The CBD Phenomenon

Somewhere in between protein-heavy hemp foods and the psychoactive marijuana plant lies CBD hemp oil, Mother Nature’s little miracle. But before we delve into why we’ve become CBD fans, let's clear up one common misconception – CBD hemp oil cannot get us high (not even a little bit!). So with that out of the way, let’s move on to the good stuff. To learn more about the history of hemp, its healing powers and how best to take it, read on. 

The CBD Phenomenon

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The History of Hemp 

Hemp, or industrial hemp, typically grown in the Northern hemisphere, is a species of the Cannabis sativa plant species that is grown specifically for industrial use of its derived products, such as textiles, clothing, biodegradable plastics, paint, insulation, biofuel, food, and animal feed. Cannabis as a drug and industrial hemp are both derived from Cannabis sativa and contain THC, but there are many other distinct strains that have unique phytochemical compositions and uses. Hemp has lower concentrations of THC and higher concentrations of CBD, which decreases or eliminates its psychoactive effects. The legality of industrial hemp varies widely between countries. Some governments regulate the concentration of THC and permit only hemp that is bred with an especially low THC content.1

What is CBD oil? 

CBD oil, also known as cannabinol, is a dietary supplement that’s legal in all 50 states. Back in 2012, the powerful healing properties of CBD caught our eye when a young girl, Charlotte, went from having hundreds of seizures per week to almost none with a particular dose of hemp oil that was created for her condition. Your can read more about her story here.

Since then, CBD has slowly been gaining momentum and is now hitting its peak in the holistic medicinal world. We've been seeing "CBD" at pet stores, grocery stores and even on the menu in drinks at trendy restaurants. But most importantly, CBD is transcending the field of health, benefiting both those dealing with a wide range of illnesses as well as those simply looking to improve feelings of wellbeing.  

On a molecular level, CBD from hemp is the same as CBD from marijuana, but hemp CBD only contains trace amounts (<0.3%) of TCH, which is 33 times less potent than the least potent marijuana strains. When we ingest hemp oil, we feel no psychoactive effects, and it typically does not show up in a drug test. Unlike marijuana, hemp is naturally higher in CBD, which makes it a safer, less controversial alternative that still offers all of the health benefits.2 

Our endocannabinoid system 

We all possess an endocannabinoid system - a complex part of our immune system that includes millions of cannabinoid receptors sites found throughout our brain, central nervous system (CB1 receptors) and immune system (CB2 receptors), and participates in neural communication. When endocannabinoids bind to these receptors, it helps us regulate and promote balance (homeostasis) in our body. Humans and cannabis plants both make cannabinoids naturally, so we’re able to assimilate CBD effectively and easily in order to reduce various types of inflammation and pain.3

How do you take CBD? 

Most commonly, CBD hemp oil is found in concentrated tinctures, sometimes combined with citrus essential oils to mask the weed-like taste. For optimal results, it’s important to follow the suggested servings, take it consistently, and choose the right amount/strength for our bodies. Our biochemistry is unique, so it's best to start with a low dose and slowly increase intake until we reach our desired goals. It's also important to make sure that the oil comes from a reputable and trusted source. Hemp and marijuana plants are bioaccumulators, which means they absorb and collect contaminants. Therefore, an important first step is to research the farm where the plant originates and ensure that the crop is free of chemical fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides, as well as extracted using a supercritical CO2 process deemed safe by the FDA.4

What’s CBD oil used for? 

CBD can be used to support many conditions, such as cancer treatment, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, seizures, PTSD, insomnia, hormone balancing, anxiety, glaucoma, HIV/AIDS and Parkinson's disease. CBD with THC can help relieve pain and nausea, reduce inflammation and act as an antioxidant. CBD with low THC is known to help treat seizures, reduce anxiety and paranoia and can even counteract the "high" caused by THC.5

“The introduction of smokeless cannabis in dosage form will immediately ease human pain and suffering and help to move medical marijuana from the underground economy to the mainstream of the nation’s health-care system.”  – July 7, 2014, “New York Does Medical Marijuana Right,” Wall Street Journal