What is the Endocannabinoid System?

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Did you know that your body is producing substances that closely resemble CBD on a molecular level,  in virtually every area of itself... at virtually all times? 

It’s true — and though scientists only discovered this pretty recently, the Endocannabinoid System has a profound impact on how we should view the relationship between our health and the hemp plant. 

Definition of the Endocannabinoid System

The endocannabinoid system (ES) is a physiological network that uses hemp-like compounds (endocannabinoids) to foster communication within the body. With this increased communication comes homeostasis, or balance, and this balance allows the bodily conditions required for good health (both physical and mental) to reset themselves. 

If that sounds cryptic, it’s not: according to renowned CBD expert Dr. Dustin Sulak, 

“The endocannabinoid system may be the most important physiologic system involved in establishing and maintaining human health.”  

What’s most unique about the ES is that it acts holistically through many moving parts. These can be grouped into three categories: 

Receptors - They absorb cannabinoids and endocannabinoids.

Breakdown Enzymes - They quickly break down excess cannabinoids and endocannabinoids to ensure the ES stays balanced.

Endocannabinoids - They’re the CBD-like substances we mentioned earlier.

It’s not critical that you master these details — just know that the ES is a self-perpetuating, homeostasis-promoting system and that homeostasis is vital for feeling healthy, balanced and relaxed.    

 

Hemp + You = Balance

Switching focus to the hemp plant for a second, it too produces some very unique compounds that drive homeostasis. One such group of plant compounds is called terpenes; they’re the molecules that give hemp its scent. Also interesting is the fact that hemp contains tens or even hundreds of terpenes...terpenes normally associated with other plants!

But terpenes do more than just smell good. They’re also potent anti-inflammatory agents, and a small molecular size means they can absorb into many receptor sites of the body. Indeed, a terpene present in hemp called beta-caryophyllene works with endocannabinoid receptors so effectively that some researchers feel it should be reclassified as a cannabinoid. 

Many people don’t realize this, but cannabinoids are actually a type of terpene. They’re classified based on the depth of their interaction with the endocannabinoid system —  so while most cannabinoids are indeed found in the cannabis plant family, that’s not their main qualifier.

Cannabinoids found in hemp include CBD, THC, CBG, CBC, CBN, and more. And though these compounds have similar chemical makeups to each other, they often have very different physiological effects. THC, for example, is highly psychoactive, while CBD is only mildly so. 

 

How Does CBD Affect the Endocannabinoid System?

Because the endocannabinoid system is so complex, improving its health requires a truly holistic solution. Thankfully, that’s exactly what nature has provided in CBD. 

Unlike other substances, CBD gently and indirectly ‘hits’ endocannabinoid receptors and helps the body produce more health-boosting endocannabinoids for itself. Considering that many people in today’s stressful culture are actually endocannabinoid deficient, this quality couldn’t be more critical. 

CBD’s pharmacology gets even more effective when it’s taken in combination with other active cannabinoids and terpenes. This helps ensure that the ES isn’t oversaturated with a single cannabinoid and instead allows it to be fully engaged. And an ever-increasing body of research shows that when the ES is boosted, exciting things happen: 

  • Inflammation goes down [1]

  • Chronic pain is reduced [2]

  • Mood goes up [3]

  • Brain health improves [4]

  • Sleep is better [5]

  • Stress goes down [6]

In light of these benefits, the goal of anybody using CBD should be to engage and rebalance the endocannabinoid system. 

Research shows that the ES responds best to whole plant CBD products with active terpenes and cannabinoids intact — four times better than CBD alone, according to a pivotal Israeli study.  

Additionally, research is also demonstrating that the most bioavailable delivery method for CBD is as a low temperature vapor. This delivery method serves a dual function:

  1. The molecular structure of cannabinoids and terpenes are better preserved as a low temperature vapor (while they are destroyed at higher temperatures).

