Recently, hemp seed oil has become popular as a health food. When you think of hemp, drugs usually come to mind, so many people may be wondering how hemp seed oil can be a health food. However, the hemp species used in hemp seed oil has a very low content of the hallucinogenic compound (THC).
Especially, hemp seeds are rich in various nutrients such as omega-3, omega-6, and arginine. Hemp seed oil is the oil extracted by peeling the hemp seeds containing THC to obtain concentrated nutrients. Today, we will introduce the benefits of the representative nutrients contained in hemp seed oil, omega-3, gamma-linolenic acid, and arginine, through research papers.
1. Omega 3 – Reduces Neutral Fat
Hemp seed oil contains about 22 percent omega-3. Omega-3 is known to have the effect of lowering triglyceride levels by inhibiting the synthesis of triglycerides and very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) in the liver.
A paper published in the Eastern Mediterranean health journal in 2008 reported that fasting triglyceride levels decreased when omega-3 was consumed.
“Fasting triglycerides were significantly reduced in the supplement (omega-3) intake group compared to placebo.”
Reference : Shidfar, F., Keshavarz, A., Hosseyni, S., Ameri, A., & Yarahmadi, S. (2008). Effects of omega-3 fatty acid supplements on serum lipids, apolipoproteins and malondialdehyde in type 2 diabetes patients. Eastern Mediterranean health journal = La revue de sante de la Mediterranee orientale = al-Majallah al-sihhiyah li-sharq al-mutawassit, 14(2), 305–313.
2. Gamma Linolenic Acid – Improves Inflammation
Inflammation itself is one of the body's normal healing processes, but if the inflammatory response occurs excessively or becomes chronic, it can have a negative effect on normal tissues and even destroy them. An example of a chronic inflammatory disease is rheumatoid arthritis, which causes cartilage and bone damage and pain due to a chronic inflammatory response in the joint synovium.
Therefore, controlling inflammation well is a very important task. Gamma-linolenic acid contained in hemp seed oil is known to have powerful anti-inflammatory activity in the body. Let's look at the anti-inflammatory effect of gamma-linolenic acid through a study published in Inflammation in 2010.
“Our data show that gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) inhibits oxidative stress and signaling pathways of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and c-Jun phosphatase (JNK) in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced RAW 267.4 macrophages. This suggests that it suppresses the inflammatory response through deactivation of nuclear factor kappabinase (NF-κB) and activated protein-1 (AP-1)."
Reference : Chang, C. S., Sun, H. L., Lii, C. K., Chen, H. W., Chen, P. Y., & Liu, K. L. (2010). Gamma-linolenic acid inhibits inflammatory responses by regulating NF-kappaB and AP-1 activation in lipopolysaccharide-induced RAW 264.7 macrophages. Inflammation, 33(1), 46–57.
3. Arginine – Improves Vascular Endothelial Function
The vascular endothelium selectively permeates substances and regulates blood flow and blood coagulation. There is nitric oxide synthase in vascular endothelial cells, and when it combines with arginine contained in hemp seed oil, nitric oxide is created. Nitric oxide dilates blood vessels, facilitates blood flow, and contributes to maintaining vascular homeostasis.
In 2003, a paper was published in Vascular medicine that studied the relationship between arginine intake and vascular endothelial function.
“L-arginine significantly improved flow-mediated dilatation (FMD, the dilatation of arteries when blood flow increases), whereas placebo had no effect. (Omitted) We know that in healthy old age, endothelial function is impaired and it is L-arginine/asymmetry. We conclude that improvement may be achieved by oral L-arginine supplementation due to normalization of the dimethyl L-arginine (ADMA) ratio.”
Reference : Bode-Böger, S. M., Muke, J., Surdacki, A., Brabant, G., Böger, R. H., & Frölich, J. C. (2003). Oral L-arginine improves endothelial function in healthy individuals older than 70 years. Vascular medicine (London, England), 8(2), 77–81.
Today, we looked into the benefits that can be gained from consuming the ingredients contained in hemp seed oil. Hemp seeds contain so many nutrients that they were introduced as one of the six superfood seeds in the Times, but as mentioned earlier, hemp seed oil is rich in unsaturated fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6, so consuming large amounts can cause diarrhea or abdominal pain.
I hope you have a healthy day both physically and mentally. This was Jinny.