Although CBD, by itself, doesn’t have any psychedelic properties, the plants that it’s derived from does contain another form of intoxicating substances (THC for example). But that does not stop its persecutors from viewing this substance as “evil”. This discourages people who can benefit from CBD from seeking aid. Luckily, to counter this social taboo, there are synthetic forms of CBD that can work just as well.
A recently published paper discusses this synthetic CBD. The chemical build of this substance is similar to the CBD that can be found in the cannabis plant. The synthesized cannabidiol has the scientific name of 8,9 Dihydrocannabidiol or H2CBD. Herbal CBD has its own share of disadvantages, compared to this new form of CBD, which makes this development an invaluable addition to the medical community.
First of all, herbal CBD is considered a controlled substance in many countries, thus inhibiting its use and distribution in many places. Synthesized CBD, however, does not face such negativity and can benefit a lot of people. Second, cannabis plant requires a lot of effort to farm and produce with constant maintenance and monitoring for months until they can be used to extract CBD. Furthermore, extracting the components and isolating the CBD itself is a tedious process.
However, H2CBD can be processed and synthesized in the lab using cheap chemicals that do not even require cannabis plants. They can be extracted and purified far more easily than the herbal CBD. Above that, drug producers can convert CBD into THC which is impossible with H2CBD.
A New Cure for Seizures
Cannabis has been used as a treatment for seizures for over a hundred years. So, it’s no surprise that even H2CBD has been attempted to be used as a cure for epileptic seizures. This new form of CBD has been tested on rats and have been found to be effective at suppressing epileptic seizures and provide relief. Scientists claim that they are going to run further animal tests before moving on to do clinical trials with this new form of CBD.
It hasn’t even been about 20 years since Scientists discovered that the Endocannabinoid System in the human body uses and reacts to cannabidiol and other substances in Cannabis to suppress the epileptic symptoms. Among these substances, THC and Cannabidiol are the two most powerful substances that do that. Although Cannabidiol is less effective than THC itself, its lack of psychedelic properties makes it a better choice for a cure, even for dogs.
Although the FDA approves of some forms of the herbal extract of cannabidiol as a means of treating seizures, their stance on the chemical substitute still remains to be seen. Above that, CBD is supposed to be used as a last resort for the treatment of some forms of refractory epileptic seizures as well as for anxiety.
With that said, around 3.4 million people are diagnosed with epilepsy in the US alone. According to the 2015 survey, among these, 470,000 are just children. So, the arrival of a new, cheaper medical alternative to CBD for their treatment is good news for the whole world.
New Hemp Farmers Might Learn an Expensive Lesson This Crop Year
Farmers who decided to venture in hemp cultivation, harvest, and processing for the first time due to the crop’s boom may suffer huge losses this crop year, according to experts.
To help farmers from being affected by depressed markets, crop tariffs, and low prices, Congress decided to legalize industrial hemp cultivation and harvest.
However, hemp growing has become so successful that there is already more than 300% acreage this year, industry advocates say. The crop lawmakers intended to help growers may very well cause small farming businesses to close.
Michael Brubeck, CEO of a hemp processing and extraction firm called Centuria in Carson City, Nevada, said that the unfolding economic conditions might result in an attrition rate of 95% at the farm level.
He also stated that speculation and artificial scarcity influence the movement of the hemp market, which is mostly due to the restrictions set in place before the 2018 Farm Bill. Also, new farmers having no experience with hemp are converting 100% of their licensed acreage to hemp.
Hemp farmers, processors, and consultants see an oversupply of the said crop. Experts say it’s because small farmers did not establish a harvest plan and no viable contract to sell plants. Furthermore, inexperienced farmers also found out that hemp is challenging to grow and harvest.
Brian Griffin, supply manager for Colorado-based extraction company Mile High Labs, said that farmers worried about planting quickly and obtaining genetics, so they delayed planning for other aspects to September or October.
He also stated that some farmers could not get the help they expected from third-party companies to harvest, dry and bag their crops.
