by Matt Weik, BS, CSCS, CPT, CSN
Are you looking for a dairy alternative that’s not only delicious but also packed with nutrients? Say hello to hemp milk!
Hemp milk is a plant-based drink that’s made by blending hemp seeds with water to create a creamy and smooth liquid that’s reminiscent of dairy milk but with a nutty twist. And the best part? Commercially produced hemp milk comes in a variety of flavors, from classic vanilla to chocolate, and can even be fortified with vitamins and minerals to enhance its nutritional value.
So, whether you’re lactose intolerant, have a dairy allergy, or follow a vegan diet, hemp milk is the perfect dairy alternative for you. Plus, its low-carbohydrate content makes it a great choice for those who follow a low-carb lifestyle.
In this article, we will dive deeper into hemp milk, what it is, and its health benefits. Get ready to add a new and delicious drink to your grocery list!
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not meant to treat or diagnose any condition. It is recommended that you speak with your doctor before starting or changing a nutrition or workout program.
What Is Hemp Milk?
Hemp milk is made by mixing water with the seeds of the Cannabis sativa, the hemp plant. This plant is used to make products that many smoke across the country. However, hemp milk and various other products made from hemp seeds do not have any mind-altering effects.
Hemp milk has a nutty, earthy flavor and a creamy texture. It can be used to replace cow’s milk in smoothies, cereal, coffee, and more. While hemp milk can be made from water and seeds, many commercial varieties have sweeteners, salt, or thickeners added to them as well.
Because of the growing popularity of plant-based milk, hemp milk can be found online and in most grocery stores. Besides that, if you choose to do so, you can also make it fresh at home.
Fortified hemp milk can be a rich source of vitamin D, calcium, and various other minerals and vitamins. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has published the given nutritional data for 240mL of unsweetened hemp milk:
The Benefits of Hemp Milk
Here are five health benefits of hemp milk you should know about:
1. Hemp milk may have potential benefits for maintaining healthy skin
Hemp milk is a potentially beneficial addition to a healthy diet when it comes to promoting skin health. This plant-based drink contains significant levels of both vitamin E and vitamin A, two antioxidant compounds that can help reduce oxidative stress, a common contributor to signs of aging such as wrinkles and inflammation.
Incorporating hemp milk into your daily routine can provide your skin with the nutrients it needs to maintain its youthful glow and even slow down your skin’s aging process. By consuming this creamy and nutritious milk, you can support healthy, supple, and radiant skin.
A four-week trial was conducted in a study involving 20 individuals with eczema to investigate the effects of daily consumption of two tablespoons (30 ml) of hemp oil. Results indicated that participants experienced significant improvement in both skin dryness and itchiness.
2. It can improve bone density
Fortified hemp milk is an excellent source of calcium and vitamin D, which are essential for maintaining strong bones and preventing osteoporosis. Many people don’t get enough calcium from their diets, which can lead to weak bones and an increased risk of fractures. Vitamin D is also crucial for bone health as it helps the body absorb calcium.
While exposure to sunlight can help boost vitamin D levels, consuming fortified hemp milk is a safer and more convenient way to ensure that you’re meeting your daily requirements.
3. It may protect against heart disease
Hemp milk, rich in arginine, may contribute to maintaining a healthy heart. Arginine is an amino acid that aids in producing nitric oxide, which relaxes blood vessels and promotes healthy blood pressure. Many in the fitness industry utilize arginine to enhance their “pump” in the gym and volumize the muscles.
Studies have shown that arginine may be a potential therapeutic molecule for various cardiovascular conditions. While not a direct supplement, hemp milk is a source of arginine, and consuming it may have beneficial effects on heart health.
4. Brain Health
Hemp milk may be beneficial for brain health due to its content of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
Research suggests that these fatty acids may play a role in reducing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
5. A complete protein source
Hemp milk is a valuable addition to your diet since it contains all the necessary essential amino acids that the body cannot produce and must obtain from food. This makes hemp milk a great option for individuals looking to supplement their protein intake with a non-animal source.
Each serving of hemp milk offers four grams of protein, which is easy to digest. This makes it an excellent alternative for those who are lactose intolerant or follow a vegan or vegetarian diet and lifestyle. While animal milk, such as cow and goat milk, also contains essential amino acids, hemp milk offers an equally delicious and nutritious plant-based option.