high levels of protein and other health benefits make it an in demand alternative to other sources of natural protein.
Hemp protein smoothie and avocado toast pic.twitter.com/lMbtixxmHF
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