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Cannabinoids explained

Cannabinoids Could Help Migraine Sufferers Find Relief

By | Cannabinoids explained, Health effects of cannabinoids, Uncategorized | No Comments

Cannabinoids Could Help Migraine Sufferers Find Relief. In the USA alone, over 37 million people suffer from migraines, with an estimated 2-3 million experiencing chronic migraines1. Around 5 million have at least one migraine per month, and 11 million say that it causes them moderate to severe disability. Over 90% say that it interferes with work or everyday functioning, and most say that their migraines cause relationship problems. But a migraine is just a headache, right? Actually, migraines can involve severe, painful headaches, over-sensitivity to light, nausea, vision impairment, disorientation and problems with co-ordination – much more than just feeling uncomfortable2. Sometimes, these symptoms can last for several days.


So how could cannabidiol (CBD) and the other cannabinoids help? If cannabinoids could help migraine sufferers find relief how would it work? The human body produces its own cannabinoids, anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG); together with the cannabinoid receptors, they make the endocannabinoid system. This regulates many processes in the body, such as blood vessel dilation. When cannabinoids interact with their receptors, they reduce blood vessel dilation, which is important in migraines because the expansion of blood vessels in an area with no extra space (ie the brain) creates pressure, and therefore pain. The endocannabinoid receptors known as CB1 receptors are also present in higher than usual levels in an area of the brain strongly associated with migraines3. While our own cannabinoids regulate our bodies in ways that prevent migraines, levels of AEA have been found to be lower in people who suffer from migraines4. Also, women with migraines may have


higher levels of the enzyme that degrades AEA.


Cannabinoids such as CBD may also directly relieve the pain seen in migraines. The stimulating neurotransmitter known as glutamate is responsible for the secondary and tertiary (horrible) pain in both migraines and fibromyalgia5, but cannabinoids can block the release of glutamate from nerve cells. Cannabinoids may also stabilize the platelets, which are responsible for blood clots, and inhibit serotonin release, which in excess can amplify pain4.

Although the scientific evidence behind the use of hemp and cannabinoids to relieve migraines is largely lab studies, hemp medicines have a long history in migraine treatment4. Dr Clendinning in London was the first Western physician to prescribe cannabis (which had a much lower THC content back then) for migraines in the 1840s. In the 1870s, another doctor, Dr R. Greene, was recommending daily doses of cannabis to prevent migraines. In 1890, Sir John Russell Reynolds, physician to the British royal family, highlighted migraines as an indication for the prescription of cannabis in a review of his 30 years of clinical experience. In more modern times4, a case was reported where a patient suffering from migraines found relief in small doses of smoked cannabis, after failing conventional therapies. The author had previously encountered multiple patients with migraines who had failed pharmaceutical drugs, but responded positively to cannabis. Other case reports described patients finding relief from other types of chronic headache. Overall, the evidence behind using CBD-rich hemp oil to manage migraines is in need of clinical trials, but laboratory studies, historical use and case reports do show a potential benefit.


1: https://migraine.com/migraine-statistics/

2: https://www.leafly.com/news/health/cannabis-and-migraine-treatment/

3: http://theroc.us/images/Clinical%20endocannabinoid%20deficiency%20(CECD)%20revisited%20Can%20this%20concept%20explain%20the%20therapeutic%20benefits%20of%20cannabis%20in%20migraine,%20fibromyalgia,%20irritable%20bowel%20syndrome%20and%20other%20treatment-resistant%20conditions.pdf

4: http://theroc.us/images/Comprehensive%20Review%20of%20Medicinal%20Marijuana,%20Cannabinoids,%20and%20Therapeutic%20Implications%20in%20Medicine%20and%20Headache-%20What%20a%20Long%20Strange%20Trip%20It%E2%80%99s%20Been.pdf

5: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2503660/

Cannabinoids May Even Help in Huntington’s Disease

By | Cannabinoids explained, Health effects of cannabinoids | No Comments

Cannabinoids may even help in Huntington’s Disease. It may not have the publicity of multiple sclerosis or even Motor Neuron Disease, but Huntington’s disease is a truly grim condition. Huntington’s disease is a fatal genetic condition that causes seizures and a progressive loss of neurological function. Conventional medicine does not have a cure, or even treatments that significantly suppress its symptoms. But like many people, Erin and her mother, Cindy, were willing to try anything – even cannabis oil – and to the surprise of many, it worked1.

