My 14 year old son has Crohn’s disease – with an extra bonus of severe anxiety on top. In the last 6 years he has had more procedures than I can count, and been on almost all of the meds available to children at this time, including a g-tube providing enteral nutrition. As I look ahead to his future, I find myself panicked that we have almost used up all of our cards available and he is only 14. As his mom, it’s been my mission to figure out the best way to take control of the situation, and not just wait for the bottom to drop out again. We recently discovered the benefits of Hemp oil and I feel like this could be a big piece of the puzzle.
The Impact of Diet on the Microbiome
I have educated myself about the microbiome and how food can impact the gut and immune system. I’ve transformed our diet and have become loyal followers of the SCD. Once we changed his diet, deep remission (in conjunction with Humira) settled in. While I know one size may not fit all, I believe a healthy diet will give our son his best chance of staying ahead of this disease. When Humira is no longer a viable option (which I’ve been told is only a matter of time), we want to be prepared and not scrambling to determine next steps. We should all eat this healthy and teach our children to eat for health and long-term wellness. The medical community seems to be coming around to nutrition as a treatment option which is exciting….dump the junk as they say, we’ll all be better off.
Seeking Alternatives to the Traditional Piles of Pills
So like many families, Crohn’s hasn’t been our only issue. Between myself, my husband and our children we enjoy a myriad of issues, including autoimmune issues, anxiety, insomnia, kidney stone pain, and headaches. I’m going to go ahead and say it…..
“things have gone a little haywire in our house over the last few years”
and we have been seeking alternatives to the traditional piles of pills (and their side effects) that the doctors would have us take.
I believe there is a place for medicine, but there also is a BIG place for eating the right foods, and taking the right supplements to help balance our bodies more systemically, instead of just treating symptoms.
The Benefits of Hemp Oil
Enter hemp oil. After a lot of research, and anecdotal stories, I have officially become a big fan of using hemp oil. A plant-based, pure premium grade hemp oil (aka CBD oil) has made it’s way into our daily supplement cabinet and I truly believe that it has a major impact on all of the systems in our body.
The non-technical explanation is that hemp oil has shown to activate and help manipulate the endocannabinoid system within our body, which creates the opportunity for all our major systems to work like they should in the first place
It sounds a little ‘out there’, but the science is there. In fact, it’s been there for hundreds of years.
I remember years ago watching in amazement during a news report showing children receiving medicinal marijuana for epileptic seizures – it stopped them in their tracks. I’ve seen the research on medicinal marijuana used with cancer patients to eliminate nausea from chemo use and interrupt tumor growth. I’ve watched the series that follows the scientist who discovered this plant and it’s medical uses.
I’m obviously not a scientist, but the hundreds of stories I have heard (on top of the research and peer-reviewed journals), there is undeniably something to this. Researchers say that this oil works to ultimately:
- balance the immune system and calm inflammation
- support healthy neurological function and
- promote tremendous mood support, among other things.
Every day, people are successfully using hemp oil to help with everything from sleep disorders, migraines, anxiety/depression and ADHD to chronic pain, seizures and autoimmune disorders.
I’m actually first-hand witnessing my friends and their friends and their friends start the oil and experience great relief. And in the world of the many Crohn’s groups on Facebook that I follow, the hemp oil has and continues to be a hot topic. So many people are convinced that the hemp oil is working and they are sharing their incredible stories. One blogger says, “…CBD has given me back a quality of life that years of debilitating pain and piles of prescription medications made me feel like I could never find again.”
Difference between Hemp, CBD, Medicinal Marijuana, Cannabis, Pot etc.
You have probably heard a lot of chatter out there about this stuff, but there is SO much confusion and misinformation about it. What is the difference between hemp, CBD, medicinal marijuana, cannabis, pot, etc.? The very simplified explanation is that cannabis is a plant that has two species: marijuana and hemp.
- Marijuana contains a high percentage of THC, which is the chemical compound that creates the ‘high’, and a very small percentage of CBD (or cannabinoids), which is the medicinal part.
- The Hemp plant, on the other hand, contains a high percentage of cannabinoids and trace amounts of THC (which is completely undetectable on drug tests, thus making it now legal in all 50 states).
So now that scientists have finally figured out how to separate the CBD from the THC, the resulting hemp extract oil is creating a frenzy because it seems to be working phenomenally well. You get the medicinal benefits, without the psychoactive effect. The benefits of Hemp Oil are becoming quite apparent.
In fact, Forbes magazine reports that within the first three years of hemp oil being available, the industry is already on it’s way to hit $1 billion in sales.
Wow. But you definitely have to do your research because there are many hemp oil products on the market that aren’t premium grade and are very low in cannabinoid concentration. Many aren’t pure and have a very low absorption rate because of their formulation. Prices seem to range dramatically, which is one clue as to the quality. Also interesting to note is that many major pharmaceutical companies are already working on their own formulations, so this will clearly go beyond the supplement market. One such company has already filed a patent on the term “CBD” which is now forcing the current makers of the oil to only use the term “hemp oil.” Hmmm.
So, we have only been using hemp oil for a month, but have successfully weaned our son off of all anxiety medications. So, we’re already seeing the benefits of Hemp oil. Are we ready to stop the Humira? Absolutely not, as he’s entering puberty and seemingly doing well, we are not prepared to rock the boat at this time. But I do feel strongly that having the diet and the hemp oil on board provides a bit of peace of mind, a safety net, as we have no idea what’s ahead in this journey with Crohn’s disease.
We’ve discussed the hemp oil use with our son’s pediatric GI and she says that while there still aren’t enough large scale trials to absolutely prove, it’s safe and there are no known side effects. Years ago when we discussed using diet in the management of disease, we got that very same answer. Sometimes it seems modern medicine takes a long time to endorse new approaches, that’s fine and I understand, but that doesn’t always mean it shouldn’t be attempted if safe. What do we have to lose? Oh and a side note, the headaches and sleep issues are now a thing of the past.
After a lot of research, I personally believe in the brand formulated by Dr. Christopher Shade called Prime my Body.
- It contains a broad spectrum of cannabinoids, not an isolate as in other oils.
- It has strict standards for purification.
- It uses the latest methods available for 5-10 times the absorption rate of other brands.
- It is nano-enhanced, and uses liposomal delivery.
You take the oil by squirting a few pumps under the tongue so it’s absorbed into the bloodstream and delivered to the cells almost immediately. Do your own research, talk to your friends. That’s what I did and this is where we landed.
Here are some additional resources on CBD for your reference:
Helpful videos (2-3 minutes each):
If you have questions about hemp oil, please email me and I will do my best to respond in a timely fashion. I am reachable at: email@example.com.