With the passage of the 2018 Agricultural Improvement Act (often called the “2018 Farm Bill”), hemp and hemp-derived products were legalized throughout the United States. Previous federal legislation failed to note the difference between hemp and marijuana, which resulted in both of these plants being banned on a federal level. Although the difference between hemp and marijuana is now recognized in the laws of the United States, the previous lack of a distinction has caused broad confusion throughout the general public.

For that reason, we would like to provide some hemp education to clarify this confusion. At CBD Athlete, we believe that you should understand what you put into your body to unleash your inner athlete. We are proud to explain how hemp products can help with pain management.

What is Hemp?

Prior to purchasing any hemp products, it might be helpful to first learn what exactly hemp is, where it comes from, and some of the history of the plant. Although hemp has been used prominently throughout human history, recent history in the U.S. has created a stigma around the plant and its uses. The team at CBD Athlete believes strongly in the beneficial power of hemp, and we would like to help overcome this stigma.

Industrial Hemp Defined

The hemp used for hemp products in the United States is often referred to as “industrial hemp” to make it clear that the plant is not grown for use as a drug. Industrial hemp is a form of the Cannabis sativa plant, but unlike other strains of this plant, industrial hemp is intended for industrial use. In particular, industrial hemp is grown for use in products such as clothing fibers, biofuel, animal feed, food, paint, textiles, paper, and more.

To be considered industrial hemp, a Cannabis sativa plant must contain less than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is considered to be the psychoactive element of cannabis. Over time, humans have been able to develop strains of Cannabis sativa that can consistently grow in a way that meets this definition, meaning that we have made it relatively simple to control the amount of THC in cannabis plants. As a result, it has become straightforward to grow hemp and ensure the plants grown are suitable for industrial uses.

Where Is Hemp Grown?

Due the lack of a distinction between hemp and marijauna in federal laws prior to 2018, hemp was not grown legally in the United States for many years. The Agricultural Act of 2014 allowed states to create pilot programs with the intention of testing the potential legalization of industrial hemp. These small and heavily restricted programs allowed farmers to legally grow hemp in the United States for the first time since The Controlled Substances Act of 1970, and they paved the way toward the federal legalization of hemp and hemp-derived products in 2018.

Since the federal legalization of hemp is still relatively recent, we have yet to see how many farmers across the U.S. will decide to grow this crop. That said, we have already seen massive growth in the number of acres devoted to growing hemp since 2014. Due to its place at the forefront of the cannabis industry, Colorado consistently grows a large amount of the U.S. hemp supply, only falling behind Montana in most acres of hemp grown in 2018. Based on the number of acres of hemp grown in 2018, Colorado and Montana are by far the two states leading the pack in growing industrial hemp in the country, with Oregon growing a third of the hemp that Colorado grows and being state with the third highest amount of hemp acres grown. The hemp used for products from CBD Athlete comes from high-quality hemp growers in Colorado.

History of Hemp

Many historians believe that hemp might be one of the earliest plants to be cultivated by humans. It was grown across the northern hemisphere, where it was used to make rope, clothes, and paper. It was also reported as early as 1605 that hemp was grown by people native to North America, and early American settlers were also known to cultivate hemp.

In the United States, hemp plays a relatively large role in the early history of the country. Many founding members of the country advocated the cultivation of hemp, including George Washington. Prior to being taxed on a federal level in 1937 and federally controlled in 1970, hemp was a major crop grown throughout the U.S.

Hemp VS Marijuana

Although both hemp and marijuana are strains of the Cannabis sativa plant, they differ in many significant ways. At this point, we should clarify that we use the term “marijuana” to refer to cannabis intended for drug use, while we use the term “hemp” to refer to industrial hemp. In order to understand how beneficial the products from CBD Athlete can be, one must understand the differences between hemp and marijuana.

Grown With Different Intentions

The most significant difference between marijuana and hemp comes from the fact that they are grown, processed, and sold with entirely different uses in mind. Marijuana is intended solely for use as a drug, regardless of whether that use is for recreational or medicinal purposes. In contrast, hemp is grown for industrial use. In the case of CBD Athlete, the hemp we use is processed in order to obtain high levels of cannabidiol (CBD).

