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Everything You Need to Know About How to Eat Hemp Seeds

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Manitoba Harvest Hemp Foods

As far as the nut and seed world goes, hemp seeds are like the straight-A student who’s also captain of the football team. A couple of spoonfuls of hemp seeds packs a serious amount of essential nutrients, they’re easy to eat and cook with, and they have a pleasantly nutty taste, like a cross between a sunflower seed and a pine nut. And no, they won’t get you remotely high. Here’s everything you need to know about how to buy and eat these little seeds.

Although hemp and marijuana are members of the same species, Cannabis sativa, they’re in effect completely different plants. There are about a dozen varieties of hemp plants that are grown for food, and all of them contain about 0.001 percent Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. This means you can eat as much hemp as you want and you’ll never have to worry about getting high or failing a drug test. Although certain states have begun to legalize the cultivation of industrial hemp in the last couple of years, the hemp seeds you can find at your grocery or health food store were likely grown in Canada or China.

Hemp plants grow brown popcorn kernel-sized hard seeds. Inside these hard seeds lie soft, white or light green inner kernels that are packed with essential amino acids, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids. You can’t really derive a lot of nutritional value from the unhulled seeds, so when you see a bag at the store labeled “hemp seeds,” what you’re actually buying is those soft inner kernels, also known as hemp hearts. Hemp hearts can be pressed to make hemp seed oil, leaving behind a byproduct that can be turned into hemp protein powder. You can find all of these hemp products at health food stores, or a well-stocked grocery store like Whole Foods.

Eating shelled hemp seeds, or hemp hearts, is as simple as sprinkling a spoonful or two into smoothies or on top of cereal, salads, or yogurt, says Kelly Saunderson of Manitoba Harvest Hemp Foods, the world’s largest hemp foods manufacturer. People with gluten sensitivity can use hemp seeds as a substitute for breadcrumbs to coat chicken or fish. Just like you can blend almonds and water to make almond milk, you can do the same with hemp seeds for hemp seed milk, which you can use as an alternative to dairy milk in drinks and recipes. And because of its nutty flavor, hemp seeds make a great substitute for people with nut allergies—you can dry-toast them over low heat to bring out even more of that nuttiness.

Hemp seed oil should be used as a finishing oil, rather than a cooking or frying oil, since the delicate omega fatty acids will break down during the cooking process, stripping the oil of its nutritional benefits. Instead, use it to make salad dressings, or drizzle over pasta, grilled veggies, or popcorn.

Hemp seeds are considered one of the most valuable plant-based proteins out there. Here's what you need to know about how to eat them.

Organic Hemp Seeds (Raw, No Shell)

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All natural, raw organic hemp seeds out of the shell, also known as hemp hearts. These are one of the world’s most nutritious seeds. Shelled hemp seeds are 33% protein and packed with Omega-3 fatty acids. Eat 3 tablespoons a day of this delicious organic hemp seeds treat to gain all of its health benefits.

How to Enjoy Organic Hemp Seeds

Raw organic hemp seeds have a wonderful nutty taste similar to pine nuts. For a protein boost, mix raw hemp seeds in smoothies, cereal, omelettes, or yogurt. They are also delicious blended with other ingredients to make a salad dressing. For a real treat, try them in a chia seed pudding.

Health Benefits of Organic Hemp Seeds

As a highly digestible source of plant-based protein, raw organic hemp seeds are great for athletes, vegans, and vegetarians. Hemp seeds are a complete protein containing all 9 essential amino acids, which are required for our bodies to build protein and must be obtained through food.

Raw organic hemp seeds also contain a healthy 3:1 ratio of Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids which is rare in many of the foods consumed in Western diets. A proper balance of these essential fatty acids is important for controlling inflammation levels and preventing chronic conditions like heart disease. Hemp hearts are also a great source of nutrients such as vitamin E, which acts as an antioxidant to protect cells, and minerals like iron, which wards off fatigue and boosts energy levels.

Hemp Seeds Storage

It’s best to keep organic hemp hearts refrigerated in an airtight container. If you purchase a 5-pound bag, consider putting 1 pound of the hemp seeds in an airtight container in the refrigerator for daily use and freezing the rest.

Organic hemp seeds are 33% protein and loaded with omega-3s. Buy premium raw no shell hemp seeds today. Fast shipping.