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At the start of 2018, the removal of cannabidiol (CBD) from the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) banned substances list went into effect. This change prompted an inquiry about the rules regarding CBD in other sports organizations. While many cover the topic of marijuana in sports, we were curious as to how sports organizations handle CBD, if at all.

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a chemical compound found naturally in the cannabis plant. When sourced from hemp, CBD oil contains less than 0.3% THC, which is the compound that causes a euphoric high that cannabis is infamous for. CBD does not get you high; instead, it is being studied for a variety of health benefits. When sourced properly, hemp-derived CBD oil is legal in the United States.

The WADA is the first major sports organization to acknowledge CBD as a compound separate from marijuana. Some leagues look as if cannabis reform is in the future, while others cannot be budged. Here’s a look at six top sports organizations and their views on CBD.

WADA

In August 2016, UFC fighter Nate Diaz spoke candidly about vaping CBD at a UFC 202 post-fight press conference. In response, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) issued Diaz a public warning the use of a prohibited substance. Since January 1, 2018, however, athletes like Diaz can be as outspoken about CBD as they’d like.

WADA Removes CBD as a Prohibited Substance

“Cannabidiol is no longer prohibited.” This statement, released by WADA in September 2017, is the first of its kind in the history of competitive sports. With this decision, WADA has given thousands of athletes the opportunity to use CBD as a natural alternative without the fear of consequence.

Created by the International Olympic Committee, WADA unifies global anti-doping policies. Organizations that use the WADA policy include the International Olympic Committee, the International Paralympic Committee, all International Federations, and over 200 National Anti-Doping Organizations, including USADA. USADA has advocated for the adoption of WADA policy by collegiate and professional sports leagues, although this change has yet to be embraced.

The modified WADA document does caution athletes to be aware of the THC levels in the CBD products they are using. The document states, “Synthetic cannabidiol is not a cannabimimetic; however, cannabidiol extracted from cannabis plants may also contain varying concentrations of THC, which remains a prohibited substance” (source).

WADA’s threshold for THC is 150 nanograms (ng) per milliliter (ml), which was raised from 15ng/ml in 2013. This is the highest THC threshold compared to the collegiate and professional sports leagues discussed here. In terms of recreational substances, WADA has been progressive. Dr. Alan Vernec, the agency’s medical director, told the LA Times, “It’s a very active process that … is always open to debate and is discussed regularly.”

With its significant impact on the global sports community, it is our hope that WADA’s decision will prompt other sports organizations to follow its lead on CBD regulations.

NCAA and CBD

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) regulates athletes across over 1,200 institutions, conferences, and organizations. This sports organization is known for having the strictest marijuana testing threshold in comparison not only to other sports organizations but to employers such as the Federal Aviation Administration and the U.S. military. The NCAA testing threshold for marijuana is 5 ng/ml and took effect on Aug. 1, 2013.

Cannabidiol is not listed on the NCAA 2018-19 Banned Drugs List. However, the list states, “Any substance that is chemically related to one of the above classes, even if it is not listed as an example, is also banned!” (The exclamation point is included.) It is under our assumption that CBD is considered “chemically related” to tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, and is, therefore, a banned substance.

This was confirmed recently when Auburn University recruit CJ Harris was told he is ineligible to play football due to taking CBD oil for his seizures. From everything we read about CJ’s story, it seemed to be the NCAA simply doesn’t understand the difference between hemp and marijuana.

NCAA’s Changing Approach

In 2014, the NCAA passed legislation that reduced the penalty for a positive marijuana test from a full season to half a season. This is less of a penalty than a positive test for performance-enhancing drugs such as steroids or human growth hormone (HGH).

Regarding this change in legislation, a representative for the NCAA stated, “Street drugs are not performance-enhancing in nature, and this change will encourage schools to provide student-athletes the necessary rehabilitation” (Source). This reflects the NCAA’s changing approach to recreational drugs such as marijuana and the shift in focus from punishment to drug education and rehabilitation.

NCAA and WADA Policy

During a meeting in December of 2017, the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports (CSMAS) voted on a recommendation that would modify the NCAA’s banned drug classes to reflect the prohibited list established by the WADA. Under this change, the cannabinoids class would only include marijuana; CBD would not be prohibited. This recommendation will need to see support from the NCAA governing members if it is to move forward.