The different intended uses of hemp and marijuana result in different compounds being found in the plants. Since it is intended for drug use, marijuana comes from cannabis plants with significantly high levels of tetrahydrocannabinol. THC is one of the many cannabinoids found in cannabis, but it is also the primary psychoactive component of cannabis. It is because of THC that cannabis can make you feel “high” and result in the feelings associated with that state of mental and physical intoxication. Marijuana has been grown to contain up to 30% THC, making it significantly more potent than industrial hemp.

As previously mentioned, hemp is grown with industrial uses in mind. For that reason, industrial hemp can contain no more than 0.3% THC. Since hemp comes from Cannabis sativa plants, it does contain many cannabinoids besides the psychoactive compound THC. Often, hemp with high concentrations of CBD is grown because CBD has been found to have beneficial health effects.

For this reason, the products from CBD Athlete are hemp-derived products.

Governed by Different Laws

Another major difference between hemp and marijuana stems from the fact that they are governed by different laws. Prior to 2018, both hemp and marijuana were federally banned substances. However, as a result of the 2018 Farm Bill, the U.S. legalized hemp and hemp-derived products on a federal level. This makes a clear distinction; hemp is legal federally, while marijuana is not.

Now, the state of cannabis-related laws in the United States is relatively murky at this point. Since many people lack a hemp education, they do not see the difference between hemp and marijuana, and can get confused by the current laws around these plants. To further add to the confusion, some states have legalized marijuana for medical and even recreational purposes, with Colorado being the popular example of a state that has done this. The legalization of the marijuana by states came despite the fact that marijuana is still illegal federally, which creates some friction between state laws and federal laws with regard to marijuana.

Thanks to the federal legalization of hemp through the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp avoids much of that friction between state and federal governments. Simply put, hemp and hemp-derived products are legal throughout the United States. As a result, it is perfectly legal to use CBD derived from hemp.

Produced Differently

Due to the different intended uses and legal standards that apply to hemp and marijuana, the plants are cultivated in entirely different ways. In order to obtain different results and meet varying standards, marijuana and hemp often come from different strains of Cannabis sativa with vastly different characteristics.

Moreover, marijuana is grown to maximize the potent characteristics in the plant, and it is often bred to create plants that have high concentrations of THC. In order to grow plants in this way, marijuana growers often control the conditions in the plants environment while it grows. In contrast, hemp is grown more like traditional crops. Hemp is typically grown outdoors, and farmers that grow hemp try to maximize the yield of the plant, which requires less environmental control.

The Basics

Cannabis plants contain a multitude of different cannabinoids.. Cannabinoids stimulate receptors in the human body’s endocannabinoid system. This fact probably plays a large role in the sustained popularity of cannabis throughout human history, regardless of cultural and physical boundaries. To unlock the full potential of your body, the team at CBD Athlete believes that you need to understand cannabinoids and your body’s endocannabinoid system.

What Is a Cannabinoid?

Cannabinoids are an entire class of chemical compounds found naturally in humans, animals, and plants. Numerous different chemical compounds are considered cannabinoids, and different cannabinoids can have vastly different effects on the human body. Some cannabinoids can decrease the feeling of pain in humans, while others can heighten the feeling of pain. 

Not all cannabinoids are the same, although they all affect the endocannabinoid system.

There have been more than 100 cannabinoids found in cannabis, with concentrations of different cannabinoids varying between strains of cannabis plants. The cannabinoids found in cannabis are called phytocannabinoids, which simply means that they naturally arise in the plant, much like sugars that naturally occur in corn. Recently, synthetic cannabinoids have been developed to help scientists determine the effects different cannabinoids can have based on their chemical structure.

Your Body’s Endocannabinoid System

Some people are surprised to learn that the human body actually has an endocannabinoid system, which is directly affected by cannabinoids. The endocannabinoid system is extremely important to the proper functioning of the human body, and it regulates many mental and physical processes in the body. The endocannabinoid system helps regulate pain sensation, appetite, mood, and even memory. This makes the system particularly important to athletes, who often need to power through pain to compete.

