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CC 016 – The CBD Masterclass: Part One

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Cured Collective CBD Masterclass with Ashleigh Johnson

Your BIGGEST questions about CBD, THC, and hemp are all here! With any supplement comes questions, as it should. As the rise of the cannabis industry continues and brings with it even more exciting new natural wellness products we stand by our primary initiative of educating you to be a more empowered consumer.

What is CBD? Will CBD make me fail a drug test? What dose should I use? How do I even start using CBD products? All of these questions and more are explained in this Q&A from CEO and co-founder Joseph Sheehey and Cured Nutrition product expert and Community Manager Ashleigh Johnson.

Follow Ashleigh: @liveloveandliftheavy
Follow Joseph: @josephsheehey

Refer to the Dr. Hyla Cass medical expertise in Cured Collective Episode 009.

Joe: [00:00] I’ll just start this off by introducing you because the world hasn’t got to see your face. They’ve got to hear your voice over the year that you’ve been here. This is Ashleigh Johnson – she’s been with us for a year now; we’ll be celebrating 1-year next week. You started off just helping me with anything and everything. And you’ve been interfacing with customers a lot and really evolved over the year to now be managing so much… even outside of just the whole affiliate program; and spend a lot of time talking to customers and answering questions. So what better person to have on this informational podcast than you? We’re going to do more and more of this over the next couple of weeks/months/years, just to educate our community more. We saw that we got a good response from the first couple of podcasts that were heavy on the education through our interview with Dr. Hyla Cass. If you haven’t listened to that, that’s a very good one for understanding medicinal benefits and really diving into those questions that we get asked sometimes that we can’t necessarily answer because we’re not medical professionals. So if you haven’t listened to that, go back and listen to the podcast with Dr. Hyla Cass on endocannabinoid science and all of the other amazing stuff that she puts out into this world as a psychiatrist, who is extremely informational. And then we had another very informational podcast with Cali Simpson, who is our herbalist. Check that one as well if you have questions on our mushroom and adaptogen products, the Rise and Zen. Here we’re going to answer some questions that we get all the time. We’re going to start off with 4 questions that are kind of the most frequent, and then in subsequent podcasts and videos, we’ll dive in to more and more stuff that people want to ask us; and we’re sure we’ll get more questions via social media so we can dive into that. But the very first question – and Ashleigh and I are just kind of going to go back and forth here – is one that I hear you answer on the phone a lot, and that’s how do I select a Cured product? People will call and be like, I don’t know where to start. I don’t know what to get. What’s the difference between products? And I think there’s a pretty good answer for that; I know that I’ve heard you dive into that quite a bit. So what do you say when somebody calls and asks like, I know you guys sell CBD products, but where do I even start?

Ashleigh: [02:26] Yeah, so I think the best way to start the answer is ultimately, it’s going to come down to personal preference. Same as when you’re in the grocery store selecting any type of bread – obviously, some people like one particular kind and others like a different one; but I usually say that a good place to start is going to be a tincture. That’s a very easy to adjust in terms of the dosing. Obviously, we have multiple different concentrations – 500mg is kind of a great place to… or a great product to recommend to anybody that’s never tried anything before.

Joe: [03:08] Let’s explain a tincture, because I didn’t even know what that word was when I first got into this industry. So, what’s a tincture?

Ashleigh: [03:16] A tincture is just, I guess, another word for an oil – most tinctures are intended to be taken sublingually; I guess that’s how we typically recommend them. Obviously, some people do include it in food or drinks, but the standard method of consumption would just be under the tongue.

Joe: [03:37] Right. So, you said to start with the oil; and the other question that people ask is: I see a bunch of different oils on your website, and I see something labeled 250, I see something labeled 500, 1000; what’s going on there and what’s the difference? I think a lot of people get confused there so I want to educate people on that.

