Is CBD legal? What is it for? How does it work? And how do we use it? What form of CBD is best for you?
Hello, everyone! This is Martin Pytela for Remarkable Recovery, and today we are going to talk about CBD. What is CBD? This will be an in-depth review of the powerful plant that helps you relax and find peace. A few words about me, my name is Martin Pytela, I am working as a health coach. I am the founder of Life Enthusiast, and I am working there as a certified metabolic typing advisor using functional medicine, where we are able to help you understand how genetics and nutrition intersect, find the best ways to feed you and to maintain health. In my previous life, I also trained as a hypnotherapist, and I was also working in the high-tech computer field, my original education is computer science and business administration.
We started with CBD around the year 2013. Back then it was okay for the hemp to be on our main website, Life Enthusiast. Since then there has been a lot of regulatory change. As soon as CBD became popular, the pharmaceutical companies, especially the ones related to the opioids, started creating a regulatory barrier. They didn’t really want the CBD to get big, so they first found a way to prosecute the war through the financial industry. We couldn’t process credit cards on our main website, we had to use a separate processor and separate website, and then Google wouldn’t let us advertise CBD, Facebook wouldn’t let us advertise, so we ended up creating a separate website dedicated to CBD and CBD products, it is called Remarkable Recovery, you can see link on the screen now.
Today, my goal is to answer the following questions: What is CBD? What is it for? How does it work? And how do we use it? First of all, let’s understand the terminology. Hemp, Cannabis, Marijuana. Hemp in English, cannabis in Latin, marijuana in Spanish – these are the same thing, different names for the same plant. People have been mixing these words, and I am quite disappointed how the terminology is evolving, because these days people have been using the word hemp for the industrial hemp, and marijuana for the recreational hemp with higher levels of THC, but they are all names for the same plant. If I were to offer an analogy, apples would come to mind. With apples, you have sweet, red, green, sour, apples for pie, apples for baking, apples for this, and that, some will taste great to one person and others to another, but they all come from a tree called the Apple tree.
In the same way, we have a lot of varieties of marijuana plants. People have been messing with the genetics of it, some plants are called Sativa, and some are called Indica, they actually look different, Sativa tends to be the tall, industrial grade, Indica is a shorter plant. In the old days, Indica was more on the sleepy side, activating the parasympathetic, whereas Sativa was more on the sympathetic side of things. If you go into a store and start talking to people who really understand it, it is probably more like wine, not really like apples. People start talking about the different varieties, what they taste like, what they do, how your body reacts, and so on. Some people like the different terpenes, I will talk about that in a little bit. There are about 400 different compounds in this plant, like CBD, that is cannabidiol, THC, tetrahydrocannabinol, CBC, CBG, terpenes… there are extracts and fractions, and these extracts are used in many different ways, whether they’re edibles, smokeables, capsules, drops, lotions, suppositories, and so on.
You can see a picture on the screen right now, the link is going to be in the description for those of you who are listening to audio version only, of a variety of these compounds and what they all do. Medically, the most active compound is the CBD. It has a lot of documented effects. There are thousands, literally thousands of studies, some completed, many on their way, that document that CBD will affect your nervous system in multiple ways, it is calming, which means it is going to have anti-anxiety effects, smoother mood, less fear, less nervousness. It will also relieve pain, acute physical pain. It can also have effects on the muscles or nerves, so that means fewer spasms, seizures, twitches, and it is soothing to the skin, it will actually help with skin problems too. It is protective of the bones, so perhaps more bone growth. It is definitely protective against cancer, it strengthens your immune system, and it helps it understand which cells are normal and which are not. Through that interaction, it will help the immune system to promote healthy cells and demote unhealthy cells.
The endocannabinoid system in your body actually manufactures cannabidiol naturally. It is the same stuff that comes from the plant. In fact, it has me thinking that our human body has evolved in parallel and in coexistence with the hemp plant because those molecules are actually identical. And those molecules are used to regulate nerves and endocrine glands, like your thyroid or your sex hormones, they have many functions, including how your emotions go. You can get calmer, less fearful, relaxed. All positive effects. We have two types of receptors in the body, CB1 which is present mainly in the brain, and CB2 which is present mainly in the spleen but is located throughout the body. Interestingly, men have more of these CB2 receptors. On the other hand, women’s are more efficient, and also, there is a lot of cannabinoid stuff in mother’s milk, which is associated with the sensation of bliss, and babies can get totally blissed out on the milk. I have already mentioned it, but you will see fewer twitches, spasms, seizures, less fear, less worry, and less pain, physical or emotionally triggered.
