Hemp has been a hot topic of Australian debate and nutritional praise over the past few years and is rapidly finding its place in household products and meals. If you're not already on board this craze, we've got a few good reasons to consider hemp, along with some answers to your most asked questions.
Everything You Need To Know About Hemp! Myths, Benefits and Uses
Is Hemp Legal?
To answer our most asked hemp-related question of all time - yes! Hemp is absolutely legal.
All hemp foods in Australia are low enough in THC that you won't get high off them, nor will you receive a positive drug test.
Hemp is commonly mistaken with marijuana; however, they are different in many ways. Marijuana contains up to 100x the THC content of hemp, which is the intoxicating substance in marijuana.
What Makes It So Healthy?
Hemp is the only food source to contain the ideal ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 essential fatty acids. These are the good fats that promote cardiovascular health and maintain cholesterol levels.
Hemp also provides a complete source of gluten-free protein, with a complete amino acid profile. It's also rich in a variety of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants.
The combination of omega 3, omega 6 and protein makes hemp an excellent plant-based option for vegetarians, vegans and fussy eaters (think kids who can't stand seafood!). Hemp is also an excellent accompaniment to almost any meat dish.
Helping Australian Farmers
Hemp is a drought-resistant crop - perfect for Australian conditions. It can thrive in a variety of soils and grows extremely rapidly, which is a huge benefit for farmers hoping to maximise their yield.
You can find Australian farmed hemp products in most Naked Foods stores!
Helping The Environment
Being a drought-resistant crop means that hemp has the potential to cut down water consumption as it wouldn't require the same irrigation levels of our average crops.
Hemp also absorbs 5 times more C02 from the air than trees! Win win win.
Hemp seeds have a mild nutty flavour and suit a variety of meals. Hemp seeds are extremely versatile, try adding them to your diet with these ideas:
- Perfect as a salad topper
- In baking: try these Choc Hemp Cookies
- In homemade snacks, like these Tahini Pop Bars
- Added to smoothies and breakfasts: try this Spooky Smoothie Bowl
- In homemade protein balls: try these Nut-Free Tahini Caramel Bliss Balls
Hemp seed oil has an extremely low smoke point so it's best to use it raw or at low temperatures to enjoy its health benefits. Try these tips to add hemp oil to your diet:
- Drizzling it on your salads, try this: Hemp Oil Vinaigrette Salad Dressing
- Dipping bread in it
- Adding it to homemade pesto, hummus or dips
- Using as a marinade
Hemp Protein Powder
Hemp protein powder is rapidly growing in popularity as a valuable source of plant-based protein. It has a nutty, earthy taste - similar to hemp seeds - and is a great addition to smoothies. It's best to blend hemp protein with other ingredients as it has a grittier texture than other proteins.
Like hemp seeds, hemp protein powder is a complete protein with all nine essential amino acids, and is very easy to digest, unlike many other plant proteins.
Hemp flour is gluten-free and boasts the same health benefits as hemp seeds and oil, along with a delicious nutty taste that will boost baking flavours.
Our favourite ways to use hemp flour:
- In baking: try it in bread, brownies, cake or cookies.
- As a thickener in curries and stews.
- To crumb meats, vegetables and burgers.
You can substitute hemp protein powder for hemp flour in most recipes - hemp protein powder contains more nutrients than hemp flour, as it hasn't been stripped of its natural oils! Shop Natural Hemp Protein Powder here or in store.
Hemp On Your Body
Hemp oil works well as a natural moisturiser, and its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties may have anti-aging benefits.
Our hemp soap bars are a fresh and healing deodoriser with herbal extracts to improve circulation - they are scented with a blend of spearmint and rosemary oils, and 100% Australian owned and organic.
Have You Tried Hemp?
Leave us a comment below or tag us in your recipes using @nakedfoods.
Words by Amy Fraser.