How the Endocannabinoid System Impacts the Body

What is the Endocannabinoid System?

The discovery of the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) in the 1990s helped broaden the scope of how scientists understood not just how cannabis and its compounds impact the body, but how the body functions overall. Over the past 20+ years of research into the subject, new information is constantly being discovered – yet our understanding of the system is still far from complete.

Currently, the ECS is defined as “the ensemble of the two 7-transmembrane-domain and G protein-coupled receptors for Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol: cannabinoid receptor type-1 and cannabinoid receptor type-2”.1 If you’re asking yourself “What does that mean?” you’re not alone – the definition is confusing even among experts, and is evolving constantly. The important thing to know is this: the ECS regulates our body’s natural cannabinoids as well as those from cannabis. Did you know your body makes its own cannabinoids? There are 2 we know of – Anandamide and 2-AG (short for arachidonoylglycerol). Let’s dive in!

Anandamide

Anandamide, named using the Sanskrit root word “ananda” (meaning bliss), helps to regulate our mood and ability to manage stress. It’s also thought that Anandamide may be primarily responsible for the runner’s high, a euphoria felt commonly after strenuous exercise. See our blog post on this for more info! This endocannabinoid is produced by the body, but is degraded rapidly by an enzyme called FAAH (fatty amino acid hydrolase). Recent studies suggest that consuming the phytocannabinoid CBD can help to slow this degradation, making the effects of Anandamide last longer.

In addition to its impact on our mental state, Anandamide is also thought to play a role in our metabolism, appetite, sleep cycles, and fertility.2 This one small compound affects our bodies and minds in some truly far-reaching ways.

2-AG

The second known endocannabinoid is 2-AG. Far less research has been done into this compound, despite it occurring in a higher concentration than Anandamide. One of the main things we do know is that 2-AG only binds to cannabinoid receptors – nowhere else in the body. This is different from Anandamide, which interacts with other receptor types in addition to cannabinoid receptors. For this reason, many scientists view 2-AG as the “true natural ligand for cannabinoid receptors”.3

Much like its sister endocannabinoid, 2-AG plays a role in our mental health and is related to how we experience pleasure & rewards. It has also been shown to be part of what causes feelings of relaxation and contentment after sex; 2-AG levels boost significantly post-orgasm.4

While it may not get as much attention as Anandamide, 2-AG is just as important to our bodies when it comes to maintaining homeostasis! We look forward to updating this when more information is researched.

What does the Endocannabinoid System do?

You’ve met your two known endocannabinoids and learned a little about them – ready to learn more about the system overall? 

ECSOur body has cannabinoid receptors (types 1 and 2) located throughout the entire body. CB1 receptors occur predominantly in the Central Nervous System and are also distributed throughout the skin and other organs. CB2s can be found in the CNS as well, but are most common in the gastrointestinal tract and immune system. Each receptor type regulates different parts of the many ways the ECS impacts homeostasis!

While we know the ECS affects things like sleep, appetite, bone growth, mood, memory, and more,5 there is still so much more to learn. And, despite being known since the late 90s, the Endocannabinoid System was not discussed in most medical schooling until around 2015; even now that it is taught, the education surrounding it is extremely minimal. Since the ECS impacts so many parts of the body, not covering it in medical education is staggering. In our opinion, it’s akin to not teaching the importance of the skeletal or nervous system! We hope to see education on this crucial part of the body grow in the coming years.

Endocannabinoid Deficiency Syndrome

Of the seemingly endless roles the ECS plays in the human body, the most important may be maintaining homeostasis. If our endocannabinoids are out of whack for any reason, it’s theorized this can lead to a variety of problems. According to a 2016 study, “if endocannabinoid function were decreased, it follows that a lowered pain threshold would be operative, along with derangements of digestion, mood, and sleep”.6 The most compelling data for what is being called CED (Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency) are chronic migraine, fibromyalgia, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The same study notes that “a strong case can be advanced for unifying pathophysiological trends in the three conditions”. It’s no surprise then, that these same three conditions are among the most commonly-reported amongst medical cannabis and CBD consumers!

