Full Spectrum VS Isolate CBD Oils

 

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It can become very confusing when looking at what oils to buy as there is so many out there and you want to get the right one for you.  You also want to get high quality oil that has been extracted by the best method which I believe to be Co2 Extraction.

What is the difference between Full Spectrum CBD Oil vs Isolate?

This is often one of the first questions asked by those diving into the world of CBD for the first time. Once you understand the difference between these, you’ll be better equipped to make an educated decision on which CBD oil product to buy for your needs.

The two most popular types of CBD oil used today are Full Spectrum and Isolate. You may also come across products labelled as “Whole Plant” or “Pure CBD.” This article will explain the differences and similarities among these.

Full Spectrum CBD Oil

Full Spectrum generally refers to CBD oil products that not only contain CBD, but also contain some terpenes and other cannabinoids such as CBG, CBN and even some THC. Usually these will be in ratios that were naturally occurring and extracted from the plant and specific strain. But they are also occasionally added back into products as an isolated form to raise the potency of the product. For those that get drug tested, Full Spectrum is something to be cautious about. The THC found in full spectrum hemp products is minimal (less than 0.3%), but can still trigger positive drug tests.
With Full Spectrum CBD oil products, you have the advantage of something called the “Entourage Effect.” This is where all the cannabinoids and terpenes are working together in synergy, something that Isolate products will lack.

When seeking out Full Spectrum products, you may come across some called “Broad Spectrum” that claim to have 0% THC. It’s important to verify lab tests on these products to make sure that this is not a false claim and you’re encouraged to still exercise caution with these products if drug testing is a concern. These products have sometimes gone through additional processing to try to isolate and remove as much THC as possible while still maintaining some of the other cannabinoids and terpenes.

CBD Isolate

Isolate is typically the CBD oil product of choice for those who get drug tested or are sensitive to other cannabinoids such as THC. Products labelled as Isolate will generally be highlighted as being 99+% pure CBD. Usually, these products will have nothing but CBD in them because the CBD has literally been isolated from everything else. You can find pre-made isolate oils that typically consist of a carrier oil, such as MCT Oil, infused with the crystalline isolate powder. You can also find the “raw” crystalline powder or slabs (a form of concentrate) on its own.
When looking at isolate, it is important to verify the purity. While many are in the 99.9+% range with no identifiable amounts of THC, there are lower purity ones (such as 99.5% or lower) that may still have trace amounts that show up on the labs. This small amount is typically negligible, and is nowhere near the amount usually found in Full Spectrum products. But it’s still something to be aware of for those seeking the purest they can find.
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Which is Better – Full Spectrum or Isolate?
While there is much debate on which form is better, this 2015 study (http://file.scirp.org/pdf/PP_2015021016351567.pdf) leans in favour of Full Spectrum products. There are many that believe that other cannabinoids, THC especially, are necessary to take full advantage of what cannabis has to offer. Ultimately, however, we are all different and it comes down to the individual user and their needs. If drug testing is a concern, you’re encouraged to seek out CBD isolate products  instead of Full Spectrum.

 

 

Cbd In the news

Cbd In the news

While we discuss cannabis oil, we should remember that the government is blocking life-saving research into MDMA and magic mushrooms

The government makes it intentionally difficult for researchers to work with drugs like MDMA and psilocybin despite the fact that these drugs could be potential life-savers for those with psychological trauma

Cannabis – and specifically the use of cannabis oil – has been in the news a lot lately, spearheaded by the mother of epileptic Billy Caldwell, who had been successfully treated with oil containing THC but then denied it when his mother had the medical substance from Canada confiscated at the UK border. Science can be quite sniffy about single case studies like Billy Caldwell’s, viewing this as “low status” evidence compared to other methods of research. But many critical discoveries have been made by experiments based on one person. The way Charlotte Caldwell presented the effectiveness of cannabis oil in reducing her son Billy’s seizures has produced changes in government thinking that science has failed to do, despite decades of work challenging the legal status of cannabis.

The Caldwell case has ignited not one, but two debates about cannabis: whether it should it be legalised, and what the medicinal benefits of the drug – or indeed all illegal drugs that still might be medically useful – actually are. Both debates should be informed by evidence. Evidence should help cut through all the noise that often accompanies those who have strongly held views on either side of the argument.

The home secretary has said he will rely on evidence in his review of the potential health benefits of cannabis, but has ruled out any such parallel review of the recreational use of cannabis. Whenever someone refuses to use evidence for a review, we have to question why.

Evidence-informed policy is a relatively new idea in politics, and explains why we might be in the mess we are now in relation to cannabis. The 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act, which restricted the use of cannabis in the first place, was legislation constructed in an evidence-free way. Since then, all governments have inherited a regulatory system that has been informed more by politics than facts.

For example, the link between cannabis and mental health is often cited by the home secretary as justification for keeping it criminalised. But research exploring this relationship is messy, as among other problems, people tend to use more than one drug so we can’t absolutely establish causal relationships. It’s also never been clear whether people with conditions like schizophrenia are more likely to use cannabis because it controls their symptoms, or whether cannabis causes schizophrenic symptoms in the first place: as is often said in science, correlation doesn’t always mean causation.