Without the information to determine the permissibility of CBD, we are left to conclude that the use of CBD is banned in the NCAA. It appears, at this time, that the NCAA does not feel the pressure to acknowledge CBD as either a potential health supplement or a banned substance.

For students seeking more information regarding the use of CBD, the NCAA states, “Before consuming any nutritional/dietary supplement product, review the product with the appropriate or designated athletics department staff!”

Sports Organizations

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NFL

National Football League (NFL) players experience an array of painful, oftentimes debilitating, injuries. For players both active and retired, opiates and anti-inflammatories are commonplace. In March 2017, 1,800 former NFL players sued the NFL for breaking federal drug laws in order to keep players on the field (source). The abuse of painkillers and other drugs by NFL teams is drawing public attention as an increasing number of athletes are stepping forward.

To avoid the nationwide epidemic of opioid addiction and seek a more natural solution, cannabis is becoming a more widely accepted alternative. There are many current and former NFL players who are not only proponents of marijuana but are pushing for the research of medicinal cannabis and, in particular, CBD.

Under the NFL Players Association’s (NFLPA) Policy and Program on Substances of Abuse, delta 9-THC-carboxylic acid, or marijuana, is banned at a threshold of 35 ng/ml, which was raised from 15 ng/ml in 2014. While not specifically listed under this policy, CBD is considered a product of cannabis and is also banned.

NFL’s Response to the Push for Cannabis

NFL commissioner Rodger Goodell opposes the use of recreational marijuana but says he is willing to listen to the league’s medical advisors on the potential benefit of medicinal cannabis.

The current NFL collective bargaining agreement, which is the agreement between the players’ union and management council, expires in 2020. Health and safety are key issues that are discussed during this negotiation and it is predicted that the issue of medicinal cannabis will be presented. This agreement presents the opportunity for both sides to either acknowledge CBD as a separate compound from THC or address the legality issue of cannabis as a whole.

Until then, we expect more players to speak out about the issue. Here’s what former players have to say:

“It’s time for the NFL to change its archaic standards to better protect its players. For too long, I’ve watched my teammates and good friends battle with opioid addiction and leave the game with a long road still ahead; it’s time to make a change.” – Eugene Monroe, former offensive tackle (source)

“I want to provide my old teammates and opponents with a possible remedy to their pain and struggles while helping current players possibly avoid what may lay ahead in their post-football careers.” – Jake Plummer, former quarterback (source)

“I think in due time, the NFL is going to realize that CBD is not a performance-enhancing drug. If anything, it helps with anxiety, helps with concentration, it helps with pain.” – Ebenezer Ekuban, former defensive end (source)

American Sports

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NBA

In an UNINTERRUPTED documentary, former National Basketball Association (NBA) commissioner David Stern, who tightened the league’s stance on marijuana during his time as commissioner from 1984-2014, made headlines when he stated that medical marijuana “probably should be removed from the banned substance list.”

In response to Stern’s statement, NBA executive vice president of communications Mike Bass stated, “While (current NBA) commissioner (Adam) Silver has said that we are interested in better understanding the safety and efficacy of medical marijuana, our position remains unchanged regarding the use by current NBA players of marijuana for recreational purposes” (source).

Bass was referring to comments made by Silver in August 2017, in which he stated that the league is “open” to the legalization of medical marijuana as long as the science supports its benefit.

Cannabis has been a banned substance in the NBA since 1999. Players are randomly tested four times throughout the year and must not exceed the THC threshold of 15ng/ml. If a player tests positive for marijuana, he must comply with treatment and subsequent testing. A second offense results in a $25,000 fine. Any following violations result in a five-game suspension (five games for a third offense, ten games for a fourth, etc.).

Influence of the NBA Players Association

The most recent NBA collective bargaining agreement, which is determined by the NBA and National Basketball Players Association (NBPA), was agreed upon in December 2016 and runs through the 2023-24 season. According to sources involved in the negotiation, marijuana was not a topic of discussion and remains a banned substance (source).

“I think we’ve got to change the collection bargaining agreement,” Stern said in the documentary, “and let you [the player] do what’s legal in your state.”

