Apart from the odd supplement, I’ve never really covered the subject of drugs on Curiously Conscious. Now let’s get this clear, when I say drugs here, I’m talking the family-friendly version of marijuana: hemp. Not only is this legal in Amsterdam, it’s legal in the UK too. It might sound shocking – Drugs on a wellness blog?! Legal in the UK?! – but this is the ‘drug free’ version of the plant, using it as a food without its psychoactive properties.
Still not convinced? Neither was a friend of mine, when I gave her a bar of chocolate with hemp seeds in as a present from my holiday! But you can very readily buy it: there’s hemp protein, hemp milk, even a hemp Doisy + Dam chocolate bar!
So, on to possibly my favourite little discovery when in Amsterdam: Hempstory. Based on the dividing line between regular city streets and the Red Light District, even its location reveals how it flirts with the rougher aspects of the Dutch capital.
Hempstory is a boutique selling hemp-based products in all its forms, from gorgeously soft hemp clothes to pretty posters of the plant. The place is as chic as they come, with gorgeous toiletries, water bottles, a white-and-plant decor to die for (I’m obsessed, just look at my Pinterest…)
So, what’s the big deal with hemp? Well, it’s one of the most versatile, fastest growing plants on earth. It can be used in all sorts of ways, from fabric to food, plastic to protein. It’s a complete plant-based protein and contains omegas 3 and 6, making it a perfect supplement for vegans and vegetarians, and you can use it just like whey protein.
I’ve actually been trying Planet Hemp’s Vanilla Chai Hemp Protein* recently, and it makes for a great morning smoothie (try it with a banana and a cup of plant-based milk) or post-workout drink. Plus anything chai-flavoured and I’m all over it!
On top of that, you can get hemp oil* to fry food with, or buy straight hemp seeds* that you can add to bliss balls, salads, and smoothies.
On the sustainable side of things, hemp is a worthwhile crop, growing densely (thus saving land mass) at a fast rate, providing good yields and actually improving soil health compared to other monocultures. It also doesn’t need pesticides to grow (it’s a weed, get it?) and hemp paper is a better option that wood too.
Either way, Hempstory is totally worth popping into when in Amsterdam. It’s pretty, clever, and showcases the plant and all its uses!