Agricultural HempAgricultural hemp is the name used to describe a type of the cannabis plant grown for agricultural and industrial purposes. In the United States, agricultural hemp is defined by the 2018 Farm Bill as a cannabis plant no more than 0.3% delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) by dry weight. A fast growing and useful plant, it was one of the first plants ever cultivated by humans and remained in widespread use throughout all of human history. A source of food, medicine and one of the first plants to be spun into usable fiber 10,000 years ago, today it is cultivated in over 30 nations worldwide and is grown on every continent. In the United States, despite its importance in World War 2, hemp was caught up in the Reefer Madness campaign and was banned along with the more psychoactive version of cannabis. Hemp has seen a resurgence ever since the 2018 Farm Bill, especially because it’s a source of CBD.
Cannabis Sativa LCannabis Sativa L is a species of plant in the Cannabaceae family (which also includes hops). Legally, cannabis is divided into two types: agricultural hemp and medical/recreational cannabis (“marijuana”). The main difference between the two is the THC content. Agricultural hemp contains less than 0.3% THC while psychoactive cannabis can contain up to 30% THC. It’s believed to be native to Asia but it’s difficult to be certain because the plant spread widely soon after its first contact with humans. Its usefulness for fiber, oil, seeds, medical uses and recreational/spiritual purposes led to its worldwide importance for all of human history. Effectively banned in the United States by the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act, California legalized it for medical use in 1996. Since then, a number of states have legalized medical and/or recreational cannabis. Hemp was fully legalized by the 2018 Farm Bill.
CBDShort for cannabidiol, a phytocannabinoid found in the cannabis plant, it does not result in euphoria and has shown to have benefits on human and animal health. It works with the body’s endocannabinoid system as well as other important neurotransmitters such as the serotonin, dopamine and endorphin systems. While predominantly being consumed as a dietary supplement made from the hemp plant, a pharmaceutical version of isolated CBD called Epidiolex (Epidyolex in the EU) has been approved by the FDA to treat rare severe forms of epilepsy. First identified in 1940 by Dr. Roger Adams, CBD only became popular as a health supplement this century. Able to be utilized as an oil, a capsule, a topical, in a beverage or smoked from the plant, it’s grown rapidly into one of the most popular health supplements of all time. In addition to its benefits for human health, CBD is used widely for companion animals like cats, dogs, and horses.
CBD-ACBDA is the most abundant cannabinoid found in Nature. The naturally occurring raw form of CBD that is produced directly in the plant, CBDA was first isolated in 1955. The early research focused on the sedative properties but now it’s been more widely studied for nausea, anxiety, & the lowering of inflammation and pain. Well known for its safety, the most common use is now for gut health. The growing trend of juicing the whole cannabis plant and drinking the juice comes from the ability of CBDA to help with gut homeostasis. At the biochemical level, CBDA raises anandamide levels, activates a serotonin receptor, acts as an antioxidant, regulates genetic transcription, and inhibits the COX-2 pathway (a pathway also used by aspirin). Many patents exist for the pharmaceutical uses of CBDA.
AnandamideThe first discovered neurotransmitter of our endocannabinoid system, anandamide’s name comes from the Sanskrit word ananda, meaning bliss or joy. Often called ‘the neurotransmitter of balance’, anandamide regulates a diverse number of functions including sleep, inflammation, pain, metabolism and appetite, the immune system, short-term memory and learning, mood and anxiety, reward, neuroprotection, cognition, and neurogenesis (the growth of new brain cells). It may even be the source of the ‘runner’s high’. Found in nearly all tissues of the human body, in addition to interacting with the cannabinoid receptors that control other neurotransmitters levels like serotonin and dopamine, anandamide also binds to membrane receptors that mediate sensations of pain, heat, and cold as well as regulating genetic transcription. Anandamide is degraded by the FAAH enzyme and thus, the ability of CBD to inhibit FAAH leads to higher levels of anandamide.
