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CBD and rugby: Why are the sport’s biggest names turning to cannabis products?



Finn Russell uses it to help him fall asleep. Jerome Kaino takes something to relieve knee pain. While Jim Hamilton takes it to cope with the pain he’s still living with five years after retiring.

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is used by the British and Irish Lions Fly half, two-time All Black World Cup winner and former Scotland Ineligibility, among others, to help manage the pain caused by the brutality of the sport.

But what is it How does it work? And is it safe? In the first of a two-part series, BBC Scotland examines the role of cannabis extract in rugby.

Why are players using it?

Rugby is one of the most physically demanding sports around. And as the players get bigger and stronger, the pressure on their bodies continues to grow, especially on a crowded calendar.

Strength and stamina, diet and sleep are the most important recovery methods. But often that’s not enough, so players resort to pain relievers ranging from common anti-inflammatory pills to strong opioids like tramadol.

Kaino, who was world champion with New Zealand in 2011 and 2015 and is known for his massive tackles, “always” used anti-inflammatories to aid training sessions and games.

“You’d be surprised how many players resort to one or the other strong pain reliever to get rid of a few bumps and bruises,” the 38-year-old told BBC Scotland.

“I’ve had a big reaction to anti-inflammatories. I’ve always had bowel problems, but to feel the joints properly I needed to be able to take them every now and then.”

What is cannabidiol (CBD)?

  • Cannabidiol is one of the hundreds of components (cannabinoids) that make up the cannabis plant.
  • The main element of the plant is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychotropic element that gets people high and can lead to health problems.
  • But the World Health Organization (Who) says that CBD does no harm and is not addictive.
  • The World Anti-Doping Authority (Wada), which regulates rugby’s anti-doping policy, removed CBD from its prohibited list in 2018.
  • Cannabis is a Class B illegal drug in the UK, but CBD alone is legal.

Former Scottish and Saracen Hamilton has lived in pain years after retiring. He, too, has suffered from the side effects of pain medication.

“I lived on them,” he says. “Especially at the end of my career, I was taking anti-inflammatories every day. Almost like a vitamin regimen, just to get through the week. And that’s why I still carry stomach ache with me.”

Hamilton says he saw teammates become addicted to opioids because they were so easily accessible.

Rugby culture has changed over the past five years and it’s much harder for players to get these stronger substances, but the pain the sport causes lingers and keeps players looking for alternatives.

CBD oil has proven to be one of the most popular.

How does CBD help?

Scotland and Racing 92 Fly-Half Finn Russell is a user and advocate of CBD. He has invested in a company that sells the product founded by his former Glasgow teammates Adam Ashe and Grayson Hart.

Russell takes CBD oil before going to bed at night and sometimes when he wakes up, especially in the days after a game. One of the main benefits he describes is better sleep.

“I sleep all night instead of stop-start,” the 28-year-old told BBC Scotland. “I get a more stable and even sleep.

“It will be different for everyone. It doesn’t relieve the pain in place, but it does allow me to sleep well so that I feel much better the next day.”

The science of cannabis

Hamilton and Kaino – neither of whom have no business interest in CBD – have found similar improvements in their sleep, but also other effects.

“When I have a big training session, I get a lot of inflammation and a little fluid in my knees – that’s where I’ve seen the biggest improvement,” says Kaino.

The back row also credits the product with a career extension, having recently won the Champions Cup with Toulouse at the age of 38, despite having played in one of the most physically demanding positions on the court.

“In the past few years, I’ve had some surgeries and gnawing injuries in my knees, elbows, and shoulders. 100% CBD has been a huge impact and a great contribution to maintaining my level of play over the years.”

Is there an anti-doping risk?

Liverpool John Moores University conducted a study last year asking 517 professional rugby players about CBD use. The majority had never used it before, but a quarter had it at some point and 8% continued to do so.

Professor Graeme Close collaborated on the study and is also an advisor to the English team. He says the main concern is the lack of education about the risks of an anti-doping violation, even though CBD itself is not on Wada’s prohibited list.

Just under three-quarters of those who use CBD products said they got information about them from the internet, with 61% receiving advice from another teammate and 16% from a nutritionist.


“The fact that players are not getting qualified advice is worrying,” explains Professor Close. “Since this is a fairly new product, we are still not fully aware of the safety profile of CBD. There really are no long-term studies.”

These concerns are reflected in the attitudes of most rugby unions and clubs.

Players employed at Scottish Rugby are prohibited from promoting CBD products and are encouraged to evaluate the risks and take them in conjunction with any other supplements they may wish to use.

