Discover one of our favourite natural ingredients for restoring balance in the mind and body.
What is Hemp?
Hemp is part of the cannabis family, more specifically it is a variety of the cannabis sativa plant. It has been grown across the world for centuries and is used today for many industrial purposes such as textiles, paper, plastics and insulation. Beyond its industrial and nutritional value, hemp has gained popularity for its potential medicinal benefits. The health properties of the plant were bolstered by the discovery of the Endocannabinoid system in the early 1990s. Scientists showed that cannabinoids found in the plant could activate receptors found throughout the body and brain resulting in many therapeutic effects. This discovery has led to it being widely used to derive the compound CBD. CBD has been researched for its therapeutic properties and is an ingredient in food supplements, skincare and multiple other applications.
What is CBD and how does it work in the body?
CBD is an acronym for Cannabidiol. CBD is one of over a 100 different cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. Cannabinoids are chemical compounds that naturally occur in the flower and leaves of the plant. They are also referred to as ‘phytocannabinoids’ due to their existence in plants as opposed to cannabinoids found naturally in the body named ‘endocannabinoids’.
The primary impact of CBD in the body is down to its interaction with the body’s Endocannabinoid System, ECS for short. The Endocannabinoid system is a biological system composed of a network of receptors found throughout the body. The ECS is fundamental to human wellbeing by regulating other biological systems and maintaining balance throughout the body. It helps our bodies respond effectively to internal and external stresses and supports important physical, mental and emotional functions such as digestion, pain, memory, mood, sleep, metabolism, immunity and inflammation responses. CBD binds with these receptors and stimulates the entire endocannabinoid system, therefore harmonising and balancing our bodies.
The Entourage Effect
At Ethos we use full spectrum CBD oil as it’s the most natural extract available. Full spectrum means it contains all the phytocannabinoids, terpenes (aromatic flavours) and flavonoids (nutrients) naturally found in the hemp plant. Studies and pre-clinical research have shown that retaining all active compounds through a full spectrum extract enhances the overall effectiveness of CBD, a phenomenon known as the “entourage effect”. The compounds work synergistically as nature intended to deliver wide ranging wellbeing benefits.
Hemp is referred to as a ‘wonder plant’ due its diverse benefits and applications, famously reported to have over 25,000 uses. It is used today for textiles, paper, bioplastics, hempcrete (a concrete alternative), fibre, biofuels and an array of food products.
Hemp is a robust crop which grows in most environments and is widely recognized for its positive impact on the environment, making it a valuable resource. Its cultivation offers numerous environmental benefits, making it an attractive option for industries seeking eco-friendly alternatives.
It is a sustainable alternative for numerous materials used in industries that are currently raising greenhouse gases. These industries are adding to deforestation and accelerating climate change issues. It is a viable green replacement to:
- Petroleum used to make plastic
- Cotton used for clothes
- Traditional concrete
- Trees cut down for paper
Hemp is also a fast-growing plant that can absorb significant amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere during its growth cycle (four times more carbon dioxide than trees per acre). As it matures, it stores carbon in its fibres and biomass, helping to mitigate the effects of greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change. Its dual benefits and circular economy advantages should be championed by governments around the world and leveraged as a key weapon in the fight against climate change.