Answered: Your Most Burning Questions About Hemp Benefits
Hemp has experienced a resurgence in popularity lately, but this plant has a long history that dates back to the earliest civilizations of mankind. Hemp benefits you and impacts you daily in ways that you never would have guessed. In this article, we are going to explore the many beneficial uses of a truly extraordinary plant: hemp.
Hemp Benefits: History
Hemp plays a bigger part in history than you may have thought. Did you know that the paper that our Declaration of Independence is written on is crafted from hemp? Hemp’s fascinating history doesn’t end there. Our founding fathers, including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, were legally required to grow hemp as a crop in the Colonial era.
Archaeologists discovered a remnant of hemp cloth in ancient Mesopotamia which leads us to believe that hemp was the earliest plant cultivated for textile fiber. The word canvas is derived from the word cannabis because canvas sails woven from hemp were quickly recognized as superior to cotton sails.
The Ancient Chinese first discovered how to make paper from hemp, and the Emperor Shen Nung taught his people how to cultivate hemp for cloth according to a reference in the Lu Shi (a Chinese work of the Sung dynasty in 500 AD). Around 1,200 B.C. it is believed that hemp made it to Europe and spread throughout the rest of the ancient world.
Hemp played a major role at the beginning of the United States, but eventually, it could no longer compete with cotton. It wasn’t until the 1930’s that new machinery was developed that could separate the fiber from the rest of the hemp plant. Hemp was on the verge of becoming a billion dollar crop, but the humble plant threatened the businesses of synthetic textiles, lumber barons, and the latest DuPont plastic. In 1938 hemp production was banned under the Opium and Narcotics Act because of hemp's plant cousin: marijauna.
Hemp Benefits: Over 50,000 Uses
Did you know that hemp is the strongest natural fiber in the world? Hemp has over 50,000 uses, and the number of ways that one plant can be repurposed is truly mind-blowing. Another benefit of the hemp plant as an industrialized crop is that it can be grown without the use of toxic pesticides and herbicides.
Textiles: Clothing, diapers, handbags, denim, shoes, fine fabrics, and more.
Industrial textiles: Rope, canvas, tarps, carpet, netting, caulk, molding, and more.
Pet Supplies: Pet food, dietary supplements, bird seed, pet bedding, and cat litter.
Paper Products: Paper, newsprint, cardboard, packaging, and more.
Foods Products: Hemp seed hearts, hemp seed oil, hemp protein powder, hemp flour, and EFA food supplements.
Building Materials: oil paints, varnishes, printing inks, fuel, solvents, coatings, fiberboard, insulation, acrylics, fiberglass substitute, plastic, and more.
Skin and Body Care: soaps, shampoos, lotions, balms, cosmetics, moisturizers, and more.
Hemp Benefits: Earth Friendly
Many people are concerned about our planet, but many are unaware of the potential hemp holds to ease environmental burdens. Plastics made from hemp are biodegradable, unlike the typical plastic that fills landfills every year. Paper made from hemp spares our trees and forests. Fuel made from hemp including bio-diesel and ethanol protects national wildlife.
Hemp Benefits: Nutrient Dense
Once overlooked due to the controversy surrounding edible hemp products, hemp seeds have become a popular snack for their dense nutrition. Take a look at the many ways hemp can benefit your health!
Hormone Health – Hemp seeds are high in GLA. Gamma-Linolenic acid (GLA) is involved in the production of certain prostaglandins (chemicals that act like hormones in the body to help control inflammation and perform a variety of other functions). There are a host of health benefits associated with GLA including relief from the following conditions: ADHD, diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, multiple sclerosis, obesity, rheumatoid arthritis, premenstrual syndrome, and others.
Weight Loss – Hemp is a natural appetite suppressant, and it is high in fiber. Thus, it can help you to feel full longer while reducing your sugar cravings. Experts recommend adding four tablespoons to your breakfast to curb cravings and excess hunger for the rest of the day.
Rheumatoid Arthritis – A study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology examined the effects of hemp seed oil on arthritis. Researchers discovered that hemp seed oil supplementation lowered the survival rate of MH7A rheumatoid arthritis fibroblast-like synovial cells and even promoted cell death at certain doses. They concluded that hemp seed oil has anti-arthritic effects.
Eczema Relief – Researchers studying the effects of hemp seed oil for eczema found that patients’ symptoms improved with the use of the oil. Hemp seed oil is good for psoriasis too, and it can be put into skin creams for symptomatic relief.
Heart Health – Dietary habits for a healthy heart include plant-based protein, fiber, cutting back on sugar, and consuming more fiber. Research in both humans and animals suggests that hemp seeds can actually improve cardiovascular health and high blood pressure. Two tablespoons of hemp seeds in a morning smoothie may help to naturally lower blood pressure, reduce LDL cholesterol, raise HDL cholesterol, and improve triglycerides.
Hemp Benefits: Industry
Industrial Hemp Partners, LLC is the #1 industrial hemp supplier in the United States. According to their website, they rank #1 due to their consistency, supply, quality, 3rd-party lab testing, and their outstanding customer service. According to the latest market research, many aspects of the hemp industry are predicting rapid growth fueled by an increasing demand that isn’t showing signs of slowing down any time soon.
Hemp Benefits: Hope for Farmers
The passage of the farm bill in 2018 marked an exciting new chapter in agriculture for American farmers because it legalized the growth of industrial hemp as a commercial crop. Farmers believe that industrial hemp could be a big cash crop. Compared to other crops, like cotton, corn, and soybeans, hemp requires less water and manages to thrive even in poor soil. It eliminates weeds by growing in tight spaces that crowd them out and features a deep, soil-aerating root system.
In conclusion, is it any wonder that hemp is one of the most useful plants on the planet? Fortunately, hemp benefits both you and the planet, and hemp will continue to impact your life for the better thanks to industrial suppliers and farmers.
Follow Kaitlin Covel on Twitter at @kaitlin_covel and send her tips for future health stories.