  2. Cannabinoids and terpenes are directly exposed to the ES and the olfactory system, both of which regulate homeostasis.

This phenomenon of CBD's increased effectivness in combination with terpenes is so strong, it even has its own name: the entourage effect. Research also shows that consistency is highly important — so be sure to take an appropriate amount of CBD each day!  


We believe that nature knows how to activate the endocannabinoid system best. That’s why all Lumi products use a range of therapeutic compounds, including active terpenes and cannabinoids, to fully (and gently!) engage the endocannabinoid system.  

Our products are also designed to make the most of the entourage effect. They immerse users in a subtle experience of calmness and relaxation, an experience with more nuance and depth than what you’d get from CBD-only products. 

Combine these two things — ES activation + the entourage effect — and what you get is a body in balance. Terpene profiles target specific outcomes, and cannabinoids help the body work towards the outcome it knows is best for itself. That is a holistic combination...and our intention is to bring its goodness directly to you. 


Full Spectrum and Broad Spectrum CBD: Separating Fact from Fiction

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Wherever you get CBD, it’s hard not to notice an increase in “Full Spectrum” and “Broad Spectrum” products, all claiming that their formulation delivers superior results.

But what does full spectrum or broad spectrum mean, and what do these descriptors mean for consumers of these CBD products?

With the popularity and availability of full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD products growing, we think it’s an important time to set the record straight on this subject.

 

Myths Around "Full Spectrum" CBD Products

Below are some of the most common myths/misconceptions about full and broad spectrum CBD products and how these myths don’t live up to reality.  

Myth: full spectrum is superior to other CBD products

While full spectrum CBD products do contain a wide range of cannabinoids (which can enhance CBD experiences), their inclusion is rarely deliberate, and therefore rarely provide benefits.

To enhance CBD experiences with accessory cannabinoids and terpenes, these additional compounds must be in sufficient concentrations to produce targeted effects. For example, if a CBD product contained enough terpenes and cannabinoids with energy boosting effects, then this product would leave the user energized.

Most full spectrum products, however, don’t include accessory cannabinoids for any reason other than CBD with trace levels of THC and other cannabinoids is cheaper than CBD isolate.

Therefore, it’s plain to see that the main reason full spectrum products are so popular is purely economic: CBD oil with trace levels of THC is less expensive than THC-free compounds, giving retailers and manufacturers a large incentive to push these products.   

Myth: “Full Spectrum” and “Broad Spectrum” are specific scientific terms

Like many other buzzwords that are catapulted into public use, “Full Spectrum” and “Broad Spectrum” have a scientific flavor but no underlying substance.

Here are the dictionary definitions of full and broad spectrum:

Full Spectrum: covering an entire range or set.

Broad Spectrum: a range of many different kinds.

First used to describe wavelengths of light, “Full Spectrum” has been co-opted to mean a CBD product includes all of the “desirable” cannabinoids present in the hemp plant. 

“Broad Spectrum” is even less specific, defining a CBD product with many or most of the desirable compounds found in the hemp plant.

Both of these definitions, however, ignore the fact that desirability in cannabinoids is always subjective. For example, while a full spectrum of desirable compounds may include THC for one person, it would be excluded for someone who does not consider THC desirable.

A “Full Spectrum” or “Broad Spectrum,” therefore depends on the intended effects that someone wants from a CBD product, not a standard set of compounds that is required to meet this definition.

Myth: Bioavailability is higher in full spectrum CBD products

One of the biggest misconceptions around full spectrum CBD products is their supposedly higher levels of bioavailability over broad spectrum or isolate products.

Just to ensure we’re all on the same page about bioavailability:

Bioavailability: The proportion of a drug or other substance which enters the circulation when introduced into the body and so is able to have an active effect.
In truth, bioavailability in a CBD product has little to do with the number of trace cannabinoids and terpenes present, and everything to do with:

  • The delivery method used (edible, vapor, etc).

