Family health General

CBD Isolate vs. Broad-Spectrum vs. Full-Spectrum

We have recently started carrying CBD products, and we know you’ll have questions, so here’s a primer.

CBD refers to cannabinoids, which are the natural phytochemical found in the cannabis plant. There are over 113 different cannabinoids (CBD and THC have been researched the most), and they interact with our endocannabinoid system (ECS) in a variety of ways. The ECS is a complex network of cannabinoid receptors and neurotransmitters located in the brain, peripheral nervous system, immune system, and central nervous system. It controls many biological functions like memory, pain perception, stress management, cognition, immune response, and mood regulation.

Each cannabinoid has a unique relationship with the ECS. For instance, THC can induce psychoactive effects (i.e., getting high), and is a strong analgesic and anti-inflammatory. Cannabidiol (CBD) won’t make you high, and can provide stress/anxiety relief and alter our perception of pain. CBD can be mildly stimulating at lower doses, and have a sedative effect at higher doses. Other cannabinoids like Cannabigerol (CBG) can affect glaucoma and IBS symptoms, and cannabinol (CBN) may have sedative, antibacterial, neuroprotectant, appetite stimulation, and anti-inflammatory properties. The inclusion of all of the various types of cannabinoids creates the “cannabinoid spectrum.”

CBD products are all extracted from the cannabis plant using solvents. CBD oil derived from the hemp plant contains little to no THC (generally below 0.3%), and was approved on the federal level with the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, making it legal.

What happens after the initial extraction of the cannabinoids determines whether the extract will be a CBD isolate, broad-spectrum, or full-spectrum. Each terms refers to the degree to which the product was processed.

CBD Isolates

A CBD isolate is the purest form and is made by removing all other ingredients after it has been extracted from its natural environment. Because isolates are generally 99% pure (i.e., 1 gram of isolate powder carries about 990mg of CBD), they have the highest concentration of CBD per serving. However, because all of the other ingredients have been removed, there will be no “entourage effect” (which we’ll discuss in a bit). But you can benefit solely from the effects of pure cannabidiol, and these products tend to be a lower price.

Broad-Spectrum CBD

Broad-spectrum CBD contains cannabidiol as well as all of the plant’s other compounds except for THC. Removing the THC after the initial extraction means that not only won’t you get high, it won’t show up in a drug test. But it will still produce the entourage effect.

Full-spectrum CBD

Extracts that are full-spectrum contain all the phytochemicals naturally found in the plant. These include CBD, terpenes, cannabinoids, and essential oils – as well as a negligible (less than 0.3%) THC content. Because it does contain trace amounts of THC, it could produce a false positive on a drug test (particularly if you’re taking a high daily dose), so individuals who are likely to be drug tested should avoid taking this form. That being said, it’s non-psychoactive, meaning it won’t get you high. Full-spectrum compounds will produce the entourage effect.

So let’s talk about the entourage effect. Simply put, each compound can amplify the therapeutic properties of the others while lessening their potential side effects. The components work together to enhance the plant’s benefits. When you take a full-spectrum or broad-spectrum extract, in addition to the Cannabidiol (CBD), you’ll also be getting compounds like Cannabinol (CBN), Cannabichromene (CBC), Cannabigerol (CBG), Cannabidiol acid (CBDA), Cannabidivarin (CBDV) and terpenes. Terpenes are responsible for the unique aroma profits of various plants. The more than 200 terpenes found in cannabis bind to receptors in the body, providing an array of potential health benefits

Scientists have determined that full-spectrum CBD tends to be more effective than CBD isolate, and that it provides better effects at higher doses, while the effects of CBD isolates stays consistent even at increased intake levels.

So what is the best type for you? It takes some trial and error to figure out which type and brand is best for you. Each person has a unique body chemistry, weight, and lifestyle, and each of these factors can influence the way you react to different cannabinoid profiles. A product that may work well for someone you know may not work well for you. But generally speaking, most people will benefit from full-spectrum extracts the most, but if drug-testing is a concern, go with a broad-spectrum one. For users who were recommended to take very high doses of CBD, who may be sensitive to THC or other cannabinoids, or who prefer a flavorless and odorless product, a CBD isolate would be best.