2-AGOf the known endocannabinoids, 2-AG is the most potent and the most abundant. It activates both the CB1 and CB2 receptors. An ester formed from arachidonic acid and glycerol, it’s present at high levels in the human nervous system and functions as a powerful modulator of the release of neurotransmitters as well as the control of the excitability of neurons, a function called long-term potentiation that is linked to memory. This ability to affect brain signaling leads to its involvement in a wide array of function: inflammation, food intake, locomotor activity, learning and memory, neuroprotection, in breast milk to teach suckling, energy balance, pain sensation, mood, stress and anxiety, addiction, reward, cognition, and neuroinflammation. First isolated in 1995, 2-AG was found to be synthesized “on demand” – or, produced as needed. The enzyme that produces 2-AG is diacylglycerol lipase (DAGL) and the enzyme that breaks it down is monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL). To raise the levels of 2-AG, the inhibition of MGL is a strong area of study for various diseases. One of the most striking features of 2-AG is its almost unique ability to cause retrograde transmission – in the brain, communicating to the neuron upstream and telling it to calm down its firing. This is an essential negative feedback loop for calming neural activity.
EndogenousSelf-made; originating from within an organism.
EndocannabinoidNaturally occurring cannabinoids in the human body. The endocannabinoids are fatty lipids, a sensitive signaling system used by cells to communicate about almost all of the physiological processes of life. The most studied endocannabinoid neurotransmitters are anandamide and 2-AG – but others include virhodamine, noladin ether (2-AGE), lysophosphatidylinositol (LPI), and N-arachidonoyl-dopamine (NADA). Related fatty acids include PEA, oleamide (OEA), DHEA, EPEA, and 2-OG (these are not called endocannabinoids because they do not bind to the CB1 or CB2 receptor, but they do interact with other endocannabinoid lipid targets). The endocannabinoid system seemed to have evolved very early in the history of life and has even been found even in hydras, a relative of sea anemones and the first animal organism to have developed a neural network. Present in almost every complex form of life besides insects, the endocannabinoids regulate vasodilatation, thermal regulation, appetite and energy balance, painkilling, immune system modulation, a healthy stress response, exploration and social behavior, anxiety and fear, memory, sleep, synaptic plasticity, and neurogenesis – the growth of new brain cells. One of their most unique functions is retrograde transmission, in the brain, sending a message to the upstream neuron to calm down its activity, a key regulator of brain homeostasis. The endocannabinoids may also underlie the “runner’s high”.
PhytocannabinoidPlant-based cannabinoids found in species of cannabis.
Endocannabinoid SystemThe ECS includes endocannabinoids, the enzymes that regulate their production and degradation as well as their receptors. All animals with a spinal column share an endocannabinoid system and its history in evolution goes back to simple sea sponges. The genetic variants between humans mean that everyone’s endocannabinoid system is slightly different. Utilized as a system of homeostasis and balance for the organism, in humans, the endocannabinoid system is connected to almost all of the major neurotransmitters as well as a deep relationship to the hormone, immune, and neural systems. In the brain, the endocannabinoid system decides the fates of neural stem cells, maintains the blood-brain barrier, regulates the formation of new synapses, the calming of neurons, increases brain plasticity, modulates learning and memory, emotional control, the creation of new neurons, the processes of neuroprotection, and consciousness itself. This relates the ECS to mood disorders such as anxiety and fear, psychosis, hyperactivity, and depression, neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism and to diseases of neurodegeneration like Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. For metabolism, the ECS regulates food intake, fat formation, energy storage, obesity, and the hedonic enjoyment of food. It’s also involved in the domains of pain, inflammation, cardiovascular and lung dysfunctions as well as the immune responses, especially to autoimmune disorders such as arthritis, allergies, and fibromyalgia. Endocannabinoid receptors also exist on the surface of the mitochondria (powerhouse of the cell) and the endocannabinoids also bind to the PPAR receptors on the nucleus that control genetic transcription. The levels of endocannabinoids can be enhanced by physical exercise, acupuncture, and supplementation by phytocannabinoids from the plant.