Ashleigh: [03:58] Yeah, I think where the confusion lies for most people is what’s the strongest product? Well, obviously, all of the tinctures are 1oz, so the only difference between the 250, 500, 1000, and now 2000, is going to be the concentration. The dose is essentially… or the standard recommended dose is the same with each product, it’s just the actual size of, or amount of the product you’re consuming, so therefore the number of servings is really the only difference in each of the products. Now, you’re going to get potentially a higher dose with a 2000mg vs. a 250 but, you could essentially take the same dose; you’re just adjusting that.

Joe: [04:50] So, like, look at the label and see that we have… we have dosed every oil at the same concentration per serving size-

Ashleigh: [05:02] Correct.

Joe: [05:03] But say I took 1mL or 1 dropper full of a 250mg concentration bottle vs. 1000mg, you’re going to get 4x the amount from that 1mL. And the big thing for us is the question of how do I know how much to take? So that’s why we have different concentrations. They can last you a different amount of time. When somebody asks you that, what do you say? Like, how much should I take?

Ashleigh: [05:32] Obviously it’s going to depend on the concentration that you purchase or intend to purchase. For most people, I would just recommend starting with 1 serving. With a 500mg bottle, for example, that would be just a full dropper; you’ll get roughly 16.7mg of hemp extract in that serving, and that’s kind of a good way to gauge what works for you, how frequently you want to take it, and obviously, you go upward, potentially down, but… usually 1 serving is pretty standard.

Joe: [06:11] And there’s kind of another plug there for the podcast with Dr. Hyla Cass – when it comes to dosing, that’s not necessarily something that we dive into because everybody is different, but from a medical professional standpoint, and if you have the resources in your life… like reach out and ask and play around with it. But from us, there’s no blanket statement of ‘use this much.’

Ashleigh: [06:34] Yeah, it’s hard to say. We’re obviously not medical professionals – we don’t know your situation, what you’re taking it for – so for us to recommend a particular dose is far different than, you know, a medical professional, or even for you to do research on your own as to what you’re looking to use it for.

Joe: [06:52] So, start with an oil.

Ashleigh: [06:55] Start with an oil. Start with a serving. If you’re not sure about which oil, try a 500; it’ll last you – depending how much you’re taking – roughly a month.

Joe: [07:05] Cool. Perfect. What do we got next, Ash?

Ashleigh: [07:08] Can I pass a drug test? We get this question all the time. I think there’s a lot of confusion.

Joe: [07:16] It’s super funny because people come to us and they go, well it’s not like weed, right? And it’s like, okay, c’mon… well, we’ll educate you on that. The cannabinoids that are in our oils are from the cannabis plant; the difference for us is that we extract it from a hemp plant vs. a marijuana plant. And the only difference between the two of those is the THC content – above .3%, that’s considered marijuana; below .3%, that’s considered hemp -per federal regulations right now. We extract ours from the hemp plant and the fact that there is less than .3% THC in the hemp plant means that there CAN be THC in your product. With that said, it’s going to be a very low concentration; so something that we kind of started saying… like comparing that to taking, or eating poppy seeds. I think there are people that have failed drug tests for opiates off of eating poppy seeds, and… that might be a possibility. With that said, we do offer products that are THC-free, and if that is of a concern, we would recommend people going to a THC-free option. Also, with that said, there’s nothing we’re going to do to sit here and say that yes, you can pass a drug test vs. no you won’t. The big thing we always come back to is we just expect you to make a conscious decision and we’re going to sit here and educate you. I’m not sure if you’ve had any further conversation with people on that topic about… back and forth type stuff. But one thing to note – and I know you point people to this quite a bit, and something that we really pride ourselves on – is the quality control. We’re at a good place to kind of understand what’s in each product; where would that – where would somebody go to do that if they’re on our website and just trying to figure out that time of stuff?