Al Harrington (former power forward) has been a strong proponent of the use of medical marijuana. Harrington has developed marijuana businesses in three states and hopes to show the NBA the medical benefits of marijuana. He has spoken to NBPA President Chris Paul about the possibility of the union making a push toward removing medical marijuana as a banned substance (source).

It appears the NBA is open to the idea of removing medical marijuana from the banned substances list; however, the league needs more scientific documentation before making any changes. It is also likely the NBPA will need to initiate this change as the league will not likely make it on their own.

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MLB

Since the Major League Baseball (MLB) and the MLB Players Association (MLBPA) came to their first Joint Drug Agreement in 2002, the MLB has been lenient towards the use of marijuana. The focus of the MLB’s drug policy remains on performance-enhancing drugs, not cannabis.

Under the current Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, major league players do not participate in random drug tests for drugs of abuse, such as cannabis. Instead, players are tested upon a reasonable cause of use. Additionally, if a player exceeds the THC threshold of 50ng/ml, they are not likely subject to suspension. The player will most likely be subject treatment and/or fines, which cannot exceed $35,000 per violation.

With the tolerance of cannabis use in the major league, one would expect to see more proponents of CBD in the organization. David Wells (former pitcher) is one of the only MLB athletes, both former and current, that is an advocate of CBD oil.

In an interview with ThePostGame’s David Katz, Wells said, “I wish I knew about it back when I played because I would’ve been all over it. I would’ve took those risks.”

Discrepancy in Punishment

In the MLB, there is a strong discrepancy between the punishment imposed on major league players and minor league players for the use of cannabis. The MLBPA has opposed harsh punishment for marijuana use, but minor league players are not protected by the union. Because of this, the MLB sets the drug policies for minor league players.

The Minor League Baseball testing program suspends for marijuana use: one positive test results in admittance into a Drug Rehabilitation Program, a second positive test results in a 50-game suspension, a third positive test results in a 100-game suspension, and a fourth positive test results in a permanent ban from organized baseball. The MLB is the only major league sports organization to implement a ban on the use of marijuana.

The MLBPA appears to be the driving factor in the MLB’s lenient approach to marijuana use. The association’s willingness to remove CBD from the list of drugs of abuse has not been discussed. As of now, both the MLB and the MLBPA seem to be content with the current Joint Drug Agreement and there does not seem to be enough push from the players to consider a change in regards to CBD.

American Sports

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NHL

In terms of physical demand, hockey is high on the list. In addition to being a full-contact sport, brawls on the ice are a major draw for spectators. Similar to the NFL, the NHL team doctors answer to the taxing game of hockey by prescribing painkillers and other pain-masking medications.

Unlike the NFL, however, cannabis is not on the National Hockey League’s (NHL) list of banned substances as it is not considered performance enhancing. However, this does not mean that the league condones the use of marijuana. Players are still tested for cannabinoids under the NHL/NHL Players Association (NHLPA) Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health Program.

If an NHL player tests positive for cannabinoids, there is no discipline. Rather, the results are sent to the NHL/NHLPA committee anonymously for review and the committee uses the results to determine testing practices in the future. Only if high levels of cannabinoids are found in the system is a player subject to a mandatory assessment by a doctor.

For retired NHL player Riley Cote (former enforcer), leaving cannabis off the performance enhancing list is not enough. Rather than turning a blind eye to marijuana use, Cote wants the league to recognize cannabis as a medical solution.

“[Cannabis] is a tool and it needs to be treated with respect…. It’s all about increasing quality of life. It’s about helping these guys wake up the next morning, where they can feel functional enough, good enough, [that] they can enjoy their family and not worry about the pain and anxiety — that vicious cycle that generally leads to mental health issues” – Riley Cote, former enforcer (source) The Prohibited Substances List negotiated by the NHL and NHLPA reflects the WADA’s list of performance-enhancing substances (source).

With influence from the WADA, it is possible that we will see additional reform to the rules surrounding cannabinoids. As of now, the push from players is in respect to medical marijuana, not CBD; however, a change in cannabinoid policy will be to the benefit of THC as well as CBD. With the most lenient rules regarding cannabinoids in major league sports, the NHL could lead the way in professional sports in regards to CBD.

