In the world of nuts and seeds, hemp seed is like that prodigious student who scores top grades in the college and also is the captain of the baseball team.
A powerhouse of essential nutrients, fiber, minerals, vitamins, and healthy fats and protein, hemp seeds boost your nutrition and offer a host of benefits for your heart, skin and brain and digestion system.
They are exceptionally rich in healthy fatty acids including linoleic acid (omega-6), alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3) and gamma-linoleic acid (GLA).
You can eat hemp seed as you wish. Sprinkle a couple of spoonsful into smoothies or on top of cereal. Here are the following 5 ways you can consume hemp seed
1. Hemp Seeds can be consumed raw, roasted or cooked
Hemp seeds are basically nuts and have a pleasant mild nutty flavour—somewhat a cross between a sunflower seed and a pine nut. They blend well in salads, smoothies, spreads, oatmeal, etc and can be consumed either raw, roasted or in form, of hemp seed oil.
“Hemp has an incredible nutritional profile that can help people fill some holes in their diet,” says Ashley Koff, RD.
2. Use as breadcrumbs for coating fish and chicken
People with gluten sensitivity can substitute hemp seeds for breadcrumbs to coat chicken or fish. You can also use hemp seed with water to make hemp seed milk, which lactose intolerant people can use as an alternative to dairy milk in drinks and recipes.
3. Salad dressing, sandwiches and veggies
You can use them on top of salads, or in a vinaigrette or sandwiches. They are great to add to anything–salads, smoothies, avocado, pasta sauce, veggies, yogurt, rice, chia seed pudding, etc.
“I add it to my cauliflower for mock mashed potato. Salad dressing with garlic, olive oil, lemon, honey. Add it to my smoothies and oatmeal in the morning. Or to homemade granola, “says Dr. Ashti.
4. Use it as finishing oil
It is important to note that hemp seed oil should be used a finishing oil, instead of frying or cooking oil.
As mentioned above hemp seed oil are exceptionally rich in healthy fatty acids including linoleic acid (omega-6) and alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3) and gamma-linoleic acid (GLA).
Cooking hemp seed oil will break down the delicate omega fatty acid thus stripping the oil of its nutritional benefits.
The best way as such to consume it is to make salad dressings, sprinkle it on your smoothies or shakes, drizzle it on your oatmeal, or scatter it over pasta, grilled veggies, mashed potatoes, rice, protein pancakes or popcorn among other items.
5. Some Other ways to consume hemp seeds
Other ingredients that are made with hemp seed which you can consume either as a standalone product or with something else.
Besides the oil, other products made from hemp seeds include:
- Hemp butter: hemp seeds blended with oil
- Hemp flour: a by-product of oil extraction
- Hemp protein: hemp flour containing a rich amount of protein
- Hemp milk: blended hemp seeds with water +/- other ingredients. Good for people who are lactose intolerant.
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