Hemp foods are made from hemp seeds and are incredibly nutritious. They offer a wide variety of important health attributes. They boost the immune system, provides fiber to care for the digestive tract, are a great source of protein, and contain healthy omega-3 fats. Regular intake of hemp foods can help to improve overall health and may even stave off some diseases.
The majority of all hemp foods are made from Canadian grown and processed hemp seeds. Many people think of marijuana when they hear the word “hemp.” It’s important to know that the hemp seeds used to produce foods don’t contain any significant levels of THC and is therefore not marijuana. There is no need to worry about any ill effects such as failing a drug test as it does not have any detectible amount of THC.
Types of Hemp Foods
Hemp products are available in different forms and can be easily added to everyone’s daily diet. There are many forms of hemp foods that can be used alone or used in several recipes. There are different ways that hemp foods can be used alone or in recipes. Some of the most popular forms of hemp foods include:
- Whole hemp seeds
- Shelled hemp seed (“hemp hearts”)
- Hemp oil
- Hemp protein
- Hemp milk
Whole hemp seeds are versatile and can be used just like flax seeds. They can be added to almost any recipe to increase fiber intake. Shelled hemp seeds, also called hemp hearts, have a taste similar to pine nuts and can be eaten in a similar way. Hemp oil can be used in cooking and baking, though its best to use as a finishing oil such as salad dressing. Hemp protein is among the most nutritious and can help the body cleanse the intestinal tract. It can be used just like whey or soy protein. Hemp milk is similar to almond or soy milk and can be substituted for dairy milk in recipes.
How to Use Hemp Foods
Shelled Hemp Seed can be used alone or in almost any recipe. In the form of shelled seeds (“hemp hearts”) it can be sprinkled onto cereal or added to a fruit smoothie to boost protein intake for breakfast. For lunch, hemp hearts are a tasty addition to a salad or can be tossed onto vegetables for added protein and healthy fats. For dinner place a handful of hemp seeds on top of pasta or stir fry. As a snack or dessert, mix in some hemp seeds with yogurt.
Hemp Seed Oil can be used in baking and light cooking. However, hemp oil has a low flash point, which means it will start to smoke at fairly low temperatures. It’s also delicate, and if you cook at too high of a temperature such as frying chicken, it may cause the oil to hydrogenate. Therefore, its best to use hemp as a “finishing oil” which means that it should be consumed raw. Use as a salad dressing, either as vinegar and oil, or as a prepared dressing such as ranch. You can use hemp oil as a substitute for other fats, such as butter on a baked potato or rice. Some prefer to simply use hemp oil as a supplement and consume 1-2 Tablespoons per day as needed.
Hemp Protein is available in three different varieties with varying levels of protein: 34%, 50%, and 70%. Hemp protein is made from milling the seed cake into flour that is left over from pressing whole hempseed into oil. Further processing of sifting out the fiber is performed to increase protein and decrease fiber content. The 70% hemp concentrate is water soluble which means it will dissolve into water or other liquids. No matter which variety you choose, hemp protein is usually used as a source of protein in fruit smoothies.
There are hundreds of ways to use hemp in almost all of your recipes — you can be creative and find new and innovative ways to include them in your diet. Add them to your family’s diet every day to enjoy the many health benefits of hemp.