Ashleigh: [09:25] On our website… I guess there’s a couple of places you could look. If you’re on the product page, we have quite a few products on there – I would say the biggest difference is ultimately going to be either the THC-free or the full spectrum products. With any of the full spectrum products, if that’s a concern, if drug testing is a concern, maybe they should stay away from those; but there are many THC-free options. And if they maybe wanted to see the actual results, we do have all of those on our website, so they can definitely check those out.

Joe: [10:05] Each product page… look in the long description of each product, you can see – I think it says click here for test results – and then there’s also a… another portion of the website that says Cured quality control, and we’re really building out that section of the website to make it very clear the test results for every single batch of product that we’re putting out into this world, and that’s something that I REALLY recommend any consumer to understand and to look into regardless of – like when you’re selecting a company to buy products from, that’d be the FIRST thing that I would do – I would go to the website and I would understand their quality control and basically compliance, like regulatory system, because I’ve looked at several companies over the last couple of weeks, and even year, and I see one test result on the entire website. So, you’re telling me you sell how many different SKUs and you just have one test result that’s kind of a blanket statement for all of your products? There’s a lot more to look into. What are the, I guess, just to dive kind of even further into that, even just the cannabinoid content – the cannabinoid content is very important, but we have other test results on the website too. I’m sure you pass people to those and maybe get those types of questions as well.

Ashleigh: [11:25] Yeah, people want to know with the test results if THC is a concern, what the THC content is; but outside of that, we also test for potency purity, heavy metals, pesticides, and those are all things that can be found on our site as well that are important to know… what’s in your products and also what’s NOT in your products.

Joe: [11:52] Right, right – and I think that that’s… I am really stoked on the due diligence that we’re doing there because this is stuff that should be looked into in every single thing that we consume, and it’s not necessarily the case. We as a company, as a consumer product company, really pride ourselves on bringing you guys – the consumers – the highest quality product and then allow yourself to be able to make the conscious decision through the testing results and the transparency we put out into this world. The consumers can do that.

Ashleigh: [12:27] I mean, I think as a company we do everything that we can to provide the information and make it readily available, but I think there’s also a piece of that where it is, very much so, the consumer’s responsibility to absorb that information, research that information, and know what… when they’re looking for a product, what to look for, what NOT to look for, and what they’re consuming.

Joe: [12:53] Yeah, and ask us the questions! We’re happy to answer them. Ash’s answered a lot.

Ashleigh: [12:58] You may hear my voice if you call!

Joe: [13:02] She’s got a support team now, but she’s been… that’s been your bread and butter on top of everything else that you do as well! We’re extremely appreciative of that. I guess kind of to follow along with that question – this is a good segue – what is the difference between a THC-free product and full spectrum product, besides the fact that there is that THC content. There’s a lot more that I think consumers should understand.

Ashleigh: [13:30] The main difference, like you said, is going to be the THC content; but outside of that, I think people should understand that there could potentially be benefits to using both. Obviously, all of our products are hemp derived, so whether or not you’re looking to, I guess, see an effect – whatever that may be – you can get that from ANY product. It could be a THC-free one or a full spectrum product.

Joe: [14:03] CBD works regardless, right? CBD is in both products. But what else is in… so one thing, a personal preference, how about taste? Is there something like, what does the full spectrum product taste like? What does the THC-free product taste like?

Ashleigh: [14:22] One of the biggest differences is going to be that the… most of our – well the THC-free products – I guess it’s going to depend on which product you’re selecting. Because those are primarily isolate; the CBD portion of it does not have a taste. Whether or not you’re consuming the dough or the spices, those products are going to have whatever taste they are. Full spectrum, on the other hand, will taste very earthy, hempy, natural – I’ve heard it described that way, if you’ve ever been a cannabis user.

Joe: [14:58] Have you had people say that – I don’t like the taste?

Ashleigh: [15:02] You know, I have not. I’ve always heard that, as far as hemp products go, it’s very palatable; but obviously, if you don’t like the taste of hemp, you may not find it the most pleasurable experience. But I’ve never had anybody say that it’s not good, based on what you would expect it to taste like.