So how do we use CBD? Well, first of all, we can inhale it. Historically, this has been the most common way in the old days before hybridization. A lot of research has gone into making recreational marijuana really strong. Smoking was always the main way. But when you hybridize a plant, you are shifting the balance between the CBD and THC, and as you are shifting it towards the THC, you are making it more and more active in the way of getting a person stoned, but less and less active in getting them relaxed or healed. So I would say that maybe the old plants, with higher CBD levels, are a better choice. Modern vaping has been isolating the individual components, and then putting them into a carrier, either PG (propylene glycol), that is basically the same stuff that is known as antifreeze, or VG, which is vegetable glycerin. You definitely want to make sure that you are not vaping stuff that is meant for oral consumption, because burning oils and inhaling that is damaging to your lungs, don’t do that. And of course smoking the raw, dried weed. Smoking has its own problems, as we’ve learned over time. You can use the drops, the drops are dispensed either with a squirt, an atomizer, or an eyedropper, you just put a few drops under the tongue, hold it there for a minute or two, let it absorb through the soft tissues in the mouth, and it goes into circulation. The smoking hits you within 30 seconds, drops in the mouth hit you within a couple of minutes, so it is not much slower.
The CBD itself is quite bitter, so we need some sort of carrier. We’ve been using vegetable glycerin, which is very sweet-tasting, I find it sickly sweet. Or you can use some fat because these terpenes are actually fat-soluble, so either olive oil, or MCT, medium-chain triglycerides, taken out of coconut oil, this has been a popular choice lately. And of course, you can swallow CBD capsules, or chew on edibles, like gummies. Once you get it into the stomach, it takes a little longer to activate, 30-40 minutes, but once it is on, it stays on for a long time. Many people just take a capsule in the morning and are good for the whole day, then they take another capsule in the evening and are good for the whole night.
There are other ways of packaging available. Suppository works great. You can bypass the whole oral issue by putting the CBD into something like shea butter, and once you chill it, it is stiff enough to use it as a suppository. It goes into circulation quickly, and for people who are having trouble swallowing, or people who are intubated, or on a ventilator, or a feeding tube, or whatever else, this is probably the best way to administer it. Suppositories are very handy when you need them. CBD is also available in chewing gum, or in drinks, and also in skincare, in creams and lotions. It is really easy, you can put it on your skin and let it absorb. You can put it on the joints that may be bothering you, like elbows, knees, and feet, it is pretty handy that way as well.
Is CBD legal? This has been a shifting terrain. Hemp has been made a Schedule 1 drug, federally, and it has not been taken off the schedule yet. Schedule 1 means that it has no medicinal benefits, and it is addictive, and should never be researched, it is just the most horrible place to put it. However, industrial hemp has been exempt from this designation all along, and there is a lot of use for the industrial hemp. There is the hemp fabric for clothes and shoes, the fiber, the oil, the seed, all the other parts of the hemp plant that are non-medicinal or non-psychoactive, that have been used in many ways for centuries. So back when in 2012, when we were first starting with CBD products, we were using industrial hemp and an extract from the body of the industrial plant, and the CBD made that way was exempted all along.
In the Farm Bill of 2018, it was legalized that all farmers in the United States can grow industrial hemp, which is defined as hemp with the THC content below 0.3%. So is this plant a drug, or is it food? Well, the definition of a drug is ‘anything that can prevent, treat, or reduce symptoms of an illness.’ Well, the components of this plant will do that. So as long as I don’t make any claims about it, I can sell it to you as food. But the moment I mention that it can, for example, help with epilepsy by preventing seizures, that would be a medical claim. I can discuss symptoms such as seizure, I can say that CBD will block seizures, but I am not allowed to say CBD will prevent the consequences of epilepsy. This is a bureaucratic stupidity.
Then there is the difference between recreational and medical use. Well, many states are regulating medical marijuana, which typically is the same as marijuana that is grown for recreational uses, but you are buying it in a dispensary for medical use. Many people use THC-high marijuana as a treatment for their symptoms. And that is what medical marijuana would be. Ours is industrial marijuana, which is low in THC and high in CBD. The THC has its practical uses, it helps people deal with chronic physical pain, it also very effectively deals with issues related to cancer, especially people who are on chemotherapy. Typically, medical marijuana is smoked. We have local differences. In one state the medical marijuana is legalized, and you can find dispensaries for that, in another state, it is completely forbidden and illegal, in another state it is regulated in some way. Here at Life Enthusiast, we just don’t care, because we want to provide you the industrial hemp, and products derived from that, and that product is legal in all 50 States, no restrictions. We are not selling you medicines, we are selling you a nutritional supplement.