Phytocannabinoids can help restore an offset balance in our bodies. While everyone’s Endocannabinoid System is unique (and as such, so is the way they react to phytocannabinoids), something as simple as incorporating CBD into your daily routine can be beneficial to restoring homeostasis. Although it requires some experimentation to learn what works best for your needs, restoring and maintaining the body’s balance is likely worth the added effort. Curious to learn what may work best for you? Reach out to our team at support@fairwindscbd.com and we’ll be happy to help!

Inhaler Device FAQs

Hemp CBD inhalers

Our hemp inhalers are a novel new way to consume CBD (and other cannabinoids like CBG) with the utmost discretion. If you’re considering purchasing one for the first time, we completely understand that there may be some questions regarding best use practices or why to choose an inhaler in the first place. This quick blog is here to help you figure out how to get the most out of your inhaler purchase!

Why choose an inhaler over a tincture?

While both products certainly confer their own benefits, there are some distinct differences. Our inhalers are faster-acting (with effects felt in as little as 3-5 minutes,) more geared towards on-the-go use, and we designed them to provide the exact same serving size on each use. Plus, when it comes to discretion, nothing beats the convenience of inhalers! There’s no need for a battery, they’re incredibly lightweight, and you can take them anywhere.

Why are inhaler canisters and devices sold separately?

We sell our actuator devices separately to reduce our environmental impact; as each device is reusable for several canisters, we found it wasteful to include a different device with every order. Selling them separately also reduces the overall costs for you!

Do I really need the actuator device?

Unless you already have an inhaler device of your own, you’ll need one in order to be able to properly use the inhaler canister. Once you’ve purchased one, you’ll be able to reuse it for multiple canisters!

If you still find you have some questions, you can check out our Youtube video on how to best use and clean the inhalers. Thanks for reading, and give us a follow on Instagram at @fairwindsCBD for new product updates and more!

Runner’s High and Cannabinoids

What is the runner’s high?

Many of us are familiar with the concept of the “runner’s high.” A natural rush of euphoria which occurs in some individuals when the body is pushed to its physical limits, this runner’s high is, well, highly sought after. Often described as a second wind, the term is defined as “an exercise-induced altered state of consciousness long-appreciated by endurance athletes… described subjectively as pure happiness, elation, a feeling of unity with one’s self/nature, endless peacefulness, inner harmony, boundless energy, and a reduction in pain sensation.”1 While the existence of this phenomenon has been known for decades, the science surrounding what causes it has been incredibly limited. It’s only recently that scientists have begun to understand it – and much of it still remains a mystery.

The confusion surrounding the runner’s high is due in part to the fact that the experience does not seem to be consistent; described as “ephemeral,” certain runners may never encounter this sensation, and others may not access it each time they exercise, even if it’s something they’ve felt before. And though much of the conversation surrounding this effect is already speculative, newer research suggests that it may be tied to something even less thoroughly understood: the endocannabinoid system.1

Endogenous opioids or cannabinoids?

Exercise physiologists first thought that the cause of the runner’s high phenomenon may have been tied to a boost in adrenaline, also known as epinephrine. With the discovery of the opioid receptor network and endogenous opioids (opioid-like chemicals produced naturally in the body) in the late 1950s and early 60s, the theory was switched around a bit to include this new understanding: it was thought that this effect was “a direct consequence of alterations in endogenous opioid release.”1 For decades, this was the operating hypothesis. However, with the discovery of the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) in the 1990s and the subsequent discovery of the body’s first endogenous (naturally-occurring) cannabinoid Anandamide in 1992, the theory slowly began to take on a new shape once more. Anandamide, named using the Sanskrit root word for “bliss,” can boost happiness, assist with increasing memory, appetite, & motivation, increase neurogenesis, and more.