CB1A cannabinoid receptor found primarily in the nervous system first discovered in 1988. Known best for being activated by THC and mediating the psychoactive effects of cannabis, CB1 occurs in many areas of the brain including the hippocampus (memory center), amygdala (fear and emotional processing center), the spinal cord (transmission of pain signals), hypothalamus (regulation of hormones), basal ganglia (voluntary movements and learning), cerebellum (motor control), brainstem (behavioral responses), and neocortex (cognition, sensory perception, and language). It’s also found in several glands that release hormones as well as fat cells, muscle cells, and the digestive tract. CB1 activation inhibits the release of both GABA and glutamate, the brain’s most common inhibitory and excitatory neurotransmitters, allowing it to control the balance of the brain. Besides its primary binding site, CB1 also possesses an allosteric binding site that alters the strength of binding to the primary site, such as CBD which causes negative allosteric binding (hence protecting from the negative effects of too much THC). If the CB1 receptor is repeatedly activated, the cell may respond by internalizing the receptor from the membrane or reduce its signaling. CB1 forms dimers (joined receptors) with several other receptors including the CB2 receptor, a dopamine receptor, and an opioid receptor.
CB2The second cannabinoid receptor discovered, the CB2 receptor is found most commonly on various immune cells of the body where it controls the release of inflammatory cytokines and the functioning of T-cells and B-cells. CB2 affects a number of processes from immune system modulation to neuroinflammation. The primary neurotransmitter for binding the CB2 receptor is 2-AG, but it is also partially bound by the endocannabinoids anandamide, noladin ether, virodhamine, and N-arachidonoyl-dopamine (NADA) as well as the common cannabis terpene ß-caryophyllene. The activation of CB2 receptors has been looked at for various types of pain including arthritis, acute, inflammatory, and neuropathic pain. CB2 occurs at low levels in a healthy brain but its location on the brain’s microglia (immune cells) causes its levels to increase with neural insults. The ability of CB2 to cause neuroprotection, neurogenesis (growth of new neurons) and, protection of the blood-brain barrier make it an active area of research for Alzheimer's, Huntington's, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and other brain disorders. CB2 also occurs in the liver, lungs, retina, skin, ovaries, heart, bones, spinal discs, spleen, tonsils, and thymus gland. Its presence in the guts make it a target for treating inflammatory bowel disease such as colitis, Crohn's disease, and Celiac disease.
THCShort for tetrahydrocannabinol; a phytocannabinoid found in cannabis shown to have some benefits on human and animal health, however, is responsible for intoxicating effects associated with marijuana use.
CBNA phytocannabinoid found in cannabis formed from the breakdown of THC. It tends to occur at higher levels in more aged cannabis. The first cannabinoid ever isolated from the plant in the 1880s, it was also the first to have its chemical structure solved in 1940. CBN binds weakly to the CB1 receptor and more strongly to the CB2 receptor. If taken orally, liver enzymes convert it to 11-OH-CBN, a cannabinoid with stronger activity at CB1 but weakly blocking the CB2 receptor. With only limited modern clinical studies , little data exists in humans. The pharmaceutical company InMed claims, “using CBN at very high doses … hundreds of times higher than what would occur with topical dosing in humans [and] no adverse events were seen on central nervous system (CNS) function”. InMed is researching CBN for the treatment of glaucoma both via neuroprotection of the eye’s neurons as well as the reduction of intraocular pressure. They also announced Phase 2 clinical trials for a topical CBN cream to treat epidermolysis bullosa, a rare skin condition of fragile, blistering skin. In animal studies, CBN works as a mild painkiller via the pain sensors and combines well with CBD to lessen pain in a rat model of facial pain. In a rat model of ALS, CBN delayed the onset of symptoms, perhaps by protection of the mitochondria (the powerhouse of the cell). In a model of seizures, CBN was the most effective of the cannabinoids tested.
In cells of the immune system, CBN protected them from cell death caused by oxidative stress. In mice, CBN increased their appetite and in mice with allergies, CBN lessened the inflammatory airway response. CBN functions as an antibiotic against MRSA (the drug-resistant form of staph infection). CBN is currently in clinical trial for insomnia as well as use by healthy adults.
