Even the world’s most seasoned tokers have experienced the overwhelming and frightening feeling of THC-induced anxiety. We’ve all taken a hit (or consumed an edible) too many, inadvertently thrusting our stoned minds into a vortex of bleak thoughts, or even raising unsubstantiated questions like why is everyone looking at me right now?
Thus, while cannabis has been proven to be beneficial for a wide range of medical conditions, one might assume that it doesn’t offer much relief for mood-related disorders like depression and anxiety.
In fact, most past research suggests that ganja has an adverse effect on these conditions. And, besides the veteran-backed emergence of treatment for PTSD, most states don’t allow physicians to recommend cannabis for these other types of mood disorders.
Regardless of those anecdotal inklings some cannabis users have about the terrifying effect pot can have on anxiety and depression, new research suggests that more patients may be seeking treatment for mood-related disorders than any other medical classification, including pain-related conditions.
In a recent study conducted by CB2 Insights, researchers found that over 34 percent of patients seeking medical cannabis were aiming to alleviate mood-related disorders like anxiety, depression, PTSD, and others. Pain-related conditions were a close second, encompassing 33 percent of the patients that took part in the evaluation.
“We went into this study with a clear mind, and we actually believed that pain would be at the top,” says Dan Thompson, the chief marketing officer of CB2 Insights. “We wanted to look at what the second, third, and fourth most prominent primary conditions were, and how big of a discrepancy there was between them. The fact that mood-related disorders bubbled to the top was a surprise to us, so the report kind of came just from that.”
In the report, CB2 Insights assessed nearly 500 patients across multiple states over a four-week period. The findings were essentially published to highlight the fact that, outside of PTSD, most states with medical legalization don’t list mood-related disorders as a qualifying condition.
Currently, only seven states and Washington DC allow certified healthcare practitioners to provide a medical recommendation for patients to treat any condition with cannabis, so long as the doc deems it an appropriate remedy.
In Massachusetts, one of the few states that actually allow physicians to endorse Mary Jane-use at their own discretion, Dr. Jordan Tishler believes he’s had substantial success in treating depression and anxiety with small doses of medical-grade greens.
A Doctor Who Knows How to Get Patients in the Right Mood
Dr. Tishler runs the New England-based medical cannabis clinic InhaleMD, and also founded the Association of Cannabis Specialists, an organization that promotes education and advocacy in regard to medical cannabis care. He’s also a firm believer that, in a small and controlled dose, THC-heavy flower can be extremely beneficial for patients suffering from depression and anxiety.
“If you use a lot of cannabis, it generally makes their mood or anxiety worse,” says Tishler, bluntly. “But on the other hand, if people use very small amounts of cannabis, we find it can actually benefit their mood and anxiety. So, my approach with patients is very low dose in the evening, which effectively creates a period of intoxication that dissipates over the course of the night, but the benefits to mood persists throughout the next day.”
To ensure that those suffering from anxiety and depression obtain proper treatment, Tishler gets extraordinarily specific with each patient. Although dispensaries are technically not obliged to follow a doctor’s orders when it comes to dosages, the Massachusetts-based cannabis specialist tells each patient exactly what to get, when to use it, and how to use it.
For mood-related disorders like anxiety and depression, he’ll often recommend a small dose of THC-laden bud right before bedtime.
“There are Benzos, which we try not give people too often because they can be highly dangerous,” Tishler told us. In that case, generally speaking, the low dose of cannabis in the evening is enough to replace the Benzos. And I’ve seen this. I’ve also seen people come in on Klonopin, and over time, we’re able to wean them right off of that.”
While he doesn’t necessarily subscribe to the idea that cannabis can fully replace antidepressant medication in every case, Tishler sees remarkable benefits to using medical-grade ganja as a supplement to reduce opioid dependencies and help deal with the negative side effects of SSRIs.
“The side effects to SSRIs include weight gain, the feeling of not having any joy, and there’s also a whole bunch of sexual side effects for both men and women. Interestingly, cannabis can help offset those side effects so that if you need to be on an SSRI… using cannabis as a supplement can make the whole thing work better,” he explains.
The Future of Research on Mood-Related Disorders and Medical Cannabis
One of the main issues with past studies on how cannabis impacts these two particular mood-related conditions is that doses were not typically controlled or administered properly. In turn, this created a stigma that cannabis has an adverse effect on anxiety and depression.