While the body’s own endocannabinoids were discovered in the 1990s, it took quite a bit of time before it began to be thought that Anandamide could play a role in activating the euphoria of the runner’s high. The new theory arose when it was discovered that endorphin and endogenous opioid molecules are large and therefore cannot cross the blood-brain barrier – but Anandamide can.2 As Anandamide is often found in high concentrations in the brain after intense exercise, the natural conclusion was that Anandamide may in fact be the compound primarily responsible for helping elicit the runner’s high.

Although this hypothesis was first expressed in the late 1990s, it wasn’t really explored in much detail until 2015, when German scientists began to experiment with the theory in mice. Anandamide levels in the blood increased significantly in a group of mice that ran on a wheel for five hours when compared with a control group of sedentary mice. Additionally, the mice that were part of the running group displayed far less anxiety and a higher tolerance for pain than those in the control group.2 Studies have also been done on humans, however, further research is still needed.1

CBD and Anandamide

So what does any of this have to do with CBD? According to a study published in 2012, Cannabidiol (CBD) helps to inhibit the degradation of Anandamide in the body,3 meaning that the effects felt from this endocannabinoid can last for a longer period of time if CBD is in someone’s system. While many people enjoy using CBD products after exercise, this information makes it apparent that the benefits can likely be extended if CBD is used before exercise, as well. Since CBD can also support pain management, stress relief, and endurance – all without the intoxicating high experienced with THC use – it only makes sense to incorporate CBD products into your workout routine. See our blog post on CBD for athletic performance here!

 

CBD and Anxiety

CBD and anxiety management

Anxiety and stress have become seemingly unavoidable components of the human experience. As of 2019, 18.1% of all American adults – that’s over 40 million people – reportedly suffer from a diagnosed anxiety disorder. Over 31% of Americans (more than 102 million) will be affected by an anxiety disorder of some sort at one point in their lives – making it the most prevalent mental illness affecting the nation. And these numbers aren’t even taking into account the general daily stresses which are likely to affect us all. Anxiety and stress have become so deeply entrenched in the lives of many that they may not even realize they are suffering. It isn’t uncommon for someone who is used to experiencing anxiousness to, after trying something that helps relieve it, exclaim that they didn’t know such a reduction of symptoms was possible.

If you ask us, it says a lot about our culture that so many people are afflicted by anxiety disorders and the associated symptoms to such a thorough degree that they don’t even realize it’s negatively impacting them – they instead think that it’s simply a part of them. One of our primary goals at Fairwinds is to help people realize that it is possible to find relief. We are proud to do our part when it comes to helping people with their anxiousness, all through the use of natural remedies.

What does the research say?

Many people find that CBD products can help provide them with relief from stress, and the evidence is far from simply anecdotal; a clinical study conducted at the Wholeness Center in Fort Collins, CO in 2018 showed that “Anxiety scores decreased within the first month in 57 [out of 72] patients (79.2%) and remained decreased during the study duration” while taking CBD capsules. While it’s undeniable that there is much more clinically-researched information needed regarding this subject, it’s incredibly promising to see results like these! In fact, massive progress has already been made – according to the same study, “In the decade before 2012, there were only 9 published studies on the use of cannabinoids for medicinal treatment of pain; since then, 30 articles have been published on this topic.” And as federal restrictions on the clinical testing of cannabis and its byproducts become more relaxed, we look forward to seeing even more data that back up studies like the one we quote in this blog.

How CBD can help

One of the most important takeaways from this particular study is that most of the subjects involved reported experiencing minimal to no side effects when taking CBD; “CBD was well tolerated, with few patients reporting side effects. Two patients discontinued treatment within the first week because of fatigue. Three patients noted mild sedation initially that appeared to abate in the first few weeks.” This trial was also conducted alongside patients’ current medications and/or therapy – meaning that CBD had little to no interference with other prescribed medicines and treatment plans. This is a critically important point when you take into consideration that many prescribed anxiety medications cannot be taken in conjunction with many other medications, as they can frequently interact negatively, therefore not producing the intended effects. The conclusion of the study mentioned here states, “In our study, we saw no evidence of a safety issue that would limit future studies… CBD appears to be better tolerated than routine psychiatric medications.”