CBD oil is available in tinctures, teas, honeys, caramels, capsules or gummies, or infused into skin care products, such as bath bombs, lotions, and salves. CBD oil skincare products can be absorbed into the skin and don’t need to be washed off.

Always start “low and slow” when trying a new product. Start with small doses spread several hours apart, and increase the dose and frequency until you achieve your desired results. How much you’ll need will vary depending on your body weight, metabolism, and body chemistry. Doses should be taken at least four to six hours apart, and you can take CBD oil at any time of day, but if you’re using it to improve sleep, take it before bed. The immediate effects of CBD usually take effect within 30 to 90 minutes, but long-term results may take several weeks to achieve. 

Family health General Orthopedic rehabilitation

Static Posture Linked To Pain

“Trapezius muscle activity variation during computer work performed by individuals with and without neck-shoulder pain.”
Research published on July 25, 2019 found that individuals with neck and shoulder pain exhibited longer uninterrupted periods of muscle activation compared to their non-symptomatic counterparts. This suggests that static posture and not poor posture may be the greater concern and contributor to pain. The research reiterates the importance of taking regular breaks when sitting in front of a computer screen. 

Massage and acupuncture can help keep you functional, but studies like this show just how important it is for you to avoid being sedentary for too long.

Trapezius muscle activity variation during computer work performed by individuals with and without neck-shoulder pain

Aimed to compare muscle activation during computer use in those with and without pain. * Exposure variation analysis (EVA) applied to upper trapezius muscle activation. * EVA group differences and day-to-day reliability among controls determined. * Most EVA measures exhibited moderate-high reliability. * Pain group had more longer continuous durations of muscle activity than controls.

Wishing you wellness,

Mary Clark

Emotional health-Finding peace Family health General

Angina and Acupuncture

A recent study published in JAMA, the Journal of the American Medical Association (July 29, 2019) reported that adjunctive acupuncture reduced angina frequency and pain intensity in those suffering from chronic stable angina (CSA). It was found to be more effective than antianginal therapy alone. Acupuncture treatment also resulted in better regulation of anxiety and depression within the treatment period. 
The findings of the current study reported that the benefit is the result of acupuncture causing “autonomic remodeling by improving the balance between the vagus nerve and sympathetic nervous system during treatment.”
All participants in the study received 12 sessions of acupuncture treatment (3 times a week for 4 weeks). The acupoints needled were PC6 and HT5.

Yours in wellness,

Mary Clark

Family health General

Genetic Predisposition vs. Lifestyle

Is your current health status due to a genetic predisposition, your lifestyle choices and mindset or a combination of both? 

“A new study finds that if you tell people that they have a genetic predisposition to certain health characteristics, such as a low capacity for exercise or a tendency to overeat, their bodies start to respond accordingly. Even if their DNA does not actually contain the gene variants in question. The study raises provocative questions about the extent to which our genes affect our physical well-being.”

Mr. Turnwald, from the Department of Psychology at Stanford University stated that “our mind-sets, or mental expectations about ourselves, seem to play an equal or even greater role than does our DNA in shaping some of our bodies’ reactions to diet and exercise. But far more research is needed, he continues, to understand the interplay of genes, beliefs and health, and eventually help people better interpret any results they receive from genetic health tests.”

In clinic l will often hear something akin to “my mother had diabetes or my father had heart disease etc, so l am bound to get it.” 

Recognizing genetic predisposition is important, however, as individuals, there is a lot that we can do to address lifestyle factors. Prevention can be powerful.…/mind-may-trump-dna-in-exercise-an…

Learning one’s genetic risk changes physiology independent of actual genetic risk

Millions of people now access personal genetic risk estimates for diseases such as Alzheimer’s, cancer and obesity1. While this information can be informative2-4, research on placebo and nocebo effects5-8 suggests that learning of one’s genetic risk may evoke physiological changes consistent with the expected risk profile.

Wishing you wellness,

Mary Clark

Emotional health-Finding peace General

FGID’s – Part 3

The phrase “butterflies in my stomach” refers to a common experience – that fluttery feeling in the stomach before a stressful event, a big presentation, a first date and even moments before riding on a rollercoaster or boarding a plane. It is an idiomatic expression that means that a person is anxious or has a nervous feeling in their stomach.