  • The molecular bioavailability of cannabinoids present.

  • The concentration of cannabinoids and terpenes in the CBD product.

For example, the bioavailability of THC in a CBD vape product containing  >.3% (the legal limit) is extremely low, while the bioavailability of CBD is extremely high, because CBD is in its most bioavailable state when inhaled as a low temperature vapor.

Alternatively, the bioavailability of THC in a CBD tincture containing  >.3% is much higher, because THC is most efficiently absorbed through the stomach lining, whereas the bioavailability of CBD is lesser than when taken in vapor form.

So, other than the effects of placebo and branding on user experience, we can see that the bioavailability of THC in .3% vape products is negligible. On the other hand, when delivered in an edible/tincture form, this trace amount of THC becomes highly bioavailable.

To sum up: delivery method is by far the most important factor in the bioavailability of any CBD product, as different cannabinoids are more bioavailable through distinct delivery methods.

 

A "Full Spectrum" of Frequently Asked Questions

Spectrum buzzwords have caught on in a serious way, and you may still have some questions about full and broad spectrum products. 

Here are the answers to some common questions about full spectrum products:

 

What does full spectrum mean? How is it different from broad spectrum or isolate?

“Full Spectrum” means that a product contains trace amounts of a wide variety of desirable cannabinoids found in the hemp plant, including THC, but this is not a scientific definition.

“Broad Spectrum” means that a product contains a wide variety of cannabinoids found in the hemp plant and does not generally contain THC. .


Do full spectrum CBD products work better?

While a broad spectrum of cannabinoids and terpenes can improve user experiences, the delivery method, bioavailability and concentration of cannabinoids are the major drivers of the experience you will get from a CBD product.

For CBD, the most bioavailable form of consumption is a low-temperature vapor.


Are full spectrum products better for me?

Not necessarily, especially if you are looking for a THC-free product.


How can I spot a quality full spectrum product?

If a product displays contained concentrations of cannabinoids (CBD,THC, CBN, etc.) and terpenes (myrcene, humulene, limonene etc.), then the product’s makers are using cannabinoids and terpenes in a targeted fashion to improve your CBD experience.

If a product just says “full spectrum,” then the product’s makers have probably not been deliberate in their formulation and you will probably not have a stand out experience.

 

In light of the growing demand for CBD products with additional cannabinoids and terpenes, we have developed a tincture product like no other on the market: Microdose.

Containing nano-emulsified THC & CBG along with CBD, Microdose provides THC in its most bioavailable form while staying below the legal limit <.3%. Combined with the effects of CBD and CBG, Microdose provides a subtle, relaxing experience through an optimal ratio of active cannabinoids.

Lumi’s terpene-rich CBD vapes and our Microdose tincture are the very best options for the "first consumer experience,” because they are bioavailable by design and have noticeable, pleasant effects. This is important because the first consumer experience must be impressive or they won't believe in CBD, this being the difference between a single sale or a repeat customer.

You can learn more about Microdose here or visit our collections page to see more terpene-rich CBD products. 





















How CBD can Help on Your First Legal Mushroom Trip

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Last week, Oakland became the second city in the US to decriminalize “magic mushrooms.” Going a step further than Denver, Oakland has also decriminalized all plants with natural hallucinogenic properties such as the San Pedro Cactus.

While psilocybin mushrooms remain a schedule 1 controlled substance federally, on a state level and even locally in Oakland and Denver, they have been designated as the “lowest law enforcement priority.” This means that no taxpayer money can be spent investigating or prosecuting simple possession of these plant-based hallucinogens.

Ok, so mushrooms aren’t technically legal yet and your first fully-legal trip in America could be years out, but CBD is still a great travel companion for any kinda-sorta-legal mushroom experiences you have in the meantime.

CBD & Psilocybin

Cannabidol (CBD) and Psilocybin are peas in a psychedelic neurotransmitter pod. Each of these compounds stimulate communication between two vitally interrelated neural networks: the endocannabinoid system and the serotonergic system.