Conclusion

There are many in the world of sports that are proponents for the removal of CBD from their league’s banned substances list. Athletes are acknowledging the medical benefits of cannabis and are using their platform to promote change in their leagues. However, it will take the support of many to prompt reform, which is difficult when active athletes fear the repercussions of speaking out on a controversial topic such as marijuana.  CBD and hemp are even considered controversial though they do not cause a “high”.

With more states legalizing the use of medicinal and recreational marijuana, and with an increasing acceptance of marijuana by the public, these organizations will be forced to reevaluate their policies in the upcoming years.

Removing CBD from the organization’s banned substances list is a plausible first step in cannabis reform. Acknowledging CBD as a compound separate from marijuana would provide players with a holistic alternative to addictive painkillers without the high. It would also eliminate the organizations’ shared challenge of catering to the varied state legalization laws, as CBD is legal in all 50 states. If a league does decide to move in the direction of legalization, wouldn’t CBD be a step in the right direction?


This article originally appeared on MadeByHemp.com

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Anyone unfamiliar with cannabidiol, or CBD, may be surprised to learn its association with weight loss. After all, the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) found in cannabis has long been known to do the exact opposite; stimulate appetite. However, now that medicinal cannabis is legal in more parts of the world, new research (linked below) has found that industrial hemp-derived CBD may have an effect on weight. How you ask? Read on and find out.

What is CBD and How Does it Work?

Cannabinoids are compounds found in cannabis, and CBD is one of over 100 known today! After THC, CBD is the second most plentiful cannabinoid, composing up to 40 percent of some cannabis extracts. While THC is known for its intoxicating effects, CBD doesn’t get you high.

Studies have shown that CBD may offer its benefits by stimulating certain receptors in our body’s endocannabinoid system and prolonging the effects of the “bliss molecule” anandamide. By allowing anandamide to remain in the body longer, it doesn’t just help soothe soreness but also helps in other areas as well. CBD may also support the body by helping to decrease the number of cytokines, which are inflammatory molecules.

What does this all have to do with weight loss? Keep on reading…

CBD Weight Loss

 

4 Ways CBD May Help with Weight Loss

1. CBD’s Effects on Food Intake

Unlike THC, CBD does not make you hungry. Though there haven’t been many studies on the effects of CBD on weight loss, one study found CBD could actually reduce food intake. Researchers compared three cannabinoids and found that CBD minimized total food consumption in rats. It works by helping to block the overflow of neurotransmitters, which leads to binge-eating behaviors, thus regulating appetite and weight. However, as these tests were done on rats, more research on the effects of CBD on human appetite is still needed.

2. CBD to Combat Stress-Eating

Many people turn to food to help them deal with stress. The endorphins that stress eaters get from eating unhealthy comfort foods may effectively battle stress hormones, but it does so at the cost of weight gain, as well as other health problems. Because CBD has been found to help ease stress and anxiety, it may curb this behavior and prevent you from putting on unwanted pounds due to stress-eating.

3. CBD and Breaking Down Fat

One study published in the Journal Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry found that CBD stimulates the genes and proteins that help break down fat. CBD speeds up “fat browning”, which is the process that turns the white fat cells linked with obesity into healthier brown fat cells that generate energy. The researchers also found that CBD may increase the activity of mitochondria, boosting the body’s ability to burn calories while decreasing the number of proteins involved in fat cell generation.

4. CBD to Manage Blood Sugar

Sugar is a highly addictive substance that can wreak havoc on your health and weight. Once diabetes develops, the body becomes more resistant to insulin, causing more fat absorption. CBD has been found to minimize insulin resistance, decreasing fat build-up.

How to Use CBD Oil for Weight Loss

Though more studies need to be done on CBD’s effects on human weight management, CBD is quite safe and has very few side effects. While the findings of recent research are promising, it’s important to note that these studies are still in their early stages. However, when coupled with a healthy diet and exercise, CBD oil could very well lead to faster, healthier weight loss.


This article was originally published on MadeBy Hemp

Featured Image Credits: Pixabay


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Everyone reacts to hemp’s unique flavor a little differently; some say it’s shockingly unpleasant while others love it. In this blog, you’ll learn why hemp tastes the way it does, what you can do to improve the taste, and what products are flavored to taste great.