Dr Axe Talks about CBD Oil (proven benefits)

Dr Axe Talks about CBD Oil (proven benefits)

 

                                                                    8 Proven Benefits of CBD
1. Relieves Pain and Inflammation
Among common CBD benefits, natural pain relief tops the list for many. Evidence suggests that cannabinoids may prove useful in pain modulation by inhibiting neuronal transmission in pain pathways. A 2012 study published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine found that CBD significantly suppressed chronic inflammatory and neuropathic pain in rodents without causing analgesic tolerance. Researchers suggest that CBD and other non psychoactive components of marijuana may represent a novel class of therapeutic agents for the treatment of chronic pain.
According to a 2007 meta-analysis conducted in Canada, the combination of CBD and THC buccal spray was found to be effective in treating neuropathic pain in multiple sclerosis, which can be debilitating for 50 to 70 percent of MS patients
2. Has Antipsychotic Effects
Research shows that CBD benefits include producing antipsychotic effects. It appears to have a pharmacological profile similar to that of atypical antipsychotic drugs as seen using behavioural and neurochemical techniques in animal studies. Additionally, studies show that CBD prevents human experimental psychosis and is effective in open case reports and clinical trials in patients with schizophrenia, with a remarkable safety profile.
3. Reduces Anxiety
Studies using animal models of anxiety and involving healthy volunteers clearly suggest an anxiolytic-like effect of CBD. Cannabidiol has shown to reduce anxiety in patients with social anxiety disorder and researchers suggest that it may also be effective for panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, social anxiety disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.
A 2011 study aimed to compare the effects of a simulation public speaking test on healthy control patients and treatment-native patients with social anxiety disorder. A total of 24 never-treated patients with social anxiety disorder were given either CBD or placebo 1.5 hours before the test. Researchers found that pre treatment with CBD significantly reduced anxiety, cognitive impairment and discomfort in their speech performance, and significantly decreased alertness in anticipation of their speech. The placebo group presented higher anxiety, cognitive impairment and discomfort.
4. Helps to Fight Cancer
Several scientific reports demonstrate that CBD benefits include possessing antiproliferative, pro-apoptotic effects that inhibit cancer cell migration, adhesion and invasion. A 2006 study published in the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics found for the first time that CBD potently and selectively inhibited the growth of different breast tumor cell lines and exhibited significantly less potency in non-cancer cells.
In 2011, researchers added light on the cellular mechanism through which CBD induces cell death in breast cancer cells. They showed that CBD induced a concentration-dependent cell death of both oestrogen receptor-positive and oestrogen receptor-negative breast cancer cells. They also found that the effective concentrations of CBD in tumor cells have little effect on non-tumorigenic, mammary cells.
CBD behaves as a non-toxic compound and studies show that doses of 700 milligrams per day for 6 weeks did not show any overt toxicity in humans, suggesting that it can be used for prolonged treatment. Not only does the research show that CBD benefits including being effective in fighting breast cancer cells, data also suggests that it can be used to inhibit the invasion of lung and colon cancer, plus it possesses anti-tumor properties in gliomas and has been used to treat leukaemia.

5. Relieves Nausea
Cannabis has been used for centuries for the suppression of nausea and vomiting. Research has revealed that among more than 80 cannabinoid compounds found in marijuana, both the intoxicant THC and the non-intoxicant CBD helps to get rid of nausea and vomiting in animal studies. A 2012 study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology found that CBD benefits including possessing anti-nausea and antiemetic effects when it was administered to rats. Researchers found that CBD acts in a diphasic manner, meaning that in low doses it suppresses toxin-induced vomiting, but in high doses it increases nausea or has no effect.
6. May Treat Seizures and Other Neurological Disorders
A 2014 survey conducted by researchers at Stanford University was presented to parents belonging to a Facebook group dedicated to sharing information about the use of cannabidiol-enriched cannabis to treat their child’s seizures. Nineteen responses met the inclusion criteria for the study: a diagnosis of epilepsy and current use of CBD-enriched cannabis. The average number of anti-epileptic drugs tried before using CBD cannabis was 12. Sixteen (84 percent) of the 19 parents reported a reduction in their child’s seizure frequency while taking CBD cannabis. Of these, two (11 percent) reported complete seizure freedom, eight (42 percent) reported a greater than 80 percent reduction in seizure frequency, and six (32 percent) reported a 25–60 percent seizure reduction. Other beneficial effects included increased alertness, better mood and improved sleep; while side effects included drowsiness and fatigue.
Later in 2014, researchers reported on preliminary results of a study involving children with treatment-resistant epilepsies in an expanded access “compassionate use program.” Patients received a purified 98 percent oil-based CBD extract called Epidiolex, which is made by GW Pharmaceuticals. After 3 months of treatment, 39 percent of the 23 patients had more than a 50 percent reduction in seizures, with a 32 percent median reduction. These preliminary results support the animal studies and survey reports that CBD may be a promising treatment for treatment-resistant epilepsy and it is generally well-tolerated in doses up to 25 milligrams per kilogram of body weight.
7. Lowers Incidence of Diabetes
A 2006 study found that CBD treatment significantly reduced the incidence of diabetes in non-obese diabetic mice from an incidence of 86 percent in non-treated mice to an incidence of 30 percent in CBD-treated mice. CBD benefits also showed a significant reduction of plasma levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines. A histological examination of the pancreatic islets of the CBD-treated mice revealed significantly reduced insulitis.
In 2013, the American Journal of Medicine published a study that highlighted the impact of marijuana use on glucose, insulin and insulin resistance among U.S. adults. The study included 4,657 adult men and women from the National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey from 2005 to 2010. Of the participants, 579 were current marijuana users and 1,975 were past users. The researchers found that current marijuana use was associated with 16 percent lower fasting insulin levels. They also found significant associations between marijuana use and smaller waist circumferences, a factor connected to the onset of diabetes symptoms.
8. Promotes Cardiovascular Health
A 2013 study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology reports that CBD protects against the vascular damage caused by a high glucose environment, inflammation or the induction of type 2 diabetes in animal models; plus, CBD proved to reduce the vascular hyperpermeability (which causes leaky gut) associated with such environments.

6 Celebrities who endorse CBD OILs

6 Celebrities who endorse CBD OILs

6 Celebrities Who Endorse CBD

There are many celebrities who feel it’s important to legalize both THC and CBD as quickly as possible!

