HEMP SEED OIL BENEFITS and Uses: FROM THE HEART TO THE HEAD
We have become accustomed to seeing hemp seed oil on the shop shelves for some time now, but do you know why it has become so popular? Hemp seed oil is a natural product which can support our overall wellbeing, from the heart to the head.
The nutrients found in hemp seed oil include healthy fatty acids, protein, and carbohydrates. Natural hemp seed oil is well known for being potentially significant for the heart due to its 3:1 ratio of linoleic (LA) and a-linolenic acid (LNA). These are two essential polyunsaturated fatty acids that have been found to supplement a healthy heart.
Hemp seed oil is growing in popularity as its attached long list of potential health benefits is being reputed. Below, we uncover some of the potential health benefits of hemp seeds oil for our daily lives.
What Is Hemp Seed Oil
Pressed from hemp seeds, hemp oil is a nutritionally powerful oil with beautifully diverse health benefits. Hemp seeds do not have as many phytochemicals as the hemp plant, but they contain a complex blend of nutrients, acids, vitamins, and minerals.
The colour of unrefined hemp oil is typically dark to clear light green. Lighter unrefined hemp oils have a nutty taste, but the darker oils have a grassier flavour. Refined hemp oil is clear and colourless.
Hemp Oil Vs CBD Oil - Does Hemp Oil Contain CBD?
Hemp oil, or hemp seed oil as we call it, has little to no CBD content.
It's important not to get confused between hemp seed oil and cannabidiol (CBD) oil. They are two very different products although the plants belong to the same family. Many CBD oil uses the stalks, leaves, and flowers of the cannabis plants, including hemps, in its production. These parts of the plant include high concentrations of CBD, which is a natural plant compound with numerous potential health benefits.
Is Hemp Seed Oil Legal?
Some may feel a little uncomfortable using a product which derives from a cannabis plant. Although hemp plants are indeed a member of the cannabis plant family, they contain little to no tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the compound located in cannabis which creates the famously intoxicating 'high.' Cannabis-derived products with no more than 0.2% THC content are legal in the UK.
You will not encounter any intoxicating effects when using hemp seed oil, and it is entirely legal in the UK. You have the added insurance that, due to the oil being made from hemp seeds rather than the plant itself, it contains only traces of cannabinoids.
Cannabinoids are the naturally-occurring compounds discovered in hemp plants. It is estimated that there are over 400 different compounds in these plants, but only around 66 are officially termed cannabinoids. The two most prominent and well-studied cannabinoids are THC and CBD.
What is Hemp Seed Good for
We are still learning more about hemp oil uses and hemp seed health benefits. Some of the many alleged hemp benefits include:
- Promotes cardiovascular and heart health
- Supports weight loss
- Strengthens the immune system
- Improves skin conditions
- Helps manage hormone balance
- Keeps scalp and hair healthy
- Improves digestive health
Potentially Promote Heart Health
A healthy heart beats around 100,000 times each day, and continuously pumps about five litres of blood around your body. This blood travels through a network of vessels called your circulatory system. It delivers nutrients and oxygen to all parts of your body, and carries away unwanted carbon dioxide and waste products. Your heart plays one of the most critical functions in your body alongside the circulatory system. Together, they deliver blood to your organs so they can work optimally.
One of the top hemp seed oil benefits is maintaining a healthy heart and this is something you can work on every day. What you eat and how much you move can have a significant impact on your heart. There are supplements you can include in your coronary (heart) wellness routine, such as hemp seed oil.
How Does Hemp Seed Oil Help
Potential hemp health benefits for the heart because it contains several positive components. It contains high quantities of essential fatty acids omega-6 and omega-3 in the ‘optimal’ 3:1 ratio. Studies have detected that this ratio should not exceed 4:1, making the 3:1 ratio perfect for supplementing our health. These essential fatty acids may reduce cholesterol levels in the blood, due to hemp seed’s β-sitosterols content, which may help prevent heart disease.
This natural seed oil is also a great source of Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA), enzyme lipase, and amino acid arginine, which are all great for promoting heart health. When hemp seed oil is used as part of a healthy balanced lifestyle, it may be beneficial to think of it as a critical part of your daily heart-strengthening routine.
Potentially Support Weight Loss
Evidence supports hemp seed oil benefits for weight control when it's introduced to a weight loss plan which includes a balanced diet, consistent exercise, and a positive mindset. The Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA) found in hemp seeds may help reduce sugar cravings, and potentially act as a natural appetite suppressant. This could lead to weight loss by leading you to consume fewer calories.
How Does Hemp Seed Oil Help
As hemp seed oil is abundant in GLA, many are interested in finding benefits of hemp oil for weight loss. One study found that previously obese individuals taking GLA supplements for a year managed to regain less weight once they stopped taking the supplements. Hemp seed oil could be a great supplement to your determination and hard work when it comes to keeping excess weight off.
Why Is This Important?
