Thursday, August 19, 2010
Industrial hemp's history can be traced as far back as 8000 BC when hemp agriculture and textile industries began in Europe and Asia. The uses for hemp are innumerable: from food, to fiber, to paper, to fuel ... What a tragic irony that tobacco farming is legal in the U.S. while hemp cannot be grown by American farmers under current federal law. Hemp contributes to the health and well-being of people and the planet, while tobacco contributes only to illness and death. According to the Centers for Disease Control, each year, an estimated 443,000 people die prematurely from smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke in the U.S. So why aren't we converting tobacco plantations into eco-friendly hemp plantations? Australia began licensing of hemp farms in 1992, and Canada legalized the commercial growth of industrial hemp in 1998. Wake up, America!
Oh, but wait ... we are beginning to wake up, at least, state by state. Just one year ago, Oregon joined several other states when Governor Kulongoski signed a bill into law giving Oregon farmers the right to grow industrial hemp. And here in Oregon, a growing number of companies manufacture hemp products—among them are The Merry Hempsters, Trust Hemp Cooperation, and Living Harvest Foods.
Several years ago I wrote an article for vegsource.com called "Hemp is Good for You," which featured a few of my favorite foods made from what many consider "nature's perfect food." Since then, Living Harvest has come out with a line of milk beverages and ice cream made from hemp that have become increasingly popular. (The Chocolate Fudge and Coconut Lime ice creams are delicious.) They also make hemp oil and have introduced a new line of hemp protein powders.
One serving of Tempt Hemp Protein contains:
3 g fat
22 g protein
All 10 essential amino acids
It's a rich source of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, iron, magnesium, and potassium.
Living Harvest has succeeded in keeping their protein powder from tasting oily or hempy. But it did have a distinctively hemp-like smell when I added it to my morning smoothie, so I threw in a splash of vanilla extract, which masked it completely. If only I'd known they also make a Vanilla Spice protein powder. I'll bet it's terrific!
Tempt Hemp Protein added a nice creamy flavor to my smoothie and infused it with a beautifully rich, vibrant color. It was an energizingly tasty way to start the day!
Morning Protein Power Boost Smoothie
1 cup water (I like Taste Nirvana's Real Coconut Water)
2 very ripe bananas
1 medjool date
1/2 cup frozen fruit of choice (I used raspberries in the smoothie pictured above)
4 Tbs Tempt Hemp Protein Powder
Splash of vanilla extract
Blend all together and enjoy!
Posted by Vegiegail at 11:39 AM