Kale Salad With Hemp

Why is hemp good for our gut?

Hemp seeds are seeds of the cannabis Sativa plant, but they definitely are not psychoactive! Hemp seeds only contain a trace amount of THC, and therefore don’t produce any psychoactive effects in humans or animals when they are consumed. They are actually packed full of essential nutrients including soluble and insoluble fibers; which are beneficial for the gut. As a great source of plant-based protein, hemp hearts are rich in iron, calcium, Omega 3 and Omega 6, magnesium, and phosphorus. They are also packed with fiber as 1/4 cup contains about 5 grams.

Hemp seeds are generally found hulled (with the shell removed), they can still be eaten with the shell intact (unhulled) to add a crunch to your recipes. These little nutrient-packed seeds are beneficial for the microbiome because the significant amount of fiber helps support bowel movements. In one study, hemp seeds improved the symptoms of constipation by 43% vs an 8% placebo. Dietary fiber is extremely important for digestive health, and hemp seeds are a great source of soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber helps to form a gel-like substance in your gut that feeds the microbiome, and the insoluble fiber boosts the population and density of the bacteria in the gut.

In one study, it was found that the fiber in hemp seeds will resist digestion in the small intestine, move to the large intestine, and ferment via the microbiota that live there and produce short chain fatty acids! Short chain fatty acids are compounds that are anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory, and provide energy for the gut lining! How about that for #GoodGut nutrients!

In another animal-based study, hemp seeds were found to improve the gut microbiota in mice by increasing the levels of bifidobacterium and lactobacillus, while simultaneously decreasing E. coli after 11 weeks of strict dietary protocols. These seeds-- though the study was in mice-- appear to have compounds that are fantastic for the profile of the gut microbiota!

Ways to eat it

Hemp hearts can easily be added to a salad. Try out this Married to Health Kale Salad Recipe with Hemp Hearts to get that #GoodGut protein and nutrients!

Recipe: Kale Salad with Hemp

Ingredients (Makes 4 Servings):

For the Salad:

  • 1 pound kale

  • 1 cup romaine

  • 1 cup arugula

  • 1 cup spinach

  • 1 cup red leaf lettuce

  • 1/2 cup broccoli, chopped

  • 1 medium/large carrot, chopped

  • 1 cup (one 12 oz can) hearts of palm

For the Garnish:

  • 3/4 cup roasted chickpeas

  • 1/4 cup almond parmesan (homemade blend of 1/2 cup raw almonds, 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast, 1/2 tsp himalayan salt, and 1 tsp garlic powder)

  • 3 Tbsp hemp seeds

For the Dressing:

  • 1 medium avocado

  • 3/4 cup soaked cashews (if you do not have any pre-soaked, boil them for 30 minutes on low heat)

  • 1 1/4 cups filtered water

  • 2 Tbsp kelp flakes

  • 2 tsp dijon mustard

  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp vegan worcestershire sauce

  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder

  • 1 small clove garlic

  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice

  • 1 Tbsp ground olives or capers

  • 1/2 tsp himalayan salt (add more to taste)

  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp vegan worcestershire sauce

  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder

  • 1 small clove garlic

  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice

  • 1 Tbsp ground olives or capers

  • 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt (add more to taste)


  1. In a medium bowl, massage the washed kale with avocado for 2 minutes, or until kale is softened.

  2. Add in spinach, romaine, red leaf lettuce, & arugula!

  3. Chop broccoli and hearts of palm.

  4. With a peeler or grater, make carrot ribbons or shreds.

  5. Blend dressing ingredients in a blender.

  6. Add all ingredients to the greens bowl & add dressing. Garnish with roasted chickpeas, hemp seeds, & almond parmesan and enjoy!

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Cheng, C., Bian Z., Zhu, L., Wu, J., Sung, J. (2011). Efficacy of a Chinese herbal proprietary medicine

(Hemp Seed Pill) for functional constipation. American Journal of Gastroenterology.



Frassinetti, S., Gabriele, M., Moccia, E., Longo, V., Gioia, D. (2019). Antimicrobial and antibiofilm

activity of Cannabis sativa L. seeds extracts against Staphylococcus aureus and growth effects on

probiotic Lactobacillus spp. Food Science and Technology.


Leonard, W., Zhang, P., Ying, D., Fang, Z. (2019). Hempseed in food industry: nutritional value, health

benefits, and industrial applications. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety.


Farinon, B., Molinari, R., Costantini, L., & Merendino, N. (2020). The seed of industrial hemp (Cannabis

sativa L.): Nutritional Quality and Potential Functionality for Human Health and Nutrition. Nutrients, 12(7), 1935. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12071935.

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