My family and friends living with me…..and chronic illness
Review : Honey Colony Superior Cannabinoid Rich Hemp Formula for pain relief
Disclosure: “I have been given Honey Colony Superior Cannabinoid Rich Hemp Formula as part of a product review through the Chronic Illness Bloggers network. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company.”
For the last 6 weeks I have been trialing Superior Cannabinoid Rich Hemp Formula, an herbal supplement made by Honey Colony, a co-operative model based in USA that aims to empower the individual to be their own best health advocate. honey colony.com
Cannabidiol (CBD) can be extracted from the cannabis plant and taken for health benefits, but without the euphoric feelings usually associated with cannabis/marijuana. Honey Colony, who have a mission to empower the individual to be the best advocate for their own health whilst putting honesty back into the food supply, were looking for individuals experiencing chronic pain to assess the effects of CBD oil on their health and well being.
The science bit :
Hemp ← → Marijuana
Agricultural production Pharmacological production
Fibre Oil Food THC CBDs
Cannabis is made up of over 60 compounds, and the 2 in greatest numbers are CBD and THC. The compound that people will be most aware of by reputation if not name is the THC – this is the part that causes the user to experience the high we think of in recreational use! However it is possible to produce a plant that has higher levels of CBD and lower levels of THC. As CBD has no component to cause psychotropic changes it is useful for medicinal purposes. Must know facts about CBD
So now the health benefits :
Pharmacological reviews have claimed that CBD has the following properties
Honey Colony has developed an herbal supplement incorporating CBD which they state
- Balances the Nervous System
- Balances the Musculo-Skeletal System
- Promotes Mental Clarity, Focus & Memory
- Supports Calm & Relaxation
- Supports Healthy Immune & Stress Response
- Supports Healthy Inflammatory Response
- Provides Anti-Oxidant Support
- Supports Healthy Energy & Stamina
What makes the Honey Colony Superior formula stand out?
This herbal extract is a combination of CBD oil and 6 other natural compounds
- Sichuan Teasel Root
- Dang Shen Root
- Astragalus Root
- White Peony / Bai Shao Yao root
- Bitter Orange Peel
Full details of the ingredients’ properties can be found here: https://www.honeycolony.com/shop/superior-cbd-oil/.
Why should I try Honey Colony Superior Cannabinoid Rich Hemp Formula?
I have a genetic condition called Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (hypermobility type) which means that my body does not produce collagen in the normal way – normal tissues containing collagen stretch & rebound like an elastic band, whilst mine is more like chewing gum! It affects my joints, causing pain & dislocations, my circulation (Raynauds and Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia syndrome – I pass out regularly!), my gut, my bladder & my nervous system. Cauda equina syndrome after a lumbar disc rupture many years ago has left me with chronic pain in my back, leg & foot.
I have struggled to gain any real pain relief in recent years and have taken a cocktail of drugs including the opiate Oxycontin (oxycodone), various antidepressants used for nerve pain and the gold standard for nerve pain, Lyrica (pregabalin). Last year I had a spinal cord stimulator implanted to help relieve the nerve pain and my hospital insisted that I wean myself off the Oxycontin. Whilst I’m pleased to be off the opiates, a downside has been a huge increase in my joint pain so having been asked to write a review for Honey Colony I felt quietly hopeful & excited!
The hemp formula arrived in the UK well packaged and in a bottle of good quality & appearance – dark brown to preserve the qualities of the formula from light damage, with a pipette dropper lid and a black & bronze label.
It is recommended that the product is taken 3 times a day, placing 4 drops under the tongue for 90 seconds – sublingual for fast absorption into the blood stream.
The product is a strange sludge colour, but please don’t let this put you off! I found the taste bitter at first but after several doses my taste buds had adjusted and I was able to detect the sweetness of the honey. For me this was a similar taste experience to that with oxynorm elixir! Unlike some other CBD oil products on the market which use olive or coconut oil, the Honey Colony Superior Rich Hemp formula does not contain a carrier and does not need warming to thin the consistency.
The All Important Question – Did it help?
I went into this trial with an open mind and without reading any other reviews for this or similar products. I haven’t used CBD products before so I am unable to draw comparisons between this product and other CBD products on the market. The immediate difference that I noticed was to my sleep. Like many chronic illness sufferers, my sleep is at best disturbed and at worst non-existent. The particular type of spinal cord stimulator that I have cannot be used overnight and so I have to switch it off. Without the oxycontin my nights have become worse from both the nerve pain and joint pain.