Endocannabinoid System - Absorbs cannabinoids (CBD, THC, etc.) and endocannabinoids via CB1 and CB2 receptors throughout the body.   

Serotonergic System - Absorbs serotonin and serotonin-binding molecules (like psilocybin) via 5-HT1A and 5-HT2A receptors concentrated in the digestive and nervous systems.

These interrelated systems are responsible for regulating a diverse range of behaviors and bodily functions like:

  • Sleep

  • Learning

  • Aggression

  • Appetite

  • Cognition

  • Decreasing nausea and headaches

  • Decreasing anxiety

  • Decreasing pain

  • Regulating body temperature

A growing body of research suggests that CBD interacts as much with the serotonergic system as it does with the endocannabinoid system, binding with serotonin receptors to produce similar effects to its interaction with the endocannabinoid system. 

According to Project CBD:

CBD activation of the 5-HT1A receptor has been shown to decrease blood pressure, lower body temperature, slow the heart rate, and lessen pain.

Psilocybin and CBD are also similar in that:

  • They are being researched as an effective means for quitting smoking and treating other addictions.

  • They are being researched in connection with treatment of depression, PTSD, OCD and other disorders.

  • They are being researched in connection with reduction of pain, psilocybin specifically in the cessation of cluster headaches, the worst form of migraines.


How CBD Helps You Have a Good Mushroom Trip

What makes a good trip?

Is it a great distance traveled in high spirits? A magical experience shared with good friends? The discovery of new things in the world and inside yourself?

The answer to this question is subjective, and so is the definition of a “bad trip.”

A bad trip can generally be understood as either:

  • A hallucinogenic experience that is too strong and/or difficult for an individual.

  • A trip that is generally negative and/or accompanied by high levels of anxiety.

  • Or (our preferred description)... A trip with “rough moments” in which difficult subjects are confronted.

Just as is the case in life, many of these rough moments are triggered by anxiety, but these moments can be experiences that result in personal (or group) growth.

CBD is incredibly helpful for people suffering from anxiety, but it also has been shown to “turn down” the intensity of your trip by antagonizing the receptors that make you hallucinate. This makes CBD a great companion for your first mushroom trip or any mushroom trip, really.

Here’s how CBD helps you have a good trip:

  • CBD has anxiolytic properties, meaning that it reduces anxiety by limiting your uptake of stress chemicals like cortisol.

  • CBD helps reduce nausea, a common side effect of psilocybin mushrooms.

  • CBD is an antagonist to 5-HT2A receptors (the ones that make you trip), meaning that it can “turn down” the intensity of your trip.

How to Have a Good Mushroom Trip

No matter how legal your next mushroom trip is, we want you to have a good time.

Whether you’re trekking through the woods, vibing at a concert, or painting in your room, follow these simple tips to make sure you’re having a positive and safe experience:

  1. Plan to be in a setting you love.

  2. Make sure you’re prepared for your journey mentally (well rested and centered) and physically (you have the right clothes, shoes, and supplies for your journey).

  3. Always dose according to your experience and comfort level (a little bit goes a long way).

  4. Bring some good friends (or make plans to meet up after your solo journey).

  5. Don’t do anything stupid or dangerous (like driving a car).

  6. Bring CBD to help you relax before, during, and/or after your trip.

Whether you are new to mushrooms and don’t know what to expect or are a seasoned psychonaut who wants to push their limits, CBD is a great companion to have on your journey.

Because low temperature vapor is the most readily bioavailable form of CBD, we recommend bringing effective CBD vape products on your next trip because they are handy for adventures, are fast acting & easy to dose (especially while tripping). Besides providing you with instant relief on a chemical level, gently inhaling aromatic vapor is calming in and of itself.

This way, you can be prepared for any tough moments that come your way during your next trip or simply have a healthier alternative to smoking to enjoy along the way.  