Huntington’s Disease is a very serious condition. In a video that Erin and her family posted online, we first see her struggling to stand; in fact she is almost completely unable to do so. After taking cannabis oil, she is able to quickly stand up like an able-bodied person typically can, and smile to the camera. It’s all easy for us, but what about Erin? To see the significance, we must first understand her condition. Juvenile Huntington’s disease is the most severe form of HD, with a more rapid progression and ten-year life expectancy. The later symptoms appear, the slower it progresses. If a child’s parent has HD, they have a 50% chance of developing it themselves. Progressively worsening cognitive, motor, behavioral and psychiatric symptoms destroy the remaining life of HD patients. The apparent intractability of this disease makes Erin’s transformation all the more amazing. And what type of cannabis oil did Erin take? Not a high-THC strain, but one rich in cannabidiol (CBD), the main cannabinoid in hemp.

But how does it work, and is there any scientific evidence to back it up? Well, the endocannabinoid system is actually tied to the progression of HD, as cannabinoid receptors have been found to disappear in some neurons during the early stages2. Other experimental evidence has found antioxidant and neuroprotective effects of CBD, which may be helpful in preventing the destruction of neurons in Huntington’s disease. In a recent pilot trial designed to test for safety, a combination of THC and CBD was found to be safe, tolerated and not associated with worsening of the disease. Unfortunately, there was no significant clinical improvement. This again raises the question of how cannabis or hemp oil worked for Erin, as the nature of Huntington’s disease (and her years of activity in fighting the illness) rules out her being able to “fake it”. However, the authors did write that perhaps higher doses of the cannabinoid combination, or a longer period of treatment, may be effective in reversing progression. Additionally, studies on mice found that CBD can prevent the degeneration of the same type of brain tissue affected by HD3.

How Huntington's disease is passed down (autosomal dominant)

Other cannabinoids, such as cannabigerol (CBG), may be the answer. Mouse models of HD have shown that CBG may activate the PPAR-gamma receptors in the affected neural tissue, thereby relieving the inflammation and symptoms. PPAR-gamma receptors can also regulate neural progenitor cell growth and differentiation, which means they may aid in tissue repair. The clinical trial which showed no benefit from using cannabinoids did not use CBG, only THC and CBD. When CBG works with the other anti-inflammatory and protective cannabinoids and terpenes found in hemp, it may work even better, although clinical trials are needed to confirm this. In conclusion, more research is needed to determine how well hemp extracts can work in Huntington’s disease, but Erin’s story is nonetheless amazing.


1: http://www.digitaljournal.com/life/health/op-ed-cannabis-oil-and-huntington-s-disease-yes-it-works/article/485214

2: http://hightimes.com/culture/first-clinical-trial-with-cannabis-for-huntingtons-disease-shows-promising-results/

3: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4949444/

Why Does CBD Have So Many Potential Uses?

By | Cannabinoids explained, Health effects of cannabinoids, How CBD works, Uncategorized | No Comments

Why Does CBD Have So Many Potential Uses? Here at Elixinol, we have covered a wide range of potential therapeutic uses for cannabidiol (CBD), other cannabinoids and hemp oil. From epilepsy to PTSD, it can all sound too good to be true. So how could one plant have so many benefits?

Besides being the second most abundant cannabinoid in the Cannabis genus, and the most in hemp, CBD is now well-known for the sheer number of possible therapeutic uses1. Each use has different levels of evidence, from clinical trials where we see how effective it is in humans, to in vitro lab studies where we can see how it may work. The presence of endocannabinoid receptors in a range of tissues and organs help to explain CBD’s broad applications. However, it can also interact with other types of receptors in the body and brain. Endocannabinoid-CBD-PTSD

The brain is made up of billions of highly specialised cells called neurons, along with several types of supporting cell2. Each neuron communicates with many other neurons by the synapses. Synapses are where two tiny bulbs on the ends of projections from the neuron cell come to meet. Neurons communicate with these by using chemicals known as neurotransmitters. Whether or not a neuron can “understand” the use of a certain neurotransmitter depends on if it has a receptor for that chemical. These receptors can respond to other chemicals too, such as the cannabinoids.

CBD, unlike THC, does not directly interact with the cannabinoid receptors, but instead works to increase the levels of our own cannabinoids. It also indirectly affects the signaling of these receptors. One of the non-cannabinoid receptors that CBD can influence is the dopamine receptors. Dopamine is involved with motivation and reward, as well as other cognitive and motor functions. This may be behind how CBD could help to fight cigarette cravings. In a study of 24 cigarette smokers, volunteers were given either an inhaler with CBD, or a placebo inhaler, and instructed to use it whenever they craved a cigarette3. The number of cigarettes smoked in the CBD group dropped significantly during the week, but not for the placebo group.

