CBD Testimonials

The mind

There is so many CBD oils out there, I have listed the few that my family and clients take in my cbd blog and store and have wonderful results from the ones in which I take.  There is different strengths of oils depending on what you may need it for.   Below are just a tiny few examples of real life people with real life results from taking cbd products.

I was worried CBD oil would make me feel “high” so I put off trying it for years. Now I wish I had used it sooner. It has been a great addition to my regiment of supplements I take for good mental health. Life feels lighter and brighter. I love, love, love it!!!

CBDPure has improved my son’s life in ways I couldn’t have previously fathomed. His overall well-being is truly an answer to our prayers.

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Why is it so Confusing Buying CBD?

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Shopping for CBD Oil can be quite a confusing experience. Brands use overly vague language on their sites, like “CBD helps with homeostasis” or “daily wellness”. You’ll find it extremely hard to find what benefits hemp extracts actually offer. They won’t tell you how much CBD to take (or what’s even recommended). Most sites don’t even use the term CBD on their pages because they could get in trouble. Rather, you’ll find substitute terms, such as Hemp ExtractHemp Oil, or even Phytocannabinoid Oil being used.

WHY BRANDS CAN’T PROMOTE

What is interesting is that even though the government holds  a patent ( the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) refuses to approve CBD as a drug. The FDA’s inflexibility and the overall social stigma around cannabis continues to inhibit the research around CBD oil. That’s why when you visit any brand that sells CBD products, you’ll notice a disclaimer stating:

“These statements are not health claims, the FDA has not evaluated these claims. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.”

 

One of the more confusing aspects of shopping for CBD oil is when you have to choose from the different types of CBD products and their dosage. There’s a range of different types of hemp extract products available on the market: tinctures, capsules, concentrates, sprays, and even topicals.

On top of that, CBD companies offer their hemp oils in varying doses. For example, you’ll find bottles labeled as 100mg, 300mg, all the way to 1000+mg. It’s easy to assume the more milligrams, the stronger the CBD oil. Yet, how do you know what is the appropriate amount for your condition?

Sadly, CBD brands cannot make recommendations on what concentration customers should take. This is caused by liability issues since CBD has not been approved by the FDA as a drug. That’s why you’ll find common advice such as “We recommend you do your own research before deciding which concentration to buy”.

SO WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?

If you believe in the benefits of hemp extract, these barriers shouldn’t stop your from trying out CBD products. Although it might be confusing at first, we encourage you to do your own research to learn more about hemp extracts.

Only time will tell if the US government will loosen its restriction around cannabis. Only then will more research and definitive science behind phytocannabinoids come about. Unfortunately, we can’t be sure that day will come anytime soon since big pharmaceutical companies continue to lobby hard against the legalization of cannabis.

In the meantime, our best advice is for you to do your own research before deciding which brand, which type of product, and which concentration to buy

Where can I get CBD Oil?

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Where can I get CBD oil?

CBD is becoming readily available in health stores. Earlier this year, CBD oil launched at Holland & Barrett, starting at £19.99

However, Professor McGuire says it’s easy to get confused about what exactly it is that you’re buying. “The products sold in health stores often contain very small amounts of CBD, and may also be mixed with other compounds derived from cannabis.

“There is little evidence that these products have beneficial effects. In contrast, the CBD that has been found to be effective in clinical trials is pure CBD, and has a much higher dose.”

What percentage of CBD should I look for?

This will depend on what you’re looking to get from the oil.

The CBD oils sold in Holland & Barrett and other health stores contain up to 5% CBD. This can be beneficial when used as a health supplement.

Other oils available online contain up to 20% CBD – the most famous being ‘Charlotte’s Web’. Many claims have been made that products like these can alleviate mild to moderate mental health problems, such as anxiety and depression.

Here are 4 standards to look for when purchasing CBD medical hemp oil.

1. Extraction Methods

To obtain CBD-rich oil, you need to extract it from the cannabis plant. There are a handful of methods used, but typically this isn’t something customers know to ask about.

Not surprisingly, many companies use cheap methods that involve nasty toxic solvents such as propane, hexane, pentane, and butane, which are flammable hydrocarbon gases found in petroleum. Do you really want to consume this, especially if you are ill?

“Cannabis oil made with neurotoxic solvents like butane and hexane may leave unsafe residues that compromise immune function and impede healing,” explainsConstance Finley, founder and CEO of Constance Therapeutics.

