Friday, March 15, 2019

Cannabis 101: Part 6

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Winchester B&B

Side Effects and Safety: CBD Vs THC

The psychoactive properties of THC can cause temporary side effects:
 Memory impairments
 Lowered reaction time
Increased heart rateCoordination problems
Dry mouth
Red eyes

While there is a risk of some negative side effects from THC, according to the National Cancer Institute it is not possible to have a fatal overdose. Some studies have found evidence that cannabis strains high in THC can cause long-term negative psychiatric effects when consumed by adolescents, including increasing the risk of psychiatric disorders like schizophrenia.

Research indicates even large doses of CBD are well tolerated and safe. There have been some reports of dry mouth, light-headedness, and drowsiness. A recent research review examining the safety and side effects of CBD concluded that CBD appeared to be safe in humans and animals. Even chronic use of CBD by humans showed to cause no adverse neurological, psychiatric, or clinical effects.

CBD and THC Drug Interactions

Virtually all chemical compounds, from over-the-counter drugs and prescription pharmaceuticals to illicit substances, interact with other compounds. There are, for example, 82 identified drug interactions

with caffeine (of which 25 are classified as moderately severe to severe). Even seemingly benign substances, like grapefruit, are known to interact with many prescription drugs. When it comes to cannabis, most potential interactions that have been identified are relatively mild. And, in fact, some drugs seem to work together with cannabis favourably.

* But, before we dive deep on some of the most common drugs people combine with cannabis, it’s important to understand the difference between an “additive” and “synergistic” effect. Additive simply means the interaction between two chemicals equals the sum of their parts (e.g. 1+1 = 2). Synergistic means that when two chemicals interact, the effect is greater than the sum of their parts (e.g. 1+1 = 3. Sounds like “alternative math!”). Likewise, keep in mind that THC /CBD ratios and different strain profiles (with variable cannabinoid and terpene profiles) can influence effects.

Note: in some cases, cannabis may actually increase the effectiveness or potency of other drugs. But, even if the interaction is potentially beneficial, close monitoring by a medical professional, along with regular blood work, is important as a patient may need adjust their dosing accordingly.

Article by:
Dr. Pierre Milot, PhD., PhD. (tc)
Life Transitions / Grief Recovery Counsellor
CBD-Rich Hemp Sales Consultant
Redmond House, Winchester ON.
Tel: 613.774.4389

Monday, March 11, 2019

Cannabis 101: Part 5

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Winchester B&B

Where CBD Comes From

CBD can be derived from both the industrial hemp plant (male cannabis crop) and the female marijuana plant.  The hemp plant does not have resinous, cannabinoid-packed flowers, but the rest of the plant does contain some cannabidiol amongst the stalk, leaves and more.

Industrial hemp derived CBD products are typically lower in cannabidiol concentration for this reason, while extracts from the marijuana plant can be much more potent and rich, being that they are made from the resinous parts of the buds, which are full of cannabinoids.

* However, a special extraction process must be utilized in order to separate the CBD from the other cannabinoids present in the marijuana plant. This process is typically quite complicated and requires a wealth of knowledge, experience and the proper equipment to do it well.

For this reason, it is really important to consume a certified non-psychoactive cannabidiol product if you want to ensure you will not also be receiving some of the high effects from THC.

Where THC Comes From

THC only comes from very specific portions of the female cannabis plant, or marijuana crop. It is present primarily on the resinous flowers of the plant, mostly the sugar leaves, colas, buds, calyxes/bracts and trichomes.

Very high potency THC marijuana strains typically take on a frosty appearance, meaning that they contain a higher concentration of trichomes, which is what gives this crystalline look.

This is why smoking a water leaf or stalk of the cannabis plant probably won’t get you high, because there simply is not a high enough concentration of resin or trichomes in these regions, meaning little to no THC either.

