The ABC's of CBD

CBD. Trend or Foe? A friend with benefits? Magically delicious? What’s going on? Let’s explore the possibilities of CBD and today how it’s potent nutrition is being raved about by the women.

While the medicinal marijuana industry has been helping patients with severe illnesses for some time, an extract of the notorious cannabis plant is now floating around in just about everything, from juice to chocolate to pet food. CBD aka cannabidiol is definitely the new kid on the wellness block!

For some, the CBD trend has raised eyebrows because of its relationship with marijuana. As a sober woman of 12 years, it’s not an option for me not to do my due diligence when it comes to the cousin of THC. So, I decided to educate myself on the subject and experience using it firsthand. Let’s talk about it…

WHAT IS CBD?

CBD is the non-psychoactive, naturally occurring compound extracted from flower of the cannabis plant. Not to be confused with THC, which is the ingredient in cannabis that gives you that high or stoned feeling. In fact, CBD and THC act in different ways toward receptors in the brain and body. CBD in a pure, non-dependent form should not contain more than .03% THC.

IS CBD SAFE?

Always consult your doctor before using CBD to see if it right for you first. As with anything you put in your body, awareness is key. When it comes to CBD consumption, the safety depends on the quality of the source. In other words: know thy farmer. Ask questions. What was the grower’s intent of harvest? Pay attention to potency and purity. Stay smart, curious and cautious about your label reading.

POTENTIAL BENEFITS OF CBD FOR WOMEN

Although more studies are being conducted due to the heightened interest in CBD, there still needs to be more evidence before definitive statements can be made about the benefits. However, below are 4 potential benefits of CBD based on the research collected thus far.

 

1. FOR PAIN & INFLAMMATION

Inflammation in our body starts innocent enough as an immune system response to attempt healing. Unfortunately, when this becomes chronic, the friend turns to a foe. From the exercise junkie to the non-stop mom, inflammation has plagued most women’s bodies at some time or another. CBD studies share some compelling results of women getting relief from the pain of arthritis and endometriosis (a uterine condition) by reducing swelling. I use a CBD balm for my OA (osteoarthritis) on my hip and thumb joints and am happy to share I experience immediate relief.

 

2. FOR ANXIETY & DEPRESSION

So many of us are grappling with tools to de-stress. The quick fix answer of a pill is not in the cards for some, since each of us receive and respond to medicine differently. CBD users have reported a less anxious vibe that helps them cope with day to day stressors. Plus, research shows little to no side effects or dependency from CBD, meaning it could be an ideal option for those who have had adverse reactions to prescription medications or are abstaining from addictive substances.

 

3. FOR PMS SYMPTOMS

CBD has shown to be a popular alternative to conventional medicines used to relieve the physical pain of premenstrual syndrome. Debilitating cramps and headaches notoriously arise during this time of the month, and CBD’s anti-inflammatory effects promote relaxation in these constricted areas. It can also help with the emotional component of PMS, such as mood swings and disturbed sleep that exacerbate irritability. Many women report a calmer, more relaxed state of being when using CBD during this time of the month.

 

4. FOR SKINCARE & BEAUTY

Lotions, potions and salves, oh my! If you’re like me, you love your skincare products. Both topically and internally, when CBD is vaped, chewed or sipped, there have been reports of some remarkable results. From eczema to anti-aging, CBD can be used to treat a multitude of skin concerns. And, thanks to its antioxidants and omegas, CBD can also be used as a remedy for stretch marks and bruising.

 

5. FOR INSOMNIA

Stress, lack of exercise, high sugar diets and caffeine in excess can dictate how we slumber. Insomnia is a multi-faceted disorder which includes not being able to initially fall asleep, as well as being disturbed during the sleep/REM cycle. Since CBD has been shown to calm our nervous system and help our bodies’ natural serotonin levels, it may give us that chill edge we need to nod off and stay asleep

Thanks dropping by today Food Athletes! See you next time.

xo Jessi xo

Mind Muscle Connection (we want it, how do we get it?)

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Hello mind, meet your body. I think this is going to be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

Mindful meditation and physical fitness may seem like separate practices, but you can take a common thread from each system that when woven together make up a magnificent thing called Mind-Muscle Connection. The research and studies show evidence of MMC’s positive results; and although theories are not proven they are indeed convincing. An awareness of one’s body can catapult your fitness program to another level.

WHAT IS MMC?

 

It’s pretty straightforward. When performing a specific exercise, you direct your attention to the principal muscle group with deliberate physical contraction through visualization. Like playing darts, you are aiming for a bullseye, but to make the target it takes hand-eye coordination, concentration and lots of practice. MMC is simple to achieve; our body comes prepared with capabilities because our brains neuro function can control the flexion of our muscles. The only possible hurdle, as with any new venture, is that it takes time and patience to develop.

5 BENEFITS OF MMC

 

1. IT HELPS DEVELOP MORE ACUTE BODY AWARENESS

 

2. IT PROMOTES STRENGTHENING AND PROTECTION OF JOINTS AND LIGAMENTS

 

3. IT IMPROVES BRAIN COORDINATION, CONTRIBUTING TO PERFORMING LIFE’S DAILY ACTIVITIES

 

4. IT DECREASES THE RISK OF INJURY

 

5. IT IMPROVES BALANCE AND CORE STABILIZATION

5 TIPS FOR USING MMC

 

1. SET INTENTIONS

You may think your workout begins when you walk through the doors of your gym or fitness class, but the magic starts way before with an inceptive thought—that moment when you schedule that pivotal date for your sweat session. Be sure to have a clear vision of your workout goals. Write down the plan, such as what muscle groups you will focus on each day of the week. The more specific, the better. This will allow you to consciously create a new visual habit.

 

2. SLOW AND STEADY

Slow and steady wins the race and finishes the strongest. Practice working out with slow actions plus a theme based on quality, not quantity. Executing correct form while working out is an essential component, not only to prevent injury, but to successfully perform an exercise. Slow down the tempo of a single move, so your mind is given the proper time to make connections. Do this with an emphasis on the “eccentric phase” of your exercise, which is the lengthening period of muscle contractions and usually the most neglected. Resist the temptation to be lazy; give every movement, beat, and breath a purpose executed with control.

 

3. LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

If you’re having trouble focusing during your workout, it might be time for a change of scenery. It’s easy to get lost in a classroom full of bodies, and to get distracted by life outside of your exercise class. Being inspired by a fave instructor or workout buddy is a good start. Surround yourself with people or an environment that supports your cause to be more focused. If you find you are easily distracted working out by a window, for example, move to a different section. Don’t hide in the back of a class— get to the front of the room!

 

4. FEELING IS BELIEVING

We often rely on visual proof and seldom acknowledge our inner wins. Since MMC is internal, try to redirect your energy inward and turn away from external distractions, such as mirrors. Focus on feeling your body vs. looking at your body. Sometimes mirrors are unavoidable, so close your eyes and try to feel (not look!) while doing your reps, riding a bike (stationary of course) or even other daily tasks.

 

5. THE MORE THE MERRIER

Throw more workouts into your repertoire that incorporate Compound Exercises. These are moves that recruit many muscles at one time, forcing you to stay aware and keep you in a constant thought process. The primary muscles that contract during a movement create an apparent feeling of heaviness—maybe it’s from a free weight, your own body or gravity. When weight and force are combined, it’s natural for your concentration to wander to the strongest muscle group. Switch your focus to weaker muscles first to distribute the balance thus making the move compound, a.k.a. giving equal attention to all areas in action.

Happy Warrior Wednesday Food Athletes!

xo jessi xo