So, how did we get here? Hemp has been around for a long, long time. There are Chinese medical records that are 5,000 years old, showing some conditions were treated with hemp. There was an Egyptian mummy that was recently researched and analyzed, it was a female high-born, we can call it a princess, and she had breast cancer, of which she probably died. And she had hemp in her sarcophagus. Egyptians believed that you needed the physical body for your next journey, that is why they mummify it, so clearly these people knew that this person is going to need hemp on her next journey. Hemp products have been in the United States pharmacopeia until about 1940, and then they have been gradually disappearing, written out of existence. There has been a lot of industrial use for hemp, cordage, cloth, paper, even car parts. I’ll show you that in just a moment.
Take a look here, this is a banknote from 1914, and on it is actually a picture of a hemp harvest. The note itself was printed on paper that was made from hemp fiber. Hemp was really important in the history of the United States. When it was a young colony, taxes were paid in the form of cordage, and the cordage was made from hemp. By a decree, farmers had to plant certain acreage in hemp, and it was used for payment of taxes. This is a picture of Henry Ford himself with an axe, trying to smash the back of his 1941 automobile. The trunk lid was made from a plastic that was made from hemp. And guess what? He broke the ax.
We have the best government money can buy still today. That is a quote from Mark Twain from 1905, but I think it holds all the way through. In 1937, Congress passed a bill that made hemp and its growing illegal, there was this lobbying pressure. DuPont had invented nylon and wanted cordage to be switched to nylon. Nylon is made from petroleum rather than from natural fiber. And W. R. Hearst, the print magnate, who owned large tracts of forests and he wanted to use paper made from pulp, from wood, rather than from hemp, and the farmers that were growing the hemp on their fields were a competition he didn’t want. So they both lobbied the Congress, and they successfully got this passed, and that took hemp off the market.
Later, the pharmaceutical companies continued this push, because they didn’t want to use natural products, they wanted to promote their opioids. These are the Vicodins and Oxycontins of the modern day. They actually are dangerous, because they disable the part of the brain that is responsible for breathing. When you overdose with these chemical opioids, your breathing stops, and you die. If you tried to overdose on marijuana, on THC, it never affects your breathing. The opium or hashish is actually a substance made from the resin from the hemp plant. So if you collect the pollen, the resins that are coming off of the buds, and you concentrate that, that is hashish. So hash oil is the extract from that.
Then the regulatory industry got in, we have created an entire jail industry around fighting the drug, they call it the drug war. It is just so silly because we are essentially jailing entrepreneurs who are trying to promote a healthy product to their neighbors who want it. We are just trying to block normal trade. Personally, I feel that it is an organized corruption. I think that the government is in cahoots with the drug dealers. I don’t have direct proof of it, but I think we would know how to shut down the importation or growing of things if we really wanted. So I think it is just a window dressing that we see the politicians put forward.
Anyway, nevermind my political platform, let’s get to the medical side of things, let’s try and understand what is what. The two main components of the hemp plant CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). CBD is calming, THC is stimulating, they both regulate about 600 different genes, there is an overlap of about a hundred between them. Each up-regulates about 400 of them and down-regulate about 150 of them. The CBD will relax you without distorting how you see reality. THC will distort how you perceive time and space. You will probably feel that things are moving very slow when you are stoned.
On the other hand, THC can trigger anxiety. We have seen many times that people are having a really strange reaction to ingesting raw hemp. THC will increase the appetite, so it is welcomed by people who are underweight because they will get the munchies, they will eat more, especially people who are undergoing cancer treatments are welcoming that. And THC together with CBD also helps to regulate cancer growth. So if you are looking for a product that helps with cancer, you probably are looking for medical marijuana. Other components of this plant are terpenes. These are important, there is this concept called the entourage effect. The entourage is what happens when you take the whole plant, as opposed to isolates. The whole pharmaceutical industry works on creating isolates. Like, there is a patented medical drug that is CBD alone. In fact, CBD can be made chemically synthetically, and it is on the market, it is much less expensive than the natural CBD, and it can be added into vapes or other things. So if you see something really, really cheap, it is probably using synthetic CBD.
