CBD (Cannabidiol), one of the phytocannabinoids found in the hemp plant (cannabis sativa), is all the rage right now.
An increasing number of people are shouting and sharing health results on their Facebook and I am getting emails from companies I have never heard of, offering me to be an affiliate for a high commission. The CBD market is expected to grow by 700% come 2020 according to Forbes, but I predict this trend won’t last…
Phytocannabinoids are plant-based cannabinoid compounds which support the Endocannabinoid system (ECS): an important biological system expressed throughout the nervous system that orchestrates communication between other bodily systems, such as your respiratory, digestive, immune and cardiovascular systems. The ECS does this via receptors found in every organ, including your skin. The ECS has been neglected by most medical schools and professionals and partially only been discovered in the 1990s.
Whole Hemp May Be Better Than Isolated CBD
But note, the hemp plant contains over 100 different phytocannabinoids, of which CBD is only ONE!
Once again, your superfood biohacking organic GMO-free supplement companies that make products infused with crystals are isolating a single compound from a plant and stripping it away from the rest of its family.
Those of us in botanical medicine understand that the sum of all the parts of the plant is greater than any one single ingredient. Natural products that escape laboratory confinement are WHOLE HERBS, not extracts. What you have is natures intelligence effortlessly organising a complex design of constituents which completes a substance with a foundational microbiome and effective holistic action that is welcomed and absorbed by the body.
“The Entourage Effect” (termed by Dr. Ethan Russo) means having ALL the phytocannabinoids and terpenes (hydrocarbonic compounds in the essential oils of plants and flowers) present to give rise to full clinical and meaningful benefits.
While CBD may be the most dominant phytocannabinoid in hemp, the other phytocannabinoids are essential to nourish and support the ECS in the body.
Two Types of Endocannabinoid Receptors
- cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1)
- cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2).
Both these receptors are found throughout your body.
One cannabinoid your body produces is called anandamide — a nod to the word "ananda," the Sanskrit word for "bliss," as it attaches to the same CB1 receptors that THC attaches to.
Basically, through meditation and other bliss promoting practices, you can make your own endogenous anandamide, rather than relying on an unsustainable source like weed.
Sure CBD helps the CB1 receptor, but what about the CB2 receptor? CBD does not touch CB2.
The CB2 receptor controls inflammatory cycling, pain signaling, insulin sensitivity and bone building. Clearly essential biological functions of which CBD does NOTHING for.
Better get more holistic.
We need a CB2 agonist. Luckily, if we include the whole family of phytocannabinoids, a full spectrum hemp oil contains these other phytocannabinoids that compliment towards what CBD cannot do alone.
We must get off this single magic bullet bandwagon. We must appreciate the full role of all these phytocannabinoid as a whole and that they compliment each other.
CBD is not the answer to support the endocannabinoid system as a whole.
The story is much bigger than just CBD - clinically, scientifically and legally (Big Pharma has patented isolated CBD so others cannot sell it at a dietary supplement).
Endocannabinoid Levels and Your Health
Endocannabinoid deficiency has been identified in people who have:
- irritable bowel syndrome
- pain and inflammation
- neurological conditions
- Stress, anxiety and insomnia
- ocular health
- bone health
- neurological conditions
- a variety of treatment-resistant conditions.
They've also discovered there's an intimate relationship between your ECS and your omega-3 : omega-6 ratio status.
Your Endocannabinoid Systems Role in Your Gut Health
Your ECS is interlinked with the brain-gut-immune system pathway. Communication occurs between your endocannabinoid system and your gut microbiome (the bacteria in your gut).
According to Carl Germano, researchers have also discovered the ECS controls:
- Motility in the gut
- Intestinal inflammation
- Abdominal pain
- Gut permeability
- Tolerance to antigens
The ECS also reduces the activity of the stress pathways, including the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) pathways. Anandamide, specifically, participates in the immunological response in the gut.
Finally, Hemp is legal in the USA. Donald Trump signed a farm bill at the end of 2018. Australia will probably follow this year.
Now academic and medical institutions can study it. Now consumers have access to an important medicinal plant.
Hemp oil with full-spectrum phytocannabinoids benefits health when used in the right situations and the right way. Always remain natural and holistic.
Hemp as a Herb in Ayurveda
Hemp (Cannabis sativa), known as "Bhanga" in sanskrit, is used in three principal forms:
- Ganja - The flowering heads, branches or shoots of the female plant are pressed into compact masses and mainly used for smoking (more recreationally).
- Bhanga - Dried leaves and female flower heads is ground up and used as a therapeutic herb. This is added to ayurvedic formulas or mixed with water or milk to consume a syrupy drink.
- Caras - Resin that oozes out from the leaves of the plant and rolled into pills. Like hashish, this has no taste and is chiefly used for smoking.
- In small doses and taken in the right preparation, the plant is antispasmodic, analgesic, stomachic, sedative.
- In moderate doses it is a good sedative.
- It is habit forming and in large doses, it produces mental exhaustion, intoxication, double consciousness, delusion, depression (lowers dopamine), loss of memory, emaciation and impotence.
Action: Astringnet, appetiser and narcotic.
- Rasa (taste): Katu (pungent)
- Gunas (quaities): Laghu (light) and tikshna (sharp and penetrating).
- Virya (Potency): Usna (hot)
- Vipaka (Post digestive effect): Madhura (sweet)
- Doshas: pacifies Kapha but aggravate Pitta.
Buy High Quality Hemp
- Pesticide and herbicide free
- Full-spectrum phytocannabinoids
- Grown from certified seeds and not hybrids with marijuana.
- Support companies that don't mention CBD on the front panel or quantify it in the Supplement Fact box.
Carl Germano and Dr. Joe Mercola