Griffin said that small farmers might end getting hurt by this turn of events, with potential pullbacks from the small farmers this year.
Problems in processing
In Tennessee, hemp farmers saw a 1,5000% increase to 3,600 wherein some hundred of them attempting to break through the processing industry. Many of those didn’t go well, says Harold Jarboe, a consultant for Nashville-based CBD and hemp company Tennessee Homegrown.
Jarboe noted that this growing season was a mix of greed, arrogance, and ignorance for many farmers.
Those who survive the initial challenges like extreme weather, labor shortage, or inconsistent genetics may still face other difficulties, particularly in reneged prices and contracts by processors taking advantage of the situation.
Many of the processors gave only verbal agreements, stating they will pay a certain amount for all the produce. However, new processors tend to overestimate their capacity and underestimate costs, Jarboe explains.
He further said that the demand does not matter if there are not enough processors to do the job. Also, there is still no established baseline such as the stock market price for hemp, which some processors know and abuse.
Brubeck stated that hemp firms might fire-sale their produce to recover on losses, especially now that an oversupply is happening.
For farmers who can store their hemp until February or March of next year may obtain better prices than selling it this November or December, according to Jarboe.
Free market or regulated cultivation?
Many states do not require harvest plans from farmers for hemp crops.
In Kentucky, the requirement to secure a proof of contract before farmers can grow hemp has been dropped.
Brian Furnish, the hemp farmer, and consultant from Cynthiana stated that the government does not enforce buying contracts anymore, which hinders farmers from exercising due diligence.
A word from the Kentucky Department of Agriculture officials commented that the said change in regulation is a “natural transition” from the phase of research to full commercialization.
Sean Southard, the KDA spokesman, stated in an email that the free market allows farmers to handle business decisions such as how and when they move their hemp to the market.
Furnish, however, believes that securing a contract before being granted a license can help eliminate the oversupply of the crop.
Arthritis Foundation Issues Guidelines Regarding Patient Use of CBD for Pain Management
The Arthritis Foundation released a set of guidelines for patients who are using cannabidiol or CBD to help alleviate their pain. Patients who have arthritis have been asking more about CBD, doctors noticed.
CBD-containing products are widely marketed in the industry. However, regulations are still unclear on how to use CBD, where it is bought and if it is legal. This reason prompted the said foundation to develop their set of guidelines.
Preliminary studies on CBD, a cannabis extract, have shown promising results regarding its effect on pain. It is distinctive to tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, which is responsible for the psychoactive effects of marijuana, according to the University of Michigan Rheumatologist Dr. Daniel Clauw.
Dr. Clauw also helped formulate the Arthritis Foundation’s CBD guidelines.
Curiosity regarding CBD
A significant concern about cannabidiol is the source from which patients would buy their stock. There is a risk for contamination of THC or any other chemical that may have been introduced while processing or manufacturing the product, according to Clauw.
Patients are increasingly curious about CBD and its effect on pain and other health conditions.
Clauw also noticed how patients are asking their respective providers for medical advice regarding CBD since people on the internet claim that CBD is used for almost everything. However, not many providers have a vast knowledge of the medicinal properties of cannabinoids like CBD.
After the legalization of hemp in the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD extracted from the hemp variety is legal, although a gray area on regulation still exists. Clauw reiterated that CBD and THC could be contaminated or adulterated, which makes such products more harmful than beneficial.
Clauw shared tips on the safe way of using CBD for pain.
He stated that CBD is different from THC in that it’s doesn’t have the psychoactive effect that THC has. He also said that THC could even protect a user against the high caused by THC. Therefore, CBD is safe to take for pain.
When a CBD-infused product contains high levels of THC, the psychotropic property is activated and becomes detrimental to health. The patient is exposed to the risk of addiction and dependence, which is the infamous side effects of taking cannabis.