Some companies that offer CBD products have their offerings tested by three different laboratories across Europe to make sure there is no THC present. And while small amounts of it are allowed, other cannabinoids can are not.external link

“There are well over 100 cannabinoids in the hemp plant,” says Professor Close. “Only one of them is not banned from the Wada and all the others are.

“So when an athlete takes CBD, we need to know that they are getting it from a source that we know will not contain any other cannabinoids that would fail an anti-doping test.”

Informed Sport is testing dietary supplements and is widely considered to be the gold standard for products in the UK, but does not currently accept CBD products. It remains to be convinced of its safety from a doping point of view.

However, by 2024, the industry is expected to be worth $ 20 billion (£ 14 billion), and athletes in all sports continue to use, promote and invest in CBD products.

“When I was younger, instead of taking drugs, I took the plant-based route,” says Russell. “So it’s similar. I’ve had this all my life and it’s just one more step for me in the current phase of my career.

“It comes from a plant, so what can you say, it’s different from other things you get? It is up to the individual what they want to do, but for me I have no qualms about taking it and I will continue to take it. “

Could CBD become “like protein shakes”? Find out more in part two on Wednesday

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Pressure BioSciences Nanoemulsion Platform Will Bring More Effective, More Shelf-Stable CBD-Infused Beverages to the Market by End of 2021



Image provided by Pixabay

CBD-infused beverages will soon be available to consumers worldwide thanks to the nanoemulsion-producing Ultra Shear Technology ™ (UST ™) platform developed by Print BioSciences, Inc (OTCQB: PBIO). With a projected average annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.2% over the next 7 years, the CBD market is projected to become 13 billion stable, water-soluble versions of the CBD oil by 2028 to allow for more predictable dosing and degradation during the Reduce distribution and storage. That is exactly what the new UST platform from Pressure BioSciences (PBI) did. How it works and what it means for consumers.

Why consumers need a water-soluble version of CBD

CBD is an oil-soluble compound found in cannabis plants. When extracted from the plant, it has no psychoactive side effects, but still offers many of the mental and physical health benefits that cannabis is known for.

Researchers have found that CBD has the potential to manage anxiety, reduce stress, and even reduce the severity of psychotic symptoms in schizophrenic patients. It also shows potential as a powerful anti-inflammatory agent, making it possible to relieve muscle and joint pain, treat symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, and prevent or slow the growth of cancer cells.

Most importantly, all of these potential benefits come with few or no adverse side effects, which sets CBD-based treatments apart from many of the existing standards of care for these conditions, which are often associated with unpleasant or even harmful side effects.

However, the incredible potential of CBD-based treatments and wellness products has yet to be fully realized. While vegetable oil versions of CBD are already on the market, these oil-based products are not well absorbed by the human body, making it difficult for consumers to take full advantage of the compound.

The World Health Organization estimates that only 6% of CBD oil is actually absorbed when ingested or applied topically. The rest goes through the body, unused and wasted. As a result, the dosage is difficult to predict and the potential health benefits of the cannabis derivative are reduced by the inability of the body to fully absorb the oil.

The story goes on

PBI’s UST platform is helping CBD oil reach its potential

While the search for a method to reliably and consistently convert CBD oil into a water-soluble product that is more easily absorbed has continued, researchers have had little luck so far. Dr. Christopher Hudalla, President and Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) at ProVerde Labs, which tests cannabis-derived materials, commented on the lack of availability of cannabis-based products that are both truly water-soluble and shelf-stable for long enough to be marketable.

ProVerde’s CSO stated, “The introduction of a new technology platform that can consistently produce the ultra-small droplet size nanoemulsions necessary for reliable shelf life of over 1 year, including resistance to freeze-thaw challenges, will be a be a critical turning point and an explosive growth opportunity in the CBD and cannabis product industries. “

This new technology is PBI’s UST platform, which uniquely combines extremely high pressures with intense shear forces to break down CBD oil into droplets so small that the human body can effectively absorb the medicinal compound contained in the oil at significantly higher rates .

In addition, the nano-sized droplets are small enough to withstand regrowth into larger droplets – a problem that leads to this separation and deposition that you see in other emulsions like salad dressings or nut butters. Even with repeated freezing and thawing, a tried and tested test to determine long-term stability, the nanoemulsions made with UST do not separate from PBI or do not decompose.

