WRITTEN BY: ZACH CHAMP,
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WHAT IS CBD?
CBD is an acronym that stands for Cannabidiol. Cannabidiol is a phytocannabinoid, a special type of organic compound found in all plants including cannabis.
CBD is the component of the cannabis plant that when ingested gives users pain-relief and stress-relief through its anti-inflammatory and anxiolytic properties.
CBD interacts with the individual’s nervous and immune system through the endocannabinoid system.
The endocannabinoid system is a combined network of receptors located throughout the body that positively interact with CBD to regulate communication between cells and nerve pathways.
The medicinal and therapeutic effects of CBD are due in part to the function of the endocannabinoid system and its ability to regulate pain and a general sense of well-being.
CBD can be ingested in a variety of ways. Several types of CBD products exist including sublingual drops, edibles such as gummies, CBD flower, CBD tinctures and balms, and vaporizers and extracts.
CBD from hemp flowers is one of the most potent herbal remedies available.
HISTORY OF HEMP
The history of CBD is the history of hemp! Hemp has been cultivated for thousands of years and is one of the most durable plant-based fibers available.
Hemp has been used in everything from ropes and cordage to the sails of seafaring ships.
Coincidentally, it is one of the most prominent cash crops grown around the world.
The utility of Hemp can’t be beaten. Hemp can be used to make fuel, food, clothing, and more!
Hemp’s special powers are truly appreciated in its medicinal and therapeutic abilities.
Hemp is high in CBD but low in THC making it primarily non-psychoactive. The cultivation of Hemp is legal in most countries around the world whereas the cultivation of it’s close cousin Cannabis remains prohibited.
It’s interesting to note that the prohibition on Cannabis is a modern invention and that the US Founding Fathers themselves grew hemp!
American Colonial society relied heavily on hemp for commerce and manufacturing of everyday materials.
This remained true even up until World War II where Hemp was considered essential for the war effort.
LEGALITY OF CBD
CBD has had its hurdles with the federal government which over the years has tried to limit or outlaw its cultivation and production. Luckily, times have changed and the federal government is recognizing the economic and medicinal benefits that CBD offers.
One recent demonstration of the federal government’s shifting views on cannabis and hemp has been the passing of the recent Farm Bill which was signed into law by former President Barack Obama.
The Farm Bill allowed for the legal research and study of hemp and cannabis by Universities and certified facilities and prepared the foundation for the later implementation of the Industrial Hemp Farming Act which legalized commercial hemp production in the United States.
For the first time in decades, farmers were able to grow hemp legally and make a profit off of this powerful plant!
CBD derived from Hemp is legal while CBD derived from Marijuana is illegal. Most CBD products are based on hemp. CBD is legal in Virginia with a thriving market and several community-based stores.
In 2017 annual sales of hemp and hemp-based products grossed nearly $850 million dollars, with a large portion of those sales being attributed to the growing CBD market.
A more recent study from 2019 found that nearly ¼ Americans use some type of CBD product. Hemp and CBD continue to grow popular and more wide-spread!
HOW SHOULD I USE CBD?
CBD is versatile and can be utilized in a variety of ways. One important thing to keep in mind is that CBD is like a vitamin, so taking it regularly can help promote a general sense of well-being and relaxation alongside pain relief.
Elderly persons or individuals with preexisting respiratory conditions should use an edible or sublingual tincture versus smoking or vaping CBD.
As master herbalists, we don’t recommend smoking as a method of ingestion for the medicinal use of cannabis or hemp!
CBD is potent and active, capable of being ingested sublingually, topically, or through different types of edibles.
For those that do choose to smoke... CBD can help regulate the effects of THC and reduce anxiety and feelings of paranoia that are associated with the consumption of strong cannabis.
Typically this is done by mixing hemp flower with regular cannabis to increase the percentage of CBD to THC within the dried herb.
Cannabis that is high in CBD produces more of a body high versus cannabis high in THC which produces more of a psychoactive high.
CBD vaporizers are also an effective medicinal remedy for helping individuals who suffer from epileptic seizures!