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Can You Be Allergic to Hemp Hearts?

Can you be allergic to hemp hearts?

Sadly, the answer is yes, but don’t worry too much yet, a hemp heart allergy is rare. To know for sure, you will have to check with your allergist. Until then, here are some symptoms you may encounter if you have a hemp heart food allergy.

Can You Be Allergic to Hemp Hearts?

You can be allergic to hemp hearts, but you won’t find a lot of information about it. That’s because most studies are about whether or not people are allergic to marijuana.

While it’s rare, there have been reported cases of allergies to marijuana and hemp that have resulted in anaphylaxis .

You can be allergic to hemp in different ways. The first is an airborne allergy to cannabis plant pollen. Just like any other plant allergy, it affects the skin or respiratory system. You can compare this to the symptoms most people have during allergy season in spring when a heavy amount of pollen is found in the air.

The second is a food allergy caused by ingesting hemp products. Like other food allergies, you can be allergic to the protein in hemp hearts.

A food allergy occurs when your body attempts to fight off a protein in a food that it thinks is a foreign invader. You exhibit symptoms that are a result of your body fighting back. Even if you have hemp heart allergy symptoms, to know for sure, you will need to be tested by an allergist.

How Common is a Hemp Heart Allergy?

A hemp heart allergy is not very common. In fact, most allergies that occur are caused by the same eight foods, commonly referred to as the top eight.

The top 8 food allergies are:

  • Dairy
  • Eggs
  • Peanuts
  • Tree Nuts
  • Shellfish
  • Fish
  • Wheat
  • Soy

You will have to ask your doctor to include hemp hearts to an allergy test if you feel you’ve exhibited symptoms. The symptoms of hemp allergy are similar to other food allergy symptoms. Food allergy symptoms, including those to hemp hearts, are:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Swelling mouth or tongue
  • Hives
  • Itching
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting
  • Anaphylaxis

Anaphylaxis is life-threatening and can happen within minutes. During anaphylaxis, you can experience a drop in blood pressure or heart rate and breathing impairment. A sign of anaphylactic shock occurs when two or more allergy symptoms happen at once. If you have two or more symptoms, you need to seek medical attention immediately.

Food allergies are tricky because they don’t always present themselves the same way. All reactions are different, so it’s important to talk to your doctor if any of the above symptoms occur.

What are the Side Effects of Hemp Heart Protein?

The side effects of eating hemp seeds can vary. Hemp hearts have a high amount of healthy fat and protein. Therefore, pregnant women or people with digestive issues may suffer from diarrhea if they overeat. In this case, a side effect could occur in the form of a hemp seed stomach ache.

The side effects of hemp heart protein are the same side effects of consuming too much protein . They include weight gain, constipation, and dehydration.

These side effects happen because of too much protein in your diet. To combat the side effects of a hemp heart protein, incorporate hemp hearts into a balanced diet and don’t overeat them. Take all the protein you eat under consideration and stick to your recommended daily values.

Suffering side effects doesn’t mean that you are allergic to hemp hearts. Side effects differ from allergy symptoms. Allergy symptoms would include a runny nose, hives, itching, or redness mimicking seasonal allergies or food allergies.

Remember to contact your doctor right away if you have more than one allergy symptom at a time. It could mean you are suffering from anaphylaxis.

Can Hemp Cause Headaches?

It’s been reported that using CBD can cause different side effects , including headaches. This side effect is often due to added ingredients, but remember, there’s no CBD in hemp seeds . Therefore hemp products like hemp hearts and hemp bars don’t cause headaches.

If you have an airborne allergy, other symptoms like sneezing or coughing could also cause a mild headache. This reaction is not due to eating hemp seeds, so getting a headache from eating hemp seed products is unlikely.

Which Hemp Products Cause the Most Allergic Reactions?

If you are allergic to hemp hearts, do not eat any products that contain hemp seeds. Hemp seeds are found in baked goods, protein powders, and nutrition bars. Any amount of hemp seed in any form can cause a reaction if you are allergic.

One hemp product will not cause more of an allergic reaction than another. If you are allergic to hemp protein consuming it in any form will cause a reaction. Every person is different and your reactions to different products may vary.

Can I Eat Hemp Seeds if I Have a Nut Allergy?

