Despite what their name may lead you to believe, hemp seeds won’t get you high — but they can give your health a nice boost.
Hemp seeds come from the same species as the cannabis plant, but they only contain trace amounts of THC, which means you can sprinkle them on your salad without worrying about any crazy hallucinations. Filled with all sorts of nutrients, hemp seeds are incredibly nutritious and worth adding to your diet.
If you haven’t given hemp seeds a try, you might want to start now. Here are five benefits of eating hemp seeds.
High in protein
Hemp seeds can be added to any meal for an extra protein boost. “A three-tablespoon serving of hemp seeds packs 10 grams of protein, which includes all 10 essential amino acids – making them a fabulous option for vegans, vegetarians, and those looking to increase plant-based protein in their diets,” says registered dietitian Lauren Harris-Pincus, M.S., RDN. “That’s especially helpful at breakfast where hemp seeds make a delicious addition to oatmeal, Greek, or plant-based yogurt and fruit.”
Rich in fiber
Whole hemp seeds are a good source of both soluble and insoluble fiber. However, de-hulled or shelled hemp seeds — also known as hemp hearts — contain very little fiber because the fiber-rich shell has been removed. “[Soluble fiber] is a valuable source of nutrients for beneficial good bacteria and may also reduce spikes in blood sugar and regulate cholesterol levels,” says registered dietitian Carol Aguirre M.S., RD/LDN. “Insoluble fiber adds bulk to your stool and may help food and waste pass through your gut. It has also been linked to a reduced risk of diabetes.”
Contains heart-healthy fatty acids
Hemp seeds are unique because they’re not only a good source of plant-based omega-3 fats, but they have an optimal ratio of 3:1 omega-6 to omega-3s. In addition to omega-3s, they also contain gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). “The gamma-linolenic acid found in hemp seeds has also been linked to reduced inflammation, which may decrease your risk of diseases like heart disease,” says Aguirre. “Additionally, animal studies have shown that hemp seeds or hemp seed oil may reduce blood pressure, decrease the risk of blood clot formation, and help the heart recover after a heart attack.”
Helps with PMS
You might want to whip out some hemp seeds when Aunt Flo comes into town. GLA found in hemp seeds can also help fight PMS symptoms. “One study where women who had PMS took one gram of essential fatty acids (GLA) daily resulted in a significant decrease in symptoms,” says Aguirre. “These symptoms include a decrease in breast pain and tenderness, depression, irritability, and fluid retention associated with PMS.”
Can improve your skin
Hemp seeds may be your new favorite skin care secret. “Acne can result from chronic inflammation, and the anti-inflammatory compounds in hemp seeds may help,” says Aguirre. “Among other possible dietary causes, acne may be linked to a deficiency in omega-3s. The high omega-3 content in hemp seeds may help to manage and reduce acne symptoms.”
Adding hemp seeds to your diet is a great way to balance out your meals and contribute to your overall health.
xx, The FabFitFun Team