What is hemp milk?
Hemp milk is a drink made from the seeds of the hemp plant. It’s made by mixing hemp seeds and water to get the hemp milk. This milk is a dairy-free alternative to cow or goat milk, which makes it vegan-friendly, eco-friendly and generally a healthy choice. It does not mean you need to be a vegan to enjoy hemp milk. It’s naturally delicious to top it up and contains no flavours or cholesterol.
Hemp milk is also gluten and soy-free. Did you know that according to statistics, 33% of Americans are lactose intolerant? (https://www.statisticbrain.com/lactose-intolerance-statistics/) Hemp milk is a suitable and healthy alternative for people with lactose intolerance as it contains no gluten or soy. Gluten and soy found in some milk types trigger reactions in people who are lactose intolerant. It can be used like any regular milk meaning it can be added to tea or coffee, cereals, smoothies or milkshakes. Some people find it a bit too light for coffee, but it depends on how you like your coffee.
The protein contained in hemp milk is also highly digestible compared to other plant milk products which contain complex proteins. Complex proteins cause flatulence when not digested properly. Hemp milk is suitable for those with allergies as it contains no allergens.
What does hemp milk taste like?
Organic hemp milk has an earthy and nutty flavour. However, it is creamy making it an alternative to use in coffee, milkshakes and smoothies. Commercial hemp milk comes in different flavours such as vanilla and chocolate for those who would like something different.
One common misconception about hemp milk is its association with cannabis. Hemp milk is free from cannabinoids and THC, which causes the “high.” Hemp from which the hemp seeds come from is like a cousin to marijuana. Hemp does not cause a psychoactive effect, so you won’t get high from taking hemp milk. Although the name may be misleading, hemp milk is not a drug and its completely legal.
Benefits and nutrition of hemp milk
Hemp milk packs great amounts of nutrients you will not find in any plant or animal milk. Apart from being safe to drink, it’s also bursting with nutritional benefits. Take a look at some nutritional facts of hemp milk.
A regular cup of hemp milk contains;
- 60 calories
- 3 grams of plant protein
- 5 grams of fat
- Vitamins a, b, d and e.
- 283 mg calcium- hemp milk contains half the calcium needed by the body each day.
- Omega 3 and omega-six fatty acids
- Essential amino acids- hemp milk contains all the ten amino acids.
- Zinc- boosts immunity and enhances the growth and renewal of cells.
- Phosphorus- necessary for healthy bones and teeth
Hemp seed milk has a range of benefits. Take a look at some of them;
Hemp milk is excellent for skincare
As we mentioned, hemp milk is loaded with a variety of vitamins, including vitamin e and a. These vitamins contain antioxidant properties which reduce the oxidative stress on the skin. This stress is what causes inflammation which leads to pimples and acne, wrinkles and signs of aging. Hemp milk can help to reduce the stress, therefore, improving the health of your skin and leading to clear and healthy skin.
Protects against heart diseases
Hemp milk contains healthy fats, unlike animal proteins which contain unhealthy fats like saturated fats, cholesterol and trans-fat. Cholesterol and trans fats can cause clogged arteries which put the consumer at risk of heart diseases and heart attack. Hemp milk also contains amino acids and omega-3 fatty acids which protect the heart from inflammation that can be harmful to the heart. A particular amino acid in hemp milk known as arginine creates nitric oxide in the body to help in relaxing the blood vessels to prevent high blood pressure. According to studies (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26471966), arginine is a possible remedy for relieving different cardiovascular disorders.
Hemp milk also contains magnesium that is needed for healthy glucose absorption and regulates blood pressure. Potassium in this milk also lowers the risk of getting atherosclerosis due to buildup of substances in the arteries. Magnesium and potassium also lower blood pressure, keeping the heart healthy.
Hemp milk is packed with vitamins and minerals which are at the frontline in boosting immunity. They combat free radicals that may lead to infections and a weak immune system. The amino acids, specifically omega-3 that is contained in hemp milk is a natural anti-inflammatory which prevents inflammation. Inflammation in different parts of the body may lead to an overactive immune system which leads to autoimmune diseases.
Hemp milk is good for your brain and cognition.
Hemp milk is known to contain very high levels of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Research has shown that these compounds are boosters of both memory and concentration. They also boost the performance of other cognitive functions, therefore, sharpening your brain. Hemp milk is even more beneficial for young ones who are still developing and the elderly as it helps in preventing the occurrence of degenerative brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
Improves bone health in children and adults
Hemp milk provides 40% of all the calcium required by the body in a day. Constant intake of hemp milk improves bone mineral density and therefore improving the health of your bones. It also prevents osteoporosis as it contains other minerals required by the body such as zinc, potassium and magnesium.
Hemp also contains the right amounts of omega fatty acids. The ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 in hemp milk is between 2:1-3:1, which is the optimal ratio required by the human body. These fatty acids support brain health and while improving the health of your skin and heart. High levels of omega-3 in the blood also lower the risk of premature death in old adults. It’s also free of phytates which inhibit the absorption of essential minerals in the body.
