Hemp seeds have been a staple in my diet for years after I discovered the numerous health benefits of hemp seeds. Most people know they are a tasty source of vegan protein, but the health benefits of hemp seeds don’t just end there. These little seeds are powerful foods that have incredible powers. If you want a real superfood, hemp seeds are it! Check out the health benefits behind hemp seeds and add some to your diet ASAP to get in on the goodness yourself!
1. Complete Source of Protein
The most well-known of all health benefits of hemp seeds is their incredible protein content. Just 3 tablespoons of hemp seeds will give you 11 grams of complete protein and hemp protein powder will lend you 15 grams of complete protein. What makes a protein complete? Complete proteins are those that contain all essential and nonessential amino acids. There are 8 essential amino acids that make up the best proteins and most complete protein sources only come from animals. Not hemp seeds. These seeds contain the closest protein makeup to the human body, making them perfect for your plate!
2. Same Omega 3 Content as Fish Oil Pills
Did you know that 3 tablespoons of hemp seeds contain 3 grams of Omega 3 fatty acids, which is the same amount of heart healthy fats that promote a healthy metabolism, brain function, clear skin and healthy heart that you'll find in 2 fish oil pills? Hemp seeds are the perfect vegan or vegetarian solution for the best sources of Omega 3s. Flax and walnuts are also great sources but contain less protein.
3. Easily Digested
Hemp seeds are one of the easiest of all nuts and seeds to digest, along with one of the easiest foods to digest of all protein sources. They do not aggravate IBS, nor will they cause gas and bloating if you’re new to using them.
4. Rich Source of Fiber
Hemp seeds contain 7 grams of fiber per serving, which is about 3 tablespoons, and hemp seed protein powder contains anywhere from 12-14 grams of fiber per serving, depending on the brand and variety you choose. Fiber is great for removing cholesterol, keeping you full, keeping your blood sugar stable, and of course, keeping you regular. Ditch the wheat bran and go for some hemp seeds!
5. No Saturated Fats
Hemp seeds contain no saturated fats, unhealthy oils, or harmful fats of any kind, like trans fats. Just be sure to store them in the fridge to prevent rancidity, as you should store all your nuts and seeds this way.
6. They Combat Anxiety and Depression
This benefit is perhaps one of the best ways hemp seeds have helped me. Hemp seeds are rich in brain-boosting ingredients, vitamins and minerals that tame anxiety and tension, such as magnesium, iron, zinc, B vitamins, and of course, those awesome Omega 3 fatty acids. The protein in hemp seeds also help combat anxiety. Hemp seeds contain more magnesium than greens, grains, or fish, and contain 50% of your entire daily needs of magnesium. Magnesium is key to keeping stress at bay and taming anxiety, along with preventing cramps, fatigue, and weakness. Hemp seeds also contain 20% of your daily zinc requirements and 15% of your daily iron requirements.
7. Beautiful Skin
The Omega 3 fats in hemp lubricate your cells from the inside out and prevent inflammation. These two attributes are important for beating acne and dry skin. The protein content in hemp seeds also aid in collagen production, helping to ward off wrinkles.
Most people think shelling out $10 for a bag of raw, organic hemp seeds is a waste of money. I seriously disagree and let me explain why. Take into account that per 12 ounce bag of hemp seeds, you get 30 servings of a pure, raw, organic and complete source of vegan protein. Now, let’s compare that to spending $10 on a bag of wild salmon, which lends 2-3 servings, or spending $10 on organic poultry, which may lend you up to 10 servings at most. 30 servings of eggs would cost you $20. Hemp is one of the most cost efficient sources of most all protein sources, and one serving gives you anywhere from 11-15 grams of protein, which is similar to other sources or more.
9. Prevent Constipation
Since hemp seeds are so rich in fiber and are easy to digest, they are an excellent remedy for constipation. Their healthy fats and magnesium content also contribute to regularity by relaxing and lubricating your gut. Hemp seeds are an excellent option for those that don’t tolerate nuts or grains, which I tend to avoid myself for digestive reasons.
10. Lean Muscle
Hemp protein is one of the most recommended proteins for women wanting to gain more lean muscle and lose more fat. Hemp protein is used by vegan body builders and fitness buffs more than most other protein sources to build lean muscle. If you don’t tolerate grain sources of protein like brown rice and want a lower carb content, choose hemp protein powder, which is simply cold-milled, raw hemp seeds. They are low in carbs, higher in fiber and Omega 3s than brown rice, and they contain more lean-muscle forming nutrients than any other plant protein. Don’t worry, they won’t bulk you up, but will help your muscles burn more fat to increase the leanness of your overall body.
Did I mention hemp seeds taste great? I love them on salads, in smoothies, and I use the protein powder as a base for all my homemade energy bars and in smoothies as well. You can add hemp seeds to hummus, yogurt, oatmeal, cereal, as a topping on cooked veggies or any other way you can think of. Hemp oil is also a great replacement to olive oil! Always choose raw, organic hemp seeds to get the best source of this awesome food. Have you ever tried hemp seeds?