Joe: [15:23] Yeah. Then how about the THC-free product? That’s flavored mint and it’s pretty mild mint flavor.

Ashleigh: [15:31] As far as the tinctures go, it is going to be infused with peppermint extract, so it’s just a very mild peppermint taste. I have had people say they don’t enjoy the taste of peppermint, but with something like that, you could definitely infuse it into a hot peppermint cacao, use it other ways if you needed.

Joe: [15:51] And make sure you’re putting it underneath your tongue and holding it, and not just drinking peppermint oil.

Ashleigh: [15:56] Don’t just swallow it immediately!

Joe: [15:59] I’ve had some people get some upset stomachs because yeah, just drinking a lot of oil can upset your stomach. So, how about the other parts of the hemp plant that are beneficial that would show up in the full spectrum vs. our THC-free product?

Ashleigh: [16:15] With anything that is full spectrum, obviously there’s going to be CBD in there, a little bit of THC, but there are over 80 other cannabinoids and plant components that you’re going to find in that product as well.

Joe: [16:33] In different concentrations. People can see that through the test results. And then, what about this terpene world? We’re exploring that still, but… how do you explain terpenes to people?

Ashleigh: [16:48] Oh goodness. I guess I will be honest, I haven’t done a whole lot of explaining terpenes myself. We don’t… I think for the most part we don’t really have a lot of people that ask about them, mostly because they don’t really know what they are.

Joe: [17:07] Yeah, and we need to educate people on those because that’s something that’s actually being looked into a lot, and Dr. Hyla Cass dove into that in her podcast as well. Lavender, for example, is a terpene. It’s more or less the flavor profiles of the plant, and something for people to understand – those actually have medicinal benefit as well. The full spectrum of cannabinoids in combination with the plant terpenes give what people call the entourage effect because it all works synergistically. I think people need to understand that as well. As this industry is booming, I think we’re seeing a lot more of… kind of false education on – and I wouldn’t say there’s a definitive statement one way or the other – but when were talking about a holistic approach, an isolate or THC-free version product is just going to be processed a lot more; so when you compare that to the full spectrum oil, you’re getting more of the whole plant medicine, more or less, and I think that’s something that people should understand. That’s probably the MOST important part of THC-free vs. full spectrum – is all those other cannabinoids are in there, all those terpenes are in there, it’s the flavor profiles, and they all work together for a more beneficial product, so you could potentially have more bang for your buck, I don’t know. I don’t know if we’ve heard that… people have taken one then switched to the other. Once we started playing in the full spectrum world, I never went back to the THC-free.

Ashleigh: [18:53] I guess what I usually tell people if they’re unsure is we like to have options for everybody. There are people who may require or prefer a THC-free option. Obviously, those products, there’s great benefit that can be seen from them. However, if somebody is open to a full spectrum product, I’m always going to recommend that, hands-down. I think outside of the CBD itself, there’s so many other components of the plant that you would be benefitting from.

Joe: [19:29] We’re still learning all of that too. Basically what we’re saying is – we know that the benefits are there, and it’s still continuing to evolve; so if you’re looking for a more holistic approach, why NOT try something that’s less refined?

Ashleigh: [19:45] I think people maybe are 1.) intimidated by the fact that it does contain a small amount of THC. If they’ve never been a cannabis user or never used anything that got you high.

Joe: [19:56] So is it going to get you high?

Ashleigh: [19:58] I wish! It is not. All of our products, including our full spectrum products, are non-psychoactive, so users may not experience that high that they would with cannabis.

Joe: [20:13] Awesome. What else do we got here?

Ashleigh: [20:17] I think the last one is just the difference between the oil or the tinctures and the capsules.

