It can be hard to dissect fact from fiction as our country begins to dismantle the archaic drug
laws that have been in place for so long. As a result, the process of educating the general
public about Cannabis will be a long and uphill battle, but there is a lot to be excited about.
In 2013, CNN aired a mini documentary called “Weed” that highlights one family’s journey
through the almost unbelievable (but true and very well documented) benefits of CBD oil.
The video focuses on Charlotte, a 5 year old girl who struggles with acute epileptic seizures.
The footage is harrowing. For Charlotte and her family, relief from the roughly 300 seizures per
week from which she suffered could not come sooner. The documentary takes us through the
horrific and traumatic reality of child epilepsy. In fact, their daughter was so frail at one point that
she could have died at any moment.
Any parent faced with this reality would be ready to try anything and that’s exactly what they did.
The conservative family decided to give their daughter something they had never even tried
themselves: CBD Oil.
Thankfully, they lived in Colorado, a progressive state that had already legalized recreational
and medical Cannabis use. They visited the Stanley Brothers, one of Colorado’s largest
Marijuana producers and dispensary owners at that time. The brothers were growing a strain of
Cannabis high in CBD and low in THC. This was perfect for their case. After all, THC is the
psychoactive compound found in Cannabis and if the concentration was too strong, their
daughter would essentially get stoned.
The effects were astounding. It worked! They were down to only one seizure per week and their
daughter, who was previously unable to move and had to get her nutrients from a feeding tube,
was now able to walk, talk and eat on her own.
So what is CBD oil?
If you are unfamiliar with CBD oil (or Cannabidiol) the name or even association it has with
Marijuana might conjure up images from the 1930’s propaganda; Reefer madness. Do not be
afraid. There couldn’t be a more rigid dichotomy between the ill-conceived war on drugs and the
known benefits of Cannabis.
Marijuana contains two major ingredients: THC and CBD. THC is the psychoactive element that
gets you “high.” The other half, CBD (which can be extracted as an oil), is believed by scientists
to modulate chemical and electrical activity in the brain and regulate all excessive brain activity.
Before the Charlotte case in Colorado, there was barely any demand for low THC products
because the primary interest for consumers was getting high. In fact, the higher the THC the
better in most cases. While that demand still exists to a large degree, the demand for CBD is
well on its way to catch up.
Since CBD is not psychoactive, then what is it good for?
CBD is generally known for its muscle relaxant properties, however, that on its own would be
quite the understatement. While there is more research being performed, there are many
positive reports about the link between CBD oil and the reduction in Child seizures.
Many also claim CBD oil as the cure to their anxiety, panic attacks, inflammation and
depression. Others believe that it can help reduce the threat of heart disease and even Cancer.
Unfortunately, as a result of Cannabis remaining a Schedule 1 drug in the United States, it can
be very difficult for scientists to perform any research. There has been very little research
research done on many of these claims in the United States.
In the rest of the world, that is not exactly the case! Marijuana legalization has been
implemented in Israel since the 1990’s and it is currently home to over 50 U.S. companies doing
extensive research. Israelis also use Cannabis and related products to help treat cancer,
Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis, Crohn's disease, other chronic pain and post-traumatic stress
In Charlotte’s case, the result was the calming of the muscles and the reversal of the
malfunction in the brain which may have caused the seizures.
Regardless of the benefits claimed by those who use it to treat specific illnesses, it’s also very
good for you! Hemp is a recognized super food and good CBD oil contains: VitaminB1, B2, B3
& B6 and so much more. How could you go wrong?
I think that I might benefit from CBD oil. What do I look for?
After the CNN documentary aired, there was rapid demand for CBD oil from viewers who were
also suffering and seeking relief. However, there was not enough supply to meet that rapidly
growing demand and this led to opportunistic charlatans taking advantage of this new found
While searching for the CBD oil that might be best for you, one might want to consider all the
varieties and figure out which one would correlate best with your current ailments. In addition to
this, it is always best to seek government regulated products to ensure quality and consistency.
Companies spend a lot of money making sure that their products are of the utmost quality.
It’s important to note that there is some debate in the industry about how industrial Hemp is
manufactured, packaged, formulated and then administered to a patient or customer. There
have been cases of people becoming ill over poorly manufactured products. Sometimes when
reading the label, you might discover added chemicals that are not naturally found in CBD oil. It
might be best to leave that product for one that is all natural.
Keep in mind that not everyone’s body is the same. You will need to test out what works best for
you. Since the release of the 2013 CNN video, many families started seeking help for their
children and family members in States where Cannabis is legal. Unfortunately, some have
reportedly been disappointed when they tried the same cure with only to receive negative
As the stigma surrounding these products begin to dissipate, we expect that the wide
acceptance will create new demand for education and research. This will only improve the
possibilities that CBD could potentially provide.