But to Tishler, all this means is that we need to conduct better research, and that starts with implementing more controlled dosing regimens.
“Particularly with regard to the mood disorders, the amount of cannabis is so critical,” he says. “I think that when we look at this older literature and see that the results are totally mixed, if we could go back and actually control what people are getting, then we would really be able to demonstrate that low doses are beneficial and higher doses are nonbeneficial. We’d be able to find that breakpoint.”
Unfortunately, as long as cannabis remains illegal on the federal level, it will be difficult to conduct this research in a proper manner. But according to Thompson of CB2 Insights, he believes that will likely change once Big Pharma – for better or for worse – finally situates itself in the budding cannabis space.
“They’ll either do so to protect themselves or as an understanding that it’s time to collaborate with it,” says Thompson. “Whatever the motivation, Big Pharma will absolutely enter the cannabis space.”
Although Thompson doesn’t necessarily believe cannabis will be a replacement for opioids, he does believe it can be used in tandem to reduce opioid usage. And the same goes for with antidepressants. “Trying to find that balance of how traditional Pharma can work with cannabis in an integrated treatment plan,” he says, “is certainly the future.”
The post Getting In the Mood: How Pot Could Change Depression And Anxiety Treatment appeared first on High Times.
1. What is CBD? What is CBD Oil?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a naturally occurring constituent of industrial hemp/cannabis. Its formula is C21H30O2 and it has a molecular mass of 314.4636. It is the most abundant non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis, and is being scientifically investigated for various reasons.
CBD oil is a cannabis oil (whether derived from marijuana or industrial hemp, as the word cannabis is the latin genus name for both) that has significant amounts of cannabidiol (CBD) contained within it. Our CBD products and extracts are derived from industrial hemp, so they could be considered CBD-rich hemp oil, hemp derived CBD oil, CBD-rich cannabis oil, or plainly “hemp extracts” since they typically contain much more than just CBD. Again, cannabis doesn’t mean marijuana, but is the genus name, and general umbrella term which all forms of marijuana and hemp fall under. The form of cannabis we use for our CBD and hemp extracts is industrial hemp; we do not sell marijuana.
2. If a hemp extract is 40% cannabinoids, what’s the other 60%? What’s in your hemp extracts besides the naturally occurring cannabinoids?
Our Kentucky hemp extracts contain over 80 different phyto-cannabinoids such as cannabidiol (CBD), CBC, CBG, CBN, etc.. In addition to the cannabinoids naturally present in our agricultural hemp extracts, there are also many other types of natural molecules and phyto-chemical compounds such as amino acids, carbohydrates, vitamins (including B1, B2, B6, D), fatty acids (including omega 3 & 6), trace minerals (including iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium, potassium), beta-carotene, chlorophyll, flavanoids, ketones, nitrogenous compounds, alkanes, glycosides, pigments, water, and terpenes. The most common terpenes in our hemp extracts are Myrcene, Beta-caryophyllene, Terpinolene, Linalool, alpha-Pinene, beta-Pinene, Nerolidol og Phytol, trans-alpha-Bergamotene, Limonene/ beta-Phellandrene (Co-elution), and alpha-Humulene.
3. What’s the difference between Hemp and Marijuana?
Scientifically, industrial Hemp and Marijuana are the same plant, with a genus and species name of Cannabis Sativa. They have a drastically different genetic profile though. Industrial Hemp is always a strain of Cannabis sativa, while marijuana can be Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica, or Cannabis ruderalis. The major difference is how industrial hemp has been bred compared to a marijuana form of Cannabis sativa. Typically speaking, industrial hemp is very fibrous, with long strong stalks, and barely has any flowering buds, while a marijuana strain of Cannabis sativa will be smaller, bushier, and full of flowering buds. However, newer industrial hemp varieties in the USA are being bred to have more flowers and higher yields of cannabinoids and terpenes, such as our Kentucky hemp we’re now using!
99% of the time marijuana has a high amount of THC and only a very low amount of CBD. Hemp, on the other hand, naturally has a very high amount of CBD in most instances, and only a trace amount of THC. Fortunately, the cannabinoid profile of hemp is ideal for people looking for benefits from cannabis without the ‘high.’ Hemp is used for making herbal supplements, food, fiber, rope, paper, bricks, oil, natural plastic, and so much more, whereas marijuana is usually used just recreationally, spiritually, and medicinally. The term cannabis oil can refer to either a marijuana or hemp derived oil, since marijuana and hemp are two different forms of cannabis.