You can eat hemp seeds if you have a nut allergy unless you are allergic to hemp seeds directly. Hemp seeds have become an alternative for people with nut allergies to replace the nutritional value they are missing from omitting nuts from their diets.

If you have a peanut or tree nut allergy, your allergist or doctor may recommend you stay away from all nuts due to cross-contamination.

Many manufacturers of peanuts also manufacture a mixed variety of nuts. So, if you eat an almond that has been mixed in with peanuts in the factory you run the risk of an allergic reaction.

Seeds and tree nuts are handled differently. For example, it’s unlikely a peanut will be cross-contaminated in the factory with a coconut.

Snack seeds aren’t usually stored with tree nuts and peanuts. During manufacturing, hemp seeds only come in contact with other hemp seeds because of quality checks and classification. It’s essential hemp seeds are qualified as hemp before they make it into products. This means they don’t get the chance to be cross-contaminated with other nuts.

Bars and baked goods with hemp can have nuts or tree nuts added in later. So always be sure to check the packaging of anything you eat for allergies to be safe.

Is Hemp Considered a Nut or Seed?

Hemp is technically considered a nut. The definition of nuts and seeds can get complicated, but let’s try to explain.

According to the oxford dictionary, a nut is a fruit with a hard shell and an edible kernel. They are the seeds of plants and trees.

Seeds are the small part of a plant that holds the reproductive characteristics of the plant. In other words, it’s the part of the plant you or I would use in a garden to grow more.

The difference between a seed and a nut lies in its shell. While a nut doesn’t open naturally and has to be cracked, a seed breaks open easily. Hemp hearts are already hulled for you from the hard outer shell of what we call hemp seeds.

People use the word nut often when referring to peanuts, but there are lots of different types of nuts. Peanuts are actually legumes, that is a member of the pea family. If a person is allergic to “nuts” they are allergic to tree nuts and peanut allergy is a separate issue entirely.

All of this gets very confusing, but it’s helpful to know if you think you have a tree nut allergy .

People can be allergic to peanuts, but not tree nuts (like coconut) or seeds like (sesame or sunflower seeds). So what you really need to know is that hemp is not considered a tree nut or a peanut.

Brooke with Honey Aleppo humminghemp hemp hearts

Who Should Eat Hemp Seeds?

Hemp seeds are a superfood that is safe and nutritious for anyone who isn’t allergic. They are loaded with nutrients and minerals that make them outstanding for pregnant women and for children.

Some of the nutrients you can find inside are:

  • Fiber
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Protein
  • Omega fatty acids
  • Zinc
  • Amino acids
  • Iron

This is a shortlist of nutrients; you may find that there are a lot more benefits to eating hemp hearts than you may know.

Are Hemp Seeds an Allergen?

So, can you be allergic to hemp hearts? The answer is yes, but that doesn’t mean a hemp seed allergy is the same as a tree nut or peanut allergen.

A person is rarely allergic to hemp hearts. You will have to be tested for the allergy to know for sure. Until then, read the packaging carefully and be aware of any symptoms that may occur.

Can you be allergic to hemp hearts? Does a nut allergy mean you have a hemp protein allergy? Symptoms and side effects of eating hemp seeds.

What is Hemp Allergy & How can it be Cured?

Hemp has been rising to fame as the new superfood. Hemp’s reputation as a highly nutritious and beneficial food item is fairly recent. Majority of its motivation is because of the rise in the vegan lifestyle. But with increasing adoption we are also witnessing increasing cases of hemp allergy.

Hemp is the most environment-friendly, chemical-free, and ethically cultivated plant ever. It is naturally healthy and can, in appropriate proportions, serve the daily nutritional needs of the human body.

With so much being sais about hemp’s use as a superfood, one aspect that must be explored is allergies. Even though hemp is entirely organic, it can, in some cases, set off allergic reactions in the body. 97% of the time, it is a safe food that can be consumed by almost anyone. But there are some research studies that indicate the allergic properties of the plant.

But before we set off to understand those studies, let’s brush off the basics of hemp .

What is hemp?