Beware of companies who try to convince you that using a hydrocarbon method stays the most true to the plant. Butane is illegal for a reason.

“Butane extraction is cheap and efficient but is toxic to make and use,” adds cannabis and medicinal plant expert Medicine Hunter Chris Kilham. “Inhalation of butane residue can cause cardiac and respiratory problems.”

Some industry insiders argue that organic, pharmaceutical-grade ethanol, which is a grain alcohol, is optimal and eliminates certain toxins and residues in the raw plant material itself. But others say that while this extraction method yields a high amount of cannabinoids and is GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) for human consumption, it destroys the plant’s waxes, leading to a less potent oil.

Conversely, to preserve most of the plant’s trichromes – these are the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids – look for Supercritical (or subcritical) CO2 extraction. This method uses carbon dioxide under high pressure and extremely low temperatures to isolate, preserve, and maintain the purity of the medicinal oil. While this method is more expensive and involves complex equipment and expertise, it ensures quality.

“The CBD oil obtained through supercritical extraction is a full-spectrum cannabinoid-rich product,” says Elizabeth Moriarty, Clinical Herbalist and Formulator at Luminary Medicine Company. “This method also produces a cleaner taste, and meanwhile, mycotoxins cannot survive this process.”

It’s also eco-friendly and non-flammable, creating a safer laboratory and manufacturing environment, as well as better product control, says Gabriel Ettenson, licensed physical therapist and general manager of Elixinol, an organic Hemp CBD Oil company.

Finally, olive oil or coconut oil can also be used to extract cannabis oil. According to Dr. Arno Hazekamp, director of phytochemical research at Bedrocan BV, which supplies medical cannabis for the Dutch Health Ministry, this method is both safe and inexpensive. “You won’t blow yourself up making cannabis-infused olive oil.”

With that said, cannabis-infused olive oil — whether CBD-rich or THC-dominant — is perishable and should be stored in a cool, dark place.

2. Sourcing

The quality of CBD oil is really based on its source; where was it grown, how was it grown, and what is the species of cannabis (e.g., sativa, ruderalis, or indica).

“The soil, climate, plants growing on the farm next door, the flowers in the farmer’s garden, etc. are all reflected in the final essence of the plant,” says Finley.

The main reason why hemp’s cultivation environment is so important is because the cannabis plant is a “hyperaccumulator,” meaning it easily absorbs contaminants from the soil while it grows. In fact, it’s used in bioremediation, a cost-effective plant-based approach to clean the environment of toxic heavy metals and organic pollutants.

“This is sadly why industrial hemp grown in non-food grade conditions is falsely being sold as CBD medicine over the internet,” says Finley.

So if the soil is polluted with heavy metals, then that plant will likely contain high levels of lead or mercury. According to Frias, there have been instances where children have almost died taking hemp extracts that were high in lead.

Essentially, “those companies have given the rest of the CBD industry a black eye because they were more interested in profiting off the sick instead of creating a quality product and testing it.”

Look for brands who source their cannabinoids from organic-certified, hemp-grown farms in pristine regions of Europe. “The German regulatory system is strict and enforced, providing confidence in the superiority of their harvest, processes, and extraction quality,” adds Moriarity. wordswag_1530913339399-1010449129.png

Meanwhile, independent testing by accredited laboratories with globally accepted analytical methods ensures the organic extract is intact from pesticides, heavy metals, or microbiological contaminants. And reputable CBD companies have lab results from independent labs available on their websites, this can also be used as an indicator for consumers about what companies are providing high-quality CBD.

When it comes to the “best” genotype, it really depends upon what one is hoping to treat or effect.

3. Bioavailability

Unfortunately, there have been instances where products claiming to have CBD in them tested at zero percent in a lab attempting to verify the results. In fact, in 2015, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) tested products and fined companies that did not include any CBD despite reports. This also gives the industry a proverbial black eye.

So let’s say you are dealing with a product that contains CBD, the amount that actually enters the body and central nervous system is still a gray territory. In food products, cannabinoids are subject to degradation and reduced bioavailability, depending on overall formulation/delivery.

“The industry is pushing for more research here, as these studies on cannabis are relatively very new,” explains Joe Santucci of  Solstice, a commercial cannabis production company. “CBD can be an amazing, but a very expensive solution for those that need it, so maximizing bioavailability is going to be essential to lower the cost for people.