Everyone’s anxiety is different

When it comes to reducing feelings of anxiousness, the most important things (in our opinion) are knowing one’s own needs and determining what works best for them. Our intention is not to claim that CBD is a cure-all (despite its many benefits, it cannot truly provide full support on its own – it’s capable of producing its most effective results when used in tandem with other herbal compounds). We do not wish to imply that traditional medications shouldn’t be used, or that there is one clear, definitive answer for how to best treat anxiousness. Instead, we simply wish to make it clear that everyone should be able to assess their own needs and access the treatment which works most effectively for their individual system!

Whether the best regimen for managing anxiousness includes CBD products like our Release tincture, traditional prescription medicines, or a combination, everyone deserves to experience relief. We hope that you can find yours with Fairwinds CBD!

 

*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to treat, cure, or prevent any disease or illness.
woman holding joint

Non-Intoxicating vs Non-Psychoactive

What’s the difference?

At Fairwinds, we believe that transparency and honesty are critical when it comes to choosing the right CBD brand and products, whether you’re shopping for yourself or a loved one – and we will always do our best to provide you with the most accurate and truthful information possible. Because of this, we feel it’s important to shed light on wording that may be misused by some and open up a conversation about why using the most accurate language matters.

Let’s start with one of the biggest misnomers in the entire realm of CBD: non-psychoactive. Many brands claim that their CBD products are completely non-psychoactive; however, since CBD interacts with cannabinoid receptors in the brain as well as throughout the body’s other organs and pathways, this is actually a misleading statement. It’s far more accurate to refer to CBD as non-intoxicating instead. But what does that really mean?

Why wordage matters

There is a difference between “non-psychoactive” and “non-intoxicating”; they’re similar, but they aren’t quite interchangeable. The term non-psychoactive refers to a substance or product that does not produce any effect (such as any changes in perception, mood, behavior, etc) on the brain or mental processes. Non-intoxicating, on the other hand, refers to something unlikely or unable to cause any feelings of drunkenness, lack of control, or impairment.

CBD is one of these things, but not both. For many who use it, CBD can produce an overall sense of well-being, a boost in mood, provide assistance with stress relief and sleep, and/or reduce anxiousness. These effects are related to brain activity, and as such are technically psychoactive responses. While it may feel unnecessarily picky to want more distinction between these terms, using the right nomenclature and descriptions is actually a critical piece of furthering people’s understanding of cannabis/hemp, cannabinoids, and their complexities. CBD is psychoactive, but non-intoxicating, while THC is both. The distinction between the two is important; it helps make apparent that psychoactive isn’t a scary or bad term, nor one that necessarily equates to intoxicating or “high”-inducing.

What caused the divide in terminology?

The use of the term non-psychoactive became prevalent because many people who use CBD are not at all interested in the sensation of being high; as THC was already well-known for being psychoactive and high-inducing, it may have been simpler to just refer to CBD as the exact opposite – “non-psychoactive”. This terminology became standard, and despite not being fully accurate, it has become widely used and accepted. But does the terminology really matter? To us, it’s crucial!

Shifting the stigmas associated with the use of cannabis and its derivative compounds is one of our biggest goals at Fairwinds. It’s a simple truth that the way people talk about things shapes the way those things are viewed. Cannabis/hemp and cannabinoids are no exception; accurate representation and language matter here as much as anywhere. And in all honesty, accepting the status quo just because it’s what is common has never been Fairwinds’ style. Pushing for progress is part of our core identity! We are proud to provide true information with as much scientific knowledge and accuracy as possible – our dedication to representing the full capabilities of CBD, cannabis, and herbal medicine means that we will never misrepresent something for the sake of profit. Whatever the effect you’re seeking with your personal CBD use is, we’re happy to be an honest, reliable source that people can count on. Thanks for reading!