PBI’s innovative technology makes it possible to ship CBD-enriched beverages worldwide and store them for longer periods of time without fear of the product losing its potency and effectiveness. As a result, consumers will have access to more effective and precisely dosed CBD beverages than ever before. PBI is partnering with industry leaders in the food and beverage space to bring the groundbreaking new CBD infusions to market before the end of 2021.

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Study Suggests Hemp Extract Is An Effective Weight-Loss Aid



A proprietary hemp extract shows promise as a supplement for promoting weight loss, according to a study funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health. Data from the double-blind, placebo-controlled study showed that all 100 participants who took Nitro-V hemp extract daily lost weight and lost up to 22 pounds over 90 days. The minimum weight loss for those taking the supplement was 5 pounds, while 64% of participants in the placebo group either gained weight or saw no change.

The study participants who took the hemp extract, which is high in cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV), cannabidivarin (CBDV), and other cannabinoids, also showed improvements in other metabolic health metrics and important wellness indicators without changing their diet and exercise habits to change. Participants who took Nitro-V saw their body mass index (BMI) decrease an average of three points and lost an average of 2.4 inches from their waist measurements. On average, the study participants in the placebo group gained weight and saw that their BMI remained the same.

Cannabis (hemp) extract.


Almost 75% of Americans are overweight

According to data from the CDC, more than 73% of adults 20 years or older in the United States are overweight or obese. The health risks associated with obesity can be serious and include heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure. Additional CDC data shows that between 2013 and 2016, more than 49% of American adults reported trying to lose weight in the past 12 months.

“Those working to lose weight and improve their overall health are looking for every benefit they can find to help them stick to their exercise and nutrition plans,” said Arthur Jaffee, CEO of Nitro-V manufacturer ECS Brands , in a press release. “Given the results of these studies, we believe that Nitro-V could be the tool to help many achieve their weight loss potential and feel better.”

To conduct the clinical study, which had not yet been published in a peer-reviewed journal, the researchers assembled a group of 125 subjects to participate in the research. A total of 100 participants received either one or two 50 mg servings of Nitro-V daily, the remaining 25 participants received a placebo. Study participants were not told that they were participating in a weight loss study and that they had not changed their diet or exercise habits.

At the beginning and end of the 90-day study period, participants visited the Mayo Clinic campus in Scottsdale, Arizona and completed standardized surveys on health determinants such as diet, appetite, anxiety, and pain. The researchers also monitored the subjects’ weight, BMI, waist circumference, and vital signs, and performed full blood tests to measure blood sugar, cholesterol, and organ health, as well as other diagnostic tests. A statistician analyzed the data collected during the study to identify trends and evaluate the importance of the results. The research was funded by a small business owned by the National Institutes of Health and conducted by a contract researcher with 20 years of experience in product safety studies.

Each softgel microcapsule serving of Nitro-V contains 50 mg of hemp extract with a combination of cannabinoids such as CBD, THCV and CBDV in an organic hemp seed oil base. The solvent-free hemp extract contains the full cannabinoid profile of the source plant, including less than 0.1% THC. Further processing increases the THCV and CBDV levels in the supplement.

The “thin cannabinoid”

Cannabinoids from cannabis, including hemp, act on the body’s endocannabinoid system, which helps maintain physiological, cognitive, and emotional stability. Research has shown that THCV can act as an effective appetite suppressant, which has earned it the nickname “thin cannabinoid”. Other studies have shown that THCV can also help regulate blood sugar levels. THCV also has anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic properties.

Nitro-V hemp extract softgels from ECS Brands.

Photo courtesy of ECS Brands

Jaffee notes that recent research has shown that CBD and THCV can affect lipid and glucose metabolism in animals, both important factors in maintaining a healthy weight. The study also found that CBD had several positive effects on hyperglycemia, largely due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Further evidence from animal studies shows that CBD modulates the cardiovascular response to stress, which plays a role in weight gain and loss. However, the link between CBDV and weight loss is “less direct,” he says.

“Research shows that CBDV is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent that can play a role in both appetite and weight,” Jaffee wrote in an email. “Reduced inflammation in the body helps optimize the performance of the metabolic organs, and fat cells themselves are metabolic organs. Inflamed fat cells do not work properly and can contribute to unhealthy weight gain. “

The Nitro-V study also showed several other changes in the health and well-being of the participants, including many with the potential to affect weight loss. Participants who used the supplement in the study showed a 61% reduction in hunger and had fewer food cravings. In addition, all 37 study participants who took Nitro-V and were classified as prediabetic had their blood sugar levels returned to normal by the end of the 90-day study. The subjects also reported less difficulty resisting food cravings and showed improvements in sleep, happiness, and anxiety. Research also showed that the hemp extract was well tolerated and safe, with blood tests showing that all safety and toxicity levels remained within healthy, normal ranges.