Additionally, THC needs to be heated, or “decarboxylated,” in order to be activated. This is why eating buds raw won’t cause much of an effect, while smoking, cooking, baking or lighting up is how the high is able to hit you.

More Info

CBD works in concert with THC, augmenting its medical effects and moderating its psychoactive effects.  Some researchers think that CBD has anti-psychotic properties which tend to reduce anxiety and panic reactions to THC.  It is also considered to improve wakefulness (sharper mind) and to supplement THC’s activity against pain and spasticity (tightness, stiffness, or pull of muscles).  Pretreatment with CBD in mice nearly tripled the levels of THC in their brains which is an indication that it can increase the action and effectiveness of other drugs. 

If taken by itself, CBD has anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety, anti-epileptic, sedative and neuro-protective properties.  It’s also quite a powerful antioxidant and can protect against chemical damage due to oxidation.  Lab and animal tests have suggested that CBD could even protect against the incurrence of the following diseases: diabetes, certain types of cancer rheumatoid arthritis, brain and nerve damage as a result of a stroke, alcoholism, Huntington’s disease, and even infections like “Mad Cow”.  Other evidence suggests that CBD is biphasic, meaning that its effectiveness diminishes if the dose is too high or too low.


* CBD is one of the major ingredients in ‘Sativex’, the cannabis spray the UK-based GW Pharmaceuticals is developing.  The spray contains equal parts of CBD and THC and as been approved for the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis in Canada.

Marijuana that’s sold to consumers has significantly lower levels of CBD because growers tend to selectively breed out the CBD enzyme to produce more THC.

Article by:

Dr. Pierre Milot, PhD, PhD (tc)
Life Transition Counselling / CBD Sales Consulting
Grief Recovery – Clinical Hypnotherapy
Winchester Ontario
Tel: 613 774 4389

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Cannabis 101: Part 4

Sponsored by:
Winchester B&B


Hemp and marijuana are grown for different uses, and therefore require different growing conditions.
Medical cannabis has been selectively bred over generations, and its characteristics are optimized in its cultivation environment to produce female flowering plants that yield budding flowers at the flowering stage of their life cycle,
In contrast, hemp plants are primarily male, without representing flowering buds at any stage in their life cycle.  Instead, centuries of selective breeding have resulted in relatively low concentrations of THC, and tall, fast growing plants optimized for higher stalk harvests.

* Achieving maximum THC levels in marijuana is tricky and requires close attention to grow-room conditions. Marijuana growers usually aim to maintain stable light, temperature, humidity, CO2 and oxygen levels, among other things.
On the other hand, hemp is usually grown outdoors to maximize its size and yield and less attention is paid to individual plants.

A Bit About the Anatomy of the Marijuana Plant
Most people know that THC is only present in the female cannabis plant, because this is the one that produces those resinous flowers that are able to provide the high that so many marijuana consumers desire. On the other hand, the male cannabis plant, which is also known by some as hemp, might not have any THC present, but it does contain some CBD. Both the female and male cannabis plants have a source of CBD, so they both make suitable options for cannabidiol oil extraction and processing.

* In addition to being female and male, cannabis plants can also be hermaphroditic (a.k.a. both!). Pretty neat right? Hermaphrodite plants are capable of pollinating themselves, because they contain both female and male sex organs.  This is a nuisance though for marijuana growers, because it means their final product will be filled with seeds and the hermaphrodite genetics can be passed down onto other generations, which defeats the purpose of having feminized seeds. To ensure a female plant, either specifically bred feminized seeds can be purchased, or clones of a female cannabis plant.

The structure of a female cannabis plant, also known as the marijuana plant, is typically built up of a stem with roots that dig deep into the earth, with fan leaves and sometimes colas that stick out in between some of the fan/water leaves.  These colas are a mass collection of the buds, which are the flowers and the part of the plant that can get you high.