Although, patients with functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGID’s) will tend to focus on the possible physical causes of their symptoms (at the gut level), the relationship between psychological stress and the onset or exacerbation of symptoms should always be taken into consideration.

When an individual is stressed they will often be in a sympathetic state (fight or flight) which will do a number of things. It will:

– Inhibit gut transit and secretion

– Stimulate contractile activity of the sphincters

– Induce vasoconstriction and even modulate the mucosal immune system and microbiota

– Increase painful perceptions arising from gastrointestinal stimuli (referred to as visceral hypersensitivity), and

– Compromise the vago-vagal reflex

The vago-vagal reflex, which stimulates the secretion of a number of hormones, will be impaired and impact:

– Gastrin: which promotes the secretion of gastric acid and allows the stomach to break down food, enhance the absorption of nutrients and aid digestion.

– Somatostatin: which plays a physiological role in regulating gastric acid secretion, and is also thought to modulate the intestinal absorption rate and inhibit intestinal motility.

– Serotonin: which has a role in mood modulation. Given that 90% of it is made in the gut, it is no surprise that less than ideal levels of serotonin are linked to higher levels of depression and anxiety.

– Innate and acquired immunity.

The key message here is that although many of us will continue to experience “butterflies”, research suggests that working on ways to bring the body back into the parasympathetic state, and back into a state of calm, will aid digestion.

For many this may feel impossible and take time.

Sometimes, we have to sit in the uncomfortable and messy space for a short while, or as a Brene Brown puts it, lean in.

At other times, we may need some extra support and guidance from a close friend or family member, a counselor, a psychologist or psychotherapist.

I often encourage my patients to take small steps. To do what they can, and to continue to be gentle with the person that they are generally most impatient with, themselves.

Wishing you wellness,

Mary Clark…/artic…/pii/S0016508514002790
Family health General

FGID’s – Part 2

Stress, Distress and Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders (FGID’s).

The response to stress is an integrated and coordinated physiological process that can result in adaption or pathological maladaptation.

Protective and damaging effects of stress mediators: central role of the brain

The mind involves the whole body, and two-way communication between the brain and the cardiovascular, immune, and other systems via neural and endocrine mechanisms. Stress is a condition of the mind-body interaction, and a factor in the expression of …

I have previously discussed the term ‘allostasis’ which is described as the process by which stability is maintained in the face of stress. When the environment that we live in starts to exceed our capacity to keep up and our attempted adaptation fails, we start to experience a myriad of symptoms.

Digestive disturbances and disruption to the brain gut axis can commonly occur. The individual may also experience symptoms such as exhaustion, irritability, anxiety, weight gain, low immunity, hormonal problems, brain fog, insomnia and so forth.

The brain gut axis is a complex and bidirectional communication between the:
~ enteric nervous system (gut sensation, secretion, motility, permeability)
~ autonomic nervous system which is made up of the sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight), and the parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest) and the
~ central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord).

The connection between stress and Irritable Bowel Syndrome has been studied extensively.

Researchers have found that:
~ Those with IBS experience heightened levels of anxiety and depression
~ The anxiety symptoms are more frequently related to the IBS symptoms and not necessarily considered to fall into the category of a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
~ Those exposed to chronic or sustained stress, early life stress or adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are more vulnerable to the development of FGID’s such as IBS
~ The presence of at least one chronic life stressor at the onset of IBS is thought to impact the response to treatment and delay it by as much as 16 months.
~ Early recognition of stressful triggers may help to proactively institute therapeutic interventions and prevent the development of IBS and/or decrease the severity of symptoms.

Current research suggests that the treatment of IBS is multimodal and may involve dietary modifications, probiotics and herbal therapies, pharmacological interventions, psychotherapy and acupuncture.

Irritable bowel syndrome: modern concepts and management options.

Am J Med. 2015 Aug;128(8):817-27. doi: 10.1016/j.amjmed.2015.01.036. Epub 2015 Feb 28. Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov’t; Review


Wishing You Wellness,

Mary Clark