If you clicked on the link because you thought — or crossed both your fingers with hopes — that this will be a post about how I spent my youth rolling joints, planting seeds in the plant pot I kept in my bedroom or trying to disguise the smell of the herb. My youth was not that wild or misguided. So I am sorry to disappoint you but this is not a post about marijuana. It is however, a look at the hemp plant, which has been of nterest to me because of its eco friendly properties and its nutritional value.
I first found out about the other uses of hemp about 15 years ago when I was on a break in South America. The local habitat for humanity project was planning on building a school and a small primary healthcare facility. They didn't have a lot of funding so they were investigating construction methods that would make the institutions self-sufficient within a few years. Hemp was among the options they had on the list. Apparently hemp-based building material is great for earthquake prone places. According to experts hemp can be made into any building material.
The most interesting thing about hemp that has health conscious hippies like myself interested is its health and nutritional benefits. Here's a mouthful from The Nourishing Gourmet: Hemp is a seed that is high in protein and contains all nine of the essential amino acids like flax that our bodies cannot produce. It is also high in essential fatty oils and protein. Hemp is also a great protein source for vegetarians. Read more here
Body ecology had this to say about the nutritional benefits of hemp:
- It has a perfect 3:1 ratio of Omega-6 Linolenic Acid and Omega-3 Linolenic acid, which strengthen the cardiovascular system as well as the rest of the immune system.
- It's the richest source of polyunsaturated essential fats
- Rich source of phytonutrients, which protect immunity, bloodstream and skin etc.
There are also a great deal of natural skin care and beauty products being developed from the hemp plant/ hemp seed. Hemptons is a local company that carries and distributes hemp foods, beauty products and health products.
Hemp is quite expensive and considered by some to be an experimental product, go out there and do your research, find out if it suits your lifestyle and then decide. As always, I was just sharing ideas with you. I must confess though that I've pictured my wonderful Sealy bed wrapped in some hemp bedding.