Hemp milk for babies
You must be wondering whether hemp milk is safe for your baby. Good news is hemp milk is 100% safe for your child. However, it can only be given to kids from the age of seven months. Hemp seeds used in making hemp milk contains no THC and therefore does not cause any psychedelic effects.
Mothers looking to bring up their young ones in a holistic way prefer hemp milk as it contains some nutrients you will not find in cow or goat milk. It’s a superfood that will benefit your child immensely. Hemp milk contains all the ten essential amino acids and packs, vitamin A, B, E and B12. Its also loaded with minerals such as potassium, magnesium, iron and calcium needed for a developing body.
Hemp milk is easily digestible compared to animal milk and other plant milk options. It’s also allergen-free, so you don’t need to worry about any adverse reactions. The nutrition offered by this milk will help in the growth and nourishment of your child.
You can feed hemp milk in a baby bottle for toddlers and young ones. It’s even recommended for use when weaning young ones. You can also add it to cereals, porridge or smoothies for young ones. The best part is you can make hemp milk in your home to control the quantities you want to feed to your baby. This also ensures that your baby is always having something fresh, unlike buying hemp milk from your grocery store.
How to make hemp milk?
Hemp milk is effortless to make right from the comfort of your home. It takes less than five minutes to prepare as you require minimal ingredients and equipment to make this nutritious punch.
What you need
- Hemp seeds
- A pinch of sea salt
- A blender
- 1/2 cup of hemp seeds
- 3-4 cups of water
- A pinch of salt
- Add your hemp seeds, water and salt into your blender. A high-powered blender is recommended for the best results.
- Blend the ingredients for a minute or until the hemp seeds pulverize complexly and the mixture is smooth and creamy.
- Strain your hemp milk using a cheesecloth or a thin strainer to remove the pulp that may be left behind by the seeds. Straining makes the hemp milk smoother, but you can skip the step if you don’t mind the pulp.
- Pour your hemp milk into a sealed container and store appropriately.
You can vary the amount of water added to the hemp seeds depending on the consistency you want. For thicker and creamier hemp milk, add more seeds and less water. Hemp milk has a natural earthy and nutty raster which may not be suitable for some people. You may opt for flavoured milk. Here are some ideas to try out;
- Chocolate hemp milk- you can prepare this by adding a tablespoon of cocoa powder and a tablespoon of maple syrup or honey or three dates into your blender with the hemp seeds.
- Vanilla hemp milk- add 2 teaspoons of vanilla and a tablespoon of honey or maple syrup. You can also add three dates instead of the maple or honey.
- Matcha hemp milk-add a heaped tablespoon of matcha and a sweetener like a maple syrup, honey or dates to the hemp seeds in your blender.
The downside of hemp milk is it does not have a long shelf life. It’s meant to be taken while fresh. Hemp milk can last for 5 days when refrigerated well but its recommended to consume it within 2-3 days while it’s still very fresh. You can freeze it for prolonged usage or pour the milk in a cube tray. The cubes can be used for puddings and smoothies like a banana smoothie. Freezing does not damage the flavour or texture of hemp milk.
Where to buy hemp milk?
Hemp milk is not commonly available everywhere as people are just beginning to embrace its goodness. There are limited producers of this amazing product, so it can be challenging to locate one, especially near you.
You can try your local grocery for some hemp milk. Hemp milk can also be purchased on online stores such as Amazon and Walmart. You can find a variety of manufacturers in such stores. Ensure you do your research before making any purchase. We have some big names in the market such as tempt and pacific, so you need to ensure you are purchasing from a reputable brand.
Purchasing ready-made hemp milk can be convenient since its time saving and you don’t have to look for the hemp seeds yourself. You can also find the hemp milk in different flavours such as vanilla, chocolate or strawberry, among others. You can also choose long life hemp milk that can just sit on your shelves or fresh hemp milk that needs to be stored in a refrigerator.
Either way, it’s crucial to read the ingredients on the brand you choose to buy. Ensure that there are no red flags and the sweeteners and sugars in the milk are not overdone. Excess sugar can lead to overweight and obesity, and it will take away all the nutrition in the hemp milk. Also, look out for fillers and additives such as phytates which may be harmful to your body.
The safer alternative is always making your hemp milk at home. If you cannot find it, you can always opt to make it at home. Homemade hemp milk is safer and refreshingly fresh.
Hemp milk is a safe and nutritious alternative to dairy milk and nutty alternative. If you have any allergies or you are just venturing into veganism, hemp milk is a great alternative. It’s wholesome and more nutritious than all the other milk you can come across. It packs all the nutrients your body needs for healthy growth. You also don’t need to worry about any side effects as the milk is free from THC or the component in hemp that makes one “high.” You can purchase this milk or make it in your kitchen. Try hemp milk today!