CBGKnown as the “mother cannabinoid”, CBG is the chemical precursor to THC, CBD, and the other cannabinoids in the plant. CBG occurs only at low levels in cannabis because it tends to be quickly converted to other cannabinoids. Binding slightly to the CB1 and CB2 receptor, it also inhibits the enzymes that break down anandamide and 2-AG, hence raising the levels of those endocannabinoids. CBG interacts with an adrenaline receptor (α-2 adrenoceptor) and a serotonin receptor (5-HT1A Receptor) as well as modulating the expression of glutamate, GABA, and dopamine via the PPAR receptors on the nucleus that control genetic transcription. CBG is also active at the TRP channels involved in the sensations of temperature, pressure, pH, smell, taste, vision, and pain perception whose dysfunction are linked to neuropathic pain, inflammation, and respiratory disorders. Surveys show patients reporting help for anxiety, chronic pain, depression, and disturbed sleep. In preclinical trials, it's been studied for eye pressure, gut problems, appetite modulation, blood pressure lowering, bladder control, oral care, muscle spasms, airway inflammation, arthritis, painkilling, and most notably for brain health and neuroinflammation. In adult neural stem cells, CBG increased their viability. The breakdown products of CBG have been shown to reduce inflammation via the brain’s immune cells.
CBCOnly discovered in 1966, CBC is the third most prevalent cannabinoid produced by the cannabis plant. While not as well studied as THC or CBD, CBC is known best for its potential for inflammation, pain, and neuroprotection. It strongly binds the CB2 receptor, but not the CB1 receptor, causing it to have immune system effects without the psychoactivity. One area of mystery is that CBC is often found to cause its effects by neither the CB1 or CB2 receptor and the exact mechanism of action is still unknown. One additional pathway CBC is thought to utilize is adenosine (an important signaling molecule and a building block of RNA). It’s ability to lower inflammation has been studied for decades and in rat models, CBC works via several mechanisms to lower pain. In neural stem cells, CBC increased their functioning, a mechanism of protecting the brain, as well as helping in a mouse model of depression. In a mouse model of epilepsy, it displayed anticonvulsant effects. CBC helps in the guts of mice with diarrhea and in their pineal glands, it reduced the output of melatonin (the sleep inducing hormone). Unpublished data suggest CBC as useful against acne, potentially even more potent than CBD at lowering skin inflammation as well as the production of sebum.
Entourage EffectThe scientific concept proposed in 1998 that “the endocannabinoid system demonstrated an “entourage effect” in which a variety of “inactive” metabolites and closely related molecules markedly increased the activity of the primary endogenous cannabinoids, anandamide and 2-AG”. This would mean all of the “minor” cannabinoids, terpenes, and fatty acids enhancing the effects of the THC and CBD. The entourage effect would also explain why botanical drugs are often move efficacious than their isolated compounds, something seen when CBD-rich full spectrum hemp extract outperforms isolated CBD. In some cases, the botanical cannabis extracts demonstrate less side effects than the isolated pharmaceutical cannabinoids.
Hemptourage EffectRefers to the “entourage effect” of compounds present in hemp-derived CBD oil to optimize health and wellness.
TerpeneA large and diverse class of strong smelling organic compounds, produced by a variety of plants and insects.
Fatty AcidLong hydrocarbon chain, with a carboxyl group (COOH) at the end; important part of the fat-soluble components of living cells (lipids).
Plant SterolCholesterol-like compounds that are naturally occurring in plants.
Vitamin EAlso known as alpha-tocopherol, a fat-soluble vitamin important for normal cell growth and function; found in vegetable oils, egg yolk, and our Plus CBD Oil™ products.
DecarboxylationRemoving a carboxyl group from a chemical compound; the process used to convert the CBD-A in our Plus CBD Oil™ Raw to our Plus CBD Oil™ Total Plant Complex.
Distilled oilRefers to our Plus CBD Oil™ Gold Formula which contains the highest concentration of CBD; this is the ultimate step in refining our oil, where excess plant material is distilled from our Plus CBD Oil™ Total Plant Complex in a solvent-free process.
