Hemp is making a comeback. Originally used for food and industrial applications like sailcloth, the crop has been less popular in the last 100 years. Fortunately, all that is changing and we believe hemp the ideal source of natural plant based protein.
When hemp seeds are cold pressed creating hemp seed oil, there is a byproduct, hemp based protein powder. There are many sources of protein for you to choose from, so what makes hemp based protein stand out? There are many benefits, but first hemp protein powder has up to 50% protein. The remainder is made up of a combination of dietary fiber, healthy fats, and other ingredients. Compared to other sources of plant based protein, hemp seed protein contains significantly more natural protein as compared to its competitors like soy protein.
Not only does the hemp seed contain larger amounts of protein, but it is also a complete protein. In total there are twenty amino acids through different combinations make up all proteins. In short, amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. Hemp protein has eighteen of these amino acids, including all nine essential amino acids and two semi-essential amino acids. Essential amino acids are the amino acids that our body cannot naturally produce and must be supplemented in our diet. The semi-essential amino acids are also not produced in our body, depending on our developmental stage. This profile of amino acids makes hemp a fantastic source of protein, providing every amino acid needed for our bodies.
When these amino acids come together to form protein in hemp grain, they make edestin, 70 to 80%, and albumin. These proteins are known as “high-quality storage proteins, which are easily digested and rich in all essential amino acids.” This makes it easier on your body to digest the protein and convert it to the energy you need.
With all these factors in mind, it is clear that hemp protein is a great option. Next time you go to make a protein shake or want to add more easily digestible protein in your diet, grab some hemp protein!
Leizer, C., Ribnicky, D., Poulev, A., Dushenkov, S., & Raskin, I. (2000). The Composition of Hemp Seed Oil and Its Potential as an Important Source of Nutrition. Journal of Nutraceuticals, Functional & Medical Foods, 2(4), 35-53. doi:10.1300/j133v02n04_04
Tang, C., Ten, Z., Wang, X., & Yang, X. (2006). Physicochemical and Functional Properties of Hemp (Cannabis sativaL.) Protein Isolate. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 54(23), 8945-8950. doi:10.1021/jf0619176