Seth Rogen

celebrities who use cbd

Seth believes so strongly in the benefits of cannabis for Alzheimer’s prevention that he spoke in congress about the state of Alzheimer‘s research and the public perception of people with the disease…His testimony came as part of a larger Senate hearing about the state of Alzheimer‘s research.

Whoopi Goldberg

celebrities who use cbd

Whoopi is a well-known cannabinoid advocate and consumer. She’s used a vape pen for years treat her pain, stress and glaucoma. Last year, she and Maya Elisabeth started Maya & Whoopi – which sells edibles, tinctures, salves, and more.

Morgan Freeman

celebrities who use cbd

Freeman uses both CBD and THC to treat the fibromyalgia he suffers after a serious accident in 2008 and has since been a voice of support for the benefits of the plant.

Montel Williams

celebrities who use cbd

Montel has been famous for years for his acting career, but in 2016 the cannabis community won a huge victory while he was traveling through Frankfurt airport. Police found cannabinoids in his luggage, but after he proved that it was CBD prescribed as a medical use product by a licensed doctor, he was released. Williams suffers from Multiple Sclerosis and has been a proponent of legalization ever since he tried it and found relief. He has been an outspoken advocate since 1999.

Nate Diaz

celebrities who use cbd

After winning a fight in the notoriously brutal UFC ring, Nate Diaz conducted his post-fight interview while smoking CBD from a vape pen, live on TV. He has stated that CBD oil helps him relieve pain, heal injuries and concentrate.

Michael J. Fox

celebrities who use cbd

As a longtime sufferer of Parkinson’s disease, Michael J. Fox has used cannabis to counteract the effects of the chronic disease since he was diagnosed. It certainly extended his acting career for many years.

Woweee there are so many celebrities who know the benefits of this oil through their own personal experience and it just amazes me every day. I learn more and more about this plant and am overwhelmed to hear my own clients and family telling me how much it s helping them

If you wish to order cbd oil you should thoroughly do your research. It is becoming a lot more regulated now with laws changing and licencing coming into play.

Order your oil today

CBD and Chocolate. What a Combo

CBD and Chocolate. What a Combo

Chocolate lovers are gonna be loving these little products from Hempura.

CBD White Chocolates

Who doesn’t love a good piece of chocolate? There’s a reason that chocolate is so irresistible, and when its mixed with one of the purest CBD extracts in the UK, it gets even better. Our fabulous new range of CBD chocolates are delicious and highly beneficial to your health – a real win-win situation!

Each of the delectable chocolates features a full-spectrum of cannabinoids (like all our products), and of course, the incredibly beneficial CBD. These make a wonderful change from CBD oils, and are the perfect option for anyone out there with a sweet-tooth.

Our CBD chocolates come in a pack of 20, with a choice as to which strength you want: 200mg, 500mg, or 1000mg (if you can’t resist these delectable treats, a lower dose may be the best bet!). The strength is calculated overall, so a 500mg strength packet will contain 20 chocolates, each with a 25mg CBD dose and so on.

These little guilty pleasures don’t have to make you feel guilty about the price either, the CBD content is priced the same as our fantastic range of oils.


https://hempura.co.uk/product-category/cbd-chocolates/?affiliates=98f13708210194c475687be6106a3b84

 

CBD Oil Dosage Calculator

CBD Oil Dosage Calculator

So you get your cbd oils and there is no instruction and you don’t have a clue what your doing?? Firstly you can ask the company to send you out their own dosage advice or the person you bought from should hold information to help you.

I personally find that starting of low is the best way to go and work your way up until you feel the benefits.

There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to determining the “right” CBD dosage. The effective dose for each person is different based on body chemistry, severity of concern, weight, concentration of the product, etc. One or two drops may be effective for one person but another person may need several drops of the same product.

Below is a chart that may help determine the amount of cbd in mg that you may need per day.

 

 

Once you work this out then have input your details into the online cbd oil calculator and this may help you determine the suitable dosage for yourself.  Just bare in mind that we all feel things in different ways so take it slow, increase as desired and relax.  Some people may notice benefits in a few short weeks others takes a few months so stick with it.

Our CBD dosage calculator can help you calculate total drops, milligrams of CBD per drop and number of drops necessary to achieve your desired CBD oil dosage.

Source: CBD Oil Dosage Calculator

 

 

 

 

 

 

Difference Between Hemp and Bioactive Oil?

Difference Between Hemp and Bioactive Oil?

What is the difference between Hemp & Bioactive CBD Oil
With so many to choose from it can be hard to make a decision upon which one would suit yourself.  I found these two Oils from Flora fusion, one is the classic UK manufactured Hemp seed oil and the other is the Bioactive CBD Oil from the EU. Although both are ‘CBD Oils’ the two are very different. It is worth understanding the differences between the two before deciding which is best for you. So, here is the difference.
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Hemp Seed Oil infused with CBD

Our UK manufactured CBD oil is made from organic cold pressed hemp seed oil which is fantastically rich in essential proteins and fatty acids. The seed itself is made up of about 32% of an edible oil that contains 80% of the essential acids. These include Omega, 3, Omega 6, Linolenic acid, alpha & Gamma-linolenic acid and stearidonic acid.
Omega 3 is extremely important for the human metabolism and is known to reduce inflammation and the potential of cancers and cardiovascular disease while increasing cognitive ability and brain functions. Similar to Omega 3, Omega 6 also plays an essential role in brain function, normal growth and development. It also helps to regulate, skin and hair growth, maintain healthy bones, regulate metabolism and maintain the reproductive system.

