5 Health Benefits of Hemp Seed Oil

Dr. Group
by Dr. Edward Group DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM
Published on , Last Updated on

A close jar of hemp seed oil. This oil has a long history of use in Eastern culture as a multi-purpose natural remedy.

Hemp seed oil is a great source of high-quality nutrients and has a long history of use in Eastern culture as a multi-purpose natural remedy. Despite its widespread popularity, prejudice related to its association with cannabis has kept it from common use in the West. While the oil contains virtually no THC, the psychoactive element in cannabis, hemp oil is still considered sketchy to some. Thankfully, education is prevailing and the market for hemp seed oil is growing in the United States, with an increasing number of people seeking it out for its reported health benefits.

1. Good for Heart Health

Hemp seed oil has a 3:1 ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 fatty acids, a balance that has been shown to support heart health and promote proper cardiovascular function. [1] These nutrients play a role in many biological processes and may help prevent a number of degenerative diseases. [2]

2. Supports Healthy Skin, Hair, and Nails

Hemp seed oil is often used as a moisturizer for the skin, and for good reason. Studies have indicated that hemp seed oil can dramatically decrease skin dryness to alleviate itching and irritation. [3] Moreover, the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties may protect against the aging process while soothing the skin. [4]

3. Excellent Nutrition for Your Brain

Hemp seed oil contains essential fatty acids, including docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), that are required for brain development. DHA is crucial to the health of the brain as well as the retina of the eye, particularly in the first year of life. [5] Mothers who supplement with hempseed oil during pregnancy may provide brain- and eye-protective benefits for the developing baby.

4. It’s a Mercury-Free Fatty Acid Supplement

Taking a fish oil supplement can be a helpful way to increase omega-3 fatty acids in your diet, a nutrient that is essential for brain development, immune system health, and mood regulation. [6] [7] [8] Expectant mothers certainly want to include these nutrients in their diet; however, fish contains a great deal of mercury which can hinder neurological and developmental mechanisms in the unborn baby. Fortunately, hemp seed oil works as a terrific alternative to traditional omega-3 fatty acid supplements and doesn’t carry the same risk of mercury ingestion. [9]

5. Supports the Immune System

The essential fatty acids in hemp seed oil have been shown to promote healthy flora in the intestines and support immune system response and function. [10] This can be very helpful during the cold and flu season when viruses are running rampant at school, work, and in everyday social interactions.

Is hemp seed oil part of your life? If so, what do you use it for? We’d love for you to leave a comment and share your experience!

References (10)
  1. Gavel NT, Edel AL, Bassett CM, Weber AM, Merchant M, Rodriguez-Leyva D, Pierce GN. The effect of dietary hempseed on atherogenesis and contractile function in aortae from hypercholesterolemic rabbits. Acta Physiologica Hungarica. 2011 September;98(3):273-83. doi: 10.1556/APhysiol.98.2011.3.4.
  2. A. P. Simopoulos. Evoluntionary aspects of diet, the omega-6/omega-3 ratio and genetic variation: nutritional implications for chronic diseases. Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy. 28 July 2006. 60 (2006) 502-507.
  3. Callaway J, Schwab U, Harvima I, Halonen P, Mykkänen O, Hyvonen P, Jarvinen T. Efficacy of dietary hempseed oil in patients with atopic dermatitis. The Journal of Dermatological Treatment. 2005 April;16(2):87-94.
  4. Sapino S, Carlotti Me, Peira E, Gallarate M. Hemp-seed and olive oils: their stability against oxidation and use in O/W emulsions. Journal of Cosmetic Science. 2005 July-August;56(4):227-51.
  5. Connor WE, Neuringer M. The effects of n-3 fatty acid deficiency and repletion upon the fatty acid composition and function of the brain and retina. Progress in Clinical and Biological Research. 1988, 282:275-294.
  6. Bourre JM. Roles of unsaturated fatty acids (especially omega-3 fatty acids) in the brain at various ages and during ageing. The Journal of Nutrition Health and Aging. 2004;8(3):163-74.
  7. Ergas D, Eilat E, Mendlovic S, Sthoeger ZM. n-3 fatty acids and the immune system in autoimmunity. The Israel Medical Association Journal. 2002 January;4(1):34-8.
  8. Peet M, Stokes C. Omega-3 fatty acids in the treatment of psychiatric disorders. Drugs. 2005;65(8):1051-9.
  9. Emily Oken, Robert O. Wright, [...], and Matthew W. Gillman. Maternal Fish Consumption, Hair Mercury, and Infant Cognition in a U.S. Cohort. Environmental Health Perspectives. October 2005; 113(10): 1376-1380.
  10. Fritsche K. Fatty acids as modulators of the immune response. Annual Review of Nutrition. 2006;26:45-73.

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