“In terms of ingestion, the general consensus is that sublingual (under the tongue) and/or rectal delivery provide the highest levels of bioavailability,” says Ettenson. Some believe that vaping also produces high bioavailability as well. “Topical and ingestion (through soft gels for example) have lower levels of absorption,” says Gabriel.

If you are vaporizing CBD-dominant strains of cannabis, bioavailability is through the alveoli, tiny sacs in the lungs, clarifies Kilham. If you are taking CBD strain capsules, he suggests eating some fat or oil, like a handful of nuts or some full-fat yogurt, to improve absorption and bioavailability. Cannabinoids are fat-loving molecules. They are taken up readily into the small intestine with a bit of dietary fat.

“The need for enhanced bioavailability of the CBD phytonutrient is paramount”, adds Moriarity, “but tricky to accomplish without synthetic chemicals.” Most CBD products do not offer any bioavailability optimization, so 90 percent of the CBD is lost to first-pass effect, a phenomenon of drug metabolism whereby the concentration of a drug is greatly reduced before it reaches systemic circulation.

Meanwhile, the products that do engage in optimization efforts “are generally using a synthetic chemical soup of solvents, surfactants, and emulsifiers — none of which must be disclosed on the label since they are characterized as ‘processing aids,’” says Moriarty, who co-formulated our Superior cannabinoid oil, the market’s leading solution.

The formulation, however, offers optimized delivery via mucosal membrane permeability in tandem with precision production/formulation methods. Her company, HERBOLOGIE, reduces the particle size of the cannabinoids and immerses them in a matrix of exclusively natural ingredients that work synergistically to enhance absorption through oral membranes. When cannabinoids are transported through membranes and directly into the bloodstream, the phytonutrients are delivered more quickly, and crucially, avoiding first-pass degradation in the liver.

“We know the manufacturing process can also influence bioavailability,” says Ettison. “For example, reducing the size of the CBD compound through the use of liposomes improves absorption and bioavailability.”

“When purchasing a CBD product, keep in mind that a transparent company’s CBD milligram (mg) strength is reflective of the actual active CBD in that particular product,” states Farias. “If a bottle says 250 mg of CBD, then that product should contain 250 mg of actual active CBD. However, a lot of companies currently in the market will list the mg dosage of their CBD hemp oil without publishing the strength of their actual active CBD.”

Ideally, look for CBD products that proportionately offer 4 or more parts CBD to 1 part THC, for maximum relief and minimal or no storage issues.

4. Greenwashing Tactics

Upon investigation there are companies that engage in the use of “window dressing.” For example, one popular brand brags that they use the superfood moringa. This of course lures people in. But keep in mind that for added antioxidant benefit, you would need to ingest 7.5 g (7,500 mg) within the context of a meal or beverage. The entire 30 ml bottle of said brand contains 33.3 mg; so at the recommended dose of 1 ml daily, the daily dose of moringa would only be 1.11 mg.

“The truth is that the gray zone of medicinal cannabis invites lots of shady characters into the burgeoning industry,” says Finley. “A lack of critical thinking, quality business practices, transparency about products and plants, all have been part of the black market.”

“When the conditions are “primed” in these four areas,  you set a high standard of quality for the whole plant efficacy, and CBD can provide outstanding health benefits for longevity and wellness in high grade medicinals used for health repair,” says Cherie Arnold, Founder and CEO of MediQI Energetics.

Look for products that are sold legally, with full transparency.

Groundbreaking Medical Study Reveals Cannabis Treats ADHD Better Than Ritalin

CBD Safe for Kids?

A groundbreaking new medical study may have determined that cannabis treats ADHD symptoms better than conventional medicines, like Ritalin and Adderall.
A small sample of 30 patients with ADHD took part in a study to demonstrate the ways in which cannabis treatments can affect their symptoms. These patients said they were having limited success with Ritalin and Adderall. After their cannabis treatment, all 30 patients reported a significant improvement in their concentration levels and their quality of sleep, and 22 of the 30 patients have stopped using ritalin/adderall since

 

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ADHD cannot be prevented or cured but spotting it early and having a good treatment can significantly diminish the symptoms.

“Cannabis appears to treat ADD and ADHD by increasing the availability of dopamine,” said cannabinoidologist, Dr. David Bearman. “This then has the same effect but is a different mechanism of action than stimulants like Ritalin and dexedrine amphetamine, which act by binding to the dopamine and interfering with the metabolic breakdown of dopamine.”