Animal studies have also shown that CBD can interact with some types of serotonin receptors, which may explain its effects on depression and anxiety. Its ability to interact with the serotonin 1A receptor may explain the documented effects of CBD on neuropathic pain, opioid dependence, and nausea and vomiting. There have been many anecdotal reports of hemp oil relieving nausea, even in severe vomiting caused by pharmaceuticals used for cancer. In addition, a study on shrews showed an effect of CBD on the serotonin 1A receptors which significantly reduced nausea and vomiting4. Its non-heated form, CBDA, had the same effect, but at a much lower dose.

Supporting the wide-ranging effects of CBD are the other cannabinoids, such as CBG and CBC, terpenes and other phytochemicals. These have shown anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, antioxidant and other effects. The number of potential benefits of hemp oil and CBD aren’t exactly “too good to be true”, but clinical trials are needed to confirm many of them.


1: https://www.leafly.com/news/science-tech/what-does-cbd-do

2: Tortora & Derrickson, 2012, Principles of Anatomy & Physiology, 12th edn, Wiley

3: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23685330

4: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4960260/

5: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3165946/

Why Doesn’t Cannabidiol Make You High?

By | Cannabinoids explained, Elixinol product reviews, Health effects of cannabinoids, Hemp Seed Benefits, Uncategorized | No Comments

Why Doesn’t Cannabidiol Make You High?

If you have heard of CBD that stands for Cannabidiol. But what are the differences between CBD and THC? What is the difference between hemp and marijuana? One of the reasons why many people prefer high-CBD hemp extracts that contain little to no THC is that they aren’t psychoactive – they won’t get you “high”. But why is this the case? If both THC and CBD act on the brain, using the cannabinoid receptors, and are closely related, why is CBD so different?

The “high” caused by THC involves the CB1 receptors, which are concentrated in the brain and nervous system1. While both THC and CBD can interact with the CB1 receptors, THC binds very well with them, but CBD only has a weak affinity. If you think of THC as an electric plug and the CB1 receptor as a socket, the THC is a perfect fit. CBD would be an ill-fitting plug that obstructs the THC plug when in the way. Therefore, CBD is thought of as an antagonist of substances that activate CB1 receptors.

You may remember the infamous drug Rimonabant, which is a CB1 antagonist and had its clinical trials stopped due to severe side effects. CBD is more like a modulator of the receptors’ effects, so it won’t completely stop them from working. The most common effects of CB1 receptors are relaxation and euphoria (a happy high), but also anxiety and short-term memory impairment, especially in large amounts. When those who partake in recreational cannabis use strains with higher levels of CBD, they often report fewer negative effects. However, many recreational strains have been bred to produce less CBD, in order to maximise the “high”. This would also significantly impair many therapeutic effects. In one study, participants who were given CBD before THC were much less likely to suffer from psychotic symptoms and paranoia2. They were also largely spared from episodic memory impairment, another common side effect of THC. Episodic memory is our memories of specific events, such as what you were doing last night at that party.


Along with CBD, the other cannabinoids in hemp are not psychoactive either, despite being related to THC3. Cannabichromene (CBC) is another cannabinoid, which may have anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain-relieving) abilities. In mice, it was also found to reduce THC toxicity. Therefore, like CBD, there is no reason to condemn CBC on moral grounds. It works in a similar way to CBD, by increasing the available levels of our own cannabinoids, which may have a more balancing effect than a possible over-stimulating one. Cannabigerol (CBG) seems to also work this way, and could also have anti-depressant properties by acting on the serotonin receptors. CBD has been found to act on the serotonin receptors too, as a stimulant4. This could help to relieve nausea, depression, anxiety and even psychotic symptoms. Additionally, it has also shown effects on the dopamine receptors. Dopamine plays a critical role in aspects of cognition such as motivation and reward, as well as affecting co-ordination. With all of these potential therapeutic effects, CBD doesn’t need to stimulate the CB1 receptors directly.


1: https://www.leafly.com/news/science-tech/cbd-vs-thc-cbd-not-psychoactive

2: http://jop.sagepub.com/content/27/1/19.short

3: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3165946/

4: https://www.leafly.com/news/science-tech/what-does-cbd-do

Hemp Oil May Be a Great Topical For Aging Skin!

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Aging is a universal complaint, and as a result, treatments intended to fight skin aging make up an industry worth millions of dollars. If you’re tired of face creams with unreadable lists of ingredients, and no guarantee that a therapeutic dose of the active compounds are used, it may be time for a more natural approach. Fortunately, hemp oil may be an effective alternative. Read More

Introducing CBD Rescue Balm & CBD Topical

By | Cannabinoids explained, Elixinol product reviews | 2 Comments

Global CBD leader Elixinol continues its product expansion to meet its customers diverse needs with Rescue Balm a naturally soothing CBD topical salve for targeted areas.  

