Hemp protein is considered a “complete” source of protein because it contains the 9 amino acids you need from your diet. Hemp seeds are one of the few vegetarian sources of a complete protein, and to boot the seeds really pack it in, containing up to 35% protein. It’s also a safe source of protein for those with soy or nut allergies. Although derived from cannabis, hemp seeds do not contain psychoactive cannabinoids.
To be considered a complete protein, a food must contain 9 essential amino acids that your body is unable to synthesize internally. The 9 essential amino acids are: methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, and valine.
The most typical hemp based protein product you’ll see on the market shelves is in powdered form. Protein can be extracted from the seeds and made into a powder to be added to smoothie. In it’s full seed form, hemp is also quite delicious sprinkled over a salad or yogurt bowl.
Additional Health Benefits of Hemp Seeds
Hemp seeds are rich in fiber, leaving you feeling more satiated for longer. They also are rich in essential fatty acids and are packed with vitamins and minerals. The health benefits range from lowering inflammation to boosting heart health with their high nutritional value.
I think it’s time we started paying more attention to this novel and complete protein! With resources getting ever more scarce, meat based protein will soon be a luxury many cannot afford. Fortunately, the plant kingdom has provided us with backup.