This week marks the fifth annual Hemp History Week. More than ever, people are learning the benefits of this amazing plant. It’s been seen in health foods, skincare products, textiles and even building materials! Despite’s ever growing popularity, it’s misguided and outdated policy prevents U.S. farmers from growing this versatile, nutritious, eco-friendly crop.
Hemp is a variety of the Cannabis sativa plant. It is not the same as marijuana, as it does not contain the high levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the active ingredient that produces a high. Hemp, or industrial hemp, is a cultivated, low-THC variety of Cannabis. It is grown for its seeds, oil and fiber.
Hemp is full of nutritional benefits. It’s a great source of complete protein with ten amino acids, omega-3 and -6 essential fatty acids, Vitamin E, and iron. Vegan and gluten-free, hemp is an ideal, non-dairy alternative for vegetarian, vegan and raw diets or anyone with soy or dairy allergies.
Hemp Oil is becoming the new olive oil. A recent study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry detailed the numerous compounds in hempseed oil, which contains aliphatic alcohols, sterols and linolenic acids, which have all been associated with promoting good health.
You can you hemp seed in a variety of ways – added in smoothies, sprinkled in salads, cereals and dips or you can even substitute them for nuts in baked goods. You can even try making your own hemp milk or ground them into a meal.
We need work together to help farmers and support hemp farming in the U.S. Let’s educate our elected officials about the economic benefits of growing non-drug, industrial hemp on American soil. To learn more about events going on in your area and how you can help, please visit HempHistoryWeek.com