GRAND TRAVERSE COUNTY, Mich. (WPBN/WGTU) — Does it work wonders? Or, is it just a health craze? CBD Oil is sparking both curiosity and criticism across the country.
“They tried everything to try and help relieve his pain,” said Christine Stalsonburg, whose husband has neuropathy. “So, we started him on CBD Oil, and he noticed a reduction in his pain within 20 minutes of taking it and about 80% of his numbness is now gone.”
There are plenty of people who say CBD Oil has changed their life, by either relieving pain or just improving their overall wellness, but there's not a whole lot of scientific research to back that up – at least not yet.
Stalsonburg is a licensed massage therapist and certified clinical aromatherapist who owns Angelic Energy in Traverse City.
“Right now, we can’t say that it works, fixes, or cures anything,” said Stalsonburg. “All we can say is that it supports the endocannabinoid system in our body to help promote wellness, and by doing that people are saying some amazing ‘side effects’ if you will.”
CBD Oil is derived from the cannabis plant, hemp, but it doesn't make you high like marijuana.
“The marijuana plant is very high in THC, which is the psychotropic portion, and very low in concentrations of CBD,” said Stalsonburg. “On the flip side, the hemp plant is very, very high in the CBD compound and very, very low – almost minute traces of THC.”
With less than .3 percent THC, CBD Oil can be bought in all different forms; capsules, candies, and now, in your coffee.
“It makes me feel great, so why not try to serve this to other people,” said Dan Guy, owner of Espresso Bay in Traverse City.
Guy lives with an autoimmune disease that causes constant pain in his legs, and says he's tried pretty much everything you can imagine to try and take the pain away.
It wasn't until a couple years ago that he actually saw some relief after a friend introduced him to CBD Oil.
“It started working about 20 minutes after I took the capsule, and it just has completely changed my life,” said Guy.
Guy started experimenting with recipes at home, and once the FDA passed the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, the Espresso Bay owner added a CBD Latte to the menu.
“I can taste the cinnamon and I can taste the milk, but it doesn’t have any unusual taste or smell or anything like that,” said one customer who was trying it for the first time.
A different customer, Bea Kurek, said she has been using CBD Oil for years, and makes her own candy with it.
“I saw they had that latte, and I tried it, and my headache went away in like 15 minutes,” said Kurek. “It was so cool, I'm going to come back, a lot.”
Migraines, joint pain, anxiety, trouble sleeping – these are all things people are using CBD Oil for instead of medicine.
“CBD Oil has many therapeutic benefits,” said Stalsonburg. “It works within the endocannabinoid system.”
A system in human and animal bodies that Stalsonburg says was discovered some 20 years ago by Israeli scientists and physicians.
“There are two different receptor sites that they have found so far; one is the CB1 site, which affects our central nervous system [our brain and our spinal column] and then there are CB2 receptor sites which is everything out in the periphery. When the CBD attaches to those CB2 sites that are out in the periphery where people are having a lot of pain and inflammation, the oil helps to support the reduction of that inflammation and we start to see a lot of the pain go away because 90% of our pain in disease processes are all inflammation based.”
However, as of right now, CBD supplements are still not FDA regulated or tested, and there has been very little scientific research done in our country on the benefits of CBD Oil.
“I think that’s kind of the scary part with a lot of folks in the medical field,” said Stalsonburg. “There isn’t enough scientific information to show long-term use to see if there’s going to be any downside or bad side effects, so they’re just kind of sitting in the background waiting because they don’t want to be the one in a legal battle because they were recommending something that has no proven track record.”
In June 2018, the FDA approved a drug, Epidiolex, that contains cannabis-derived CBD for the treatment of seizures associated with two rare and severe forms of epilepsy.
Stalsonburg says that medication can cost more than $1,000 a month.
As with any nutritional supplement, you should advise your doctor before trying CBD Oil.
If you'd like to learn more about CBD Oil, Stalsonburg will be holding a free, informational event at Lucky's Market in Traverse City from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.