*These statements have not been approved by the FDA. They are not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any disease.

Antimicrobial Herbs

Staying healthy the natural way

Maintaining our health is always important, but it’s understandably become something a lot of people are placing a laser-focus on during the current COVID-19 pandemic. Fortunately, there are plenty of natural methods at our disposal that can help keep our bodies functioning at their best – from antimicrobial herbs to one of nature’s top remedies: sunshine! Whether you’re combating illness or just looking to stay as healthy as possible during this time, here are a few of the many herbs you can add to your repertoire. Not sure where to source these herbs sustainably? You can find many of them in some of our Fairwinds tinctures – available nationwide! 

Ginger

At the top of this list for a reason, ginger is one of the most renowned herbs for its seemingly endless list of benefits. Used for thousands of years to help relieve common ailments such as nausea and indigestion, ginger is also known for its ability to stave off bacterial infections. It has been shown in clinical trials to exhibit both antibacterial and antiviral properties and can also boost the immune system. Other studies have also shown that ginger and garlic are among the two most versatile antimicrobials when it comes to the number of bacteria they’re capable of fighting off!1,2 You can find ginger (alongside a few other herbs from this list) in Fairwinds’ Digestify tincture. It may be designed for assistance with gastrointestinal issues, but it’s a great addition to any wellness routine. 

Garlic

Another of history’s most common remedies, garlic is easy to find, easy to use, and packed with benefits. From eating cloves raw to infusing drinks and food, this powerhouse plant is one of nature’s best antimicrobial gifts. According to a clinical trial, garlic in its raw/fresh form is the most powerful antibacterial, followed by powdered/dried, with oil extracted from garlic falling third.1

Clove

Unlike garlic, the extracts from cloves have been shown to be far more powerful bacteria fighters than the raw form! Eugenol, a terpene derived from cloves, can break down individual cells and inhibit cell reproduction in some bacteria.1 However, while clove oil is incredibly valuable at fighting off food-borne pathogens and bacteria such as salmonella, it is a little less versatile than some other herbs/spices in this list when it comes to the types of microbes it can fight off successfully. You can find Eugenol in many Fairwinds products in small quantities.

Oregano

Much like cloves, oregano oil can be incredibly effective when it comes to fighting off food pathogens like salmonella. Additionally, it’s used frequently to help treat and/or prevent illnesses such as the common cold! Oregano oil has also shown to be incredibly effective against E. Coli.1

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is a powerhouse when it comes to its benefits. In a similar fashion to cloves, it is able to break down bacterial cell walls and prevent reproduction. More clinical studies are needed to confirm its full list of capabilities; however, current research is promising. Cinnamon may soon be on the same level as garlic and ginger as far as versatile antimicrobial herbs are concerned!1

Coriander

Another incredibly powerful herb/spice, coriander has shown to not only be an antimicrobial, but also to confer bactericidal effects! This means that it can actually kill many kinds of bacteria in addition to just fighting them off. Coriander is another of the herbs used in our Digestify tincture, helping to fortify its benefits. We also love coriander for its anti-inflammatory properties!1

An incomprehensive list

There are so many valuable antimicrobial herbs and spices that people can use to help boost their health and immunity – this is just a short list of some of our favorites and a few we include in our products. As always, we truly appreciate you taking the time to read more and grow your knowledge; when it comes to holistic healing, we’re honored to be a part of your journey towards whole-body wellness.

Boosting Your Immune System With Natural Remedies

CBD and Your Immune System: Staying Healthy During the COVID-19 Pandemic

No matter where you go, what you’re reading, or who you’re talking to right now, there’s one subject that’s bound to come up: the global COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. And while these are undeniably nerve-wracking times that are frightening for all and life-threatening for some, it holds as true with this as with anything else: the only way out is to get through it together. At Fairwinds, we wanted to make it clear that we are not only taking steps within our own company and community to combat this virus, but that there’s a potentially invaluable opportunity here to boost your immune system and reduce stress through the use of CBD, thereby helping your body to fight off a COVID-19 infection.

