Hemp has many environmental and health benefits. Even though it comes from the same plant family as marijuana, hemp contains only 0.3% THC or less, which makes it a non-psychoactive compound that does not cause a mental high.
Hemp is a highly nutritious plant which originated in Asia and China and soon spread to Europe and the Mediterranean. For thousands of years it was used to make many commercial products such as rope, paper, textiles, and canvas. The Seeds are situated at the top of the plant and are made up of approximately 29% Dietary Fiber, 25% Protein, and 35% Oil. They are also rich in a variety of minerals, essential fatty acids, and vitamins and can be used in organic body care, fibers, and stalks used in clothing, plastics, bio-fuel, and construction materials. In 1937 hemp was seen as a financial threat to paper manufacturers and other industries, and, as a result, banned and eradicated from that point on, making it illegal to grow in the US in 1970. The 2018 Farm Bill has lifted that ban, due to the many environmental benefits and supporters worldwide.
Here are eleven reasons to seek out hemp products that will benefit our planet and our bodies:
- Growing Hemp can Clean the Environment through Bio-remediation
Hemp can help protect the environment, clean the soil and atmosphere and possibly reverse the damage that has been done to the environment. Global warming is due to high levels of carbon dioxide and Hemp can reduce this as it consumes 4 times as much CO2 as trees do. It has a short growing cycle of 12 to 14 weeks, which makes it a highly sustainable crop. It also removes radioactive chemicals and toxins from the soil.
- Paper made from Hemp can protect against deforestation
Hemp is the preferred source for making paper. The use of hemp instead of timber as a source of paper can significantly reduce deforestation. Eliminating the need to cut down forest trees is the best way to protect our environment. A single acre of hemp can produce the same amount of paper per year as 4 acres of trees!
- Pesticides Reduction
Hemp can grow just about anywhere, unlike trees, which are used for paper and have a fairly limited habitat location. The plant can grow in different seasons and even on unproductive land. It is naturally resilient to pests so it doesn’t need environmentally harmful herbicides or pesticides. In the making of cotton textile, it requires a large number of pesticides. Using hemp as a substitute to cotton would drastically reduce pesticide usage. Very few insects are known to exist in hemp crops.
- Hemp is Recyclable
The paper that is produced from hemp can be recycled 2-3 times more than timber paper. Recycling has become an increasing concern, for example, fiberglass is non-recyclable and the hemp plant is a great substitute for this. If you add long-fiber hemp pulp to recycled paper, it greatly increases the number of times that it can be recycled.
- Bio-mass Fuels
Hemp grown for the production of biomass fuels can provide us with our coal, oil, gas, and all our energy needs, therefore, ending the need for fossil fuels. There are a couple of ways to create hemp bio-fuel, with hemp bio-diesel and hemp methanol/ethanol. The process of making biomass fuels from the plant produces gasoline, charcoal, methanol, and much more. It is the number one producer of biomass fuels per acre in the world. When burning biomass fuels, there is a lower amount of CO2 added to the atmosphere.
- Hemp is a great food source plant
There are many nutritional benefits from Hemp by just adding the seeds into our daily diet. The seeds are amazingly healthy, containing high levels of essential vitamins C, A, & E and also contain many important minerals like iron, zinc, magnesium, calcium, fiber, phosphorus, and potassium. Hemp also has the same balance of Omega 6 and Omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3 can contribute to your daily dietary needs and offers a lot of health supplement benefits. It is a fantastic source of plant-based protein and it contains all the essential amino acids that we do not produce in the body. The seeds can be added to granola, yogurts, soups, salads, and much more. CBD extracted from the plant also provides many health benefits that have been enjoyed for centuries, but is just now getting FDA review, due to the federal ban on the plant. SHOP
- Hemp is a very versatile textile
Hemp can be used in a variety of different ways and it is a great alternative for almost any textile. The plant can be used to make clothing and it is fire resistant unlike many other fabrics like cotton, linen and synthetics. It gets softer every time you wash it and wear it. It keeps you warm in the winter and it is very breathable in warmer climates. Hemp fiber is 10 times stronger than cotton.
- Hemp Plastics are the Future
One of the biggest concerns in the world right now is the plastic pollution problem. Millions of plastic products are found floating in the sea which can poison the food chain and also pollute the water. Plastic is a part of our everyday lives but why is it made from non-renewable petrochemicals? Hemp can be used as a great biodegradable alternative to plastic. It is a surprising miracle crop that should be used more widely around the world. Using this plant to make plastic would have a major positive impact on the world. Learn more about hemp plastic!
- Environmentally Friendly Cosmetics
Hemp can be found in a lot of skin care cosmetic products. To maintain healthy skin, the plant is considered an optimum requirement due to the fact that it contains all the 21 known amino acids and offers a perfectly balanced Omega 3 fatty acid. These fatty acids can restore and sooth the skin when added to creams. The natural texture of hemp gives an excellent smooth after feel to conditioner, body lotions, lip balms, massage oils, and shaving creams. The possibilities are endless when using the hemp plant for skin care cosmetic products.
- Used for Pet Food and Bedding
Hemp is harvested mainly for its seeds and stalks which are used in the production of so many different products including Pet Food and Bedding for animals. This makes it a very important renewable commercial commodity. It is an all-natural bedding and food product. It is an environmentally friendly and safe choice for both pets and livestock. Hemp food and bedding bring healthy advantages to your pets. Hemp wood and straw shavings are twice as absorbent and need changing less often. Being chemical free, it produces less dust than other animal products, which will help protect your animals from respiratory health issues. This environmentally friendly source of food and bedding will reduce your overall costs and waste, saving you time and money!
11. Hemp Crops May Help Restore Bee Populations
This according to a recent study published in Environmental Entomology titled “The Bee Community of Cannabis sativa and Corresponding Effects of Landscape Composition”. Hemp and cannabis plants do not produce nectar, but their pollen can keep bee populations happy and well-fed. Specifically, the study found that bees not only love the pollen from cannabis and hemp plants — they also can benefit from the plants’ abundance of pollen as a subsistence resource during times when local flora diversity has been stripped due to modern farming practices or a natural occurrence, such as drought. Bees are especially drawn to larger crop plots and taller plants, meaning industrial hemp carries the most benefits as an industry for the bees.
Additionally, because hemp plants are especially resilient to pests and disease, their crops are more frequently organic and devoid of chemicals and pesticides that pose other dangers for bee populations.