* These buds contain sugar leaves, which are coated with those crystal-appearing trichomes (the component that directly contains the THC). Additionally, pistils and stigmas are those tiny, usually orange hairs mixed amongst the sugar leaves. Lastly, there are calyxes and bracts, which also contain potent quantities of cannabinoids.

Article by:
Dr. Pierre Milot, PhD, PhD (tc)
Life Transition Counselling / CBD Sales Consulting
Grief Recovery – Clinical Hypnotherapy
Winchester Ontario
Tel: 613 774 4389

Friday, March 1, 2019

Cannabis 101 Part 3

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What are Cannabis Terpenes & How Can They Help?
Terpenes—compounds that lend the cannabis plant strains their fragrance and flavor—number well over 100, and interact with the ECS (endocannabinoid system) as well. They work in concert with cannabinoids in a wide range of activities—from promoting sleep to elevating mood and providing stress relief.

Cannabis is believed to be one of the oldest domesticated crops. Throughout history, humans have grown different varieties of cannabis for industrial and medical uses.

Tall, sturdy plants were grown by early civilizations to make a variety of foods, oils and textiles, such as rope and fabrics. These plants were bred with other plants with the same characteristics, leading to the type of cannabis we now know as hemp.

Other plants were recognized for being psychoactive and were bred selectively for medical and religious purposes. This led to unique varieties of cannabis that we now know as marijuana.

* According to Dan Sutton of Tantulus Labs, a Canadian company that specializes in cannabis cultivation technology, “the core agricultural differences between medical cannabis and hemp are largely in their genetic parentage and cultivation environment.”

In fact, scientists believe the early separation of the cannabis gene pool led to two distinct types of cannabis plants. The two species (or subspecies) of cannabis are known as Cannabis indica and Cannabis sativa.

THC Content
Cannabis plants contain unique compounds called cannabinoids. Current research has revealed over 100 different cannabinoids so far, but THC is the most well known. THC is credited with causing the marijuana high.

While marijuana plants contain high levels of THC, hemp contains very little of the psychoactive chemical. This single difference is what most rely on to distinguish hemp from marijuana. For example, countries like Canada have set the maximum THC content of hemp at 0.3%. Any cannabis with higher THC levels is considered marijuana instead.

In comparison, medical marijuana produces anywhere between 5-20% THC on average, with prize strains tipping the scale at 25-30% THC.
Hemp and marijuana plants contain another important cannabinoid: CBD. Hemp plants produce more CBD than THC, while marijuana produces more THC than CBD. Interestingly, research has shown that CBD acts to reduce the psychoactive effects of THC, separating hemp further from marijuana.

Don't miss my next post where I will write about 'cultivation and anatomy of the marijuana plant'.

Article by:
Dr. Pierre Milot, PhD, PhD (tc)
Life Transition Counselling / CBD Sales Consulting
Grief Recovery – Clinical Hypnotherapy
Winchester Ontario
Tel: 613 774 4389

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Cannabis 101 Part 2

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What Is THC (Marijuana)?
THC is the most common and well-known cannabinoid found in the marijuana plant. Often associated with its psychoactive properties, THC can be very helpful in different medical applications. THC’s pain-relieving properties make it effective for patients managing their chronic pain.

What Health Conditions Can THC Help?
Besides chronic pain, THC can also help:
Ease stomach discomfort through the reduction of nausea and vomiting
Stimulate appetite in older patients and those experiencing chemotherapy for cancer treatment
Those who suffer from chronic stomach issues such as Crohn’s disease irritable bowel syndrome
Reduce muscle spasms, helping patients with conditions such as Parkinson’s disease control        excessive muscle movement

What Role Do Other Marijuana Cannabinoids Play?
Cannabis is much more effective in the whole plant as opposed to when one cannabinoid is used in isolation. It’s the interactions taking place among the various cannabinoids—called the entourage effect—that helps drive positive effects in the human body.