My nights have definitely been more settled following a final dose of CBD oil before going to bed – the muscle spasm around my joints is improved and I feel generally more relaxed. I can’t pretend that I suddenly sleep all night every night, but I think that during wakeful periods I am less stressed.
My pain in my joints & soft tissues is definitely helped by the CBD formula – the relaxed feelings come within about 30 minutes and last for several hours. This allows me to perform some of the moderate exercises that are essential to keep me moving & to ensure my mobility does not further deteriorate. The jury is still out with regards to the chronic nerve pain that I have in my back, leg & foot – I plan to continue monitoring this alongside the scs over coming months. The temperature has dropped in recent days and so my pain has worsened – this will be a really good test period for some improvement.
I am completely realistic after so many years with chronic pain and do not expect a “cure” but any relief is really welcome, so I am thrilled that I am able to feel more comfortable in my shoulders, hips and hands particularly.
Prices, Value & Comparisons
Honey Colony products are available for shipping to the UK, but cannot be bought from suppliers here. So when calculating costs a shipping fee must be considered.
A 30 ml bottle of the Superior Cannabinoid rich hemp formula retails for $92.55, with a current conversion of £74.73 and various reductions are available for larger quantities (https://www.honeycolony.com/shop/superior-cbd-oil-3-pack/). The current postage on one 30ml bottle to the UK at Priority International rate is $48.75 or £39.36, or first class rate is $22.75 or £18.37. The exchange rate has altered since the Brexit vote in the UK and unfortunately for me makes the product and postage rate higher as the pound falls against the dollar!
The product does feel expensive, particularly as I am no longer physically fit enough to work and we rely upon disability benefits & are technically a low income household. However having now done a little research and value comparisons online with other products, I can see that other CBD oils claiming to be of a similar quality are comparable – it is difficult though as I may not be comparing like with like. My verdict is that for the results I achieved, this product does offer good value and I would purchase under different financial circumstances.
Any Special Considerations?
Honey Colony recommend that pregnant and breastfeeding women consult a doctor prior to using the product.
It is possible for the consumption of CBD oil to result in a positive drugs test for THC – whilst this should be well below legal limits, it must be noted by the individual (in the same way that eating poppy seeds can result in a positive opiates test occasionally).
I have been impressed with the results that I have achieved using Honey Colony Superior Cannabinoid Hemp Formula health supplement whilst caring for my symptoms from Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. Whilst I have not eradicated all my pain, I have achieved a better sleeping pattern & have gained relief for my joint pain. When personal circumstances allow, I plan to continue using this product as part of a pain relieving programme.
DISCLAIMER: all opinions stated above are my own and based upon my own experience. I am not authorized to give medical advice and am no longer registered as a nurse. Please consult your doctor or seek medical advice before commencing any health supplements/medications.Disclosure: “I have been given Honey Colony Superior Cannabinoid Rich Hemp Formula as part of a product review through the Chronic Illness Bloggers network. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company.” For the last 6 weeks I have been…
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Everything You Need to know about CBD, Hemp Oil. Read this Blog.
When looking to purchases a brand of CBD that meets your standards, there are many aspects to consider.
Superior CBD Hemp Oil Options
Balance In A Bottle
Experience all the health benefits of Superior Hemp Oil
Must look when buying CBD Medical Hemp Oil
- By Maryam Henein
- Published: January 30, 2018
The CBD medical oil industry is exploding. In fact, experts estimate it will be as profitable as the $13 billion National Football League. Cannabidiol (better known as CBD), a compound found in the Cannabis sativa L. plant species, offers a host of health benefits. For instance, CBD oil reportedly reduces pain, inflammation, seizures, and brings about balance within our bodies. However, unlike the compound tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD has no psychoactive properties whatsoever.
Because of its amazing efficacy, this natural medicine is sweeping the nation and being sought out by sick patients who want an alternative to pharmaceutical painkillers or other medications that are not only addictive but go hand-in-hand with harmful side effects.
Unfortunately, there’s a lack of transparency and regulation that currently exists in the marketplace. Driven by the desire to turn a quick buck, producers use misleading marketing and deceptive advertising, banking on the fact that people are ignorant and in need. Read: not all brands are reputable.
“Barely in its infancy, the CBD medical market is still largely unregulated; quality control is meager at best, and consumers are largely unaware of what to look for when shopping …,” explains Carlos Frias of the Texas Wellness Center. Frias, who has been with the cannabis industry for more than 15 years, has seen, firsthand, the shadiness that exists in the CBD market.
