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Month: September 2022

What Are Phytocannabinoids?

The hemp and cannabis industries come with a whole host of new terminology that can get confusing even for those of us in the industry.  One term we are seeing questions about is “phytocannabinoid”, so let’s explore that one in this blog post.

While many people are now familiar with the term “cannabinoid” (the active ingredient in hemp and marijuana products: CBD, THC, etc), “phytocannabinoid” is a bit less well-known.  The difference between the two is pretty small and not all that complicated.

Our Endocannabinoid System

Our bodies contain an endocannabinoid system (much more detail here) that creates its own cannabinoids and it plays an important role in the release of neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine for critical brain functions.  The same system also helps guide our immune system which includes our response to inflammation and pain.  This endocannabinoid system provides many opportunities for cannabinoids to bind to receptors, which, when activated, help to maintain a healthy body.

Cannabinoids made by our bodies (and mammals in general) are referred to as endocannabinoids while cannabinoids made by plants are known as phytocannabinoids.  That’s it.  Phytocannabinoids are just cannabinoids that our body doesn’t make.  It was thought for a while that only hemp and cannabis (I use the terms “marijuana” and “cannabis” interchangeably in this post) plants contained phytocannabinoids, which are found concentrated in the trichomes of the plants.  These are the little crystals found on the surface of the leaves and the flowers (“buds”) of a hemp or marijuana plant.  However, cannabinoids have been found more recently in black pepper, broccoli, carrots, and other plants.

How Many Phytocannabinoids Are there?

A lot.  While the prominent cannabinoids–THC, CBD, CBG, CBN–are the ones featured in most of the current hemp products on the market, there are one hundred or more total cannabinoids and many more terpenes and flavonoids on top of that.  I will discuss each of those in greater detail in future blog posts, but the short version is that these are also molecules found in hemp and marijuana plants that bind to our cells and affect the way we metabolize various cannabinoids.  I have written about my experience with CBD and what a profound impact it had on my daily life when it relieved my sciatica and osteoarthritis pain almost entirely.  But I’m also of the opinion that we are just getting started learning about the amazing properties of these plants as research has barely begin in the other 90+ cannabinoids about which little is known. And then there are the flavonoids and terpenes.  If I sound like a zealot, it’s because I am.  But with good reason!

The “Entourage Effect”

While my initial experience with CBD and the resulting pain relief that followed came from just four day’s use of CBD isolate–a form of CBD that is 99.9% pure CBD with no other parts of the hemp plant–mixed with water, I have learned since then about the “entourage effect”.  An Israeli doctor, Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, came up with this phrase to describe the result of the various components of the hemp (or marijuana) plant acting together to deliver benefits to the user that are greater than the sum of the individual cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes.  

Dr. Mechoulam’s research showed that cannabis/hemp molecules team up to provide synergies that enhance the beneficial effects of the plant.  While I often recount my initial experience with CBD isolate and think it’s a great active ingredient in a number of products for a few different reasons, there is no doubt that there are a great many additional benefits to be found in the other parts of the plant.  While there is no definitive proof (yet!) to substantiate Dr. Mechoulam’s entourage effect hypothesis, count me among those who will be zero percent surprised when that proof does emerge after more research is conducted.

Cannabinoids are the compounds that bind to receptors in our body’s endocannabinoid system and play a key role in maintaining our overall health in a variety of ways.  Phytocannabinoids are cannabinoids made by plants and endocannabinoids are made by our bodies (and in other mammals).  The entourage effect is a term that refers to the synergistic effect of different cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids (both are good-for-you molecules also found in plants) all working together to accentuate the beneficial properties of hemp and cannabis plants.

puRelief Joint CBD Cream

5000mg CBD joint cream - CBD Pain relief.

Our puRelief CBD cream (5000mg in each of the different scent options) was among our earliest products.  We were planning a topical product with about 500mg, similar to most of our competitors, but a car accident changed that plan.  My wife was hit by another car which resulted in back pain that grew worse with time.  I decided to make a very strong version of our lotion which was not yet a finished Carolina Pure product back then.  I put in far more CBD than I had in my prior test batches to see if it would help with her back.  

