Hemp powder vs. hemp oil

Written by matthew cote
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Hemp powder vs. hemp oil
A cannabis (hemp) plant (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Fotoblog Rare)

Hemp seeds are collected from the cannabis plant and used to produce hemp powder and hemp oil. These substances vary in how they are produced, and differ in their general applicability.

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Hemp Oil

Hemp seeds are squeezed to extract an oil, which contains a 3:1 ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 essential fatty acids.

Hemp Powder

The remaining materials left from the extraction process are known as hemp seed cake, which is milled and turned into hemp powder.

Using Hemp Oil

Hemp oil is not suitable for frying (due to a low smoking point); however, it is often used as a food oil and dietary supplement, due to the health benefits of consuming high levels of essential fatty acids (EFA). It is important to incorporate EFAs in your diet because a deficiency in either alpha linolenic acid (LNA)--Omega 3--or linolenic acid (LA)--Omega 6--may result in vision impairment, high triglycerides, high blood pressure, sticky platelets, tissue inflammation, oedema, dry skin, mental deterioration, low metabolic rate, eczema-like skin eruptions, loss of hair, liver degeneration, kidney degeneration, susceptibility to infections, failure of wound healing, sterility in males, miscarriage in females, or heart and circulatory problems.

Using Hemp Powder

Hemp powder is sifted to produce hemp flour and hemp protein concentrate; the large fibres are slowly sifted out, leaving a finer grain of pure hemp protein. Hemp flour may substitute flour in most recipes, and the protein concentrate is generally used in protein-rich items, such as protein shakes.

Is Any of This Illegal?

According to Dr. Andrew Weil, author of "Natural Health, Natural Medicine," "The oil itself is perfectly legal. Hemp seeds are allowed in commerce if they have been sterilised in some way to prevent germination."

Which One?

While hemp powder supplies more fibre or protein to your diet, hemp oil offers a highly digestible 3:1 balance of 80 per cent EFA content.

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