In the USA the legal definition of “industrial hemp,” per Section 7606 of the Agricultural Appropriations Act of 2014, is “INDUSTRIAL HEMP — The term ‘‘industrial hemp’’ means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of such plant, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.”
4. Are hemp derived cannabinoids such as CBD as good as CBD from marijuana?
The short answer is yes. CBD is CBD, whether from marijuana or hemp. Most marijuana has a very low non-psychoactive cannabinoid profile (like CBD, CBC, CBG), so most of the time hemp would be much more preferable for anything besides THC. Marijuana is usually very high in THC (gives people the high) but usually very low in other non-psychoactive cannabinoids.
Nowadays in the USA, many farmers are growing industrial hemp flowers that are just as beautiful, odor-producing, and terpene rich as the best marijuana strains, such as our partnered farmers in Kentucky.
5. Why don’t you source your Hemp and CBD from within Colorado?
We feel that the hemp program in Kentucky is more well suited for our company in regards to growing hemp, and that because it’s 100% compliant with Section 7606 of the 2014 Farm Bill (and the 2016 Agricultural Appropriations Act), procuring it from there is perfectly legal at the federal level. Kentucky’s ecology is perfect for hemp just as it is for tobacco. The growing season is longer than in Colorado, and the soil is richer, so the quality of the hemp and the yields are better.
6. What’s the percentage of cannabinoids and CBD in your product?
Our raw extracts have varying percentages of cannabinoid and cannabidiol (CBD) content, the range being 10%-99%. Each product has a unique formulation and uses varying ratios of our extract types. Our CBD Isolate is over 99% pure CBD.
7. What is the best method of use?
For our dietary supplements we can only recommend them for internal consumption. Our CBD isolate is for research purposes only. If you don’t like the flavor of the oil supplements, you can mix with something sweet like apple sauce or honey to cut through the flavor.
8. What’s the ideal serving size for me, and how often should I take it?
There is no easy answer to this. Our starting recommended serving size is 15 drops but we generally recommend experimenting to see what feels best to you. Some prefer 5 drops, some prefer over 50 drops per day.
9. What is the safety of your hemp extracts? Are there negative side effects?
Hemp is considered by many to be generally safe. We’ve never seen or heard of any significant or negative side effects in our years in the industry. That said, we can’t rule them out. Please consult with your physician before using any dietary supplement including Hemp extract supplements.
10. Which of your CBD and hemp products should I get?
As a company who sells various dietary and food supplements, we can’t suggest any of our products for the prevention, treatment or cure of any disease or ailment.
When considering our different dietary hemp products, know that they all come in two strengths. Our Original Hemp blends (Classic Hemp Blend, Hemp Complete, Brainpower oil, & Signature Blend) all have 250+mg of cannabinoids per fluid ounce, and our concentrated blends have 1,500+mg per fluid ounce, six times the potency of our traditional oils. We’ve found that sometimes less is more, but nevertheless, some people like to take very large serving sizes of our hemp extracts.
The main difference between the four Original Blends is the additional herbal ingredients besides hemp. We suggest you research the separate components of each blend to determine which product may be most appealing to add to your dietary regimen. If you know it’s solely the hemp extract that you are looking for, with no additional ingredients, then Classic Hemp Blend or Classic Hemp 6x is what you’re looking for.
For dabbing and vaporizing or for research you can try our CBD Isolate.
THOSE WHO SUSPECT THEY MAY HAVE A DISEASE OR ARE SEEKING HELP FOR A DISEASE SHOULD CONSULT A QUALIFIED MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL.
11. Why do people use Hemp Extracts and CBD? What are the benefits and uses of CBD?
In accordance with federal regulations we cannot make health claims regarding our dietary supplement products. We can only recommend our products for general wellness.
12. Is a standard hemp seed oil the same as a high-CBD hemp extract?
Absolutely not. Standard hemp oil, which can be found very cheaply at a grocery store, is a much different product than our CO2 hemp extracts (not from seed). Standard hemp oil is produced by cold pressing the seeds, whereas our hemp extract is a supercritical CO2 extraction of the hemp plant itself, not the seeds. Hemp seed oil is considered to be a great nutritive food, but it doesn’t have the naturally occurring terpenes, cannabinoids and other components that our extracts do have.
