Hemp is a commonly used term for high-growing varieties of the Cannabis plant and its products. However, because the Cannabis plant is seen to be a source of psychoactive cannabinoid compounds, hemp is considered illegal to grow and produce in many parts of the world even though the latter does not contain the sensory-altering substances.

That possibly explains why many people are unaware of the health benefits of hemp.

Hemp milk is a rich source of omega-3, which is especially beneficial to children and pregnant ladies. Omega-3 is needed for brain development, as well as useful for lowering cholesterol, reducing inflammation and preventing cancer.

Hemp nuts are rich in amino acids, omega-3s, B vitamins, chlorophyll, magnesium, potassium, sulfur, phytosterols, beta-carotene, calcium, iron, phosphorus, riboflavin, niacin, and thiamine.

Hemp protein powder is rich in fiber and bio-available vegan protein. It is also high in omega-3s, omega-6s, GLA, essential amino acids, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, iron and magnesium.

Shelled hemp seeds are a source of complete protein with the various essential amino acids. Balanced in omega-3s and omega-6s, these seeds also contain dietary fiber, B vitamins as well as minerals like magnesium, potassium, calcium, iron and phosphorus.

[1] Collins, Elise Marie. An A-Z Guide to Healing Foods: A Shopper’s Companion. San Francisco, California: Conari Press, 2009. Print.

Cindy L. TJOL is trained in Psychology, Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. She has several years of experience writing on natural health on the internet. Follow her on her blog and read her other articles at Insights On Health.com.

More from Beliefnet and our partners