Is Hemp Milk a Healthy Plant-Based Milk Alternative?

Mar 28, 2023| By JOI team

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Mar 28, 2023| By JOI team

Is Hemp Milk a Healthy Plant-Based Milk Alternative?

Gluten-free | Milk | Plant Milk | Vegan | Vegetarian | 

We’re making milk out of everything these days, but not all of them hit the mark like this latest product creation! JOI has launched a new plant-based milk alternative for your enjoyment and your heart health. Meet JOI hemp milk concentrate; made of 100% hemp hearts. Read on to see why hemp is a dietitian-approved milk alternative, and how you can incorporate it into your own healthy routine!

A dietitian’s verdict: is Hemp Milk Healthy?

The Benefits of Hemp

There are many benefits of hemp milk and hemp seeds. For one, they are rich in plant-based protein. This is a great way for those who eat plant-based, or just want to add more plant protein into their diet, to do so. Specifically, research has shown that hemp protein helps to lower your blood sugar after a meal. Can you say #bloodsugarbliss?!

Hemp milk also contains omega 3 fatty acids, which are great for heart and brain health! Omega 3’s help the cells in your body to function as they should, and areas like your eyes and brain have a high concentration of these tiny powerhouses. Those fatty acids also aid in relaxing and contracting your arteries, which is why you always hear about them being “heart-healthy”! Hemp milk gives our body some of the omega 3’s it needs to keep our bodies functioning efficiently. 

Also, hemp milk is a great example of a beneficial dietary addition that diversifies your gut microbiome and the types of heart-healthy fats in your current diet! The most powerful gut-health tool you have is in the diversity of your shopping cart! By throwing hemp milk into your cart, you’ve added more dietary diversity and flavor variety to your palette, but also your gut health which thrives on fiber diversity.

I ask my patients to consume 30 or more different plant foods, which can include produce, nuts, seeds, herbs, spices, and yes - hemp. This is an easy way to meet prebiotic and polyphenol needs through food, instead of supplementation! And, hemp contains a wide variety of polyphenols; compounds that feed the probiotic micro-organisms thought to be beneficial to our health. 

Lastly, there are a plethora of vitamins and minerals found in hemp milk. Rich in vitamin A, vitamin B12, iron, zinc, calcium, and even vitamin D, hemp milk or hemp seeds are an easy way to get these into your diet.

JOI hemp concentrate is made of 100% hemp hearts, and can be used either directly in cooking or made into milk (so you retain all the nutritional benefits).

What should I look for on a hemp milk nutrition label? 

nutrition label for JOI hemp concentrate

Let’s use the label to really break down the nutritional benefits of hemp milk! The best thing to remember, with any packaged food, is the power of savvy label reading. Here are some of the nutritional powerhouse benefits of hemp milk: 

  1. Heart-Healthy Fat: 1 cup of prepared JOI Hemp Milk provides 10g of heart-healthy unsaturated fat. That’s more than 2 times more healthy fats than leading boxed hemp milk brands, which provide only 4.5g of protein per cup. 
  2. Clean-label: This fact is even more obvious when we see that JOI hemp milk concentrate is only made from ONE ingredient; hemp hearts! No added sugar, fillers or gums!
  3. Hemp hearts are naturally low in carbohydrates, low-glycemic, and provide a great anti-inflammatory ingredient addition for diabetes-friendly cooking! 
  4. Hemp hearts not only create a smooth and creamy milk alternative, but they’re also naturally free of the top common allergens AND still manage to provide 10g of protein per 1 cup serving! 
  5. Nutrient Density! Make your hemp milk even more nutrient-dense by adding more concentrate! Because JOI is a shelf-stable concentrate, you have the ability to increase nutrient density as needed. Prepare your milk with 3TB (vs 2TB) of hemp concentrate for 33% more protein and fat per cup, with even more creaminess!

Plant Milk Comparisons 

As a dietitian focused on an anti-inflammatory, real-food rooted approach to eating, I urge patients to get comfortable reading labels. A few key nutrition considerations with your plant-milk sleuthing: 

  1. Avoid added sugar 
  2. Beware of the addition of inflammatory oils
  3. Consider the purpose of the milk in your diet! Are you adding this as a source of protein? Just need a creamy smoothie base? Looking for a source of heart healthy fat?
hand holding glass jar of milk being poured into glass

How does hemp milk compare with other milk?

  • Oat milk: high in fiber, but can also be high in carbohydrate content, leading to a blood sugar spike. This is where hemp milk comes in: a great low-glycemic, low carbohydrate option for milk that won’t spike your blood sugar. 
  • Cashew milk: full of heart healthy fats, and is super versatile! Not only can it be used as a milk for coffee, but is oftentimes used in dairy free dishes like mac n’ cheese as it adds loads of creaminess!  Thankfully, an alternative exists for people who can’t are allergic to nuts, but still want that delicious creamy texture. Hemp milk is not only allergen-friendly, but it also adds a great thickness and creaminess to your smoothies, coffee or dairy-free dishes!
  • Almond milk: So many benefits from the little nut! It contains heart healthy fats, and JOI almond milk base has six times the amount of protein of conventional almond milk. It is also considered a Vitamin E superfood - which helps to fight free radicals.
  • Hemp Milk: Oh my, omega-3’s. Hemp milk is a great source of those heart and brain benefitting omega 3’s! They’re also low in carbohydrates, making them diabetes friendly. Hemp milk is a delicious and creamy allergen free option! Because it's a milk that is allergen free and low-glycemic, it's my favorite option of milk by far; making your cup of coffee or smoothie taste great all while maintaining #bloodsugarbliss!

How Can I Use Hemp Milk? 

JOI hemp concentrate can be used either directly in cooking or made into milk. Bonus? You retain 100% of all the nutritional benefits.

  1. In a smoothie - I love the taste hemp milk adds to a smoothie, plus unlike a juice where you lose fiber and nutrients, you can create a satiating balanced meal with a few simple additions. Try blending this blood sugar balanced option for lunch: 
    1. 2 TB of JOI Hemp Milk concentrate
    2. 1 cup water
    3. 1 cup raspberries
    4. 1 tsp cinnamon
    5. a handful of spinach
    6. either ½ scoop of protein powder or ½ cup cottage cheese or pressed tofu. 
    7. Press down with 5 ice cubes and enjoy! 
  2. In a chia seed pudding
  3. In a curry - Yes, the benefit of hemp is that is it versatile enough to be used in both sweet and savory recipes. 

Takeaway: Joi Hemp Milk concentrate is a healthy plant-milk and cow's milk alternative rich in healthy fat, omega-3 fatty acids with nutritious health benefits and a nutty flavor. If you’re looking to minimize the milks in your fridge and want a versatile one-stop option, or want an omega-3 rich alternative to your current nut milk, this is your best pick!

About the author

Whitney Stuart is a registered dietitian-nutritionist and Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist (CDCES) focused on the improvement of metabolism, gut health and blood sugar through her virtual practice, Whitness Nutrition. Not only is Whitney a health food nut, but she is an avid grocery store sleuther, always looking for the latest greatest nutrition creations to share with her patients, like JOI’s hemp milk concentrate! She provides functional nutritional counseling for females sick of the restrictive diet hamster wheel. With seven years of experience, Whitney focuses on simple and sustainable health actions for her patients. Voted best Dallas Dietitian since 2019, she has been featured in media segments for Shape, Real Simple, ABC & NBC. Learn more here.

photo of a laughing Whitney on her computer

1 comment

  • Powerful articles. Keep the good work!!!

    Mike

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Instant Organic Oat Milk

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Almond Milk Base

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