Vegan consumers down under rapidly making the most of now-legal seeds

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Not only are hemp oil and seeds delicious as ingredients in just about every food category, and especially salads, they are laced with abundant nutrition, including many of the dietary elements that vegans are only able to gain by supplementing.

The amazing thing about hemp is you can eat it until the day you die and you will pretty much not be deficient in any vitamins​,” said Lloyd Williams, managing director of Lariese Purely Hemp. The Sydney-based company is one of Australia’s biggest hemp distributors to consumers and the food service industry.

It’s got all the nutritional building blocks we need: a perfect ratio between omegas 3,6 and 9; it also has zinc, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium and iron—and hemp seeds and hemp oil simply taste great​,” he adds.

Hemp’s omega fatty acid content is particularly helpful for vegans. Though they are essential for good joint, cardiovascular and cognitive health, among many other benefits, these essential polyunsaturated fats are not produced by the body. Instead, they must be absorbed from what we eat, with oily fish and eggs being the biggest supplier.

Moreover, the ratio of anti-inflammatory omega 3 and cholesterol-lowering omega 6 in hemp seeds, at 4:1, is perfect—more so than other vegan sources such as chia seeds, where the ratio is 1:3. Hemp is also a good source of stereadonic acid, a more potent form of omega 3, and gamma linoleic acid, which is found in evening primrose oil.

Australia was one of the last major countries to legalise hemp as a food ingredient when it approved legislation last November, following nearly two decades of lobbying by growers, nutritionists and politicians.

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