Linolenic acid is a fatty acid that (like Omega 3 & 6) cannot be produced by the human body and must be acquired through diet. The consumption of Linolenic acid differs in individuals however, it is essential in the make-up of cell membranes and there has been some evidence to suggest that it helps to prevent cardiovascular diseases. Finally, Stearidonic acid (also known as Moronic Acid) is known to have anti-viral properties and is part of the process of producing anti-HIV medicines.
All of these properties make Hemp oil a brilliant supplement for concentration, cognitive ability and things like hair growth. Like most oils, hemp oil is not soluble in water but is easily consumed and can be applied topically. It is a very durable and versatile CBD oil product.
Bioactive CBD Oil
The Bioactive CBD oil is specifically designed for consumption rather than being applied topically or added to other ingredients. Unlike the CBD infused hemp oil, it is water soluble so can be easily mixed with tea, vegetable or fruit juices to make the consumption of CBD as easy as possible. Everything in the Bioactive oil is exclusively derived from plants and is a multi-spectrum product that contains a whole host of different cannabinoids and compounds that enhance each other to promote health and wellbeing. This is sometimes referred to as the Entourage Effect.

Curcumin, Myrcene, Caryophyllene, Pinene, Limonene, Linalool, CBD, CBC, CBN and CBG are all included within this product which are organic compounds found in a multitude of different products, foods and vegetation. Caryophyllene, in particular, is associated with stimulating the CB2 receptor (in the Endocannabinoid System) and has been shown to have anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, neuroprotective, anxiolytic, antidepressant and antialcoholism activity in mice. Studies are trying to prove whether these effects are shared in humans. CBD, CBC, CBN and CBG are all cannabinoids which bind with the endocannabinoid system. Further information on these cannabinoids can be found by clicking the link.
This product is 100% natural and all the ingredients have been selected so that they can work together and interact with the endocannabinoid system.
10ml of CBD MCT Oil (500mg of CBD)  20 ML Bottle of BioActive 800mg CBD Oil

MCT Oil – Another Great Oil to add to your diet.

MCT Oil – Another Great Oil to add to your diet.

MCT OIL

MCT stands for Medium-Chain triglycerides which are a type of saturated fatty acid that has been associated with a range of health benefits; most notably cognitive function and better weight management. MCT’s, which can also be called MCFAs (Medium Chain Fatty Acids) are thought to be missing from the diets of those who eat a ‘standard western’ diet. This could be because we don’t have regular access have all been told to be afraid of ‘saturated fats’! But it is like anything- in moderation, the right saturated fats can actually be beneficial to our body functions.

 

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Where do Medium Chain Triglycerides come from?

MCT’s or MCFA’s can be found in their highest concentrations in Coconut Oil which is made up to 62-65% of MCT fatty acids but they can also be found in smaller quantities in foods such as butter (from grass-fed cows), Cheeses, Palm Oil, Whole Milk and full-fat yoghurts. It is a fact that medium chain triglycerides fatty acids are easier to digest than long-chain triglycerides (LCTs) and might have even had benefits related to heart health, prevention of obesity and brain function.

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MCT Oil Benefits

Here is a list of MCT Oil Benefits:

  • Maintain a healthy weight – Since both make you feel full
  • Reduce Stored Body Fat as they Raise your Metabolic Function
  • Have More Energy
  • Think More Clearly
  • Experience Better Digestion
  • Balance Hormone Levels
  • Improve Your Mood
  • Fight Bacterial Infections & Viruses
  • Absorb Fat-Soluble Nutrients from Various Foods
  • MCTs are also seen as promoting fat oxidation and reduced food intake. Interest in MCTs has been expressed by endurance athletes and the bodybuilding community.

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Why is MCT Oil Good for you?

All types of fatty acids are made up of strings of carbon and hydrogen; the Medium chains are between 6-12 carbon atoms long. Medium-chain fats are very easily digested and they are sent directly to your liver. They are easily digested because the body uses less energy to break down the carbon bonds, so they require very few special enzymes to absorb into the liver. Medium chain triglycerides create a thermogenic effect and the positively alter your metabolism which has sparked many scientific claims that these fats are burned as fuel rather than being stored in the body as fat, making them perfect for those on a ketonic diet(one of the more well known MCT Oil benefits). Alongside this, they are known to have the capability to help the body battle bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites & contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The medium chain triglyceride oil benefits are much of the reason for Coconut oil is one of the most beneficial oils on the planet.

mct oil - mct oil benefits

Why are MCT oils good as a CBD carrier oil?

When thinking of how CBD interacts with carrier oils, it is essential that we attach it to a healthy oil that enhances the effects and absorption of the cannabinoid into your Liver. The CBD compound attaches very easily to the medium-chain fatty acids and is absorbed in the same way that the fats are. MCT’s are a strong binding for Cannabinoids and can be added to many foods. MCT is antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral & has been shown to reduce bad bacteria while leaving good bacterias alone in human biological systems. As MCT is a fat it is a good fat for the body to process as it’s breakdown requires significantly less excess energy than other fatty acids. MCTs passively diffuse from the GI tract into the lymphatic system & act like an inert source of energy that the human body finds easy to metabolise and absorb.

Compared to hemp oil, when the CBD is added to the MCT oils your body can absorb it much quicker and easier so it means that the amount of CBD your liver is absorbing is increased. Simply put, the MCT oil is a much more efficient delivery system than other carrier oils, such as hemp oil. CBD combined with the MCT oil benefits can only mean good things.

 

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Superfood – CBD Hemp – Preventative

Superfood – CBD Hemp – Preventative

People start finding out about CBD oil mainly due to the fact that they are in pain either mentally or physically.  Normally people have tried almost everything and are at the end of their tether when they come across CBD oils.  But what a lot of people don’t know is that CBD mixed with pure hemp oil is actually an amazing superfood.  I have been a vegetarian since I was 10 and have gone through stages of  my life when I have been a very unhealthy anaemic junk food vegetarian.  When health problems arose I looked into ways to make myself feel better.  I have added a variety of health food, superfood, supplements into my diet over the years and came across CBD oils.  The more I research into the oils the more I find out about the most amazing benefits.

