The cannabis plant consists of two genetically distinct species, Hemp and Marijuana, each with different cultivation techniques, chemical properties, and use. Throughout history, civilization has found both species to be beneficial with archeological evidence leading many to believe that cannabis may have been one of humanity’s first agriculture crops.
Cannabis plants contain over 100 different compounds known as cannabinoids, the most well known and studied being tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the chemical in cannabis responsible for a euphoric high. Marijuana plants are cultivated and bred to yield high levels of THC, concentrated primarily in the flowers and buds of the plant. The first recorded medical use of marijuana is in 2,737 BCE by Emperor Shen Neng of China, and historical documents also attest to its use for both spiritual rituals and recreation.
Grown and cultivated for fiber and seed, hemp is used to produce a variety of products including food, oil, rope, and fabric. While the use of hemp predates recorded history, archeologists have uncovered remnants of hemp cord that is over 10,000 years old. The hemp plant is hardy, grows nearly anywhere with minimal care and, unlike marijuana which can have THC levels that exceed 20%, has less than 0.3% THC and no psychoactive properties.
Cannabidiol (CBD), found in both hemp and marijuana, is the second most abundant cannabinoid in cannabis and research has shown it to provide medical benefits in both humans and animals. Well-known throughout the world due to reports of its amazing benefits, CBD is proving to be the most promising medicinal plant-based resource known.
CBD and other cannabinoids are unique because they act on cannabinoid receptors that are part of the natural endocannabinoid system found in the body. Research shows that CBD is an antioxidant, reduces inflammation, controls convulsions and nausea, and while acceptance from the medical establishment has been slow, the FDA has recommended approval of a CBD prescription medicine to treat rare and severe forms of epilepsy. Additional research suggests that CBD has tremendous potential for the treatment of anxiety, de