Advice on how to take CBD
Clauw further stated that supplement pills, tinctures, gummies, or generally any that have CBD are the best form to take. He said that inhaling or introducing anything through the respiratory route (i.e., vape) is dangerous. He noted the recent reports concerning vape products, which are laden with contaminants. He added that this type of administration is inherently more harmful.
He reiterated how there is no reason to administer CBD via the respiratory tract. Oral CBD can work in as fast as thirty minutes to an hour, which makes the fast onset of inhalation unnecessary for medicinal purposes.
With regards to topical CBD, Clauw stated that unless CBD is combined with something else to hasten its absorption, then it might not penetrate well through the skin, rendering it almost useless. He explained that CBD and other cannabinoids are highly fat-soluble, which makes topical administration an impractical route of taking CBD.
Clauw likewise gave pointers on what to look for in quality cannabidiol products. Firstly, it must be tested by an official regulatory board and labeled accordingly. He said that there’s danger in the uncertainty of what CBD a person is getting if it’s pure or not.
There is also the matter of even just a small THC amount causing a positive result on a urine drug screening. That is why Clauw advised employed individuals to be careful about the product they are using.
Marijuana Concentrate: What it is and why teens use it
A new study reveals that more teens are now using the more potent form of cannabis, which is marijuana concentrate. The research published recently also stated that said teens are likely to use and abuse different substances, too.
Marijuana concentrates are significantly more potent in that it contains really high amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, the component responsible for the psychoactive properties of marijuana. The concentrate may contain 40-80% (and higher in some cases) of THC in some of the products.
In contrast, the THC amount in a high-grade cannabis plant only averages about 20%.
The Arizona Youth Survey
The study published in August in the pages of the Pediatrics journal is the collated data from teens in the eighth, tenth and twelfth grade in the state, and amounted to almost 50,000 students in all. This study is based on the results gathered in the Arizona Youth Survey.
The research revealed that 33% of the participating students have tried cannabis once or more. Also, 24% owned up to having used marijuana concentrates at one time or another.
The concentrate is often called honey oil or budder due to its honey or butter-like appearance. It is also called by other names like dabs, hash oil, butane honey oil or BHO and 710.
The marijuana concentrate can be mixed to drinks or food, and even smoked using oil pipes or water. Other people like to use a vaporizer or an e-cigarette to inhale the vaporized form of the concentrate.
Among the participants, the 12th graders had a high number of users at 32.9%. Girls had a higher occurrence, and as well as students having parents who weren’t able to finish their high school.
The study also showed that students who use marijuana concentrates are more likely to get ahold of other substances, specifically e-cigarettes, as compared to users who consume other cannabis forms.
The researches further note how the number of students using this form of marijuana might be risking themselves of drug abuse since past studies show that adults exposed to high THC amounts are likely to suffer from cannabis use disorder, psychosis, and cognitive impairment.
UCI Center for the Study of Cannabis director at University of California Daniele Piomelli, Ph.D., PharmD, states that there is no clear reason why many teens use marijuana concentrates. Past trends from the 70s to the 90s only showed people using low THC-containing cannabis.
Concentrate dosage differs the effect
Plant cannabis use is a lot less potent than the concentrate, which means that using stronger marijuana concentrate can also produce greater psychological and physical differences in the user. However, the gravity of the effect will still depend on how much a person uses a substance, which in this case is marijuana.
Assistant professor at Colorado State University Mark Prince, Ph.D., stated that the research shows how frequent and heavy use of cannabis can definitely cause deleterious effects. However, he also adds that not having enough scientific information blurs the line between beneficial and dangerous cannabis use.
Marijuana concentrates the long-term effect
Piomelli stated that there is next to no information about the effects of dabbing or vaping products using marijuana concentrate. This leads experts to believe that the long-term effects of such preparation are still largely unknown.
Lab tests done by Prince and his team looked into cannabis potency and its effect on physical and mental effects but results have been mixed so far.
Field experts are convinced that more research needs to be conducted to determine all its effects, whether long or short term. There is still little to no knowledge about the chronic effect of the said substance.
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