Different Flavors for Different Brands

When you swap between different brands of hemp oil, don’t expect the flavor to be the same. Not only does hemp’s taste differ between harvests, but you can also bet it will differ between farms.

Hemp oil is commonly sourced from farms in Europe and the United States. As you can imagine from the sheer span of these locations, farmers are bound to use different seeds and methods.

Hemp Flavor = Terpenes

When you taste a new food for the first time, naturally you connect that taste to the food.

If you bite into an orange and it tastes like an apple, you’d be pretty confused, right?

With hemp, our general recommendation is to go in not expecting the flavor to be a certain way. Here’s why.

In general, hemp tastes like a handful of grass and dirt and is often described as “earthy.” However, hemp’s flavor is not as straightforward or predictable as other foods, because a significant part of the flavor (and aroma) comes from terpenes.

Terpenes are a large, diverse class of organic compounds produced in plants. Essential oils are, essentially, terpenes. That’s where the therapeutic properties, strong aroma and flavors come from. You can rest assure that every bottle of peppermint oil will be nearly identical in flavor and smell, but with hemp, there are more terpenes at play. You can’t plan for them.

Whatever terpenes develop in the plant will determine how the extracted oil tastes and smells. This is why a lot of hemp oil product manufacturers choose to add in natural terpene flavor profiles so the oil is as consistent as possible, without tossing in added flavoring. Terpenes are touted for their many therapeutic uses and are said to enhance the overall benefit of cannabinoids, an effect known as the entourage effect.

Even with added terpenes, depending on your unique taste buds, you may still find the flavor to be unpleasant.

How to Make Your Hemp Taste Better

Over the years, we’ve learned a few tricks to make your daily hemp oil regimen more pleasant. If you’re sensitive to earthy flavors, pay close attention to our recommendations below.

First, assure that you’re taking the hemp oil supplement correctly. All oils and tinctures should be taken sublingually, meaning you place it under your tongue, hold it for about a minute, then swallow.

You May Also Like: How to Take CBD Hemp Oil

Coconut Oil

Hemp oil is, well, an oil. It doesn’t play well with water, so mixing it into your favorite drink may not work the way you’d expect. It’s best to play along with hemp’s oily texture by mixing it with another great-tasting oil.

The best one we’ve found? Coconut oil.

There are a few ways to go about mixing them, but here’s our most common suggestion.

  1. Grab a spoon
  2. Scoop coconut oil into the spoon — the quantity is really up to you
  3. Dispense your hemp oil into the center of the coconut oil
  4. (Optional) Add another thin layer of coconut oil on top of the hemp oil, making a little coconut-hemp sandwich.
  5. Place the spoon’s contents under your tongue
  6. Keep the oil there for 60-90 seconds (the longer, the better)
  7. Swallow any remaining oil

Juice

Another, simpler way to hide hemp flavor is with your favorite juice. You may want to try a few different ones until you find the best concoction for you. Personally, I prefer apple cider if the season is right.

  1. Dispense your hemp oil underneath your tongue.
  2. Wait 60-90 seconds.
  3. Drink juice as you swallow the oil. If you do this quickly, it’s even more painless flavorless.

Do you have a different secret for making hemp oil taste better? Let us know in the comments below, we’d love to hear it. Your suggestions could help others!


This article was originally published on MadeByHemp

The potential benefits of CBD are a prominent topic of research and discussion. As we explain the effects of CBD, it is important to discuss the different types of extracts. Cannabidiol (CBD) is extracted from the hemp plant in a variety of forms. The type of extract used in a product is shown to impact the effect CBD has on the body, and it’s important for every CBD user to understand the differences between them.

Full Spectrum, Broad Spectrum, Isolate, and PCR Oil are four common forms of CBD extract. They vary in the type of cannabinoids and synergistic plant extracts they contain. To help you find and choose the right product for your needs, we’ll look closely at each type of extract, understand the differences between them and discover how these differences influence the intake of CBD.

CBD Isolate

CBD isolate is cannabidiol in its purest form. To produce this extract, CBD is isolated and then refined to strip out any additional cannabinoids, terpenes, and plant components found in the hemp plant. The final product is a fine white powder that contains around 99% cannabidiol.

