When the Food and Drug Administration allowed the first cannabidiol (CBD) drug to be used, it catapulted the exploration of the benefits of hemp seed oil and CBD oils to the health of human beings.
Numerous ways of how hemp seed oil helps in the treatment of diseases and boosting general well-being have since been discovered. This article will help you know what these benefits are, the distinction between hemp seed oil and CBD oil as well as the side effects of using hemp seed oil.
What is Hemp Seed Oil?
Hemp seed oil is obtained from the hemp or Cannabis sativa plant by cold pressing its seeds. Hemp seed oil that is unrefined has a dark to light green color. It has a nutty flavor and how flavorful it is depends on how dark it is. Refined hemp seed oil, on the other hand, is colorless and has very little flavor.
Hemp seed is very rich in nutrients like fatty acids, carbohydrates, and proteins. Its health benefits are mostly attributed to its 3:1 ratio constitution of linoleic (LA) to a-linolenic (LNA) acid or better known as omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids.
Difference between Hemp Seed Oil and CBD
Sometimes the term ‘hemp oil’ and ‘CBD oil’ are used interchangeably but they don’t refer to the same thing. While CBD and hemp seed oil come from a similar species of plant, Cannabis sativa, they are different. CBD oil is made from the leaves, flowers, and stalks of the hemp plant while hemp oil is from the seeds of the same plant. The seeds of the hemp plant have very negligible amounts of CBD while the stalks, flowers, and leaves have 12-18% of CBD. Therefore, the two oils are very different and they offer different health benefits.
What are the Benefits of Hemp Seed Oil?
Hemp seed oil has a variety of health benefits and is good for:
The fatty acids in hemp seed oil make it excellent for moisturizing the skin and nourishing it. This is because it boosts the barrier of your skin to protect you against the loss of moisture so your skin remains supple and glowing.
This makes hemp seed oil a good choice for a carrier oil in massages.
Hemp seed oil also has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and healing properties so it can be used to treat various skin ailments. It can be used on acne, psoriasis dermatitis, eczema, minor bruises, and itchy skin. Hemp seed oil also boosts the skin’s ability to fight off bacterial, viral, and fungal infections.
The 3:1 ration of LA and LNA essential fatty acids in hemp seed oil are very good for your heart. This is the perfect ratio that enables the reduction of cholesterol in your blood and lowers your risk of developing heart diseases.
Hemp seed oil also contains Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA), a compound that helps in the clearing of accumulated plaque in your blood vessels due to its lipase constituent. GLA also reduces inflammation in the heart which is a trigger to some types of heart diseases.
Arginine is an amino acid in hemp seed oil that promotes the release of nitric acid. Nitric acid dilates and relaxes your blood vessels and therefore reduces blood pressure and the development of heart diseases.
The brain requires fatty acids to function well so the abundance of fatty acids in hemp seed oil are good for it. They boost memory and even prevent the degeneration of the brain that comes with age.
Hemp seed oil contains cannabinoids, compounds that have been found to reduce anxiety in people, and even symptoms of depressive disorders.
Hemp seed oil also contains polyphenols that protect the brain and nervous system. It prevents the occurrence of inflammation, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, neuropathic pain, multiple sclerosis, ADHD, and seizures.
The Immune System
Hemp seed oil boosts your immune system. The fatty acids in it are used by the body to create endocannabinoids which strengthen your immune system so you will be more capable of resisting diseases.
The GLA in hemp seed oil will help in the synthesis of prostaglandins which are similar to hormones so they can stand in their place and restore the lost balance. Therefore, hemp seed oil will reduce the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome like abdominal cramps and menopause symptoms like hot flashes, depression, and irritability.
Just like hemp seed oil nourishes your skin; it also moisturizes and gives a shiny luster to your hair. Hemp seed oil also strengthens weak hair by promoting longer and thicker hair growth. Applying hemp seed oil to your scalp will help get rid of itchiness, dandruff, dryness, and scalp psoriasis.
The fatty acids in hemp seed oil promote the synthesis of eicosanoids, compounds that control the production of digestive juices and hormones. In this way, it helps in the proper digestion of food.
Eicosanoids also have anti-inflammatory properties so they reduce inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract and also relieve some digestive disorders like inflammatory bowel disorder.
The fatty acids in hemp seed oil also encourage good microbes in the digestive gut flora so they boost the immune system and also help with digestion overall.
Hemp seed oil is a natural pain reliever so you can ingest it or apply it to your skin to reduce pain. Since it has anti-inflammatory properties, it’s very helpful in reducing pain as a result of inflammation or even autoimmune illnesses. Hemp seed oil also helps relieve muscle tension, cramps, or injuries sustained during workout.
If you prefer not to use over-the-counter pain killers, hemp seed oil is ideal for you.
The GLA in hemp seed oil naturally suppresses appetite so it will help you get rid of cravings for sugar or fatty foods that make weight loss a challenge. It also prevents you from regaining weight that you’ve already lost.
The omega-3 fatty acids in hemp seed oil are very good supplements for pregnant women. They contribute to the healthy growth of the fetus’ brain and retinas. The benefits that the baby gets from omega-3 will last all through their life. For the expectant mother, the fatty acids prevent preterm delivery, perinatal depression, and promote a smoother birth process.
What are the Side Effects of Hemp Seed Oil?
Too much of anything is bad for you. This principle also applies to hemp seed oil. If you use too much of it, it can cause health complications. These complications include:
Excess omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids can result in cardiac conditions.
Hemp seed oil has tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which may cause you to experience hallucinations and you may not even be aware of it.
If you have a susceptibility to stomach problems, eating food that has been cooked with hemp seed oil may trigger cramps and diarrhea. Avoid ingesting hemp seed oil if you are suffering from a bowel disorder or a stomach condition.
Hemp seed oil can affect blood platelets and anticoagulants and cause clotting. Blood clotting is dangerous because it could lead to a heart attack or stroke.
Suppressing the Immune System
Hemp seed oil contains immune suppressants known as PUFAs which reduce the strength of the immune system. While this may be beneficial in treating autoimmune diseases, it also increases the chances of contracting of infections.
Brain Development Problems
Neurons need omega-3 fatty acids to develop but hemp seed oil contains both omega-3 and omega-6. The excess of omega-6 increases acidity and leads to a fatty acid imbalance. This results in problems with brain development.
Tumor Cell Regeneration
Hemp seed oil promotes cell production to heal skin conditions but if this production goes overboard, it may turn out cancerous. It may lead to prostate cancer and eventually death.
The benefits of hemp seed oil are undeniable but be careful not to use it in excess. Be sure to consult your doctor before you use it to treat a medical condition.