10 benefits and uses of hemp - CBH India

Hemp is very cultivated and easy to access. But, because of bad information, hemp is ignored or despised. The uses that could be made of them are so numerous that it is not possible to list them all. This article will make you discover what hemp really is and its multiple benefits through 10 main points.


1) Hemp and cannabis: Definition and Differences

2) Hemp to make plastic

3) Hemp as a food supplement

3.1) How is hemp consumed?

4) Hemp as a raw material for the fabric manufacturing

4.1) Hemp is better than cotton

5) Hemp to cure diseases

6) Hemp can produce biofuel

7) Hemp for making paper

8) Hemp is practical for building houses

9) Hemp to take care of the skin and hair

10) Hemp for cleaning contaminated soil

1) Hemp and cannabis: Definition and Differences

Hemp and cannabis: for many people, there is no difference between these two plants.

However, the reality is quite different, even if the two plants belong to the same botanical family (Cannabis Sativa L.).

Hemp is a leafy shrub that is grown for the textile fiber contained in its stem, and the oil taken from its seeds. However, Cannabis (or Indian hemp) is a plant-derived from hemp. Richer in THC, Indian hemp is cultivated, not for obtaining useful raw materials, but for its powerful psychoactive activity on the human organism. The effect obtained by the consumption of cannabis flowers is, therefore, the main objective of its use, whether in a medicinal setting or in a recreational setting.

Why is hemp so frowned upon if it is beneficial and has little to do with cannabis? Apart from the resemblance between the two plants, other explanations are possible. For example, hemp competed with and supplanted many other products. To preserve the dominance of other products, it was frowned upon and had to be put aside.

Now that the difference is well established between hemp and cannabis, let's discover some of its multiple benefits.

2) Hemp to make plastic

Generally to design plastic, the raw material used is a derivative of crude oil (cellulose). We also find a variant of this raw material in plants (cellulose of plant origin). With vegetable cellulose, it is possible to produce resistant and very good quality plastic.

Interestingly, hemp is one of the richest plants in cellulose with a composition of up to 85% (especially in its stems). It is, therefore, an ideal alternative for long-term plastic manufacturing.

In addition, it should be noted that plastic made from hemp (or any other plant containing cellulose) is fully biodegradable. Unlike traditional plastic, it, therefore, does not pollute the environment. We should also remember that hemp can be cultivated everywhere, easily, and in large quantities as opposed to petroleum, which is a dry resource.

Admittedly, it is true that the prohibition of hemp makes the use of vegetable plastic somewhat improbable. However, the perseverance of certain industries and advances in technology are causing these restrictions to gradually diminish. For example, some giants of the automobile industry namely BMW, Ford, and Honda have already started the industrial use of the raw material hemp. They use it in particular to make plastic components (doors, hoods, etc.) for their vehicles. These are examples to follow, no doubt.

3) Hemp as a food supplement

Hemp is highly prized for its unprecedented nutritional benefits. The hemp seeds, in this case, contain nutrients beneficial in every way for the body. These are mainly:

  • Proteins (mostly essential amino acids);

  • Carbohydrates;

  • Lipids;

  • Vitamins (B1, B2, E).

These different nutrients are useful not only for maintaining vital functions but also for strengthening the metabolism. So much so that some nutritionists even recommend hemp seeds as a food supplement for their patients.

In addition, it should be noted that hemp seeds contain soluble fibers that regulate the cholesterol level in the blood.

How is hemp consumed?

Like any other dietary supplement, hemp seeds can be consumed in different ways.

The most common mode of consumption is taking the seeds in their raw form. They are very appetizing and can be crunched as a snack.

Additionally, hemp can also be consumed in the form of:

  • Oil (the oil obtained from hemp seeds is not used for cooking, but it can be used to make a homemade vinaigrette or to season an already cooked dish);

  • Butter;

  • Of milk ;

  • Drink (lemonades, teas, beers, syrups);

  • Powder (crushed and refined hemp seeds are very good food supplements.

Note: Hemp is also used in animal feed. Its seeds serve in particular as food supplements for food for birds, for pets (dogs, cats) and even for livestock.

4) Hemp as a raw material for the fabric manufacturing

Hemp can also be used as a raw material for the textile industry. This is possible thanks to the long fibers very rich in cellulose that the plant contains. These offer very wide possibilities for creation. You can make super-strong strings, silky sheets, comforters, and soft, comfortable clothing. The textile produced from hemp is of optimal quality and has nothing to envy to other materials.

The use of hemp in the textile industry is nothing new. Thousands of years ago, hemp fibers were already used to make tents, fabrics, boat sails, and canvases. In the 19th century, hemp was even the most widely used raw material for the textile industry (around 75% of world production at the time).

Hemp is better than cotton

Since its disgrace, hemp has been doubled by cotton among the natural fibers most used in the textile industry. However, when comparing the two plants, hemp seems the most advantageous in many aspects. In particular, it consumes very little water and can grow almost anywhere, even in the harshest conditions (without the use of pesticides). Cotton, on the other hand, is a plant whose cultivation requires abundant water reserves as well as chemicals harmful to ecosystems. Its yield is also minimal, compared to that of hemp. In addition, hemp fibers are much more resistant and longer than those of cotton. So we can clearly say that hemp is better than cotton.