CBD Hemp Oil is considered to be a Super Food – it offers a complete full spectrum of natural proteins, with all 20 amino acids used by the human body, including all eight essential amino acids. It contains the perfect ratio of omega fatty acids 3, 6 & 9. CBD Hemp has high levels of enzymes, fiber, vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, D, and E and is rich in essential minerals such as calcium, zinc, iron, magnesium, manganese, and phosphorus. CBD is packed full of natural carotenes, flavonoids, ketones, nitrogenous compounds and terpenes.
There are more than 500 trace compounds in hemp working synergistically together with CBD to render its powerful nutrition. Scientists call this “the entourage effect.” So there is no single magic constituent standing alone that gives CBD hemp its myriad of health values. Each compound in CBD full spectrum CBD oil plays off of another and this is what makes this cannabis plant so special.

 

 

CTFO CBD hemp oil does not contain the intoxicating cannabinoid called THC. – This is a misconception. Since hemp only has a trace amount of THC, it’s not enough to make it illegal or get someone high. HempWorx CBD hemp oil is extracted and tested to have less than <.3% THC content, which is so negligible it cannot produce a high. And because of this negligible THC count, this renders CBD hemp oil legal in all 50 states. Taking CBD hemp oil will not give a positive reading for marijuana on a drug test. So this is another reason why CBD hemp oil is so popular.

The following is from Ethan Russo, MD Medical Director, PHYTECS

An Introduction to the ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM

 The endocannabinoid system is a recently discovered regulatory physiological system that holds great promise for improvements in human quality of life. To date, it has not received the attention that it deserves in physician and patient education, nor in research expenditures. Should these shortcomings be rectified, it stands to reason that the public health would benefit enormously.

 

