What is the first thought that pops into your head when you think of hemp?...
Is it the CBD bath you’re currently soaking in?
The lotion you’re going to put on after?
The joint you may have rolled to get into the tub with?
Hemp truly is a magical plant that is tragically misunderstood. It has been a greatly used resource since the beginning of it’s time and it has so much more to offer to our land and species. I’m sure some of the information I’m about to share with you will bring you beyond your wildest imagination, so let’s dive in at the beginning...
Natives used hemp for its fibers, medical benefits, and nutritional purposes. As a fiber, they found that hemp was more durable and absorbent than cotton and therefore lasted longer. They made thread, clothing, paper, even rope for hunting and building shelter. It’s seeds were added to foods for the protein, fiber, and fatty acids. Healers even began to make similar teas and tinctures to what we use today. With this medicine they treated gas, gout, joint pain, muscular atrophy, heart palpitations, eye disease, headaches, syphilis. Occasionally they also used the plant recreationally as a meditation stimulant during sacred ceremonies. This crop was of aid to every portion of their lives, and that is something we can get back in touch with.
Today, you see the benefits of hemp everywhere yet, we live in a world that does not always use nature's gifts in the best ways, and there is so very much more we could be doing. Using Hemp as a medicine is just one very small portion of what this plant is capable of, this plant can also be the answer of how to restore our planet. Hemp is our now, and hemp should be our future.
Biofuel, or fuel produced by plants rather than fossil fuels, are more sustainable and safe. Hemp is widely believed to be the most environmentally friendly and cost-efficient fuel crop that we have. Another intriguing use of hemp is its ability to clean-up soil contamination. This form of usage is still young, but has been proven to be efficient in significant areas such as the Chernobly site in the late 90’s. It was able to aid in this disaster’s clean-up of sewage, ash, and heavy metals within the soil.
In addition to healing the soil, we can also use this plant to produce products that are biodegradable and environmentally friendly. This may sound shocking, but hemp plastic is strong enough to replace oil-based plastics that are made with harmful chemicals. Changing over to this 100% biodegradable plastic can be a huge aid in our planet's fight for survival.
The natives had the right idea in using hemp for paper and fibers. Hemp paper is actually more durable and acid-free so it will not become yellow or brittle over time. This is more sustainable than paper made from trees because hemp grows significantly faster than trees do. Over a 20-year cycle, just one acre of hemp is able to produce the same amount of paper as 4 – 10 acres of trees. That’s quite a jump!
This brief essay doesn’t cover nearly enough of the amazing ways hemp can be used, but hopefully I taught you something new about our beloved plant that we get to enjoy everyday. I hope you read this in the bathtub, found some new insight, and found more reason to advocate and do your own research to learn more. All of the medicine and resources we use today originated from what this land gave us. The natives, our ancestors, paved the way and it’s our time to bring it back.
Hemp is hope, not dope.