If the key to higher concentration levels and better sleep is more dopamine then cannabis use can be combined with many other natural dopamine heightening activities to further decrease ADHD symptoms.

 

 

CBD Oil and ADHD

CBD Safe for Kids?

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Due to the fact that CBD produced promising results in a variety of mental disorders, specialists wonder if it could help ADHD patients as well. Considering that when ADHD is present in the brain of a person, the signs are elevated cortisol levels and low dopamine levels.

Which explains the constant state of irritation and the inability to calm down and relax, CBD could help by lowering cortisol and inducing a state of calmness.

While it is true that there is a specific medication that is prescribed in the case of ADHD patients, many complain about the unpleasant side-effects they produce, like constant headaches which often lead to a decrease in the quality of sleep.

Those that gave CBD oil a chance, said that the new treatment stopped their headaches and gave them the possibility, for some the first time in their lives, to actually get a hold of their mind.

No risks of negative side-effects

The-tVTA-RMTg-as-a-GABA-brake-for-the-dopamine-system-The-schema-represents-theThe best part about using CBD oil for ADHD is that this natural product won’t generate any unwanted side-effects.

CBD has nothing to do with an addictive substances and will not alter the perception ability of a person, this is why one can use CBD at any time during the day or night.

If you use CBD accordingly and utilize the right dose in your case, there are absolutely no risks. It is less likely for an overdose to happen and even if it does, health-related risks are minimum.

Plus, even if you decide to adopt this treatment for a long-term, you will not experience the “need” to take it, as the body will not develop any form of addiction toward it.

This is because the human body was designed to produce cannabinoids in a natural manner. Problems occur when these cannabinoids are not produced as it should.

The medication available for ADHD is meant to stimulate the production of dopamine, a chemical that is usually produced by the brain, responsible for our ability to unroll cognitive processes, like memorizing things and focusing on our activities.

Due to this fact, CBD reacts so well in our body, as the cannabinoids it contains will immediately bind with the right kind of receptors, restoring the balance in a way that no drugs can.

But, in the case of ADHD patients, there is an issue with dopamine, as the brain is not producing sufficient dopamine. According to the latest researches, CBD can do the same as specialized ADHD medication and that is to stimulate the production of dopamine and improve the brain function.

Thus, the cannabinoids, which are the active components of CBD oil, has a great potential at improving the state of mental health in people suffering from ADHD, making dopamine more available to their brains.

And the best part about this treatment is that it is safe to be used in the case of children as well, as it doesn’t trigger any addictions or unwanted psychoactive effects.

 

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Important Facts To Know About CBD Oil For ADD And ADHD

  • CBD oil not only interacts with the endocannabinoid system, but it also binds with serotonin receptors, vanilloid receptors, and adenosine receptors that have a significant impact on stress and pain management, mood management, and sleep-wake cycles.
  • CBD oil was classified as a nutritional supplement, but after recognizing many health benefits, it is considered as a medicine by the British government.
  • ADHD causes disturbances in the sleep cycle; however, CBD oil works as a sedative that helps in treating insomnia.
  • CBD oil is non-toxic; therefore, even excessive intake of CBD oil causes no severe side effects, and it is nearly impossible to overdose.
  • CBD oil consists of a very minute amount of THC; therefore, it is safe and quite effective in treating depression, anxiety, paranoia, and stress without making you high.
  • A study conducted in 2013, revealed that CBD oil helps in blocking the addictive impact of painkillers like morphine. It protects the body from dealing with any severe side effects.

 

No reason to not give this a go, no side effect only a tonne of amazing benefits.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Study Suggests – Cannabis reverses aging processes in the brains

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Memory performance decreases with increasing age. Cannabis can reverse these ageing processes in the brain. This was shown in mice by scientists at the University of Bonn with their colleagues at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel). Old animals were able to regress to the state of two-month-old mice with a prolonged low-dose treatment with a cannabis active ingredient. This opens up new options, for instance, when it comes to treating dementia. The results are now presented in the journal Nature Medicine.

Like any other organ, our brain ages. As a result, cognitive ability also decreases with increasing age. This can be noticed, for instance, in that it becomes more difficult to learn new things or devote attention to several things at the same time. This process is normal, but can also promote dementia. Researchers have long been looking for ways to slow down or even reverse this process.