Raw oilA whole-plant CO2 extraction from agricultural hemp; Cannabidiolic Acid, or CBD-A, comprises a significant proportion of the extracted cannabinoids in the raw oil.
CO2 ExtractionMethod used to extract our Plus CBD Oil™ concentrates; CO2 gas is pressurized into a a safe liquid and used to extract oils from plants with the advantage of no solvent residue.
Non-psychotoxicDoes not have a detrimental effect on the mind, personality or behavior; does not get you “high.”
HomeostasisSelf-regulating process of any system in the body; your body automatically finding balance.
ChlorophyllRefers to groups of green pigmented molecules found in plants and algae, that is important for plant photosynthesis.
Polyunsaturated Acids (PUFAS)A precursor of the endocannabinoids, polyunsaturated fatty acids are present in every membrane cell of the body. They are considered essential nutrients for humans and their ubiquity allows for the vast impact of the endocannabinoid system on health. The omega-6 PUFA known as arachidonic acid (ARA) is the main ingredient for the creation of anandamide and 2-AG. The ‘on demand’ synthesis of endocannabinoids from arachidonic acid is regulated by electrical activity and calcium shifts. Because of their fatty lipid nature, small changes in the levels of the fatty acids can be detected by the cells and function as a messenger system for the fine tuning of homeostasis. The dietary intake of these fatty acids can alter endocannabinoid levels as well as health in metabolic disorders, obesity, diabetes, inflammation, brain development, anxiety, depression, memory, brain aging, neurodegeneration, and executive function.
PALMITOYLETHANOLAMIDE(PEA)Not only is the fatty acid palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) found widely in plants and animals, PEA occurs widely in our own bodies and brains and appears to exist at low levels in every mammalian cell. An endocannabinoid-like signaling molecule, it’s hugely important in the brain where it interacts with the glial cells, the support cells of the brain that are the most abundant type of cell in the human nervous system. It’s also noted for its effects on inflammation, especially via the mast cells (multifunctional bone marrow stem cells that regulate tissue inflammation and neuroimmune interactions). With its ability to support our immune system as well as to lessen pain and inflammation, PEA has been suggested to be the next CBD in the dietary supplement world. And in the safety studies, there’s one phrase you read over and over again: “We also noted its safety due to the total absence of adverse effects.”
MElatoninOne of the most well known ingredients for sleep, this hormone naturally produced in our brain’s pineal gland is often called “our hormone of darkness” because of how it induces sleep as the sun goes down. Known for its strong safety profile, melatonin helps to synchronize our circadian rhythms and aligning our sleep cycles while also functioning as a strong antioxidant and a lessener of neuroinflammation. In surveys, people report melatonin’s help for troubled sleep and this review look at its help for travelers adjusting to new time zones while this one goes over its benefits for the sleep of menopausal women. An observational study found that melatonin paired well with CBD-rich hemp extracts for “restoring the biological clock functions… and to relieve anxiety fulfilling a very balanced sensation of wellbeing during the sleep.” In teens with obesity, a lower level of nocturnal melatonin was associated with impaired energy metabolism & a late chronotype (night owls). Supplementing your natural melatonin levels with a supplement is a widely used method for deeper, longer sleep.
MentholMenthol is a terpene extracted from the mint flower. It is one of the oldest analgesic known to man and was used by the ancient Japanese, Greeks, Romans and Chinese. Today, it is widely used as a pain reliever to treat a variety of painful conditions including headaches, migraines, muscle cramps, sprains, or muscle pain via the opioid pathway. When applied topically, menthol cools the skin and increases blood flow. Also used for minor irritations, menthol helps with itching, razor burn, and sunburns. Menthol been studied for hundreds of year and possesses a strong safety profile.