In 2019, a health survey was completed in England, which found that an estimated 28% of adults are obese, with a further 36% being overweight. Obesity is generally defined as having a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or above, while a BMI of 25 to 30 is categorised as overweight. The survey went on to find that men are more likely to be overweight or obese than women (68% of men compared to 60% women).
Weight management is something that people struggle with worldwide, and excess weight brings with it many health concerns. Controlling weight can be very hard, and there are many factors which come into play when analysing why and how body weight can be brought down to a healthy level.
Possibly Impact the Immune System
The immune system is made up of individual cells, chemicals, and organs that work together to fight infection (microbes). The central parts of the immune system which actively fight off microbes are white blood cells, antibodies, the complement system, lymphatic system, spleen, thymus, and bone marrow.
Once the immune system has defeated an infection, it keeps a record in types of white blood cells (B- and T-lymphocytes) referred to as memory cells. Due to the memory cells, the immune system is able to recognise and destroy microbes quickly if they enter the body again, ensuring they do not have time to multiply and make you feel ill.
Potential Hemp Seed Benefits for the Immune System
Some infections, such as the common cold and flu, may need to be fought many times by the immune system. This is because there are so many distinct strains of the same type of virus, so the different strains can continually make you sick. Boosting your immune system can help your body naturally fight off unwanted microbes.
Hemp seed benefits may include strengthening your immune system because of the fatty acids it contains. Fatty acids are vital for the body, so they can synthesise endocannabinoids to reinforce the immune system. This is one of the motives for regularly taking hemp seed oil as an immune-enhancing supplement that may have the potential to support your overall well being.
Potentially Help in Managing a Hormone Balance
Hormones are your body's natural chemical messengers. They are made in the endocrine glands and travel around your bloodstream telling organs and tissues what to do. These powerful chemicals play a role in controlling many of your body's major processes, including reproduction and metabolism.
It is usual for some hormones to fluctuate throughout our lifespan due to natural ageing, but sometimes there is a hormone imbalance when you have too much or too little of a specific hormone. The smallest fluctuation can have a massive effect on your whole body, causing weight gain, fatigue, low mood, and many other symptoms.
Hemp Seed Benefits for Hormone Balance
Studies suggest hemp seed oil benefits your hormone balance thanks to high contents of GLA. The research into which hormonal conditions may be directly helped with GLA supplements is still ongoing. Studies have shown that supplementations with GLA do not cause any side effects, so why not give hemp seed oil a try? It may have the potential to help improve hormone health and possibly reduce some of the uncomfortable symptoms of hormone imbalance.
To support your endocrine glands within the important job of hormone production, you can take gamma-linoleic acid (GLA) supplements. GLA is needed to synthesise prostaglandins, a compound identical to hormones. Scientists have found that supplementing a healthy diet and lifestyle with GLA could help improve hormone balance and reduce associated symptoms of hormone imbalance.
Moisturises and Potentially Alleviates Symptoms of Skin Conditions
Daily moisturising is vital for maintaining skin health. Your skin is the body's largest organ, and, as such, needs regular attention to stay healthy, blemish-free, and youthful. The number of times you moisturise each day will depend on your skin type and lifestyle. The most important times to moisturise are after a bath, exfoliation, or shave. This is because hot water can strip the moisture and oils out of your skin, leaving it dry, flaky, and uncomfortable.
Choosing the right kind of moisturiser for your skin type is vital to protect skin health and prevent skin conditions. Hemp seed oil is an excellent choice, as it is suitable for all skin types, whether you have oily, dry, or hypersensitive skin. It is abundant in nutrients, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids- making it the perfect skin supplement.
How Does Hemp Seed Oil Help
If you have an existing skin condition, and are concerned that moisturiser will trigger a flare-up, hemp seed oil may be an excellent alternative to traditional skin products. One of the hemp seed oil benefits for skin is the ability to provide moisture while not clogging pores. This makes it suitable for those managing symptoms of acne. Hemp seed oil also has the potential to strengthen your skin and possibly enhance the skin's ability to resist fungal, viral, and bacterial infections. Many people are put off by moisturising, as they find it an arduous task. They think of moisturisers as thick, while emollients which take forever to rub into the skin. Using hemp seed oil for your skin is a very different experience. It is a much lighter product which absorbs quickly into the skin, and may help provide an additional barrier to prevent moisture loss, so you will not need to use lots of the product. A little hemp seed oil can go a long way.
Support Scalp and Hair Health
We are all beginning to understand the synergy between our scalp and hair health. It is estimated that 42% of the UK population are conscious of a scalp issue. The length, lustre, and overall health of your hair depends on the skin's condition, including your head and scalp. This is because each hair grows through an individual hair follicle which surfaces on your scalp.
Each hair follicle produces sebum (natural oils) via the sebaceous gland, and the amount of oil generated will vary from person to person. The scalp and follicles need to be clean and clear when hair exits the skin to ensure optimal hair growth. Follicles which are full of sebum, dead skin, or dandruff, will have a significant impact on the quality of hair growth.