 

 

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Scientists at the University of Bonn and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel) have now achieved this in mice. These animals have a relatively short life expectancy in nature and display pronounced cognitive deficits even at twelve months of age. The researchers administered a small quantity of THC, the active ingredient in the hemp plant (cannabis), to mice aged two, twelve and 18 months over a period of four weeks.

Afterwards, they tested learning capacity and memory performance in the animals — including, for instance, orientation skills and the recognition of other mice. Mice who were only given a placebo displayed natural age-dependent learning and memory losses. In contrast, the cognitive functions of the animals treated with cannabis were just as good as the two-month-old control animals. “The treatment completely reversed the loss of performance in the old animals,” reported Prof. Andreas Zimmer from the Institute of Molecular Psychiatry at the University of Bonn and member of the Cluster of Excellence ImmunoSensation.

Years of meticulous research

This treatment success is the result of years of meticulous research. First of all, the scientists discovered that the brain ages much faster when mice do not possess any functional receptors for THC. These cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptors are proteins to which the substances dock and thus trigger a signal chain. CB1 is also the reason for the intoxicating effect of THC in cannabis products, such as hashish or marihuana, which accumulate at the receptor. THC imitates the effect of cannabinoids produced naturally in the body, which fulfil important functions in the brain. “With increasing age, the quantity of the cannabinoids naturally formed in the brain reduces,” says Prof. Zimmer. “When the activity of the cannabinoid system declines, we find rapid ageing in the brain.”

To discover precisely what effect the THC treatment has in old mice, the researchers examined the brain tissue and gene activity of the treated mice. The findings were surprising: the molecular signature no longer corresponded to that of old animals, but was instead very similar to that of young animals. The number of links between the nerve cells in the brain also increased again, which is an important prerequisite for learning ability. “It looked as though the THC treatment turned back the molecular clock,” says Zimmer.

Next step: clinical trial on humans

A low dose of the administered THC was chosen so that there was no intoxicating effect in the mice. Cannabis products are already permitted as medications, for instance as pain relief. As a next step, the researchers want to conduct a clinical trial to investigate whether THC also reverses ageing processes in the brain in humans and can increase cognitive ability.

The North Rhine-Westphalia science minister Svenja Schulze appeared thrilled by the study: “The promotion of knowledge-led research is indispensable, as it is the breeding ground for all matters relating to application. Although there is a long path from mice to humans, I feel extremely positive about the prospect that THC could be used to treat dementia, for instance.”

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Story Source:

Materials provided by University of Bonn. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

Parkinsons and CBD Oils

CBD for Parkinsons

 

Patients turn to cannabis

It’s little wonder then that Parkinson’s sufferers and their families, desperate to slow down the course of the disease and ameliorate the life limiting symptoms, look towards other options. And while, to some, cannabis might seem like a medical wildcard, its use for the disease can be traced back to the 19th Century, where it was described in William Richard Gowers’s “Manual of Diseases of the Nervous System.”

Back then, very little was known about the chemical compounds in the plant.

Indeed, it’s only in the last twenty years that scientists have really begun to understand how cannabis affects the body with the discovery of the endocannabinoid system – the homeostatic regulator comprising a network of receptors (CB1 and CB2) and cannabis-like chemicals, found predominantly in the brain, central nervous and immune system.

The area of the brain affected by Parkinson’s, the basal ganglia, has a high density of CB1 receptors and in experimental Parkinson’s models scientists have observed increased CB1 activity in this brain region. Greater CB2 receptor expression has also been noted in the brain’s glial cells, as well as an overall increase in endocannabinoid production.

Researchers have already seen that botanical cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant can have a direct impact on the endocannabinoid system. It’s no surprise then that an exciting area of research into combating neurodegenerative disease is the use of cannabinoids as therapeutic tools.

 

Key to your decision should be finding CBD oils that are extracted from organic hemp, using state-of-the-art Supercritical CO2 methods. This ensures you that the CBD oil is both free from solvents and that the active compounds like cannabinoids and terpenes are preserved.

Effects of cannabidiol in the treatment of patients with Parkinson’s disease: an exploratory double-blind trial.https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25237116

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Patent No. 6630507, held by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, covers the use of cannabinoids for treating a wide range of diseases.

Under U.S. federal law, marijuana is defined as having no medical use. So it might come as a surprise to hear that the government owns one of the only patents on marijuana as a medicine.

The patent (US6630507) is titled “Cannabinoids as antioxidants and neuroprotectants” and was awarded to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in October 2003.