But back to my point, there are these terpenes, they have different names, different smells, and different effects. Limonene comes from lemons and oranges, and in high concentration, it has that sour diesel smell. Myrcene is in thyme, bay leaf, parsley, and it has the skunky smell. So of course, you know, you recognize the skunky smell of ganja, when somebody is smoking it is nearby. Linalool, that is in lavender and other flowers, it is healing and calming, it has the emotional stability notes to it. Pinene is found in coniferous trees, especially pine, and in rosemary, they have this uplifting effect. Nerolidol, that is in jasmine, ginger, or lemongrass. Humulene is in hops, basil, or clove. Caryophyllene is in allspice, fig, oregano, and hops. In general, these terpenes are antibacterial, they help to stabilize the mood, they are anti-inflammatory, help to reduce pain, swelling, redness, things like that. They also help with sleep. They can stop cramps, they relieve bronchial and intestinal problems. CBD helps to reduce appetite, while THC increases it. They are also antioxidants, which means they reverse the effects of aging, and they are also sedating and anti-spasmodic, helping with twitches and seizures.
So which option should you choose? What form of CBD is best for you? CBD is all equal in the sense that a milligram of CBD from one plant is going to equal a milligram of CBD from another. But what you do want to look for is that entourage effect, that is important. The whole plant extract is better than isolates (for example made only from leaves), which are still better than synthetics. Then you need to decide how you want to consume it. If you are going to use it in drops, do you like the sweet taste or the oily version? Just pick whatever you prefer. Do you mind the fuss of the droppers and handling it that way? Then capsules are perhaps the best option for you. Dosing? It is probably better to start with drops because you can easily divide them, you can have one drop, two drops, 10 drops, 20 drops, and decide how many are needed to get the desired effect.
When I take it, for example, I take about 3mg of CBD at a time, and within two, three minutes, it has an effect on me. For example, I get a letter that the IRS wants to talk to us, they just sent me a notice, I might start worrying about that, thinking: “Oh my God, I am going to be audited. What am I going to do?” You know, the typical monkey mind starts running off, and before you know it, you are painting a very dark picture in your head about what’s coming tomorrow. Take a dose of CBD, and the response is: “Yeah, they’re calling, but hey, we have been running our business in an organized manner. We have our records in good order, there is nothing for us to worry about because we haven’t really done anything.” So you just get a better perspective. Instead of worrying about whatever horrible things might happen, you just say: “Oh yeah, okay, I can deal with it.”
You can take a small dose many times a day, maybe 3mg five times a day for your 15mg daily dose, or you may like to take a big whack, 15, 20, 30, 50… I’ve seen people taking 400-500mg a day, especially when they are dealing with a significant health problem. It works best when you do initial loading, when you take a large dose at first, for example, a couple of hundred milligrams in the first two days, and then you can decrease it. You will always have a much better response when you start big and back off from there, rather than just trying to fiddle into it from tiny amounts. So it is backward from what many people will suggest. Many people will suggest to you to start small and slowly go up until your dose will kick in. I promise you, you will see a much better response when your first two doses are large.
You may care about how the ingredients have been extracted. You don’t want to be eating the whole plant. The extraction requires an organic solvent. This is similar to how aromatherapy works, essential oils. We are extracting the essential oils from the hemp plant, and for that, we need an organic solvent. Carbon dioxide is one that is used often because it is very clean and very easy to work with. When you release the pressure, the carbon dioxide goes from liquid to gas and just disappears, and you are left with just the extract. Alcohol works really well, and we have had imported products extracted with alcohol, it has a different profile and it is very beneficial. Other benzene, naphtha, toluene… these are organic solvents, we shouldn’t really call them industrial, butane for example is an organic solvent, and as long as it is clean, you have nothing to worry about, it all evaporates. The only question is: was it clean or did it leave something behind?
So the analysis does matter. You want to buy from companies that promise you they have analyzed the product, and find it to be free of contaminants. Homogeneity is also important. When you are mixing a CBD concentrate into a carrier, such as vegetable glycerin, you are mixing at 1%, 2%, or 3% solution. If you don’t mix it properly if you don’t achieve homogeneity, you may have hotspots, so one bottle is going to have 500mg of CBD, and the next bottle is going to have only a 100mg. That is all about manufacturing skills that companies either do or do not have.
Where to get your CBD products? Here is the address. Remarkable Recovery. Links are going to be in the description as well. Visit our site, we have a blog where you can read some articles about health benefits I showed you earlier in the presentation. And for more information, feel free to call us! Our main website is www.life-enthusiast.com, phone number is either (775) 299-4661, or a toll-free (866) 543 3388. Thank you very much for listening and watching! This is Martin Pytela, health coach at Life Enthusiast. We are restoring vitality to you and to the planet.