13. Do I need to move to Colorado to get your Hemp Extracts and CBD? Where do you ship?
No. We actually source our hemp from Kentucky, as it’s legal to ship across state lines. Many people are under the impression that the only way to acquire hemp extracts and CBD for themselves or a loved one is to move to Colorado or another cannabis-friendly state. Many major news outlets are misinformed and are unfortunately spreading the idea that you can only get CBD oil in the states where medical marijuana has been legalized. This is simply not the case though. Because our extracts comes from hemp instead of marijuana, we can and do ship to all fifty states, and no medical marijuana card is needed. There are some exceptions, like with Indiana, Missouri and South Dakota we can’t sell our concentrated products due to state legislation.
We also ship to Japan, Australia, the EU, Switzerland, and Brazil. For all EU orders contact our exclusive distributor there, Cannawell.
14. Is your Hemp Extract Oil similar to Rick Simpson Hemp Oil?
Not quite. Ours are from hemp and RSHO is usually using marijuana, a different form of cannabis than industrial hemp. Our industrial hemp extracts are more standardized and will usually have a much higher content of non-psychoactive cannabinoids like CBD than one produced through the Rick Simpson method. And oils produced through his method will usually have a much higher THC content, as it’s typically marijuana that is used for RSHO.†
Generally speaking, most marijuana producers and sellers (especially on the black market) don’t test for contaminants (metals, pesticides, bacteria, etc.). Rick Simpson Hemp Oil is actually more a method of extraction than it is a specific product. People use the Rick Simpson method with hundreds of different strains of marijuana, so the THC, CBD and other cannabinoid content of the final oil is always varying greatly, depending on the cannabis the consumers are acquiring. Usually what’s used for Rick Simpson oil is a strain with an inferior CBD content (and high THC), because that’s what the vast amount of marijuana is nowadays.
15. Where do you source your hemp and CBD from?
We have partners in Kentucky who grew a dedicated plot for us this year (2016) which is being used in our products now. We also currently source from Europe but we’ll be changing that soon.
16. What kind of testing/analysis is performed on your products?
We have an industry leading quality control system, and we have third party laboratories analyze all of our hemp extracts and our final products for cannabinoid potency, heavy metals, bacterial and microbial life, mycotoxins (fungus), and pesticides.
17. What is CO2 extraction? What’s the difference between subcritical and supercritical CO2 extractions?
CO2 extraction is an extraction process that uses pressurized carbon dioxide to extract phyto-chemicals (such as CBD, CBG, or terpenes, flavonoids, etc.) from a plant. CO2 at certain temperatures and pressures acts like a solvent, without the dangers of actually being one. It is the most expensive extraction method, and is widely considered the most effective and safest plant extraction method in the world.
Many hemp and CBD companies boast about their supercritical CO2 extractions, but that’s actually only one (and perhaps an inferior) method of using a CO2 extraction machine. There are also subcritical CO2 extractions, and ‘mid-critical’, a general range between subcritical and supercritical. Subcritical (low temp, low pressure) CO2 extractions take more time and produce smaller yields than super-critical, but they retain the essential oils, terpenes, and other sensitive chemicals within the plant. Supercritical, on the other hand, is a high pressure and high temperature process that damages most terpenes and heat sensitive chemicals, but can extract much larger molecules such as lipids (omega 3 and 6), chlorophyll, and waxes. A truly full-spectrum CO2 extract includes first performing a subcritical extraction, separating the extracted oil, and then extracting the same plant material using supercritical pressure, and then homogenizing both oil extracts into one. In the essential oil industry, an extract made using this specific process is referred to as a CO2 Total.
18. What is the endocannabinoid system (ECS)?
“The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a group of endogenous cannabinoid receptors located in the mammalian brain and throughout the central and peripheral nervous systems, consisting of neuromodulatory lipids and their receptors.” Wikipedia
There are two main types of receptors in the ECS, CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are primarily located in the central nervous system and brains of mammals, and CB2 are generally found in the peripheral nervous system. There are two main cannabinoids mammals produce- 2AG and Anandamide (named after the Sanskrit term “ananda” which translates to “peace”).
For hundreds of millions of years every vertebrate on Earth has been equipped with this ECS, a crucial system in the body, and it has been known about in the scientific and medical communities since the 1980’s. However, it’s still not taught about in most medical schools.