A hemp field in rural Belgium.


While the study was designed to examine the effects of Nitro-V on weight loss, Jaffee says the data suggests the supplement may have other health and health benefits as well.

“The ultimate goal of the study was to identify the overarching power of the ECS system, and the results indicate effects beyond weight loss and appetite suppression,” he writes. “But as with all cannabinoid and ECS researchers today, we still have many unanswered questions about how interactions between cannabinoids and the ECS lead to health improvements.”

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Could CBD Oil Help with Nausea?



When it comes to the CBD industry, misinformation is rampant. There are too many brands out there trying to make quick money in a phenomenally fast growing market. With a lot of money at stake, these companies are less concerned about what they can do for their customers and more concerned about their profit margins.

The benefits of CBD are known due to the relentless research of dedicated scientists. However, the actions of certain brands lead the general public to remain skeptical.

My advice is to avoid brands that claim that their CBD oil “treats” everything. Unless the cannabinoid is approved by the FDA for medical treatment, no brand is allowed to make any medical claims. However, there is no question that CBD is a potential life changer for many people, for example against nausea. Let’s find out more.

What is nausea?

It is usually classified as a stomach discomfort that makes you want to throw up. It affects a wide variety of people and can have a variety of causes. Common reasons for nausea are:

  • heartburn
  • GERD
  • An infection or a virus
  • Motion sickness
  • Extreme pain
  • Medication

It’s important to remember that nausea is not a disease in itself. Instead, it’s your body’s response to one of a number of conditions. Although it feels awful, nausea is often necessary for your body to fight off unwanted invaders.

Although there are several anti-nausea drugs on the market, there is evidence that CBD may be effective against nausea.

How could CBD help with nausea?

THC is the most common intoxicating cannabinoid found in marijuana. It’s also available in small quantities in hemp. THC is known to create a high, and it binds to endocannabinoid receptors in the brain and spinal cord.

CBD works on these receptors too, but in a different way. First of all, it doesn’t bind directly to the CB1 and CB2 receptors. This helps explain why it doesn’t induce an intoxicating high. CBD helps the body produce higher levels of endocannabinoids like anandamide.

What does the research say?

Currently, much of the research on CBD for nausea is based on people with cancer. Nausea and vomiting are common side effects of chemotherapy. A study published in 2016 examined how cannabinoids can regulate acute and anticipatory nausea. The researchers found that a combination of THC and CBD could provide some relief to cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.

The American Cancer Society actually puts cannabinoids on its list of drugs to use to treat nausea and vomiting. It suggests that these compounds may be useful in cases where traditional anti-nausea medications are ineffective.

A 2011 review of animal studies also looked at how cannabinoids can regulate nausea and vomiting. The researchers found that CBD was potentially useful against nausea due to its interaction with serotonin receptors. Serotonin is a hormone that affects our mood, behavior, and wellbeing.

THC is potentially more effective at reducing the effects of nausea. However, it causes a high intoxication and is not legal in over a dozen US states. It’s also not legal in many countries around the world. Although CBD is not strictly legal in America, it is widely used and tolerated. It is also widely used around the world, with many nations specifically saying that it is legal.

What types of CBD should I use for nausea?

You will likely get more benefits from CBD for nausea by trying a full-spectrum product. This is because research suggests that the presence of THC might increase its anti-nausea effects. A full-spectrum CBD product contains dozens of compounds and terpenes. However, in the United States, it cannot contain more than 0.3% THC. In the UK, the maximum THC content is 0.2%.

When you feel sick, it makes sense to avoid anything that could make you feel like you are vomiting. While some people can tolerate edibles or oils, others cannot. CBD capsules are another option. They have no taste and are easy to swallow. You could try vaping CBD for a faster effect, but your stomach may not like it!

It also makes sense to start with a relatively low dose and work your way up. Start with 5-10 mg of CBD and increase it as needed.

Final thoughts on CBD for nausea

According to the research available, there is plenty of evidence that CBD could be effective against nausea. While most of the studies are on cancer patients recovering from chemotherapy, you may find that CBD works for your nausea. There are also many other potential benefits of CBD that are worth exploring.

When trying out CBD for nausea, you need to carefully consider your method of consumption. Buy a moderate amount first to see how you react. If you can handle it, you can buy more and possibly increase the amount you consume.

Image by unbekanntuserpanama from Pixabay

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