While it’s surely a good thing to make products rich in cannabinoids available for people worldwide, it’s important to know what criteria to use when assessing products.
Here are 4 standards to look for when purchasing CBD medical hemp oil.
1. Extraction Methods
To obtain CBD-rich oil, you need to extract it from the cannabis plant. There are a handful of methods used, but typically this isn’t something customers know to ask about.
Not surprisingly, many companies use cheap methods that involve nasty toxic solvents such as propane, hexane, pentane, and butane, which are flammable hydrocarbon gases found in petroleum. Do you really want to consume this, especially if you are ill?
“Cannabis oil made with neurotoxic solvents like butane and hexane may leave unsafe residues that compromise immune function and impede healing,” explains Constance Finley, founder, and CEO of Constance Therapeutics.
Beware of companies who try to convince you that using a hydrocarbon method stays the truest to the plant. Butane is illegal for a reason.
“Butane extraction is cheap and efficient but is toxic to make and use,” adds cannabis and medicinal plant expert Medicine Hunter Chris Kilham. “Inhalation of butane residue can cause cardiac and respiratory problems.”
Some industry insiders argue that organic, pharmaceutical-grade ethanol, which is a grain alcohol, is optimal and eliminates certain toxins and residues in the raw plant material itself. But others say that while this extraction method yields a high amount of cannabinoids and is GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) for human consumption, it destroys the plant’s waxes, leading to a less potent oil.
Conversely, to preserve most of the plant’s trichomes – these are the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids – look for Supercritical (or subcritical) CO2 extraction. This method uses carbon dioxide under high pressure and extremely low temperatures to isolate, preserve, and maintain the purity of the medicinal oil. While this method is more expensive and involves complex equipment and expertise, it ensures quality.
“The CBD oil obtained through supercritical extraction is a full-spectrum cannabinoid-rich product,” says Elizabeth Moriarty, Clinical Herbalist, and Formulator at Luminary Medicine Company. “This method also produces a cleaner taste, and meanwhile, mycotoxins cannot survive this process.”
It’s also eco-friendly and non-flammable, creating a safer laboratory and manufacturing environment, as well as better product control, says Gabriel Ettenson, licensed physical therapist and general manager of Elixinol, an organic Hemp CBD Medical Oil company.
Finally, olive oil or coconut oil can also be used to extract cannabis oil. According to Dr. Arno Hazekamp, director of phytochemical research at Bedrocan BV, which supplies medical cannabis for the Dutch Health Ministry, this method is both safe and inexpensive. “You won’t blow yourself up making cannabis-infused olive oil.”
With that said, cannabis-infused olive oil — whether CBD-rich or THC-dominant — is perishable and should be stored in a cool, dark place.
The quality of CBD oil is really based on its source; where was it grown, how was it grown, and what is the species of cannabis (e.g., Sativa, ruderalis, or indica).
“The soil, climate, plants growing on the farm next door, the flowers in the farmer’s garden, etc. are all reflected in the final essence of the plant,” says Finley.
The main reason why hemp’s cultivation environment is so important is that the cannabis plant is a “hyperaccumulator,” meaning it easily absorbs contaminants from the soil while it grows. In fact, it’s used in bioremediation, a cost-effective plant-based approach to clean the environment of toxic heavy metals and organic pollutants.
“This is sadly why industrial hemp grown in non-food grade conditions is falsely being sold as CBD medicine over the internet,” says Finley.
So if the soil is polluted with heavy metals, then that plant will likely contain high levels of lead or mercury. According to Frias, there have been instances where children have almost died taking hemp extracts that were high in lead.
Essentially, “those companies have given the rest of the CBD industry a black eye because they were more interested in profiting off the sick instead of creating a quality product and testing it.”
Look for brands that source their cannabinoids from organic-certified, hemp-grown farms in pristine regions of Europe. “The German regulatory system is strict and enforced, providing confidence in the superiority of their harvest, processes, and extraction quality,” adds Moriarity. Organic hemp grown in Europe must also adhere to the EU’s strict organic standards, which are stricter than in the U.S. and highly audited. Also, look for ingredients that are certified organic and wildcrafted.
“While certainly a subject of debate among hemp experts, the general consensus is the best hemp extracts are found in plants from where growing hemp has been legal for generations and the environment is well-preserved, like in Europe,” agrees Ettenson.
