hemp seed nutrition facts 1 tbsp

Nutrients per Tablespoon of Hemp Protein

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If you’re looking for a plant-based protein source, consider hemp. Although hemp seeds come from the Cannabis sativa plant, they won’t make you high. In addition to their protein content, they’re also extremely rich in healthy omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. With that said, if you’re eating a hemp-based protein supplement, you’ll sacrifice some of hemp’s other nutrition benefits in exchange for concentrated protein.

Bob’s Red Mill Hemp Protein Powder

As an example, consider the nutrient content of Bob’s Red Mill hemp protein powder. A 1-tablespoon serving contains the following:

  • Calories: 116
  • Protein: 13.54g
  • Fat: 2.9g
  • Carbohydrate: 9.67g
  • Fiber: 7.7g
  • Sugar: 0.97g
  • Iron: 6.96mg
  • Calcium: 19mg.

Nutiva Organic Hemp Protein

Here’s a second example of the nutrient breakdown for a commercially available hemp protein powder, Nutiva Organic Hemp Protein:

  • Calories: 80
  • Protein: 11g
  • Fat: 4g
  • Carbohydrate: 12g
  • Fiber: 12g
  • Sugar: 1g
  • Iron: 4.5mg
  • Magnesium: 140mg.

The Nutrients in Raw Hemp Seeds

If you’re not shopping specifically for a protein supplement, you can also buy raw, shelled hemp seeds to add to your smoothies, cold cereals, salads or any snack that you might use pine nuts in. Each tablespoon of raw hemp seeds contains the following nutrient breakdown:

  • Calories: 180
  • Protein: 10g
  • Fat: 14g
  • Carbohydrate: 2g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Sugar: 1g.

That same tablespoon of hemp seeds also provides 20mg of calcium, 3.6mg of iron, and 180mg of magnesium.

You can also add hemp seeds to hot cereals, but like other plant products rich in healthy oils, hemp seed is at its nutritional best when consumed raw.

Hemp Protein vs. Hemp Seeds

So, what are you giving up when you use a hemp protein powder instead of hemp seeds? Although hemp is an excellent source of protein, you do get more concentrated protein in the hemp-based protein powders: 10g in regular hemp seeds versus 11g to 14g in a protein powder. However, hemp-based protein powders tend to be quite low in the healthy fats that make hemp such a healthy food on its own. A tablespoon of hemp seeds has 14g of fat, compared to roughly 3g or 4g in the same amount of hemp-based protein powder.

While it may be tempting to consider that reduction in fat as an improvement, your body needs a certain amount of the healthy, unsaturated fats present in hemp; the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-2020 recommend getting 25 to 35 percent of your daily calories from healthy fats.

If your priority is finding a plant-based protein, go for the hemp protein powder, which still contains some healthy fats. But if you’re attracted to hemp protein for the healthy fatty acids, you might as well go for the hemp seeds themselves. You’ll get almost as much protein, while maximizing your intake of essential fatty acids that your body can’t make on its own (which means you must get them through your diet).

Nutrients per Tablespoon of Hemp Protein. Hemp comes from the plant variety Cannabis sativa, which is an annual herbaceous plant. The plant grows well and quickly in various conditions making it a valuable crop. The hemp plant is grown for its fiber and seeds but is also used to make hemp oils, building materials and …

What are the health benefits of hemp?

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Hemp is a plant grown in the northern hemisphere that takes about 3-4 months to mature. Hemp seeds can be consumed or used to produce a variety of food products including hemp milk, hemp oil, hemp cheese substitutes and hemp-based protein powder.

Hemp seeds have a mild, nutty flavor. Hemp milk is made from hulled hemp seeds, water, and sweetener. Hemp oil has a strong “grassy” flavor.

Hemp is commonly confused with marijuana. It belongs to the same family, but the two plants are very different. Marijuana is grown to contain high amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the chemical that is responsible for its psychoactive properties. Hemp describes the edible plant seeds and only contains a trace amount of THC.

This feature is part of a collection of articles on the health benefits of popular foods. It provides a nutritional breakdown of hemp and an in-depth look at its possible health benefits, how to incorporate more hemp into your diet and any potential health risks of consuming hemp.

Share on Pinterest Hemp is available in a variety of forms, including oils and powders.

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, a 2 tablespoon serving of hemp seeds weighing 20 grams (g) contains:

  • 111 calories
  • 6.31 g of protein
  • 9.75 g of fat
  • 1.73 g of carbohydrates (including 0.8 g of fiber and 0.3 g of sugar)
  • 14 milligrams (mg) of calcium
  • 1.59 mg of iron
  • 140 mg of magnesium
  • 330 mg of phosphorus
  • 240 mg of potassium
  • 1.98 mg of zinc
  • 22 micrograms (mcg) of folate

Hemp seeds also provide vitamin C, some B vitamins, and vitamins A and E.

The nutritional content of hemp is linked to a number of potential health benefits.

Healthy fats

The American Heart Association recommends consuming two 3.5-ounce servings of fish, especially oily fish, each week. This is because fish is a major source of omega-3 fatty acids. If a person does not regularly consume fish, they may not be getting enough DHA or EPA.

Hemp is a plant-based source of concentrated omega-3 fatty acids. However, the fatty acids that hemp contains are alpha-linolenic acids (ALA), which are poorly converted to DHA and EPA in the body at a rate of only about 2 to 10 percent.

Despite this inefficient conversion rate, hemp is one of the richest sources of ALA, and so still represents a very good source of healthy fat, particularly for those who do not consume fish or eggs.

Hemp contains a specific omega-6 fatty acid called GLA and hemp oil contains an even higher percentage of GLA.

Hemp seeds also contain phytosterols, which help in reducing the amount of cholesterol in the body by removing fat build-up in the arteries.

Protein source

Hemp contains all 10 essential amino acids, making it a good plant-based protein source. Hemp does not contain phytates, which are found in many vegetarian protein sources and can interfere with the absorption of essential minerals.


Magnesium plays an important role in over 300 enzymatic reactions within the body, including the metabolism of food and synthesis of fatty acids and proteins. Magnesium is involved in neuromuscular transmission and activity and muscle relaxation.

Magnesium deficiency — which is especially prevalent in older populations — is linked to insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, coronary heart disease, and osteoporosis. Nuts and seeds like hemp are some of the best sources of magnesium.

Research suggests that people experiencing premenstrual syndrome (PMS) may be able to alleviate symptoms such as bloating, insomnia, leg swelling, weight gain and breast tenderness by ensuring an adequate intake of magnesium. Magnesium combined with vitamin B6 appears to be most efficacious in these instances.

Hemp is a plant whose seeds can be consumed or used to make food products such as milk and oil. It provides protein, fiber, and healthy fats, and it may be useful as part of a weight-loss diet. Risks include digestive problems. Find out more about hemp seeds and how to include them in your diet. ]]>