However, understanding CBD can sometimes be overwhelming.
As an herbalist, a doctor, and a mother to a child with intractable epilepsy, I have studied this plant extensively.
I’m going to break down the basics of CBD, its relationship with the endocannabinoid system, the entourage effect, and how to identify a quality CBD product so you can understand why I think everyone should be taking a high-quality hemp product every day.
Is Hemp the Same as Marijuana?
Yes and no. Both marijuana and hemp belong to the cannabis family of plants. Marijuana is bred to contain higher levels of THC, the cannabinoid responsible for the psychoactive effects commonly associated with cannabis. On the other hand, hemp contains less than 0.3% THC and is grown for various purposes, including medicinal use. CBD is one of the main cannabinoids found in hemp and does not cause psychoactive effects.
The Endocannabinoid System:
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a regulatory system discovered in the early 1990s. It consists of receptors located throughout the body, including CB1 and CB2 receptors. The ECS works to maintain homeostasis, or balance, in the body.
THC, as well as endogenous cannabinoids like anandamide and 2-AG, directly activate CB1 and CB2 receptors.
Anandamide is often referred to as “the bliss molecule” and plays a role in regulating immune and psychological responses to stress.
CBD, instead of acting directly on ECS receptors, breaks down the FAAH enzyme, allowing anandamide to remain in circulation, supporting the immune response and promoting relaxation.
The Entourage Effect:
Whole plant hemp extracts harness the power of the “entourage effect.” This concept emphasizes the importance of utilizing the full spectrum of phytochemicals present in hemp.
While THC and CBD are the most well-known cannabinoids, there are over 114 others that may have medicinal effects. Terpenes, the aromatic oils found in cannabis, also contribute to the therapeutic qualities of the plant. Each variety of cannabis has its own unique terpene profile, which adds to the overall harmony of effects.
Whole plant hemp extracts, with their diverse range of cannabinoids and terpenes, have been shown to be more effective and safer than isolated extracts.
How to Spot a Quality CBD Product:
To ensure a high-quality CBD product, there are a few factors to consider. Hemp is a hyperaccumulator, meaning it absorbs toxins from the soil.
Reputable companies will test their products for heavy metals, pesticides, and other contaminants.
Look for easily accessible third-party lab test results on the company’s website or request them directly.
Extraction methods also play a role in the quality of the product. CO2 extraction and ethanol extraction are common methods, but spagyric extraction, an ancient alchemical technique, has gained popularity for its ability to preserve the full spectrum of phytochemicals.
Lastly, be cautious of products with unusually high CBD concentrations at low prices, as they may be isolated CBD or of lower quality.
Armed with knowledge about CBD, its relationship with the endocannabinoid system, and the importance of whole plant extracts, you can make informed choices about CBD products.
Remember to prioritize quality, look for transparent lab test results, and consider extraction methods.
CBD can be a valuable supplement when used correctly, supporting your overall well-being. If in doubt, consult with a healthcare professional who is knowledgeable about CBD to guide you on your journey to wellness.
Note: At Radical Roots, we prioritize sustainability, high-quality ingredients, and rigorous testing to provide you with the best CBD products. We are committed to making herbal medicine accessible and offer discounts to various populations.
Feel free to reach out if you need assistance. Your investment in your health and our planet is worth it.
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