Meanwhile, independent testing by accredited laboratories with globally accepted analytical methods ensures the organic extract is intact from pesticides, heavy metals, or microbiological contaminants. And reputable CBD companies have lab results from independent labs available on their websites, this can also be used as an indicator for consumers about what companies are providing high-quality CBD.
When it comes to the “best” genotype, it really depends upon what one is hoping to treat or effect.
Unfortunately, there have been instances where products claiming to have CBD in them tested at zero percent in a lab attempting to verify the results. In fact, in 2015, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) tested products and fined companies that did not include any CBD despite reports. This also gives the industry a proverbial black eye.
So let’s say you are dealing with a product that contains CBD, the amount that actually enters the body and central nervous system is still a gray territory. In food products, cannabinoids are subject to degradation and reduced bioavailability, depending on overall formulation/delivery.
“The industry is pushing for more research here, as these studies on cannabis are relatively very new,” explains Joe Santucci of Solstice, a commercial cannabis production company. “CBD can be amazing, but a very expensive solution for those that need it, so maximizing bioavailability is going to be essential to lower the cost for people.
“In terms of ingestion, the general consensus is that sublingual (under the tongue) and/or rectal delivery provide the highest levels of bioavailability,” says Ettenson. Some believe that vaping also produces high bioavailability as well. “Topical and ingestion (through soft gels for example) have lower levels of absorption,” says Gabriel.
If you are vaporizing CBD-dominant strains of cannabis, bioavailability is through the alveoli, tiny sacs in the lungs, clarifies Kilham. If you are taking CBD strain capsules, he suggests eating some fat or oil, like a handful of nuts or some full-fat yogurt, to improve absorption and bioavailability. Cannabinoids are fat-loving molecules. They are taken up readily into the small intestine with a bit of dietary fat.
“The need for enhanced bioavailability of the CBD phytonutrient is paramount”, adds Moriarity, “but tricky to accomplish without synthetic chemicals.” Most CBD products do not offer any bioavailability optimization, so 90 percent of the CBD is lost to the first-pass effect, a phenomenon of drug metabolism whereby the concentration of a drug is greatly reduced before it reaches systemic circulation.
Meanwhile, the products that do engage in optimization efforts “are generally using a synthetic chemical soup of solvents, surfactants, and emulsifiers — none of which must be disclosed on the label since they are characterized as ‘processing aids,’” says Moriarty, who co-formulated our Superior cannabinoid oil, the market’s leading solution.
The formulation, however, offers optimized delivery via mucosal membrane permeability in tandem with precision production/formulation methods. Her company, HERBOLOGIE, reduces the particle size of the cannabinoids and immerses them in a matrix of exclusively natural ingredients that work synergistically to enhance absorption through oral membranes. When cannabinoids are transported through membranes and directly into the bloodstream, the phytonutrients are delivered more quickly, and crucially, avoiding first-pass degradation in the liver.
“We know the manufacturing process can also influence bioavailability,” says Pattison. “For example, reducing the size of the CBD compound through the use of liposomes improves absorption and bioavailability.”
“When purchasing a CBD product, keep in mind that a transparent company’s CBD milligram (mg) strength is reflective of the actual active CBD in that particular product,” states Farias. “If a bottle says 250 mg of CBD, then that product should contain 250 mg of actual active CBD. However, a lot of companies currently in the market will list the mg dosage of their CBD hemp oil without publishing the strength of their actual active CBD.”
Ideally, look for CBD products that proportionately offer 4 or more parts CBD to 1 part THC, for maximum relief and minimal or no storage issues.
4. Greenwashing Tactics
Upon investigation, there are companies that engage in the use of “window dressing.” For example, one popular brand brags that they use the superfood moringa. This, of course, lures people in. But keep in mind that for the added antioxidant benefit, you would need to ingest 7.5 g (7,500 mg) within the context of a meal or beverage. The entire 30 ml bottle of said brand contains 33.3 mg; so at the recommended dose of 1 ml daily, the daily dose of moringa would only be 1.11 mg.
“The truth is that the gray zone of medicinal cannabis invites lots of shady characters into the burgeoning industry,” says Finley. “A lack of critical thinking, quality business practices, transparency about products and plants, all have been part of the black market.”
“When the conditions are “primed” in these four areas, you set a high standard of quality for the whole plant efficacy, and CBD can provide outstanding health benefits for longevity and wellness in high-grade medicinals used for health repair,” says Cherie Arnold, Founder, and CEO of MediQI Energetics.
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