To begin, hemp oil simply tastes good. It also offers a number of nutritional advantages over other edible oils. Organic hemp oil has a very high content of unsaturated fats, perfect for a healthy lifestyle but also for the treatment of a variety of diseases. Hemp oil has not been genetically modified and is available in Certified Organic. The hemp oil we offer is grown in Canada and is of the very best possible quality and freshness.
Cold pressed hemp oil has a dark green color and lends its nutty flavor to a wide variety of foods. It is a delicious alternative wherever olive oil, walnut oil, or butter are used in low heat items. It can for example be used as a high quality salad oil in dressings, add it to your meal as a condiment or eat it by the tablespoon as a nutritional supplement. Check out the hemp oil recipes we offer in the hemp foods section.
A variety of health problems including heart disease, obesity, and certain cancers have been blamed on fats and oils. Most of these conditions can be attributed to an unhealthy lifestyle with excess dietary intake of improper types of fat. Health specialists recommend that fat consumption be limited to no more than 30 percent of the total calorie intake. However, fats are not only a source of energy, but also the source of two unsaturated, so-called essential fatty acids. They need to be included in the diet because they cannot be produced by the human body.
Linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid are the two essential fatty acids necessary for growth, maintenance of cell membranes.
Linoleic acid is a double unsaturated fatty acid common in plants: Evening primrose oil contains up to 80% of its total fatty acid content as linoleic acid. Unrefined sun flower oil contains up to 65%, hemp oil up to 60%, soybean oil up to 55%, and flax oil up to 26% linoleic acid. The human body synthesizes another important fatty acid from linoleic acid: gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). The optimum uptake of linoleic acid is between 3 and 6% of daily calories (or 9 to 18 grams).
Alpha-linolenic acid, a triple unsaturated fatty acid, is found in algae, crustaceans, and in fish oil. Only a few seeds of higher plants have substantial contents of this essential fatty acid: flax (up to 58%), hemp (up to 25%), canola and soybean (up to 15%). The daily requirement for alpha-linolenic is assumed to be 2-2.5% of the daily calorie intake (6-7.5 grams). A nutritionally balanced diet contains these essential fatty acids is in a ratio of roughly 3:2 (linoleic acid:alpha-linolenic acid). The distribution of essential fatty acids in hemp oil is close to this favorable ratio (2:1 to 3:1), more so than flax oil which despite its higher total content of essential fatty acids has a less favorable ratio (1:5). The requirement for these essential acids can be satisfied by two to four teaspoons of hemp oil per day.
Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA)– In addition to the two essential fatty acids, hemp oil is a rich source of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) and it is the only edible oil with a considerable content (2-4%). Other sources are evening primrose (6-14%) and borage (25-40%), which, because of their unpleasant taste, are only offered as dietary supplements in the form of capsules. While our diet generally contains sufficient linoleic acid, which is then enzymatically converted to GLA in the body, the process converting linoleic acid into GLA is too slow, in some individuals thus leading to GLA deficiency. Supplementation of GLA in the diet can alleviate the resulting health problems
Cardiovascular Diseases – Most of the cardiovascular diseases threatening the health of people around the world are caused by the formation of arterial plaque, i.e. the deposition of blood components on the interior walls of our blood vessels. This process may eventually block blood flow and cause arteriosclerosis and strokes. LDL cholesterol, a sticky substance present in the blood, has been identified as one of the main contributors to arterial plaque formation. Among other factors, such as smoking and stress, the intake of the saturated fatty acids present in animal fat is known to contribute to a high LDL level in the blood. Reversely, dietary treatment of patients with daily doses of linoleic acid and GLA which correspond roughly to four teaspoons of hemp oil, has shown to rapidly decrease elevated blood levels of both, LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol. Thus, the regular use of hemp oil may help reduce the risk of arteriosclerosis and other cardiovascular diseases.
PMS – PMS, or premenstrual syndrome, can include varying intensities of painful muscular tension, swelling of the breast, nervosity and irritability as well as aggressivity and depression. Investigations indicate that women with PMS suffer from a fatty acid metabolism disorder. The ability to convert linoleic acid into gamma-linolenic acid and subsequently into prostaglandins is disturbed. A daily dose of 1.37 grams linoleic acid and 156 milligrams GLA over a period of twelve weeks has been shown to significantly improve the PMS related symptoms in clinical studies. This dose corresponds to only one teaspoon of hemp oil a day. Rheumatoid Arthritis – Some fatty acids, including gamma-linolenic acid, are indicated as effective anti-inflammatory and immune system stimulating factors. Daily oral administration of 1.2-1.4 grams of GLA (corresponding to eight teaspoons of hemp oil) over a period of twelve weeks has been clinically proven to significantly alleviate the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.
Other Diseases – A number of clinical studies suggest administration of GLA as preventive measure and as a treatment for multiple sclerosis, schizophrenic psychosis, and cancer. Multiple sclerosis occurs more frequently in geographical regions where the diet includes high amounts of saturated fats. Dietary supplementation of unsaturated fatty acids may have a positive effect on the course of the disease. In patients with schizophrenic psychosis disturbances are found in the fatty acid metabolism which might be treated through administration of essential fatty acids. Cancer treatment may be assisted by administration of linoleic acid and GLA. Cancer tissue and cells have lower contents of GLA and other related metabolites compared to healthy tissue. Linoleic acid enhances die-off of cancer cells, an administration of this essential fatty acid might therefore prove to have positive effects.