Joe: [20:23] Right, so we have THC-free capsules and oils, and then we have full spectrum capsules and oils as well. The oil that’s in the tinctures – and we just discussed the difference between the THC-free option and the full spectrum option – that oil that is in those tinctures is the EXACT same oil that’s in the capsules. The only difference is, actually the full spectrum capsules that we have, those are dosed at 30mg and the THC-free right now are 10mg per capsule; so there’s a dosage difference between the full spectrum and the THC-free, but really, the BIG difference is the activation time. For me, I notice more of an instantaneous calming effect from the oils; when you put them underneath your tongue, they’re going to go enter into your bloodstream faster as that sublingual dropper vs. taking a capsule that’s going to go into your stomach and get processed through your liver and work in the same way, but it’s going to take a longer time to go into effect. You can use BOTH… something that I’ve started to dive into is saying, let’s maintain therapeutic levels with taking a capsule every single day, and then use the oil as needed for calming. Say I’m getting this dosage every single day with the capsule; I take it at the same time everyday; I’m building that therapeutic level; and then for me as a person that is… tends to get stressed and a little bit overwhelmed sometimes, I just take it as needed, and it’s a lot more instantaneous putting it underneath your tongue. That’s the big difference between the two. Some people like it for ease of use… I think we’ve talked about… just traveling, sometimes it’s easier to put a capsule in your carry-on, in your pill jar, and it’s a lot easier to take that way vs. working with an oil; but they’re both pretty easy to carry around.

Ashleigh: [22:33] I think one other thing too that as far as the benefit of maybe a gel cap over an oil is for people who are intimidated by the dosing on the oils – or the tinctures – the gel caps it’s already essentially dosed for you; it’s just however many capsules you want to take, you can address that, but you can kind of rest assured that you’re taking one gel cap, 10mg is what you’re getting, or 30mg is what you’re getting. You don’t really have to think about that.

Joe: [23:05] Yeah, extremely accurate; whereas with the oil, you’re messing around with the dropper, you might be a little bit off; then again, that’s another place to go look at the test results too, is to go see this is how much we’re seeing in every capsule and that we’re meeting all of our label claims, and that, actually, the dosage is usually a little above what we have on our labels. But that’s kind of the main difference between the two. The carrier oils are – well, I guess in the THC-free capsules, we have a hemp seed oil in there, so it’s got great omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. We’ve got a grapeseed oil in the THC-free tincture, and then with the full spectrum products, those are all in MCT carrier oil. Great healthy fats, which people need to not forget about. It’s more than just CBD, and that’s what really Cured is – we’re not just a CBD company; we started off selling CBD and kind of positioning ourselves as a, more or less, progressive cannabinoid wellness company. But everything else that is in our products is carefully selected. And when it comes to our other products, such as our dough products, and other products that we’re formulating, looking at macronutrient profiles, and looking at the other beneficial adaptogens and herbs, and everything in how that really works for creating an all well-rounded healthy lifestyle is what we’re doing here. We’re a lot more than that CBD that a lot of people are seeing that we sell, but we’re here to educate people heavily on that, and we’re super excited to continue to share with you guys where we’re going and continue to be leaders in this space, and help you guys really, really just understand what’s going on in the industry. I know it can get confusing and we’ve seen such a change, even since you started at Cured… the industry has grown a lot – rightfully so – because it is helping a lot of people. But as consumers, we all need to be educated and that’s what we’re here to do through this podcast, through videos, and through that customer support email… or the phone!

Ashleigh: [25:24] Absolutely.

Joe: [25:27] Thank you all for tuning in. It looks like we’ve lost video here, but those of you that are on the audio podcast, thank you all for joining in. Feel free to reach out to us at any time. Follow us on Instagram – if you’re hitting us up on Instagram, you’re most likely talking to Ashleigh, but our customer service department continues to grow. You might not be able to get directly in contact with her, but Ashleigh, thank you for sitting down with me and helping answer these questions and continuing to educate our customers that we care about.

Ashleigh: [25:56] Absolutely. Thank you.

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