CBD Isolate

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Isolates contain only one cannabinoid: CBD. This means that CBD isolate does not contain any THC, a psychoactive cannabinoid responsible for getting you “high”, making CBD isolate a perfect option for those who seek a THC-free product.

Isolate has no taste or odor and can be used to formulate many varieties of CBD products, such as edibles and topicals. Since CBD isolate is around 99% pure, you have control over exactly how much is added to a product (a milligram of CBD isolate equates to about a milligram of CBD).

When it comes to products like vape juice or tinctures, it’s easy to recognize them as made with CBD isolate if the color is very clear. Although, other ingredients can be added that darken the liquid.

PCR – Phytocannabinoid Rich

Phytocannabinoid Rich or PCR is a term that’s most often used to describe hemp oil containing a wide array of different cannabinoids and zero THC. In other words, PCR is a common alternative term for broad spectrum hemp oil. However, it’s important to note that PCR is often used loosely and could refer to a full spectrum product, which contains up to 0.3% THC.

Full Spectrum or Whole Plant Hemp Extract

Full Spectrum or whole plant hemp extract keeps the full properties of the hemp plant intact. In addition to CBD, this extract includes terpenes, cannabinoids, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, phytonutrients and any other materials that are extracted from the hemp plant. The hemp plant naturally contains over 100 cannabinoids that, similar to CBD, provide their own unique benefit.

Full Spectrum Hemp Extract

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The full spectrum extract contains all of the available benefits within the hemp material. By keeping all of the plant components, whole plant hemp extract benefits from the synergistic properties between the components. Scientists have found that plant components interact with one another to create an enhanced effect (compared to the component alone).

According to a theory known as the entourage effect, CBD and other components of hemp work together to improve absorption and effect in the body. These compounds influence each other’s function for a sum greater than its parts.

Since the natural cannabinoids remain intact, whole plant hemp extract contains small levels of THC. However, in order to be considered hemp, whole plant hemp extract must have less than 0.3% THC. This is a trace amount that does not create a high.

Broad Spectrum

Broad Spectrum CBD is basically full spectrum CBD, containing an array of cannabinoids and terpenes, except it doesn’t contain THC. It’s a great option if you want to maximize the benefits of CBD isolate but without the risk of failing a drug test. Broad Spectrum CBD is created by putting products through an additional process to isolate and eliminate traces of THC while still preserving the other natural cannabinoids and terpenes. Because multiple cannabinoids and other compounds are preserved in Broad Spectrum CBD, it can provide the enhanced benefits of the entourage effect, without the psychoactive effects of THC.

An example of this is the Hemp Oil Care tincture, which is full-spectrum but is THC-free. Let us explain the process of manufacturing this product.

CBD Broad Spectrum

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The Hemp Oil Care tincture starts as a full-spectrum oil. There are various methods of extracting full-spectrum hemp oil from the hemp plant. While CO2 extraction is deemed the cleanest method, other methods, such as solvent extraction, may be utilized. However extracted, the final product will be an oil with varying amounts of THC no greater than 0.3%.

At this point, most manufacturers would combine this oil with several other ingredients or use as is. Using technology called centrifugal partition chromatography (CPC), the manufacturer of the Hemp Oil Care tincture takes an additional step.

CPC is a tool for purifying cannabis extracts. CPC technology separates each compound to remove unwanted compounds, such as THC.

During CPC, raw oil is run through a centrifuge. The oil is pushed through a series of cells that contain a mixture of liquids such as water, methanol, or heptane. Each compound diffuses into one of the liquids depending on their affinity to it; the compounds separate into different cells along the way. The compact CPC unit uses over one thousand extraction cells in a high-speed spinning disk pack to separate and purify the desired compound. Each cell increases the purity of the desired compound until a high purity product is created.

Additional CBD isolate is added to the final product to increase the potency.

THC or no THC?

If CPC technology is available, you may be wondering why all products are not THC-free. THC, the intoxicating compound of the cannabis plant, raises concern for those who do not wish to experience the intoxicating effects of marijuana or must partake in routine drug testing.