CBD has been clinically proven to aid the human immune system through multiple mechanisms1. Its non-intoxicating effects add to its capability to help your body stay healthy while keeping a clear mind! Since the immunocompromised are among the most affected by this new pandemic, it’s our hope that sharing this awareness can help people find potential new ways to stay as well as possible.

How Can CBD Help?

When looking for a CBD oil to help assist with immune system or stress responses, there are a few tips to keep in mind. Be sure that the products you’re looking at are made using hemp grown with no pesticides; you can check for third-party testing to confirm this. It’s also helpful to look for products that are terpene-fortified, meaning they will have additional immune-boosting properties! Lastly, the inclusion of other herbal extracts and/or essential oils can also help to boost the effects of CBD. Herbs like ginger, coriander, and many others have been shown to help keep the immune system functioning at its best.

In addition to helping keep your immune system functioning at its best, it’s important to know about the impact that stress can have on our health and wellness. Our Release tincture is specifically formulated to help reduce stress and keep your mental health in just as good of shape as your physical wellbeing. Fairwinds always takes steps to include herbal extracts that boost the desired effect of a product, and it’s our promise to you that we’ll never cut corners or provide a product that isn’t up to our high standards.

If you want to learn more about how you can help to combat this pandemic with natural measures, feel free to contact us! Lastly, we’re happy to share we’re offering free shipping on all orders right now. We truly believe that through education, conversation, and the science of whole-body wellness, this COVID-19 outbreak can help to bring people together instead of pushing them apart.

Wishing you health and happiness, from the entire Fairwinds team.

woman holding french bulldog

CBD for pets

Is CBD right for your pet?

When it comes to taking care of the non-human family members millions of Americans love, there are several important factors to consider. We want to ensure that we do our best to provide a beneficial diet, the best veterinary care possible, and a healthy lifestyle – and adding new supplements to our animals’ routines is a critically important decision when it comes to maintaining the quality of life we want to give them. And as the CBD (Cannabidiol) craze continues to sweep the nation, many people are curious to know if CBD can help their pets as much as it has helped them.

The ECS

One of the most fascinating developments related to cannabis was the discovery of the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) by researchers in the early 1990s. While there is still research being conducted into all of the roles the ECS plays in the body, the most relevant takeaway in this situation is that every animal (vertebrates and invertebrates alike) has an ECS. The first-known animals to express cannabinoid receptors were the sea squirts, which evolved over 600 million years ago!

This system in the body helps with the regulation of functions such as sleep, appetite, the immune system, and more – and its incredible discovery means that every animal has the innate capability to regulate the effects of cannabinoids, whether they are the body’s own natural endocannabinoids (2-AG and Anandamide) or phytocannabinoids from cannabis, such as CBD or THC. Knowing that our pets are naturally equipped with cannabinoid receptors, just like us, has many people turning to CBD for the incredible potential benefits that these products may provide for their pets!

Common reasons people give CBD to their pets include: reducing anxiousness, helping with pain relief, easing general discomfort, promoting a healthier appetite, encouraging better sleep cycles, and more. And with no more than 0.3% THC allowable in hemp-derived products, CBD for pets is specifically formulated to be non-intoxicating.

Making an informed choice

So how does one go about choosing the best CBD product(s) for their pet? There are a few things to consider, such as method of consumption, desired effect, desired duration of effect, and more. Just for example, a serving of a liquid CBD tincture will kick in faster than an edible treat, and will have a slightly shorter duration of effects, as well. Conversely, the effects of a CBD-infused edible treat will take longer to kick in, but will also last a bit longer. Dosages and onset time will vary depending on the weight of the animal in question, as well as their metabolism. The most common dosage guideline for pets is 1mg of CBD per 5lbs of weight; however, there is no way to guarantee this dosage amount will work for every animal. Some may need more, and others less – just like people, every animal will have their own unique tolerance and absorption rates for CBD. You can check out the two different potencies of the Fairwinds Companion tincture by clicking here.