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is an essential regulator of bodily function in its many facets. There is hardly any physiological process that is not affected by it to some degree. It is surprising then to realize that the ECS was totally unknown prior to one generation ago. The name derives from the fact that the bodies of all higher animals harbor natural chemicals within that resemble in many respects the activity of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the phyto- (plant) cannabinoid that is the main psychoactive component of Cannabis sativa, sometimes derisively labeled as marijuana. Despite the prominence and importance of the ECS as an essential regulatory mechanism in the body’s biochemistry and physiology, the basic machinery of everyday life, knowledge of it remains quite limited among American physicians due to a dearth of appropriate education in medical schools. This is a knowledge deficit that must be filled in order to benefit the public health as a whole.
The basic functions of the ECS have were summarized in 1998 by Professor Di Marzo as, “relax, eat, sleep, forget and protect.” There are two primary endocannabinoids, arachidonylethanolamine (AEA), nicknamed anandamide from the Sanskrit word for “bliss,” and 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG). CB1 is best known as the neuromodulatory receptor in the brain where THC exerts its effects on short-term memory, pain, emotion, hunger, etc. Receptors may be thought of as locks, to which a corresponding chemical (natural or synthetic) will fit like a key, if it has the proper structure to conform to it. CB1 is actually the most abundant G-protein coupled receptor in the brain, and this certainly attests to its importance in cerebral function in health and disease. Both endocannabinoids bind to cannabinoid receptors in a similar manner to THC in the brain, but are actually produced on demand in post-synaptic neurons (nerve cells) and travel in a retrograde fashion (backwards) to inhibit the release of various neurotransmitters (chemical messengers). As one example, neuropathic (nerve-based) pain is an all too common condition associated with multiple sclerosis, diabetes and HIV/AIDS, and which is notoriously difficult to treat with conventional pharmaceuticals. Glutamate is one of the primary stimulatory neurotransmitters, but when present at excessive concentrations, it perpetuates neuropathic pain and may even provoke cell death after head injury or stroke. The endocannabinoids are naturally secreted after such insults and act to inhibit glutamate release, thereby alleviating neuropathic pain and reducing cell death. THC, and cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive component of sThe endocannabinoid system (ECS) is an essential regulator of bodily function in its many facets. There is hardly any physiological process that is not affected by it to some degree. It is surprising then to realize that the ECS was totally unknown prior to one generation ago. The name derives from the fact that the bodies of all higher animals harbor natural chemicals within that resemble in many respects the activity of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the phyto- (plant) cannabinoid that is the main psychoactive component of Cannabis sativa, sometimes derisively labeled as marijuana. Despite the prominence and importance of the ECS as an essential regulatory mechanism in the body’s biochemistry and physiology, the basic machinery of everyday life, knowledge of it remains quite limited among American physicians due to a dearth of appropriate education in medical schools. This is a knowledge deficit that must be filled in order to benefit the public health as a whole.
The basic functions of the ECS have were summarized in 1998 by Professor Di Marzo as, “relax, eat, sleep, forget and protect.” There are two primary endocannabinoids, arachidonylethanolamine (AEA), nicknamed anandamide from the Sanskrit word for “bliss,” and 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG). CB1 is best known as the neuromodulatory receptor in the brain where THC exerts its effects on short-term memory, pain, emotion, hunger, etc. Receptors may be thought of as locks, to which a corresponding chemical (natural or synthetic) will fit like a key, if it has the proper structure to conform to it. CB1 is actually the most abundant G-protein coupled receptor in the brain, and this certainly attests to its importance in cerebral function in health and disease. Both endocannabinoids bind to cannabinoid receptors in a similar manner to THC in the brain, but are actually produced on demand in post-synaptic neurons (nerve cells) and travel in a retrograde fashion (backwards) to inhibit the release of various neurotransmitters (chemical messengers). As one example, neuropathic (nerve-based) pain is an all too common condition associated with multiple sclerosis, diabetes and HIV/AIDS, and which is notoriously difficult to treat with conventional pharmaceuticals. Glutamate is one of the primary stimulatory neurotransmitters, but when present at excessive concentrations, it perpetuates neuropathic pain and may even provoke cell death after head injury or stroke. The endocannabinoids are naturally secreted after such insults and act to inhibit glutamate release, thereby alleviating neuropathic pain and reducing cell death. THC, and cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive component of some cannabis strains, have similar neuroprotective benefits.
AEA and 2-AG are merely the star players in a larger group of endocannabinoids. Some of the others are seemingly inactive molecules when tested on their own. When combined with AEA and 2-AG, however, many experiments have demonstrated that these entourage compounds produce prominent enhancement of the overall effect on pain, inflammation or other function. This synergy (boosting) of effect due to an ensemble of ingredients has been termed the
“entourage effect,” and is paralleled by similar attributes in the cannabis plant, whose minor components modulate (modify or influence) the effects of THC.
Beyond the brain, CB1 receptors are abundant in the spinal cord and peripheral nervous system, where they have a key role in regulation of pain, itch and muscle tone. The ECS also influences the gastrointestinal tract, where CB1 modulates two important aspects of digestion: propulsion and secretion. The endocannabinoid system also regulates endocrine function and fertility, as well as factors in cellular function, whether developmentally or in the uncontrolled growth and spread of cancer (see below).
CB1, however, is not the only cannabinoid receptor. Less studied, but extremely important is CB2, a non-psychoactive receptor that is mostly found in the periphery (outside the brain) and which is a key immunomodulatory mediator with additional activity on pain and inflammation. It, too, is expressed in the brain under conditions of insult, whether it be traumatic injury or degenerative diseases. Many disorders characterized by fibrosis (development of scar tissue), such as liver cirrhosis, and certain heart and kidney disorders may be targets for drugs that affect CB2.
A third receptor, TRPV1 (transient receptor potential vanilloid-one) is also considered part of the ECS, and is best known as the site of action of capsaicin, the active ingredient of chile peppers, but is also a target of anandamide and cannabidiol, but not THC. TRPV1 mediates pain signals through a mechanism distinct from that of the endogenous cannabinoids and opioids, but the receptor is subject to desensitization: this means that if continuously stimulated, the pathway will eventually slow down or even stop. This raises therapeutic possibilities for agents to effectively treat certain kinds of neuropathic pain.
The third component of the ECS along with the endocannabinoids and their receptors are the biosynthetic and degradative enzymes that respectively produce or breakdown AEA and 2AG. These have also become targets for new drug development, and interestingly cannabidiol, among its many activities is capable of inhibiting AEA breakdown by the enzyme fatty acid amidohydrolase (FAAH), thus strengthening and prolonging its effects, much like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) increase serotonin activity to treat depression.
Taken together, the three components of the ECS, the endocannabinoids, their regulatory enzymes and receptors, can be thought of as a key mediator of physiological homeostasis, thus ensuring that various bodily systems function within tight parameters with neither a deficiency nor excess of activity. Just as the immune system deals with invasive proteins from bacteria and viruses, Professor Raphael Mechoulam has hypothesized that the ECS serves an analogous role in the body to neutralize and rectify non-protein insults, such as trauma or oxygen lack.
What if the ECS itself is out of balance? How might this be manifested? Recent discoveries have provided some insights. Ideally, if the ECS is functioning normally, a person might enjoy a normal mental state, without pain, have good digestive function, etc. In contrast, morbid obesity is accompanied by a metabolic syndrome with increased inflammation, insulin resistance and even diabetes. The ECS has been observed to be hyperactive in such states. Similarly, an excess of CB1 activity can be associated with hepatic (liver) fibrosis. Such
problems led to the development of drugs such as rimonabant (aka Acomplia® or SR141716) to combat this excess. This drug is an inverse agonist at CB1. That means that it antagonizes the receptor so avidly that it drives down the baseline activity of the ECS, thus lowering what is termed “endocannabinoid tone.” While this might be effective to reduce hunger and weight gain, and improve laboratory findings of the metabolic syndrome, the widespread effects of this drug also spilled over to other systems to produce undesirable adverse events (side effects) such as depression and suicidality that led to its removal from the market. Other liabilities of CB1inverse agonists would include nausea, an increased likelihood of seizures and even development of malignant tumors. In contrast, CBD is a milder neutral antagonist at CB1 that may be capable of addressing similar medical needs without the attendant risks.
What if endocannabinoid levels are too low? It has been theorized and subsequently borne out in subsequent research that numerous mysterious disorders fit the description of “clinical endocannabinoid deficiency” (CED). Noteworthy among these are migraine, fibromyalgia and idiopathic bowel syndrome (IBS or “spastic colon”). These disorders affect millions of otherwise healthy people who are plagued by chronic pain and other symptoms, leading to extensive medical tests and attempts at treatment, often to limited benefit. The three conditions tend to affect the same individuals at various times of their lives, and are therefore termed “co-morbid.” All three are characterized by “central sensitization,” the concept that normal sensations in the brain are magnified to the point of becoming painful when they would not be to a person free from the affliction. The three disorders also benefit from treatment with cannabinoids according to patient testimonials. Available data confirm that the target organs (brain, gut, musculoskeletal system) seem to express lower than normal levels of anandamide, thus providing credence for the concept that they would benefit from treatments that would upregulate the ECS back to normal levels. Similar putative (theoretical) deficiencies have been highlighted in the ECS for numerous other conditions including intractable depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), neuropathic pain conditions such as complex regional pain syndrome, causalgia, post-herpetic neuralgia, interstitial cystitis, and even certain forms of infertility and early miscarriage.
Finally, many forms of cancer are accompanied by increases of CB1 and/or CB2 expression, felt to be part of the body’s effort to combat the disorder. Interestingly, the phytocannabinoids demonstrate the potential to treat cancer in high doses without harming the normal cells of the body. Some of the mechanisms are mediated through CB1 and/or CB2, but others seem to work through independent, non-receptor means. Cancer arises due to a loss of ability for malignant cells to undergo apoptosis, a normal process of programmed cell death whereby the body remolds and renews itself. Instead, cancer cells become immortalized, divide and grow in an uncontrolled fashion, invade surrounding tissues, stimulate their own blood supply, and even metastasize (spread remotely to distant sites). The endo- and phytocannabinoids, particularly CBD, have the ability to reverse or prevent many of these effects, as demonstrated in experiments in many cancer cell types and even in a growing number of case reports in humans. Beyond the issue of eliminating the malignancy itself, properly constituted cannabinoid treatment may hold the promise of additional “side benefits” by
simultaneously addressing attendant symptoms of cancer: pain, nausea, sleep disturbance, depression and anxiety.
Throughout human history, most medicines have been derived from plants. This pattern began to change in the 19th century and accelerated in the 20th with the advent of synthetic chemistry. Modern models of drug discovery attempt to identify the key receptor or abnormal gene at the root of a disease process, and then computer-design a potent chemical that will bind to the target region with a high affinity. Sometimes this approach is fruitful, but often attendant toxicities are not identified until far into the development program, and even more often, despite this precise targeting, the drug may not exert sufficient benefits on a complex and chronic disease process to actually improve the patient’s condition. Certain disorders, such as cancer, diabetes and diseases of aging such as Alzheimer disease and osteoporosis require drug combination regimens that affect multiple targets in order to attempt to alleviate their myriad complex problems. What seems necessary are better and safer treatments that address the larger problems of disease pathophysiology and degeneration. Botanicals (plant-based medications) frequently fit this profile quite well in contrast to the “silver bullet” single chemical model that is most prevalent in contemporary Western medicine.
It is historically true that pharmacognosy, the study of medicinal plants, has frequently pointed us in the proper direction to better understand our own body chemistry. Examples are numerous: aspirin, a semi-synthetic derivative of salicylic acid from willow bark was available for 100 years before the basis of its ability to treat pain and inflammation led to the discovery of prostaglandins. Similarly, opium was used for thousands of years before research succeeded in identifying endogenous (within) opioids, the endorphins and enkephalins. Cannabis research similarly resulted in a trail that eventually led to the discovery of the endocannabinoid system, perhaps decades earlier than it might have otherwise been discovered. The future of therapeutics appears much brighter as a result, since an understanding of the ECS portends to offer many more effective and safer remedies for disorders that have previously proven intractable to conventional treatment.
In summary, the endocannabinoid system is a recently discovered regulatory physiological system that holds great promise for improvements in human quality of life. To date, it has not received the attention that it deserves in physician and patient education, nor in research expenditures. Should these shortcomings be rectified, it stands to reason that the public health would benefit enormously.