While beneficial for these reasons, THC is also being studied for its interaction with CBD in what we have referred to as the entourage effect.

THC Free CBD OIl

A Note About Broad Spectrum CBD or THC-Free Full-Spectrum Products

Please note not all products with a label saying full-spectrum or THC-free will be manufactured in this manner. We suggest you be wary of products that claim to be full-spectrum and THC-free. Many times, a THC-free “full-spectrum” product contains only CBD isolate. When in doubt, reference the manufacturer’s COA to determine the levels of cannabinoids in the product.

Conclusion

With CBD isolates, you receive the sole benefits of cannabidiol. In comparison, full spectrum or whole plant hemp extract provides the synergistic benefits of the whole hemp plant, while PCR and broad spectrum CBD allows you to enjoy the health benefits of cannabinoids without the psychoactive effects of THC. Whether you choose CBD isolate, PCR, full spectrum or broad spectrum is dependent upon your health goals. All have proven benefit in certain instances.

As the scientific community learns more about CBD, we are beginning to understand how CBD interacts with the body along with other plant components. Do you have additional questions about using whole plant hemp extract versus CBD isolate? Leave a comment below!

 

This article first appeared on MadeByHemp.com

It’s hard not to browse a feed, turn on the television, or read a magazine without coming across news about CBD. CBD is a powerful compound found in hemp. While hemp-based products are soaring with popularity, using them was taboo just a couple of years ago. For over a century, the product was outlawed throughout the United States. Yet, this crop was a source of food, clothing, and medicine for our ancestors who settled in this country. So, what led to the prohibition on hemp and inevitably, the lifting of the ban? Here is a comprehensive look at the complicated history of hemp.

History of Hemp Origins

The hemp and human connection dates back as far as 8000 BCE. Archeologists recovered hemp cloths in regions associated with ancient Mesopotamia (present-day Iran and Iraq). Indigenous people used the durable hemp fibers to create textiles. Meanwhile, those who lived in present-day China and Taiwan used the product seeds and oil for food sources and to make pottery.

While hemp flourished in the areas that we know today as Asia, the hardy plant can be grown in a variety of climates. As our ancestors migrated west, they brought hemp along with them. The plant was used by our ancestors to make shelter, sails, food, and eventually, medicine.

Hemp was held in such high regard that ancient texts, The Vedas, dubbed it one the five essential plants. Records indicate the herb was christened with the name, “sacred grass.”

Early civilians grew dependent on the product. In fact, King Henry VIII of England fined farmers who didn’t cultivate the crop. It was imperative that our ancestors brought the product along with them on their journey overseas. It was in the New World that the value of hemp would hit an all-time high and a near-fatal low.

History of Hemp in the New World

Hemp made its way to the New World in 1606. By 1616, the first settlement of Jamestown was established. The first line of action was to transform the fertile soils of modern Virginia into robust hemp farms. In 1632, the Virginia Assembly mandated that farmers grow the product on the farms–a practice that would continue as our ancestors colonized New England throughout the 1700s.

The plant was of such importance that hemp was considered a legal form of tender in early settlements. Even the Declaration of Independence was drafted on hemp paper!

Throughout the 19th century, America continued to rely on this durable plant. Congress was as far as enacting a law in 1841 that required the Navy to purchase hemp from domestic farmers.

The hemp industry was booming, requiring innovations in technology such as the hemp decorticator. This machine would strip the fibers and stalks off the hemp plant, making manufacturing more efficient. It also revolutionized the way we handle agriculture to this day.

By 1850, hemp was listed in the United States Pharmacopeia. In this important historical text, they recorded the uses of the product for everything from hysteria to gout to tetanus. It wasn’t long before hemp was included in many over-the-counter products. All of these practices would continue until 1937. That was when a century-long prohibition went into effect, almost erasing the history of hemp forever.

History: The Path to Prohibition

At the beginning of the 20th century, the New World experienced a cultural shift. Settlers leaned toward more conservative values. In the early 1900s, the use of mind-altering substances was frowned upon. These outlooks led to the prohibition of alcohol. Simultaneously, these actions helped foster the growth of a stigma that would bleed over into the cannabis industry.