THC and CBD work in harmony on the endocannabinoid system in the body. For example, having a balance of THC and CBD in a strain of cannabis can allow for the highly successful pain-relieving aspects of THC with less of the psychoactive effect—because non-psychoactive CBD counteracts THC.

* Though THC and CBD are the most prominent compounds, many other cannabinoids such as tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) and cannabichromene (CBC) can provide a range of benefits. Studies have found THCA to have anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, anti-emetic and antiproliferative properties, while CBC appears to be an effective antimicrobial, anti-viral, anti-depressant and analgesic compound.

Article by:
Dr Pierre Milot, PhD, PhD (tc)
Life Transition / Therapeutic Counsellor
Grief Recovery Specialist – Clinical Hypnotherapist
Winchester Ontario
Tel: 613 774 4389

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Taking Care of You: Self-Care After Childbirth

Taking Care of You: Self-Care After Childbirth

By: Sheila Olson

Your new baby is a welcome and beloved addition to your family that you’ve been looking forward to for a long time. It’s not exactly what you expected, though. Exhaustion, loneliness, and depression have crept up on you. In fact, according to, nearly 70-80 percent of women will experience some period of “baby blues,” and postpartum depression (PPD) may affect up to 20 percent of women.

If you think or are unsure if you have PPD, contact your doctor right away. However, stress and being overwhelmed are common challenges for new mothers, mostly caused by forgetting your own needs while caring for your baby. Your family needs you to be healthy and regain your strength. It’s time to take better care of yourself. Here are some ways to address these issues.

Reducing Stress

Stress will have a negative effect on both your mental and physical health. Start by doing some daily practices to reduce stress.

       Practice deep breathing. While it may be challenging in these early days, you can always take a few minutes, even while caring for your child, to practice deep breathing in the midst of struggles. Just a few deep breaths can calm your anxiety and slow a racing heartbeat. Once you are in this zone, it is easy to do some meditation, but it also helps to design your own space to keep your mind relaxed.

       Take a soothing bath. Place your baby in his carrier in a safe place nearby or bring the baby monitor in while you take a bath. Take a bubble bath and relax for 15-20 minutes.

       Rest while your baby naps. You might be tempted to “get stuff done” whenever your baby is asleep, but every now and then, get in a bit of relaxation time. Put your little one down and watch a few minutes of TV or do a crossword puzzle or some reading. You can even also do relaxing household chores such as folding laundry.

       Minimize all other commitments. This may be a time when you need to let go of a number of your normal commitments and duties. Make arrangements to have more downtime for you and your baby. Start saying “no” to things, such as visitors who want to see the baby.

Getting Rest and Support

Because your sleep time is limited, make sure you can fall asleep quickly and rest deeply until your baby needs you. To help, declutter your bedroom to create a soothing environment. You might want to get room-darkening curtains or blinds and a white noise machine. Before bed, avoid drinking lots of water, eating spicy and caffeinated foods, and getting blue light exposure from your smartphone or tablet. All these things can keep you up at night.

Moms today have less help than in the past with smaller extended families. To get enough time to rest, you may need to consider hiring help. Find a recommended childcare provider who is experienced with newborns to come in while you get some sleep or go out for a short break.

You should also find a support group. Talking to other new moms can ease your mind and help you deal with any “mommy guilt” you may be feeling. Motherhood can come with some complex emotional struggles. For example, in this article from, writer Katy Anderson explains how becoming a stay-at-home parent made her “feel so lonely while I had my children around.” It helps to share your feelings with other moms who have been there. Here are tips from on how to strengthen your support system.

Eating Healthy

If you breastfeed, you know that you must give your baby nutrition, but eating healthy is, of course, good for you, too! Choosing the right foods will not only help you lose the baby weight, it can also increase your energy and fight inflammation. Learn which foods benefit you (as well as your baby) from this post at

Remember that a healthy you is the best gift you can give your baby. If you need more help, read these self-care tips for new moms from Mom365.