Ingredients In Focus: Hemp Seed Oil

Hemp seed oil. It’s deeply moisturising, rich in antioxidants and prone to controversy. However despite the often confusing association, hemp seed oil is free from THC (the active ingredient in marijuana), meaning it has no psychoactive properties.

Extracted from cold pressed seeds, hemp seed oil is ultra nourishing and commonly found in skincare products. Suitable for all skin types, read on to see how pre and postnatal skin in particular can benefit from hemp seed oil.

What are the benefits of hemp seed oil in skincare?

One of the reasons hemp seed oil is often included in skincare is for its high concentration of essential fatty acids (EFAS), such as omega-3 and omega-6. Ideal for dry or dehydrated skin, which is common during pregnancy, these EFAs work to reduce water loss through the epidermal layer of the skin [1]. The key to maintaining our skin’s protective barrier is moisture… which is where hemp seed oil comes in. Why hemp seed oil is so effective in skincare is down to its humectant properties. That means that the EFAs in this natural oil attract water, helping our skin to retain moisture, preserve the epidermis and regenerate cells [3]. Our body oil, Motherlover, was formulated using hemp seed oil specifically to complement other oils like olive and jojoba, which work to lock in moisture once it’s drawn to the surface of the skin.

How does hemp seed oil help pre and postnatal skin?

Hemp seed oil is non-comedogenic, meaning that it won’t clog pores and making it ideal for use during pregnancy when hormone levels have increased and skin can be prone to breakouts. Rich in essential fatty acids, this oil works to keep skin hydrated, helping to prevent dryness which can result in the overproduction of our skin’s natural oil and stimulate acne. Naturally anti-inflammatory and rich in antioxidants such as gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), hemp seed oil can also help to calm irritated skin and encourage new cell generation.

How else can you use hemp seeds?

Have you ever tried hemp milk? With a similar consistency to rice milk, hemp milk is one of the thinnest plant milk alternatives, making it the perfect addition to your morning smoothie or coffee.

Often found in recipes, this superfood contain a long list of vitamins and nutrients and as well as being pressed into an oil, hemp seeds can be used for both drinking and cooking in anything from baked oats to chia puddings. The potential health benefits of consuming hemp seeds during pregnancy or postpartum are largely thanks to the high content of Omega 3 fatty acids, in particular DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), which is a fatty acid that constitutes the majority of the human brain and eyes and is therefore essential for brain and eye development of the foetus during the pregnancy. Whilst breastfeeding, hemp seeds can also help to supplement daily iron, calcium and protein levels.

 

Sources:
[1] www.betternutrition.com
[2] www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19842026
[3] www.ecomall.com

Images via: thecleandish.com, tuulia.co, healthyblenderrecipes.com, pinterest.com, thehonoursystem.com

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