thkjkjPetrocellis, V. ome cannabis strains, have similar neuroprotective benefits.
AEA and 2-AG are merely the star players in a larger group of endocannabinoids. Some of the others are seemingly inactive molecules when tested on their own. When combined with AEA and 2-AG, however, many experiments have demonstrated that these entourage compounds produce prominent enhancement of the overall effect on pain, inflammation or other function. This synergy (boosting) of effect due to an ensemble of ingredients has been termed the
“entourage effect,” and is paralleled by similar attributes in the cannabis plant, whose minor components modulate (modify or influence) the effects of THC.
Beyond the brain, CB1 receptors are abundant in the spinal cord and peripheral nervous system, where they have a key role in regulation of pain, itch and muscle tone. The ECS also influences the gastrointestinal tract, where CB1 modulates two important aspects of digestion: propulsion and secretion. The endocannabinoid system also regulates endocrine function and fertility, as well as factors in cellular function, whether developmentally or in the uncontrolled growth and spread of cancer (see below).
CB1, however, is not the only cannabinoid receptor. Less studied, but extremely important is CB2, a non-psychoactive receptor that is mostly found in the periphery (outside the brain) and which is a key immunomodulatory mediator with additional activity on pain and inflammation. It, too, is expressed in the brain under conditions of insult, whether it be traumatic injury or degenerative diseases. Many disorders characterized by fibrosis (development of scar tissue), such as liver cirrhosis, and certain heart and kidney disorders may be targets for drugs that affect CB2.
A third receptor, TRPV1 (transient receptor potential vanilloid-one) is also considered part of the ECS, and is best known as the site of action of capsaicin, the active ingredient of chile peppers, but is also a target of anandamide and cannabidiol, but not THC. TRPV1 mediates pain signals through a mechanism distinct from that of the endogenous cannabinoids and opioids, but the receptor is subject to desensitization: this means that if continuously stimulated, the pathway will eventually slow down or even stop. This raises therapeutic possibilities for agents to effectively treat certain kinds of neuropathic pain.
The third component of the ECS along with the endocannabinoids and their receptors are the biosynthetic and degradative enzymes that respectively produce or breakdown AEA and 2AG. These have also become targets for new drug development, and interestingly cannabidiol, among its many activities is capable of inhibiting AEA breakdown by the enzyme fatty acid amidohydrolase (FAAH), thus strengthening and prolonging its effects, much like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) increase serotonin activity to treat depression.
Taken together, the three components of the ECS, the endocannabinoids, their regulatory enzymes and receptors, can be thought of as a key mediator of physiological homeostasis, thus ensuring that various bodily systems function within tight parameters with neither a deficiency nor excess of activity. Just as the immune system deals with invasive proteins from bacteria and viruses, Professor Raphael Mechoulam has hypothesized that the ECS serves an analogous role in the body to neutralize and rectify non-protein insults, such as trauma or oxygen lack.