When a cannabinoid is ingested, it stimulates cannabinoid receptors in the body and alters the way the endocannabinoid system regulates processes. Depending on the chemical structure of a cannabinoid, it may ease the sensation of pain, reduce stress, help induce sleep, or lead to intoxication. These different effects depend entirely on which cannabinoids are ingested. Some cannabinoids, such as cannabidiol, produce many positive effects, while others can produce negative effects on the human body.

Every athlete knows that they need to control what goes into their body in order to get the best results. You can’t score a triple-double or shoot your best golf game if you consistently consume unhealthy and harmful foods. Similarly, controlling your endocannabinoid system and helping it regulate bodily processes can help you unleash your inner athlete and perform at the highest levels.

THC and CBD: The Two Major Cannabinoids

Tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol are the two cannabinoids found in cannabis plants that are most commonly discussed. As previously mentioned, THC is the primary psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis, which leads to intoxication.

Unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive, and it has many beneficial health effects on the human body. It has very different overall effects on the endocannabinoid system when compared to THC. CBD has been shown to help with pain management, reduce anxiety, induce sleep, and even treat rare forms of epilepsy. Scientific studies have not found THC to result in these same effects.

Our section on the difference between hemp and marijuana should make it clear that these two compounds cause the primary difference between the plants. Marijuana is grown for the psychoactive effects of THC. Hemp, on the other hand, can be grown in order to obtain CBD.

CBD and Athletes

At this point in your hemp education, you may still be wondering why athletes might be interested in cannabidiol. Sure, it may seem like hemp can be beneficial, especially when it comes to clothing, textiles, and as a source of CBD. But why should an athlete focused on results care about that?

At CBD Athlete, we believe that athletes should definitely care about the effects that CBD can have on their game. As we mentioned, it can affect your body’s endocannabinoid system, which helps regulate different bodily processes. More than that though, we have seen the effects that CBD can have on athletes first hand. We strongly believe that CBD can help you optimize your performance, whether that is on the football field, tennis court, or on the golf course.

Benefits of CBD

The primary benefit of CBD use among athletes comes from the pain management associated with CBD usage. Many people have found CBD to be one of the easiest ways available to manage their pain and play the games they love with more comfort. From professional football and hockey players to amateur golfers and runners, CBD has been found to help athletes recover faster and feel better in their athletic endeavors.

CBD can also have beneficial effects on stress and sleep. Those who use CBD often find that they are more relaxed and feel less cognitive stress in their day-to-day lives. This makes CBD a tool that athletes can try using to help manage mental health and feel better on a holistic level when they participate in sports. Moreover, CBD can help the body’s endocannabinoid system induce sleep, which can help athletes get the rest they need to dominate their game. With CBD, athletes get the chance to feel better playing the sports they love.

Common CBD Products

Trying CBD is the only way to discover the beneficial effects it can have. CBD Athlete sells three different types of CBD products, so athletes can find the right type of CBD product for their needs. With these three products, using CBD to help regulate your endocannabinoid system is simple.

The most common CBD product sold today is CBD in the form of oil tinctures. Oil tinctures provide an easy way to incorporate CBD into a diet, and can be used directly under the tongue or mixed with food and drink. The oil tinctures from CBD Athlete are full-spectrum oil tinctures, meaning that they contain CBD as well as other cannabinoids naturally found in hemp.

 Like all of our products, the oil tinctures are made from industrial hemp, which contains less than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol. Our oils also come in different doses to help you find the right level for you.

CBD Athlete also sells CBD gummies and a pain salve. While gummies and salves aren’t the most popular way to unlock the beneficial effects of CBD, they are still a good way to introduce yourself to CBD. Unlike our oil tinctures, the only cannabinoid in our gummies is CBD. The gummies make it extremely easy to use CBD on the go, and our pain salve gives you the option to target specific muscles for pain management.

How CBD Helped Barry Goers

Give our CBD products a try, and maybe you will find that they help you in the same way they helped the founder of CBD Athlete, Barry Goers. Barry was a professional hockey player who had to retire due to injuries. In the end, he found that the main thing that got him back to feeling right was CBD. To learn more about Barry’s story, browse our site and read about CBD Athlete.

To learn more about CBD, visit our frequently asked questions (FAQ) page, browse our blog, or send us your questions! The team at CBD Athlete is here to make you feel better in all of your athletic endeavors and help you unleash your inner athlete.

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