Hemp
Hemp

Background

Hemp (Cannabis sativa) is the same species of plant as cannabis. Unlike cannabis, hemp contains very low levels of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

Both hemp and cannabis also contain cannabinoids such as cannabidiol (CBD), cannabidivarin (CBDV), cannabigerol (CBG), and others. The 2018 Farm Bill established the specific definition of hemp versus cannabis by limiting the THC content of hemp to no more than 0.3%. Hemp seeds contain fats, protein, and other chemicals.

People use hemp for constipation, high cholesterol, eczema, arthritis, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.

Don't confuse hemp with Canadian hemp, hemp agrimony, cannabis, or CBD. These are not the same. Unlike cannabis, it is legal to sell hemp and hemp products under federal law in the US.
When taken by mouth: Hemp seed, seed oil, and seed protein are commonly consumed as food. Hemp is possibly safe when the seed oil is used as medicine for up to 6 months. There isn't enough reliable information to know if hemp flowers, hemp leaves, or oil made from the flower or leaf is safe or what the side effects might be.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if hemp is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Children: There isn't enough reliable information to know if hemp is safe for children. Hemp seed oil has caused rare cases of sleepiness, blood shot eyes, and liver problems in children.

Allergy to cannabis: People who are allergic to cannabis might also be allergic to hemp. Use hemp with caution if you are allergic to cannabis.

Surgery: Hemp protein might lower blood pressure. This might make blood pressure fall too low, especially during surgery. Stop using hemp protein at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

Effectiveness

There is interest in using hemp for a number of purposes, but there isn't enough reliable information to say whether it might be helpful.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions

Dosing & administration

Hemp seed, hemp protein, and hemp seed oil are commonly consumed in foods.

As medicine, there isn't enough reliable information to know what an appropriate dose of hemp might be. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult a healthcare professional before using.

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

Estrogens

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Hemp seed might increase estrogen levels in the body. Taking hemp seed along with estrogen might increase the effects and side effects of estrogen.

Medications for high blood pressure (ACE inhibitors)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Hemp seed protein might lower blood pressure. Taking hemp seed protein along with medications that lower blood pressure might cause blood pressure to go too low. Monitor your blood pressure closely.

Medications for high blood pressure (Antihypertensive drugs)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Hemp seed protein might lower blood pressure. Taking hemp seed protein along with medications that lower blood pressure might cause blood pressure to go too low. Monitor your blood pressure closely.

Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs)

Interaction Rating=Minor Be watchful with this combination.

Hemp seed might slow blood clotting. Taking hemp seed along with medications that also slow blood clotting might increase the risk of bruising and bleeding.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

Herbs and supplements that might lower blood pressure: Hemp seed protein might lower blood pressure. Taking it with other supplements that have the same effect might cause blood pressure to drop too much. Examples of supplements with this effect include andrographis, casein peptides, L-arginine, niacin, and stinging nettle.
Herbs and supplements that might slow blood clotting: Hemp seed might slow blood clotting and increase the risk of bleeding. Taking it with other supplements with similar effects might increase the risk of bleeding in some people. Examples of supplements with this effect include garlic, ginger, ginkgo, nattokinase, and Panax ginseng.

Interactions with foods

There are no known interactions with foods.
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This monograph was last reviewed on 31/01/2024 11:00:00 and last updated on 17/10/2020 02:21:23. Monographs are reviewed and/or updated multiple times per month and at least once per year.
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