Commonly known as industrial hemp, hemp is a variety of the cannabis sativa plant. It is a sister plant of marijuana but without the psychoactive properties. This is because of the amount of cannabinoids present in the plant. The two major cannabinoids present in cannabis plants are THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol). The THC cannabinoid is the one with psychoactive properties which causes excitant behaviour in the human body. The marijuana plant contains high amounts of THC and is therefore used by people to get high.

The CBD cannabinoid, on the other hand, is the cannabinoid that exhibits properties opposite to that of THC. The hemp plant is rich in CBD and contains less than 1% THC. It, therefore, causes no elation in the human body.

The hemp plant has been cultivated by humans since ancient times primarily for medicinal purposes. Hemp is grown specifically for industrial uses of the products that can derive from it. Initially, its major use was medicine. But advancements over time have led to a plethora of commercial items being produced from hemp. Today, the world has hemp-based paper, clothing, textiles, ropes, building material, food, biofuel, and plastic to name a few.

Hemp—the nutritional powerhouse

The use of hemp as a food item is particularly interesting. Hemp seeds are a rich source of nutrition . They are one of the rare foods that can be consumed raw, as sprouts, powder, or grounded meals. Hemp seeds have high levels of arginine and a high sulphur-rich fraction which give it the high nutritional value.

The seeds also contain proteins in the form of salt-soluble globulins (75%) and water-soluble albumin (25%). Ideally, a 100g serving of hemp seeds can serve 64% of the daily protein value of the human body.

That’s not all. Hemp seeds also contain B vitamins, dietary fibre, and dietary minerals such as zinc, iron, magnesium, and phosphorous. The dietary fibre and minerals cater to about 20%, 104%, 61%, 197%, and 236% of the daily nutrition value respectively. This 100-gram portion of hemp seeds feeds approximately 586 calories in the body. Almost 73% of the energy in hempseed is in the form of essential fatty acids.

The leaves of the hemp plant are also edible. They can be consumed raw as leafy vegetables in salads or in the form of juice.

Hemp Food Allergy

Given the present lifestyle that the world is heading into, food intolerance and allergies are on the rise. A food allergy is an autoimmune response of the human body to a protein or pollen present in something that the body consumes. The body misidentifies a harmless substance as a possible threat and goes berserk trying to stop it.

The degree of this reaction varies from immune system to the immune system. Some of the most common food allergies around the world are to peanuts, wheat, cow’s milk, soy, and fish. However, in theory, of course, you could be allergic to any food. But you are more likely to be allergic to food items that are high in protein. Of course, one can be allergic to an apple but since the protein level of an apple is considerably low, any reaction can get hard to detect.

But, foods like hemp, which are rich sources of protein, set off considerably noticeable reactions in the body. This fact is what has triggered the research into observing hemp as an allergen. As mentioned above, a 100g serving of hemp injects as much as 34 grams of protein in the body. This is higher than what the same serving of peanuts injects into the body and therefore calls for an investigation.

Is hemp an allergen?

The hemp food industry has been increasingly growing for the last 15 years. Today we have hemp oil, seeds, and ready-to-eat and lightly processed hemp products including milk, bread, ice cream, etc. Up until a particular time period, there were no documented allergies to hemp food. However, there were instances of intolerance toward hemp-based food items.

But, the scientific community studying hemp allergies deduces that they appear to be on the rise. “Although still relatively uncommon, an allergic disease associated with cannabis sativa [hemp] exposure and use has been reported with increased frequency.”, quoted the 2015 edition of Cannabis Sativa: the unconventional weed allergen paper published by Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology Annals.

What are common hemp allergies?

A true hemp allergy stems from a reaction to a specific substance contained within the hemp plant. Multiple reports in the medical literature describe episodes of allergic reactions, hypersensitivity, and anaphylaxis to various forms of cannabis including hemp.

Studies show that inhalation of hemp pollen causes symptoms of asthma and conjunctivitis. Exposure to hemp pollen or smoke has resulted in sneezing, nasal congestion, itchy throat (pharyngeal pruritus), coughing, conjunctival injection, and difficulty in breathing (dyspnea).

There are also reported instances of skin irritations thought to be associated with the consumption of hemp. Skin contact through the handling of the plant links to generalised pruritus (itching) and swelling. The ingestion of hemp seed has reported causing a serious anaphylactic reaction with ocular symptoms such as swelling, hives, and difficulty in breathing.