CamphorA terpene from the camphor trees of Asia, when camphor is applied to the skin, it increases blood circulation, lowers pain, and stimulates the nerve endings sensitive to hot and cold, enhancing both of those sensations. Widely used in human history as both a medicine and a perfume, camphor was used to treat inflammation, swellings, to balance the gut, and applied to the gums of babies as a pain reliever for teething. Today, it's used to treat fungal infections, warts, cold sores, hemorrhoids, and osteoarthritis. Camphor has been found to be antimicrobial, antiviral, antitussive (cough preventative), and pain relieving.
Marula Seed Oilrom the marula fruit of southern Africa, it’s earned both the nicknames “The Elixir of Youth” and “The African Beauty Secret.” This oil is lightweight and easily absorbed, making it beneficial for smoothing fine lines in the face, preventing stretch marks, lowering skin inflammation, and for its anti-aging properties. Marula oil moisturizes , hydrates, and forms a protective layer over the skin. Considered sacred, the marula tree was linked to fertility and happy marriage in ancient times. It’s traditionally been used by the Tsonga people as a moisturizing body lotion for women and a massage oil for babies. The oil contains a large proportion of monosaturated fatty acids that contribute to it’s stability including oleic acid, linoleic acid, alpha-linolenic acid, palmitic acid, stearic acid and arachidonic acid. It also contains amino acids like L-arginine and glutamic acid that help with skin hydration and anti-aging. It also includes antioxidants such as phenolic compounds and vitamins E & C. It is considered to be the richest plant source of Omega-9 fatty acids. In terms of safety, the Environmental Working Group gives it a score of 1 on their scale of 1 to 10.
Jojoba OilThis oil is a liquid produced from the seed of the jojoba shrub of the southwestern deserts of North America. Native Americans extracted the oil from jojoba seeds to treat sores and wounds, something confirmed by modern clinical trials. Unrefined jojoba oil appears as a clear golden liquid at room temperature with a slightly nutty odor. Although frequently referred to as jojoba oil, it is, in fact, a liquid wax composed almost entirely of long-chain fatty acids, wax esters and free fatty acids. What makes it so unique compared to other seed oils is that jojoba oil is structurally and chemically very similar to the human sebum (the oily substance made by our skin to keep it moisturized, oiled, and protected). This is because sebum is also comprised largely of wax mono-esters, the primary constituent of jojoba oil. In most cases, jojoba oil can act as a substitute to sebum while giving similar or added benefits. When applied to the skin, it forms a tender lipid film that locks in moisture without sealing it off and it disintegrates slowly, protecting from moisture loss without feeling greasy. Jojoba oil also has the ability to absorb into the first layer of skin, softening it from the inside out by increasing its elasticity. Jojoba oil has been well-studied for safety and Ecco Verde says, “One can say that it is a universal tool in cosmetics.”
Kokum ButterWith a long history in Ayuruvedic medicine, the large seeds of this evergreen contain the rich kokum butter that stays solid even at room temperature – but melts easily when applied to the skin. Traditionally, it was used topically to treat sores, dermatitis, and to alleviate the skin inflammation caused by cuts, burns, and ulcerations. It’s used to improve the moisture content of almost every part of the body, including your skin, feet, scalp, and hands. People often use kokum butter for preventing the visible signs of aging skin such as wrinkles, diminished elasticity, increased fragility, and dryness. One study in people with dry, cracked heels found that applying kokum butter twice a day for 15 days significantly improved symptoms. It’s ability to moisturize and its powerful antioxidants makes it a common ingredient for sensitive skin. The Environmental Working Group gives it a score of 1 (safest) on their scale from 1 to 10.
Argan OilStill produced by hand in Morocco, argan oil is one of humanity’s oldest plants for hydrating the skin and is often referred to as the beauty secret of Moroccan women. Composed of several helpful lipids and fatty acids for the skin, research shows that these components of argan oil serve as an emollient (attracting and retaining hydration in the skin), have potent anti-inflammatory properties and help with skin elasticity. Argan oil is also an excellent source of the powerful antioxidant tocopherol (Vitamin E) and the polyphenols it contains help to prevent UVB wrinkle formation caused by collagen destruction and inflammation. The Environmental Working Group gives argan oil a score of 1 (safest) on their scale of 1 to 10.