It was filed four years earlier, in 1999, by a group of scientists from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), which is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

 

The government’s patent does not cover THC, the main ingredient in marijuana. On the other hand, cannabidiol (CBD) is specifically mentioned as an example of a cannabinoid that is covered. The patent describes CBD and other non-psychoactive cannabinoids as superior when taken in higher doses.

“Nonpsychoactive cannabinoids, such as cannabidiol, are particularly advantageous to use because they avoid toxicity that is encountered with psychoactive cannabinoids at high doses.”

According to the description, CBD can be ingested in very large amounts without side effects.

“No signs of toxicity or serious side effects have been observed following chronic administration of cannabidiol to healthy volunteers, even in large acute doses of 700mg/day.”

The patent explains that cannabidiol previously had not been considered useful as a neuroprotectant. However, it cites various studies on cannabidiol as an antiepileptic and as a potential treatment for glaucoma.

Other great reads on the Cannabis Conspiracy

https://www.denverpost.com/2016/08/28/what-is-marijuana-patent-6630507/

https://www.bing.com/search?q=truth+is+goverments+have+owned+patent+cbd+oil+for+years&form=EDGEAR&qs=PF&cvid=0f8f429236894cada918eea8e5390bc5&cc=GB&setlang=en-US&PC=LCTS

Cbd oil for menopause.

CBD for Menopause and PMT

There are cannabinoid receptors in all areas of the female reproductive organs, including both the CB1 and CB2 receptors. Given what we already know about CBD’s influence over these receptors, it’s a logical assumption to believe that CBD could help reduce the signs and symptoms of menopause through interaction in the highly concentrated areas of endocannabinoid receptors.

During menopause, women find it increasingly difficult to sleep. Hot flashes, mood swings and overall discomfort continually disrupt a healthy sleep cycle. Soon, this lack of sleep trickles down into other areas of a woman’s life and eventually increases the severity of all menopausal symptoms.

There is a growing body of research indicating that both CBD, THC and other cannabinoids are beneficial for improved sleep quality. While CBD itself may trigger a mild increase in wakefulness when taken before bed, CBD still facilitates a better and longer nights rest.

Bone Density Loss

Bone density naturally starts to decrease during menopause. In some circumstances, it can lead to future issues with osteoporosis and bone fragility. It’s common for doctors to prescribe ERT simply for the possible improvements to bone density. But, as we’ve discussed, ERT is not always a perfect long-term solution.

Cannabidiol, THCV, CBG, and CBC all are potential candidates for protecting against bone loss. In fact, these specific cannabinoids are known to stimulate bone growth. Cannabidiol, among the other cannabinoids, may represent a perfect alternative to ERT therapy for those women worried about bone density loss.

Mood Stabilizer

Alongside the inevitable hot flashes, the associated menopausal mood swings are an equally taxing part of hormonal changes. As hormones change, it changes the way women process and manage their stress levels. A woman’s body continues to operate as per usual, but with an endocannabinoid deficiency. Its suddenly not as easy to process stress, anger, and daily pressures.

Thankfully, cannabinoids are already making incredible inroads as a powerful replacement to traditional SSRI drugs. It’s a logical next step to bring the mood stabilizing capabilities of CBD, already evidenced for treating depression and anxiety, into the realm of menopausal women.

1992 discovery of the EndoCannabinoid System

The Endocannabinoid System

0By Julia Granowiz

Have you ever wondered why marijuana affects us the way it does? What is it that makes THC and CBD react with our bodies, healing and offering relief to the ill? What makes this plant such a diverse medicine, able to treat such a large number of vastly different conditions?

If you had asked this question fifty years ago, there wouldn’t have been an answer for you to find. Unfortunately, the extraction methods available in the early 1900s made it difficult to determine which one of the 80+ cannabinoids found in cannabis was the psychoactive cannabinoid responsible for the effects of marijuana.

The truth is, it’s only been in the last couple of decades that scientists have truly even begun to understand the ways cannabis works within our bodies.