Which parts of the plant are most allergic?

Theoretically, any part of the plant can trigger an allergic reaction in the body but as already mentioned, the most likely offenders to be are parts that have the most protein and/or pollen. The prime suspect on the basis of this is hemp seeds.

Hemp oil is highly unlikely to be an allergen. This is because it is refined to be 100% fat. However, its use as an ingredient in skincare products such as lotions, creams, etc., might cause an allergic reaction.

The same is true for hemp milk. To produce hemp milk, the hemp seeds are grounded into a fine powder and diluted with water. The mixture is then strained off any chunky residue leaving plant-based milk. So, if you are allergic to hemp seeds, you are most likely to be allergic to hemp milk as well.

Common side effects of a hemp allergy

While the symptoms of a hemp allergy depend on a human’s biology, there are some common symptoms of hemp allergy that everyone is most likely to experience.

  • Irritation: itchiness, swelling, and puffiness of the eyes, and the skin in general.
  • Hives: in the form of skin rash, plaques, or pale red bumps
  • Allergic rhinitis: sneezing, running nose, and nasal congestion
  • Asthma: dyspnea (difficulty in breathing), tightness in chest, and abnormal lung function.
  • Conjunctivitis: pink and/or bloodshot eyes.
  • Anaphylaxis

How common is hemp allergy?

Hemp is an all-natural, all-organic food and is mostly safe to consume. However, hemp food allergies are more common than you might think. Hemp as a food item is in the nascent stages of consumption. In about a decade or so, if the rate of its consumption remains the same, it may very well become a major food allergen in the same league as nuts.

But what must also be said is that a lot of that outcome depends on the environmental practices that surround the cultivation of the hemp plant in the coming years. Moreover, being a rich source of protein is not necessarily a bad thing for hemp. We can reduce the serving size and control the consumption to maintain the good protein amount for the body.

How to diagnose a hemp allergy?

A hemp allergy test is often dependent on skin testing. A skin prick test determines if a person is allergic to one or more specific allergens. If the body finds sensitivity, the immune system produces an antibody called immunoglobulin E (IgE). Then, the physician conducts an allergen-specific IgE blood test to check if the person is actually allergic to a particular substance. Since the IgE antibodies are unique to each allergen, it becomes easy to check for specific allergens.

The knowledge of hemp allergy symptoms aids in this process.

Interestingly, a positive skin prick test does not necessarily indicate that a person will experience an allergic reaction. For this reason, doctors have to continually compare the skin prick tests over time along with the person’s symptoms. This is to determine whether it is the hemp consumption causing the symptoms or something else.

Are there treatments available for hemp allergies?

It is possible to control or reduce the hemp allergy symptoms such as irritation, hives, and conjunctivitis with proper medication. But in cases where extreme reactions to hemp cause asthma and asphyxiation, things can get tricky.

The scientific literature suggests that factors such as local aerobiology and occupational exposure need to be considered. Treatment for allergic rhinoconjunctivitis is antihistamines, steroids, and nasal decongestants. Beta-agonists treat asthma. And for people who experience anaphylaxis as a result of hemp allergy can use EpiPens.

The medical literature, however, sheds little light on treating hemp allergy symptoms with immunotherapy. There are reports, but rare, that demonstrated the desensitization of patients and improvement in cohort of hemp.

What does all of this mean?

Although still relatively uncommon, there is a fair number of cases of hemp allergies. The severe allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis can be a result of the sensitization associated with pollinosis, hemp consumption, occupational exposure, and potential cross-reactivity among plants.

Hemp allergies can essentially be treated like any other allergies. It is the lack of standardization in testing limits and widespread applicability of diagnostic testing that makes the job harder. However, with more research that clearly defines allergens and aids in setting these limitations, joined with a more defined territory of hemp allergy symptoms, more clarified treatment options for patients will be available.

And yet, at the bottom of it all, the possible allergies do not beat the amazing health benefits of hemp. It is a superfood which because of its magical component—CBD—is a healthy alternative not only for food but for medicine as well.

Hemp allergy refers to the allergy of the part of the plant which contains most proteins and/or pollens. Symptoms of hemp allergy are irritation, hives… ]]>