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Our mission is to inspire further exploration of the mind through the delivery of information & Plant-Based Experiences.

Please join us on our mission and help us shine light on this topic by sharing your experiences (and this article) with others.

#BeAnAstronaut 

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To celebrate Oakland and Denver for decriminalizing mushrooms in 2019, you can use this code until July 5th to get 11% off of your next order at LumiCBD.com.

Promo code:  mushroom11

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Why Vaping CBD Helps Smokers Quit

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Many see vaping as the lesser of two evils, believing they are making the healthy choice by switching from cigarettes to tobacco alternatives like e-juice or e-cigarettes.  

Switching from cigarettes to vaping is net positive, as it helps people take a step on the path to quitting, but nicotine is still very unhealthy and highly addictive. 

Here’s what you should know about consuming nicotine in any form:

  • Nicotine is equally as addictive as heroin.

  • Nicotine can temporarily reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression, but repeated use can actually worsen anxiety and depression.

  • Nicotine use increases risk of cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal disorders.

  • Nicotine decreases immune response and also negatively impacts reproductive health.

  • Nicotine creates DNA mutation by various mechanisms which leads to cancer.

  • Nicotine affects tumor proliferation and metastasis and causes resistance to chemo and radio therapeutic agents.

CBD and the Path to Quitting Cigarettes

While e-cigarette and e-juice users have made a positive change by quitting cigarettes, they have only substituted one form of nicotine addiction for another.

To be free of nicotine and other unhealthy chemicals found in cigarettes/e-juice, and the addictive nature of the act of smoking or vaping, further steps are required.

Here’s how we see the path to quitting cigarettes:

First, there is cigarette addiction: This is the starting point for smokers, and includes an addiction to nicotine, the intake of many toxic chemicals and a psychological dependence on the act of smoking.

Second, there is addiction to E-Cigarettes: This is a common second step for smokerswhich includes an addiction to nicotine, the intake of  synthetic flavors and other unknown chemicals found in e-juice, and a psychological dependence on the act of smoking.

Third, there are CBD Vapes: CBD is non-addictive, but many CBD vape products still contain synthetic flavorings and other unknown chemicals. Vaping CBD also includes the psychological dependence on the act of smoking.

Then, there’s Lumi CBD: Few CBD companies take our entirely plant-based approach to CBD, where no synthetic ingredients are used. By switching to Lumi CBD, former nicotine users are safe from consuming synthetic chemicals and are at the last stage of the quitting cycle: needing only to quit their psychological dependency on the act of vaping.

By choosing to replace vaping nicotine with vaping 100% plant-based CBD formulas, you advance to the last stage of the quitting cycle, leaving only the act of vaping to quit.

 

How CBD Helps Smokers Quit

By helping smokers turned vapers replace nicotine with non-addictive CBD, the cycle of nicotine addiction is broken and a healthier phase of life can begin.

Here’s how CBD helps smokers quit:

  • Studies have shown that using CBD can reduce the number of cigarettes a tobacco addict smokes by up to 40%.

  • Studies show that CBD can reduce the effect that visual cues to smoke (seeing people smoking, seeing smoking on TV, etc.), making these cues less likely to trigger relapse.

  • Vaping CBD instead of an e-cigarette or e-juice means you’re quitting nicotine all together, not replacing one nicotine habit for another.

  • By vaping CBD, quitting CBD vapes becomes the final step in the quitting cycle as opposed to quitting highly-addictive nicotine e juice, making it much easier to quit the act of smoking and become completely smoke and vapor free.


By switching from nicotine e-liquids to vaping 100% plant based CBD, smokers are setting themselves up for success on the path to quitting tobacco.

Limi CBD products are 100% plant-based, hemp-derived and THC free. Lumi CBD offers a wide range of CBD Vape Products that can help smokers quit like our Flavorless CBD Vape Additive for mod lovers who want to be nicotine free.