The Wonderful Health Effects of Hemp for Humankind
Increasing awareness regarding the dietary advantages of its oil, coupled with the growing demand from the personal care and cosmetics industries is expected to drive the market growth.
According to Grand View Research's Market Analysis Report of Industrial Hemp 2020-2027, the global industrial hemp market size is expected to register a revenue-based CAGR of 15.8% over the forecast period, a sharp rise from USD 4.71 billion in 2019.
The expanding market of industrial hemp is driven by the growing demand for hemp oil and fibres in food and beverage, automotive, construction, textile industries and personal care. Additionally, low prices of crop encourage farmers to diversify their crop options, subsequently, increasing the number of producers. Further, increasing awareness regarding the dietary advantages of its oil, coupled with the growing demand from the personal care and cosmetics industries is expected to drive the market growth.
Hemp Seeds as a Superfood
Unlike popular belief, hemp does not have psychotropic effects on the human body. In fact, its seed has many healthy benefits and is actually 33% protein. The small, brown seeds are rich in fibre, protein, and healthful fatty acids, including omega-6 and omega-3s. Their antioxidant properties may reduce symptoms of numerous ailments in addition to improving the health of heart. The nutritional power and hardiness of hemp seed could significantly address the global protein needs and starvation problems.
As awareness about the harmful effects of pesticides, artificial chemicals, and radioactive materials increases, people are increasingly becoming interested in eating low on the food chain which means eating more and more plants. The side effects of eating animal products, such as saturated fat, excessive cholesterol, and weight gain are becoming an overwhelming problem. Therefore, millions of people are seeking more sustainable and humane alternatives with vegan food sources of protein and fat, particularly hemp seed.
Raw hemp seeds are one of the richest sources of complete protein as it is packed with 33-37 percent pure digestible protein. Only algae such as marine phytoplankton, AFA blue-green algae and spirulina exceed hemp in protein. Additionally, 47 percent of a hemp seed is comprised of good fats, a vital composition of omega-3 and omega-6.
Moreover, the fibre content of hemp seed flour is the maximum out of all commercially grown seeds. Hemp seeds also have a high content of vitamin E in the form of alpha- tocotrienols, delta-tocopherol and alpha-, beta-, gamma- and are a significant source of monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acids. The THC found in various concentrations in the hemp genus has numerous medicinal properties - useful for chronic pain and nausea in cancer patients.
A normal serving of 3 tablespoons of hulled hemp seeds has over 14 g of healthy fats, 165 calories, and almost 10 g of protein. These seeds are also rich in minerals like potassium, phosphorus and magnesium.
Health Benefits of Hemp Seeds
1. May Control the Risk of Heart Disease
Hemp seeds contain good amounts of the amino acid arginine, which produces nitric oxide in the body. It is a gas molecule that makes blood vessels relax and dilate, which, leads to controlled blood pressure and a reduced risk of heart disease. According to Pub Med, increased arginine intake coupled with decreased levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) and high levels of CRP is linked to heart disease in the majority of people.
2. Helpful in Skin Disorders
A balance of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids in the human body are significant to the immune system and hemp seeds are a good source of these fatty acids with about a 3:1 ratio of omega-6 to omega-3. Hemp seed oil relieves people from dry skin, itchiness, inflammation and thus, reduces the need for skin medication.
3. A Source of Plant Based Protein
Plants often lack the amino acid lysine which is why complete protein sources are rare in the plant kingdom. Hemp seeds are considered a complete protein source as they provide all the essential amino acids and contain high levels of arginine and glutamic acid.
4. Helps Control Stress and Anxiety
Cannabidiol or CBD is considered a cannabinoid which is leaf extract of the cannabis plant. CBD is known to have benefits on stress, seizure disorders, anxiety and pain relief.
5. Helps Control the Symptoms of PMS and Menopause
Physical or emotional symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) are common among women. This is likely due to sensitivity to the hormone prolactin. Hemp seeds are rich in Gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) which produces prostaglandin E1, thus, controlling the effects of prolactin. It decreases depression, breast pain and tenderness, and fluid retention associated with PMS.
The high content of GLA in hemp seeds indicates its ability to reduce symptoms of menopause, too as it is known to regulate the hormone imbalances and inflammation associated with menopause.
Summing It All Up
Overall, it can be safely said that hemp seeds have a generously nutritional profile and therapeutically active constituents. It contains a great potential to help many processes of the body and help one lead a healthy life.
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