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Hemp Seeds Are a Beneficial Superfood

Shelled hemp seeds, also known as hemp hearts, are considered to be a superfood because they are an excellent source of plant-based protein, fiber, omega-3 fatty acids and all nine essential amino acids. Three tablespoons, or a single serving of hemp seeds, provide 10 grams of protein. The nutritional benefits of hemp seeds promote heart and brain health, support the immune system and help reduce inflammation. They do not contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive component of marijuana.

Hemp seeds may be eaten raw as a snack, and they are great additions to salads, soups, oatmeal, yogurt and smoothies. They can also be roasted, toasted and salted. With a mild flavor and creamy texture, hemp hearts can easily be blended into granola bars, pancakes, breads, desserts and other baked goods to increase the nutritional components of favorite recipes.

Due to their high oil content, hemp seeds should be stored in a dark, airtight container. When purchasing hemp seeds, refrain from buying them in a package with a viewing window, because light could accelerate spoilage of the omega-3 fatty acids. Consider buying hemp seed in bulk, and refrigerate or freeze the seeds to extend freshness.

Sonnewald Natural Foods, one of the longest-operating natural foods stores in PA, is located at 4796 Lehman Rd., in Spring Grove, and features products that are mindful of the Earth and its inhabitants. Their motto is, “Good health comes from the farm…not the pharmacy.” For more information, call 717-225-3825 or visit