All of the factors mentioned above are relevant when it comes to human consumption, too! The difference here is that as humans, we have the ability to assess, examine, and comprehend our own needs to understand the effects of different products on ourselves – and as our animal companions don’t have that same capability to share with us, these factors are of crucial importance when it comes to selecting what CBD product to give to your pet. When giving CBD to your pets, it’s imperative to start small. You can always administer more tincture, but it doesn’t work the opposite way. As it may take up to two hours for your pet to feel the effects of CBD, it’s always recommended to wait for at least two hours before potentially administering any more.

Still have more questions about CBD and your pet? Feel free to contact us, and we’ll be happy to help.

*The FDA has not approved these statements. They are not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any disease.

CBD and Athletic Performance

Optimal performance is all about finding balance – cannabinoids can help achieve that. Here’s how!

1: Improved focus, endurance, and power output

Cannabinoids (especially CBD) can help to increase brain and nervous system function – thereby increasing athletic performance! CBD can also assist with maintaining the euphoria experienced frequently after strenuous workouts; CBD helps to slow the degradation of Anandamide, one of the body’s two known endocannabinoids (naturally-occurring cannabinoids) and the compound now thought to be responsible for eliciting the runner’s high.

2: Shortened recovery time

CBD is clinically proven to not only subdue the receptors in our nervous system that cause us to notice and feel pain, but to reduce the presence and production of enzymes called prostaglandins which cause inflammation – thereby reducing further pain. Say goodbye to prolonged muscle soreness!

3: Enhanced breathing capability

Cannabinoids are proven bronchodilators. This means that, despite what may be popular belief, cannabis products can actually help to increase airflow to the lungs and can decrease resistance in the airways.

4: Reduced need for NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen

Most NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) inhibit protein synthesis, but cannabinoids do not. Because CBD reduces inflammation instead of simply dulling pain signals, it can be a much safer and more effective choice for athletes suffering from inflammation-related pain. Additionally, NSAID pain relievers can cause various health problems with extended use, including liver toxicity, stomach ulcers, and more; these issues can be exacerbated in endurance athletes. CBD use has not been shown to cause any of these same problems – just one more reason it may be a healthier and more effective alternative. Some athletes have actually been able to completely replace NSAID use by taking CBD products!

5: Improved homeostasis

One of the primary functions of the ECS (endocannabinoid system, a natural system found in every vertebrate and invertebrate) is maintaining balance and homeostasis in the body. In addition to this, the ECS helps to regulate functions such as digestion, sleep, memory, and more. CBD can help promote balance; many people who do not consume any type of cannabis products may have endocannabinoid deficiencies.

While cannabinoids have not shown clinically-proven effects that could cause them to be considered as performance-enhancing drugs, their legality in competitive sports use is still frequently dependent on an individual sport or coach. However, due to its lack of intoxicating effects and proven inability to be considered performance-enhancing, CBD was taken off of the WADA (World Anti-Doping Association) list of prohibited substances in 2018! This means that all athletes should be able to use this cannabinoid prior to and after performance in competitive sporting events, in addition to casual workouts and practices. So what are you waiting for? Try adding CBD to your workout routine to see if it helps your athletic performance as much as it has helped countless others.

*These statements have not been approved by the FDA. They are not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any disease.

Difference between hemp & cannabis

What’s the difference?

As a CBD brand based out of the Pacific Northwest (where recreational cannabis consumption is legal and dispensary storefronts can be found as easily as coffee shops), one of the questions we are asked most frequently is, “What’s the difference between hemp and cannabis?”. The short answer: it’s really just semantics.

In an industry like ours, transparency and honesty are so important. While there is no shortage of brands claiming that their CBD products are “not from cannabis” this is, unfortunately, a misleading statement. There is no hemp plant that is not a member of the cannabis family. So, if all CBD products are in fact derived from cannabis just like their high-THC counterparts, why are they given different names?