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In 1988, the first cannabinoid receptor was found in the brain of a rat. Initially found by Allyn Howlett and William Devane these cannabinoid receptors turned out to be plentiful in the brain – more so than any other neurotransmitter receptor.
Soon after this discovery researchers started using a synthetic form of THC (which is actually FDA approved these days, to treat severe nausea and wasting syndrome) to start mapping the CB receptors in the brain. Not much of a surprise, the receptors were located primarily found in the regions responsible for mental and physiological processes including memory, higher cognition, motor coordination, appetite and emotions among other places.
This would only begin to explain how cannabinoids affect our brains and bodies – already however, it was becoming clear that cannabinoids likely played a larger part in our physiology than we ever expected. After all, why would we have cannabinoid receptors if cannabinoids could only be delivered from external sources?
It wasn’t until two years later in 1990 before the next big breakthrough; when Lisa Matsuda announced at the National Academy of Science’s Institute of Medicine that she and her colleagues at the National Institute of Mental Health had managed to pinpoint the DNA sequence that defines a THC-sensitive receptor in a rat’s brain.
Not long after this announcement they were able to successfully clone that receptor – allowing them to create molecules that “fit” or “activate” the receptors. Scientists were also able to develop genetically altered mice that lacked this specific receptor – meaning THC should have no effect on them.

When THC was given to the “knockout mice” as they were called, they found that because the THC had nowhere to bind, there was no way to trigger any psychoactive activity – proving once and for all that THC works by activating specific cannabinoid receptors in the brain and central nervous system.

Soon after, in 1993, a second cannabinoid receptor was found – as a part of the immune and nervous systems. Dubbed CB2 (the CB receptors in the brain officially dubbed CB1 receptors) receptors they are found to be plentiful throughout the gut, spleen, liver, heart kidneys, bones, blood vessels, lymph cells and even the reproductive organs.

However that curious, pesky question remained unanswered – why do we have cannabinoid receptors in the first place?

The answer to that question started to unfold in 1992, when the first endocannabinoid was discovered. Anandamide was the first, naturally occurring endogenous cannabinoid, or endocannabinoid. It was found by Raphael Mechoulam as well as NIMH researchers William Devane and Dr. Lumir Hanus.

This is still only one of two known and relatively well-understood endocannabinoids. It attaches to the same CB receptors as THC and it was named after the Sanskrit word for bliss.

A second endocannabinoid was identified in 1995, discovered by none other than Mechoulam’s group yet again. This second major endocannabinoid was dubbed 2-arachidonoylglycerol or “2-AG” to keep it simple. This particular endocannabinoid attaches to both CB1 and CB2 receptors.

It was these discoveries, working backwards, tracing the metabolic pathways of THC, which allowed scientists to discover an entirely unknown molecular signaling system that resides within us – and within thousands of other biological lifeforms, basically everything on our planet with the exception of insects.

Due to the role cannabis played in discovering this system it was rightfully named the endocannabinoid system. While we knew about the plant first – this cellular process has been happening within us for millions of years. According to Dr. John McPartland, the system started evolving as long ago as 600 million years back – when complex life meant a sponge.

There is evidence that a possible third CB receptor has still gone unidentified, thirteen years after the CB2 receptor was initially discovered.

Since then, we have found out that the endocannabinoid system is responsible for maintaining many of our normal bodily functions – everything from helping to maintain healthy bone density (as found in a study with mice and the previously mentioned “knockout mice”) to naturally preventing diabetes – and that’s only the beginning.

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It’s interesting to see how far we’ve come – fifty years ago THC had just been identified – now, thanks to the discovery of that one cannabinoid we’ve discovered an entire molecular system within our bodies that we never knew about.

Actually, the endocannabinoid system is possibly the single-most important system within our entire bodies – responsible for maintaining homeostasis. Basically, if our endocannabinoid system is out-of-whack, your whole body could be at risk as it is responsible for many of our normal day to day functions.

Is it so hard to think that if supplementing unbalanced naturally occurring endocannabinoids with the cannabinoids from cannabis is able to manage, relieve or control a condition (such as ALS, Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s) and even cure cancer – that it might be possible to use the same process to prevent such conditions in the first place?
“I now believe the answer is yes. Research has shown that small doses of cannabinoids from cannabis can signal the body to make more endocannabinoids and build more cannabinoid receptors. This is why many first-time cannabis users don’t feel an effect, but by their second or third time using the herb they have built more cannabinoid receptors and are ready to respond. More receptors increase a person’s sensitivity to cannabinoids; smaller doses have larger effects, and the individual has an enhanced baseline of endocannabinoid activity. I believe that small, regular doses of cannabis might act as a tonic to our most central physiologic healing system.” – Dustin Sulak, DO (Taken from a blog post from NORML.org)