What if the ECS itself is out of balance? How might this be manifested? Recent discoveries have provided some insights. Ideally, if the ECS is functioning normally, a person might enjoy a normal mental state, without pain, have good digestive function, etc. In contrast, morbid obesity is accompanied by a metabolic syndrome with increased inflammation, insulin resistance and even diabetes. The ECS has been observed to be hyperactive in such states. Similarly, an excess of CB1 activity can be associated with hepatic (liver) fibrosis. Such
problems led to the development of drugs such as rimonabant (aka Acomplia® or SR141716) to combat this excess. This drug is an inverse agonist at CB1. That means that it antagonizes the receptor so avidly that it drives down the baseline activity of the ECS, thus lowering what is termed “endocannabinoid tone.” While this might be effective to reduce hunger and weight gain, and improve laboratory findings of the metabolic syndrome, the widespread effects of this drug also spilled over to other systems to produce undesirable adverse events (side effects) such as depression and suicidality that led to its removal from the market. Other liabilities of CB1inverse agonists would include nausea, an increased likelihood of seizures and even development of malignant tumors. In contrast, CBD is a milder neutral antagonist at CB1 that may be capable of addressing similar medical needs without the attendant risks.
What if endocannabinoid levels are too low? It has been theorized and subsequently borne out in subsequent research that numerous mysterious disorders fit the description of “clinical endocannabinoid deficiency” (CED). Noteworthy among these are migraine, fibromyalgia and idiopathic bowel syndrome (IBS or “spastic colon”). These disorders affect millions of otherwise healthy people who are plagued by chronic pain and other symptoms, leading to extensive medical tests and attempts at treatment, often to limited benefit. The three conditions tend to affect the same individuals at various times of their lives, and are therefore termed “co-morbid.” All three are characterized by “central sensitization,” the concept that normal sensations in the brain are magnified to the point of becoming painful when they would not be to a person free from the affliction. The three disorders also benefit from treatment with cannabinoids according to patient testimonials.

Available data confirm that the target organs (brain, gut, musculoskeletal system) seem to express lower than normal levels of anandamide, thus providing credence for the concept that they would benefit from treatments that would upregulate the ECS back to normal levels. Similar putative (theoretical) deficiencies have been highlighted in the ECS for numerous other conditions including intractable depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), neuropathic pain conditions such as complex regional pain syndrome, causalgia, post-herpetic neuralgia, interstitial cystitis, and even certain forms of infertility and early miscarriage.

 

Finally, many forms of cancer are accompanied by increases of CB1 and/or CB2 expression, felt to be part of the body’s effort to combat the disorder. Interestingly, the phytocannabinoids demonstrate the potential to treat cancer in high doses without harming the normal cells of the body. Some of the mechanisms are mediated through CB1 and/or CB2, but others seem to work through independent, non-receptor means. Cancer arises due to a loss of ability for malignant cells to undergo apoptosis, a normal process of programmed cell death whereby the body remolds and renews itself. Instead, cancer cells become immortalized, divide and grow in an uncontrolled fashion, invade surrounding tissues, stimulate their own blood supply, and even metastasize (spread remotely to distant sites). The endo- and phytocannabinoids, particularly CBD, have the ability to reverse or prevent many of these effects, as demonstrated in experiments in many cancer cell types and even in a growing number of case reports in humans. Beyond the issue of eliminating the malignancy itself, properly constituted cannabinoid treatment may hold the promise of additional “side benefits” by
simultaneously addressing attendant symptoms of cancer: pain, nausea, sleep disturbance, depression and anxiety.
Throughout human history, most medicines have been derived from plants. This pattern began to change in the 19th century and accelerated in the 20th with the advent of synthetic chemistry. Modern models of drug discovery attempt to identify the key receptor or abnormal gene at the root of a disease process, and then computer-design a potent chemical that will bind to the target region with a high affinity. Sometimes this approach is fruitful, but often attendant toxicities are not identified until far into the development program, and even more often, despite this precise targeting, the drug may not exert sufficient benefits on a complex and chronic disease process to actually improve the patient’s condition.

Certain disorders, such as cancer, diabetes and diseases of aging such as Alzheimer disease and osteoporosis require drug combination regimens that affect multiple targets in order to attempt to alleviate their myriad complex problems. What seems necessary are better and safer treatments that address the larger problems of disease pathophysiology and degeneration. Botanicals (plant-based medications) frequently fit this profile quite well in contrast to the “silver bullet” single chemical model that is most prevalent in contemporary Western medicine.

It is historically true that pharmacognosy, the study of medicinal plants, has frequently pointed us in the proper direction to better understand our own body chemistry. Examples are numerous: aspirin, a semi-synthetic derivative of salicylic acid from willow bark was available for 100 years before the basis of its ability to treat pain and inflammation led to the discovery of prostaglandins. Similarly, opium was used for thousands of years before research succeeded in identifying endogenous (within) opioids, the endorphins and enkephalins. Cannabis research similarly resulted in a trail that eventually led to the discovery of the endocannabinoid system, perhaps decades earlier than it might have otherwise been discovered. The future of therapeutics appears much brighter as a result, since an understanding of the ECS portends to offer many more effective and safer remedies for disorders that have previously proven intractable to conventional treatment.
In summary, the endocannabinoid system is a recently discovered regulatory physiological system that holds great promise for improvements in human quality of life. To date, it has not received the attention that it deserves in physician and patient education, nor in research expenditures. Should these shortcomings be rectified, it stands to reason that the public health would benefit enormously.

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