Due to the scalp-conscious nation, there has been an enormous growth in scalp care product sales. But, with this newfound concern, it does not mean we need to run out and buy the latest haircare gimmick. We can look to nature to support our scalp and hair health. That's where hemp seed oil for hair comes in.
How Does Hemp Seed Oil Help
It's believed that hemp seed benefits your hair because it's packed with essential fatty acids, which are known to add moisture and shine to hair. When used on a regular basis, it may also promote hair growth, help grow thicker hair, and strengthen brittle hair strands. Some subjective reports suggest applying the oil directly to the scalp could help relieve some common problems, such as dandruff, itchiness, dryness, and could potentially help with symptoms of scalp psoriasis. It is essential we look after our scalps by removing dead skin through brushing, washing, and weekly exfoliation.
May Enhance Digestive Health
To maintain a healthy digestive system, we need to follow a balanced diet and smart lifestyle choices. The digestive system runs from the mouth all the way down to the anus. It includes the stomach, the large and small intestines, and many accessory organs, such as the liver, pancreas, gallbladder, and salivary glands, to name a few.
The digestive system's role is to turn food and liquid into the building blocks required for the body to function effectively. To be able to do this, the digestive system produces and utilises a mixture of enzymes and other substances that break down food into small molecules. It takes the average human around two hours to pass food through the stomach, another two hours to go through the small intestine, and around 20 hours to pass through the large intestine into the rectum. The length of our digestive tube (from the mouth to the anus) is 9 metres on average.
How Hemp Seed Oil Benefits Digestive Health
Hemp oil benefits can include the support of the digestive system, we can take supplements (such as hemp seed oil) which are high in omega-3 essential fatty acids. Two such fatty acids are docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) are known to synthesise compounds called eicosanoids. These compounds are responsible for regulating the secretion of hormones and digestive juices.
The fatty acids in hemp seed oil could potentially help promote good microbes in the gut flora, which assists in digestion and throughout the immune system.
How to Take Hemp Seed Capsules
When introducing hemp seed oil to your wellness routine, it is essential to start with one hemp seed capsule, and slowly work your way up if and when needed. As stated on the product packaging, do not exceed the recommended daily intake. The maximum recommended dosage will vary from product to product, so it is vital you only purchase reputable hemp seed capsules which include clear instructions.
It is best to take your daily hemp seed capsules with food and a glass of water. The reason for this is to help aid the possible absorption rate. Hemp capsules contain fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin A and vitamin E, which are dissolved in our bodies using fats. They are then transported into our bloodstream and perform their necessary functions. When our bodies get extra fat-soluble vitamins, they are stored in the liver for future use.
Hemp Oil Capsules Benefits
Hemp oil capsules are a more compact and convenient way to take advantage of hemp seeds health benefits. It is much easier to monitor and control your dosage using capsules than by pouring hemp oil into a spoon. Using hemp capsules benefits first-timers by making dosing clean, quick, and easy.
How to Store Hemp Seed Oil Capsules
After purchasing your hemp capsules, it is crucial you look after them and store the product in the correct way. How you treat your capsules will differ depending on the individual product, but most will advise storing them below 25°C. With all hemp seed capsules, it is important the seal is not broken or missing when you first open the product. It is also best to use your hemp seed oil by the ‘best before’ date, which all reputable manufacturers will print on the packaging.
Does Hemp Oil Make You Sleepy?
Hemp oil offers many hemp benefits - it's not a drowsy inducing substance and isn't known to make you feel high. Hemp seed oil is pressed from plants containing less than 0.3% THC, and hemp seed oil does not have the psychoactive effects of marijuana plants containing 50 to 100 times as much THC.
Hemp oil’s anti-inflammatory properties may ease aches and pains and make you feel more relaxed, but your alertness and reflexes will not be affected by hemp oil.
Hemp Oil Side Effects
Most people find hemp oil to be a useful dietary supplement and rubbing oil that has no unwanted negative side effects. But on rare occasions, some people have experienced problems after taking hemp oil.
Hemp seed oil can lower blood pressure, which may lead to hypotension. If you begin feeling dizziness, drowsiness, fatigue, and confusion after taking hemp oil, check your blood pressure immediately.
Other people may have difficulty digesting hemp seed oil leading to diarrhoea. Dose in moderation.
WILL YOU TRY HEMP SEED OIL?
What does hemp oil do? We've discussed many potential health benefits of hemp oil when used to support our overall well being. It has many uses; so one hemp seed capsule may effectively help a range of common issues, whatever your age or gender identity.
If you are feeling drained and need a boost of energy, hemp seed oil may also be a good option for you, as it contains significant amounts of iron. Low iron stores have been found to be a common cause of energy depletion. Hemp seed oil, if administered accurately, can contain over 20% of your recommended daily iron needs.
Whether you are trying to look after your heart, or want to improve the condition of your hair, hemp seed oil could be a great addition to your daily supplement intake.