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North Hills Monthly

Customers Need to Do Their Research in Exploding CBD Market

Oct 31, 2019 01:42PM ● By Hilary Daninhirsch

CBD—perhaps you’ve heard of it? If not, you must have been living in another dimension, because the CBD revolution is upon us.

But what exactly is CBD, what does it do, where can you find it, and how do you know you can trust it?

CBD stands for cannabidiol; a cannabinoid is one of over 80 chemical compounds found in the cannabis plant. Hemp and marijuana both derive from this plant family, but while marijuana contains THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), a psychoactive compound that contributes to the high one gets when ingesting it, hemp contains less than 0.3 percent of this substance.

Sherri Walker is a retired registered critical care nurse who is currently an independent distributor for Reliv International, a wellness company that makes innovative, full spectrum, cannabinoid-rich CBD products, including two hemp extracts as well as a newly introduced balm.

“Up until a number of months ago, I was not very familiar with CBD products, but I’ve been doing more reading and research to be able to help people with these hemp extracts,” she said. “One of the things that I enjoy is health teaching, and making people aware of what they can do for themselves to take control of their health, so that is how I became more familiar with the whole hemp line.”

In her research, Walker learned how CBD is made using hemp.  

“When they’re making the product, they can use a number of different parts of the hemp plant. They can use the seeds, which just gives you the CBD itself, or the whole plant, which they call full spectrum—that gives you a lot more cannabinoids. It also provides flavonoids and terpenes: both are chemical compounds in the plant that have their own health benefits and work synergistically,” she said.

Walker explained that our bodies have an endocannabinoid system; a complex cell-signaling system that acts as receptors in the brain, central nervous system, and peripheral organs.

“What CBD does is re-excite the receptors we already have in our cells,” she said, noting that different people will react differently to CBD, as it depends on the receptors within one’s individual body chemistry.

Consumers have been using CBD for a number of conditions or ailments, including anxiety, sleeplessness, and body aches and pains. It also has been used successfully to control seizures in epilepsy patients.

“CBD is a natural anti-inflammatory; cutting inflammation is one of the most important things you can do stay healthy,” she said.

CBD can be found in creams, applied sublingually, or it can be ingested orally. For example, Walker said that Reliv’s line of products includes a tincture—a sublingual method of placing drops under the tongue. “You have a large amount of blood vessels under the tongue,” said Walker, adding that the membrane is so thin that it is absorbed rapidly. Usually, you’re going to see the effects in 10 to 20 minutes.”

Another delivery method made by Reliv is a balm that can be used for skin irritation or for joint and muscular pain. Other companies also make CBD in capsule form.

Though everyone responds differently to CBD, Walker advised, “For some people, it will work right away, but the bottom line is being consistent. It has a cumulative effect—the more you’re doing it over time, the more results you will see.”

Hemp was considered to be a controlled substance up until late last year, but with the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp and all of its derivatives have been reclassified as legal.

“That is when things exploded,” said Walker of the CBD market's incredible growth. “This is why you see hemp everywhere from health food stores to your convenience store on the corner.”

Still, she cautioned that there are no federal regulations yet in place regarding CBD manufacturing processes, so consumers should do their own research about manufacturers and where they source their ingredients before making any purchases. As for Reliv products, she said that the ingredients are U.S. organically grown and that everything is tested and retested by third-party sources before anything is passed on to the consumer.

“From my understanding, it may be another two years or so before regulations come around. About 70 percent of those companies or manufacturers will be closing up shop because they won’t be able to adhere to the regulations,” she said.

Even though most anyone can take CBD without any ill effects, Walker did advise that people consult with their physicians before starting on any herbal routines, particularly as there could be interactions with prescription medications.