Each pleasantly scented application, applied directly to the skin, muscles or joints delivers 125mg of full-spectrum CBD topical hemp oil, combined with key ingredients such as Virgin Ucuuba Butter, Virgin Andiroba Oil, and a key terpene Nerolidol. In addition to targeted-area relief, Rescue Balm  also promotes a healthy, youthful skin appearance. Read More

Can You Vape Cannabidiol-Rich Hemp Oil?

By | Cannabinoids explained | One Comment

Vaping, where water vapour containing a substance of the user’s choice is inhaled, has grown in popularity in recent years as it is considered to be a healthier alternative to smoking. Many cannabis users are also now starting to switch to vaping, for medicinal or recreational purposes. Most research into vaping cannabis is concerned with the psychoactive THC, which is responsible for the “high” that recreational users get. However, a study published in 2014 by the University of Wollongong in Australia shows that cannabidiol, or CBD, can be vaporised too1.

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Cannabidiol (CBD) Frequently Asked Questions

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There are a couple of questions about cannabidiol (CBD) that we get asked more frequently, so we decided to put together a list of CBD FAQs for those of you who are still new to this topic and want to learn more about this cannabinoid, its properties and effects.

1. Is CBD oil legal?

Yes, CBD oil obtained from hemp is legal, because the FDA considers hemp-derived cannabinoids to be food-based products, so their importation and consumption is not restricted. However, it is not legal to grow hemp in most of the US states, and for this reason a lot of companies producing CBD oil or other cannabidiol-rich supplements source their hemp from countries where it is legal to grow it. Industrial hemp can be legally grown in most European countries.

2. If CBD is obtained from hemp, does it mean I will get high from consuming it?

No. CBD (cannabidiol) is one of the two most prominent cannabinoids in the Cannabis plant, the other one being THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). Both of them occur in this plant naturally, and can be found in higher or lower concentrations, depending on the part of the plant we refer to.

CBD is not psychoactive, which means you cannot get high from cannabidiol-rich products. On the other hand, THC is a strong psychoactive substance,  which gets you stoned. As long as you consume products made of specially bred hemp plants, you shouldn’t experience any unwanted effects. Hemp contains little to no THC, while recreational cannabis can contain between 5% and 20% tetrahydrocannabinol.

You can learn more about CBD and its properties here.

3. How is CBD oil obtained?

Cannabidiol oil is obtained from hemp through a technique called CO2 extraction. We use hemp because it doesn’t contain THC, and we opt for this technique because it enables us to produce oil that yields the full spectrum of cannabinoids in the Cannabis sativa plant. Our extracts contain a multitude of cannabinoids with positive effects, as well as terpenes, minerals, fatty acids and vitamins. All these substances make our products nourishing and recommend them as dietary supplements.

4. Can CBD oil cure any condition?

We produce CBD oil that is sold as a dietary supplement, so we’re not making any medical claims. However we do encourage you to research this topic yourself, as there are trustworthy websites where you’ll find studies on the effects and benefits of cannabidiol in various conditions. We may refer to such studies here, but only to inform you about them. Our CBD products are not intended to treat, cure or prevent any disease.

5. Is your CBD oil synthetic or natural?

As said, we extract CBD oil from industrial hemp, so our products are all natural. Industrial hemp is naturally rich in CBD and low in THC so we use this plant to make sure the final product contains a multitude of useful compounds and no psychoactive substances.

6. Does CBD oil cause side effects?

Hemp is considered generally safe, so there shouldn’t be any significant side effects, but we can’t rule them out as it really depends on how your body tolerates and adapts to these dietary supplements. We recommend to consult your physician before using any dietary supplement, including our CBD oil.

7. Why should I used this oil instead of cannabinoids from marijuana?

Technically, cannabinoids from marijuana and cannabinoids from hemp are the same, meaning that they have the same properties, but as previously said, hemp contains little to no THC. Marijuana on the other hand is very high in THC and makes you high, so this is why you should opt for hemp CBD oil if you intend to use it as a food supplement.

8. How much CBD oil should I take?

This really depends on why you’re using the product, and on how your body adapts to it. We recommend to start with 1 drop per serving, once or twice a day, and see if this dosage works for you. If it’s the first time you’re using a supplement, we encourage you to discuss with your healthcare practitioner if you have specific questions.

What is a Liposome, and How Could it Improve CBD Absorption?

By | Cannabinoids explained | One Comment

Vaping, oral sprays, skin cream, liposomes? If you’re new to the world of hemp, the variety of ways to take just one plant’s extract may be a little confusing. What method of dosage is best? And what do some of these terms, such as “liposome”, even mean? If you have noticed liposomal sprays in Elixinol’s product range and are interested in trying some, it’s worth knowing what you’re getting, and why it’s made that way. Read More