Well, it didn’t.  She had ruptured a disc and it required surgery.  But I had enough of the very strong lotion left over that I gave it to a number of people who all LOVED it.  It was then that I realized the value in a high potency CBD topical and I switched our development of topicals to all have generous amounts of CBD for maximum relief.

Topicals: CBD Benefits vs CBD Side Effects

Probably the best thing about CBD lotions and other skin products is that they work within minutes of the first application for most inflammatory ailments.  People ask me: “how often can I use CBD cream” and the answer is “as needed”.  Because our products contain such a large amount of CBD, one application often provides relief for an extended period of time; a little dab will do you.  So the benefits become apparent pretty quickly as the pain diminishes.

As for side effects of external use of CBD, I am not aware of any at all.  As with all things hemp, more data is needed because research in this area was only made legal recently.  However, I have seen no literature regarding side effects of CBD lotion and I give it to both of my kids frequently.  

It is also important to remember the difference between CBD vs THC: THC is also effective for pain but it is psychoactive and can be absorbed transdermally through your skin.  Absorption through the skin is kind of the point, but CBD is NOT psychoactive and does not present the same risk of failing a drug test that THC does.

How Much Does CBD Cream Cost?

We have a number of topical products.  Our puRelief retails for $70 (but if you subscribe, you get 25% off all Carolina Pure products).  If this seems like a lot, check our competitors.  You can find CBD cream at Walgreen’s and pay a little bit less for their strongest topical which retails for $50 and has 750mg of CBD.  You are “saving” about 25% at Walgreen’s but you get 85% less CBD!  To get the same amount of CBD at Walgreen’s, you would need to spend $333!!  And if you subscribe for our product, it costs $52.50, anyway.  This is pretty much how it goes with the vast majority of our competitors who charge far, far more than we do.

So, how much does CBD cream cost?  The answer is, you can pay as much as you want to pay, but we suggest you just try ours and put all the leftover money to better use.

What About My Pet with Arthritis?

CBD is great for dogs and other animals.  However, you don’t want to use our human products on a furry pet because lotion and fur don’t mix well.  We have a topical product for pets that works great on their fur AND skin.   You can find it here.  

I hope you found that helpful and I’ll be writing more posts about our products and hemp in general soon!

Carolina Pure & rural advancement Foundation International

I’d like to highlight an organization that Carolina Pure supports through quarterly contributions: The Rural Advancement Foundation International (RAFI).  Based here in NC, RAFI supports SouthEastern rural, family farmers in a number of ways.  They advocate for small farms at the federal level and work to protect them from the collective might of Big Agriculture’s influence in Washington.  RAFI also supports farmers directly with a variety of programs and resources from helping to establish alternative food marketplaces for farmers to sell their output to disaster assistance to technical and marketing support.  

Since Carolina Pure sources its hemp from regional farms, it was a no-brainer to support an organization that supports the farms that produce our high-quality hemp.  Please take a look at their website and make a donation if you can!

I’d also like to introduce one of the newest additions to our product lineup: puReplenish, our CBD-infused body butter. Available in Watermelon, Mango, and Lemon Sugar.  Infused with 2000mg of full-spectrum CBD, pure rePlenish is a luxurious treat for your skin packing a strong punch of hemp goodness.  Watermelon puReplenish is currently available on our website and the other options will follow soon.  Or stop by our store at 7316 Market Street in Ogden, NC, and pick some up today!

In next month’s newsletter, I will be introducing another local band that we are sponsoring, fronted by a long-time friend of mine who is one of the best musicians I’ve ever seen.  Enjoy the start of Summer!

What People Are Saying

  • Here at Elite Chiropractic, we depend on high-quality products to provide relief to our patients. Carolina Pure CBD has embodied this through its professionalism, quality, and attentiveness. We can not recommend their products enough!

    Elite Chiropractic
  • Carolina Pure CBD has been a huge help for me personally. It takes effect quickly and I don't suffer side effects of harsh drugs.

    Sue - Wilmington NC
  • Carolina Pure works for me. It's that simple. I take it every day now.

    Laura - Leland, NC

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Carolina Pure hemp oil products are not for use or sale to persons under the age of 18. Our products contain full spectrum hemp-derived hemp oil, legal in all 50 States and compliant with United States H.R.2 - Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.