Our ancestors didn’t have the technology in the 1930s that we have today. They couldn’t distinguish that hemp was a plant species in the cannabis genus. No one had a way of differentiating between hemp and marijuana. People figured out that smoking a cannabis plant will sometimes create psychoactive effects. Early civilians didn’t know they were smoking marijuana, not hemp.

Around the time of a national cultural shift, California was undergoing a local one as well. During this era, there was political unrest in Mexico. Many Mexicans were migrating to the border, and they were smoking cannabis recreationally.

Playing on the nation’s fear of immoral behavior, and in an attempt to thwart the colonization of immigrants, California became the first state to lay a hefty tax on hemp items. They signed into law the Marihuana Act of 1937.

With cotton being sewn for textiles, twine being used for rope, and the rise of pharmaceuticals, growing the product wasn’t worth the tax. Eventually, hemp production started to slow down. By 1957, the last commercial hemp field was planted in Wisconsin. In 1970, growing hemp became illegal.

Hemp Becomes Illegal

The Controlled Substance Act was drafted in 1970 as a replacement to the 1956 Narcotics Control Act that cracked down on drug arrests. Most notably, the Controlled Substance Act put drugs in tiers based on how dangerous they were to the community. Cannabis was declared a schedule 1 drug, making punishment comparable to those who possess heroin, LSD, and cocaine. This is perhaps one of the worst things to happen in the history of hemp.

Since cannabis landed on the list, that meant hemp was treated the same as marijuana. This ban would take place just as science and technology would hit an evolutionary boom. While scientists discovered CBD and THC in 1946, they didn’t realize how these chemical compounds potentially interacted with the body.

In 1964, scientists defined the molecular structures of both THC and CBD. It was in those moments that the differences between hemp and marijuana started to become clear. Dr. Raphael Mechoulam concluded that cannabis plants with high concentrations of THC caused psychoactive reactions.

Whereas, plants with low levels of THC seemed to have elevated amounts of CBD. Dr. Mechoulam noted CBD didn’t exhibit euphoric side effects but may have other benefits.

With advances in technology covering all of our ancestors’ uses of hemp, the plant wasn’t missed. Coupled with the War on Drugs and propaganda against cannabis, the product was merely an afterthought until the end of the 20th century.

History of Hemp

Image Credits: Pixabay

Industrial Hemp Movement Begins

In 1998, the very state that closed the door on the product was the first to reopen it. California enacted a medical marijuana program. This gesture would open the door for hemp legalization a crack and therefore one of the best things to happen in the history of hemp. However, it would take almost 20 years to bust it down.

By 2012, several states enacted medical marijuana laws. With each passing state, education about cannabis became more available. People started to see firsthand that those using hemp-based products didn’t act high.

Simultaneously, the opioid crisis grew to epic proportions. The very products that were created to save people from cannabis were killing them. Desperate for an alternative, millions got behind the hemp movement. President Obama couldn’t ignore the demand and signed a 2014 Farm Bill that called for a pilot farming program.

Following the 2016 election, many perceptions of hemp changed. With medical marijuana becoming legal in over half of the nation, it became time to readdress how we categorize the two separate cannabis plants.

At the end of the 2018 calendar, a new Farm Bill entered Congress. With a hemp pen, Mitch McConnell lifted the federal ban on hemp cultivation. Thanks to the new Farm Bill, the product was downgraded from a schedule 1 controlled substance to a schedule 5 under the Controlled Substances Act. Now, hemp-derived products are legal in all 50 states.

The Future

Many companies are taking advantage of the ban lift on hemp and growing interest in CBD products from consumers. CBD products are popping up in everything from supplements to cosmetics to pet treats. Suffice to say; the sky is the limit for hemp.

While the product is no longer criminalized, it is still under a watchful eye. The Justice Department no longer holds jurisdiction over hemp cultivation. It is now regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). All hemp products must contain 0.3% THC or less. Otherwise, it will be classified as marijuana and you run the risk of breaking local laws.

Currently, CBD products are not regulated. However, the demand for hemp-based products continues to grow. That means stricter guidelines and transparency will be required of anyone attempting to sell hemp products in the near future. Until that day comes, you should buy products from reputable brands you can trust.


This article first appeared on MadeByHemp.com

 

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