5) Hemp to cure diseases

Hemp owes its medicinal properties to the cannabinoid compounds it contains. These are mainly CBD (in large quantities) and THC (a tiny amount).

According to several scientific studies, CBD, also called Cannabidiol (when it can be isolated from other cannabinoids) can help in the treatment of several diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, and inflammation. It also contains active substances that can effectively combat anxiety and depression.

Note: Given its psychoactive effects, the use of THC remains problematic. However, some studies (admittedly not in-depth) have found that THC could be involved in the treatment of cancer.

6) Hemp can produce biofuel

Another interesting fact about hemp is that it can be turned into fuel. The latter takes the form of biodiesel and can be directly used by conventional diesel engines to operate.

Agrofuel made from hemp has many advantages. Indeed, it does not produce toxins and is very pure. Its combustion also does not produce sulfur dioxide (usually produced by other fuels). It is therefore not particularly harmful to humans. In addition, the environmental impact of hemp production nationally and internationally is extremely low compared to that of fuels produced from petroleum. In the long term, it is, therefore, a solution that can be envisaged to replace oil on a long-term basis.

Furthermore, it should be noted that most of the petrol engines available on the market today are not originally designed to operate on biodiesel or any other vegetable-based fuel. It is, however, possible to carry out conversion by modifying the feeding device slightly and adding a specific kit to it.

To find out if your car can run on biofuel, in particular hemp biodiesel, please ask for the expertise of a professional.

7) Hemp to make paper

Hemp can be used in papermaking. This is also not a recent discovery, because it would seem that until the 1880s, the vast majority of the paper used in Europe and the Middle East was made from hemp. It was only after its prohibition (for purely competitive reasons) that it gradually gave way to wood.

Compared to wood, the paper obtained from hemp stems is by far the best. This is mainly due to the fact that the composition of a hemp stalk is more conducive to the production of paper than that of wood pulp. Indeed, the content of lignin (vegetable component preventing the extraction of paper pulp and which must be eliminated during production) of a hemp stalk is very low, unlike a wood chip which can contain up to '' 35% lignin. The production of hemp paper, therefore, requires much less chemical treatment. In other words, it is less polluting and costs less.

In addition, the paper obtained from hemp is much more resistant than that produced from wood pulp. Therefore, it is durable and better resists the wear of time.

In addition, from a quantitative point of view, hemp also prevails over trees. Note that it takes about twenty years for a tree to mature and be used to make paper. This is absolutely not the case for hemp stems which ripen in just 4 months and are ready for use.

8) Hemp is handy for building houses

Hemp is a revolutionary plant that can also be used in the construction sector. It is made up of fibers and components useful for creating materials whose properties are similar to those of wood, concrete, and plastic.

Technically, all the construction of a house can be made from hemp products, from the foundation to the finish. You can get bricks, plaster, paint, and even floor mats from hemp. It's very amazing versatility. Some specialists even consider that hemp concrete (material obtained from a mixture of lime and chenevotte), because of its insulation capacity, is an ideal solution to comply with current and future thermal regulations.

Note: Due to its current legal status, it may be very expensive to build your house with hemp derivatives.

9) Hemp to take care of the skin and hair

The oil extracted from hemp seeds is highly prized for its cosmetic properties. It contains in particular mineral salts and nutrients beneficial for the skin and hair.

Among other cosmetic products that can be obtained from hemp oil, there are:

  • Anti-aging creams (hemp-based anti-aging creams firm the skin and reduce skin aging);

  • Anti-Acne creams (they reduce the appearance of acne and have a softening effect);

  • Body ointments (hemp oil-based ointments cleanse and hydrate the skin);

  • Lipsticks (lip balms based on hemp oil protect and hydrate lips);

  • Creams for the eye area;

  • Haircare products (they contain fatty acids and lipids which increase the shine, volume, and elasticity of the hair)…

Note that despite the various controversies surrounding hemp, several large cosmetic companies use it in the manufacture of their products (even in countries with strict jurisdiction such as England or the United States). Some French companies have even made it their specialty.

10) Hemp for cleaning contaminated soil

It has been discovered, after several types of research, that hemp can be used to clean (or disinfect) polluted soils unfit for agriculture. It is a process called Phytoremediation. Indeed, hemp plants, when present, absorb polluting metals and other substances contaminating the soil through their roots. These a priori harmful compounds are then gradually degraded by the plant and then transformed into harmless substances which will ultimately be released into nature. This purifies the soil and makes it operational again for agriculture. It is this phytoremediation technique using hemp that was used to gradually purify the contaminated soil several years after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

What to remember? Hemp is a plant with innumerable virtues which is generally confused with cannabis, another plant of the same family recognized for its psychoactive properties. In this article, you have been entitled to only a few of its multiple application possibilities. There is no doubt that the recent reforms and those to come will trigger the process of expansion and industrialization of this atypical plant.

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