When it comes to the cannabis plant genus, there are three known species:

  1. Cannabis Sativa
  2. Cannabis Indica
  3. Cannabis Ruderalis

Each of these subspecies carries its own genetic makeup, produces its flowers in different ways, and is naturally made up of different cannabinoid concentrations, terpenes, and more. And while Indica and Sativa are words used commonly when it comes to discussing the effect profiles of different cannabis chemovars (or strains), the difference between them lies more in the genetic makeup of the plants themselves. There’s plenty of great information available about each of these unique species, so let’s break this down a little bit further…

1 – Cannabis Sativa

Cannabis Sativa plants tend to grow wild in warmer, more tropical climates – such as Jamaica, Central America, etc – and generally require a longer time to mature before they are ready to be harvested. Sativa plants will have narrow, thin fan leaves and will usually grow much taller/lankier than their Indica cousins. Generally speaking, cultivars harvested from this species of plant will produce terpenes (flavonoids; the essential oils of cannabis) with more euphoric, uplifting effects – hence why people will ask for “Sativas” when shopping for cannabis that provides more daytime-oriented or energizing effects.

2 – Cannabis Indica

    Cannabis Indica plants are just about the polar opposite of their Sativa cousins when it comes to appearance, and are not always similar in effect, either. Indica plants tend towards wild growth in colder climates – the mountain ranges of India and Nepal are known for producing some of the finest cannabis in the world not grown by human hands – and grow bushier, shorter, and more stout than Sativas. Usually, Cannabis Indica cultivars will produce terpenes that lean towards a more calming, sedative effect – this is why shoppers will frequently ask for “Indicas” when seeking cannabis that may be geared more towards end-of-day use.

3 – Cannabis Ruderalis

    Cannabis Ruderalis, more commonly referred to as the hemp plant, is the third and final member of the cannabis plant family. Ruderalis plants grow natively in Central/Eastern Europe and parts of Russia, and were used originally for their fiber production. These hardy, fibrous plants rarely grow larger than two feet tall in the wild; however, due in part to trading along the Silk Road and genetic drift, you can find taller, lankier versions of this species growing in mountainous regions to which they aren’t originally native! While there has been some debate over whether Ruderalis qualifies as its own species or is a member of the Sativa species, the fact that Ruderalis plants naturally produce THC in such minimal quantities (a plant must produce 0.3% THC or less to qualify as hemp or Ruderalis) has helped to secure its position as a separate species.

If all CBD products come from cannabis plants, then where does the term “hemp” originate from? Why are these products treated and regulated with such drastic differences if they essentially come from the same place?

All genetic differences and species variation aside, a cannabis plant only qualifies as “hemp” if it produces less than 0.3% THC by volume. This quantity concentration of THC is completely arbitrary – in the 1970s, Canadian scientist and researcher Ernest Small published a book called The Species Problem With Cannabis where he discussed the fact that there is no real, definitive cannabinoid concentration at which to separate the “cannabis” plant from the “hemp” plant. It was decided that a potency of 0.3% THC (or less) by weight equating to “hemp” would work as a temporary solution – yet this randomly-decided number has held for the past 4, nearing 5, decades. And despite the ever-growing appreciation for and acceptance of CBD products, many people are still not at all comfortable consuming products with the word “cannabis” in the name for fear of getting high.

 

Coming from the Washington retail cannabis market, another question we often receive is, “Is this product made using cannabis? I don’t want to get high”. While we do create many completely THC-free products, we also fully understand and appreciate the value of the entourage effect – which very much includes at least trace quantities of THC (though never more than 0.3% total). From our experience as well as from clinically-conducted research, there is nothing comparable to the power of the full plant. We believe that people deserve and can have it all: the complete truth about the science and chemistry behind their products, as well as the confidence that something they try has the potential to help them, without leaving them feeling intoxicated.