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The Cannabis Enigma

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Doctors, patients, scientists, and families talk medical cannabis. Cutting through the smoke to have intelligent conversations about medical marijuana, what it can treat, human stories, and the questions we’re all thinking about but never had anyone to ask.Hosted by Elana Goldberg and Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man. Brought to you by The Cannigma and Americans for Safe Access. Continue Reading >>
Doctors, patients, scientists, and families talk medical cannabis. Cutting through the smoke to have intelligent conversations about medical marijuana, what it can treat, human stories, and the questions we’re all thinking about but never had anyone to ask.Hosted by Elana Goldberg and Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man. Brought to you by The Cannigma and Americans for Safe Access. << Show Less
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Perfecting cannabis with Michael Backes A common issue that is present in the cannabis market is the inconsistency of products. As an agricultural crop, it can be tricky for suppliers to deliver the same product to consumers time and again, and this is one of the areas that Michael Backes, our guest for today&apos;s episode, is tackling through his work at Perfect Blends!In our chat, Michael shares his personal journey into the cannabis space, and how his history of migraines aided him in discovering the powers of medical marijuana. From there, he talks about opening his first dispensary, and the basics of what we currently know about terpenes. We also get to grips with some important terminology, before Michael shares a few tips for healthier cannabis use.One of the simplest and most helpful takeaways from Michael is the usefulness of our noses, and as Michael reminds us, that was all he used to have to help him identify different strains! We finish off this illuminating conversation considering where Perfect is headed next and the importance of regulating the supply chain in the space before we touch in with Debbie Churgai for our AFSA segment.Key Points From This Episode:A few of Perfect&apos;s innovative products!Michael&apos;s issues with migraines and how this led to him rediscovering cannabis. The dispensary that Michael opened in Eagle Rock in 2006.Michael shares some of his insight and research into what we know about terpenes. Tracing and verifying different famous strains in today&apos;s climate.  Michael unpacks the meaning of the terms &apos;chemovar&apos; and &apos;cultivar&apos;.  Thoughts on how to treat and care for your cannabis products.Sipping instead of ripping; Michael shares the safest smoking practices.  The challenges of building a better medical cannabis model.  Looking to the short term-term future with Michael and what to expect from Perfect!How Perfect is tackling the issue of consistency with their products.  The need for more care and control over the supply chain in the cannabis space.  Today&apos;s AFSA segment featuring a rundown of the organization&apos;s mission. Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:CannigmaMichael Backes on InstagramCannabis PharmacyPerfectPick Me Up Infused Mini Preroll 3-packsMJBizConNational Institute on Drug AbuseStorz & BickelAlien LabsEmerald CupDebbie Churgai on LinkedInAmericans for Safe Access
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Perfecting cannabis with Michael Backes A common issue that is present in the cannabis market is the inconsistency of products. As an agricultural crop, it can be tricky for suppliers to deliver the same product to consumers time and again, and this is one of the areas that Michael Backes, our guest for today&apos;s episode, is tackling through his work at Perfect Blends!In our chat, Michael shares his personal journey into the cannabis space, and how his history of migraines aided him in discovering the powers of medical marijuana. From there, he talks about opening his first dispensary, and the basics of what we currently know about terpenes. We also get to grips with some important terminology, before Michael shares a few tips for healthier cannabis use.One of the simplest and most helpful takeaways from Michael is the usefulness of our noses, and as Michael reminds us, that was all he used to have to help him identify different strains! We finish off this illuminating conversation considering where Perfect is headed next and the importance of regulating the supply chain in the space before we touch in with Debbie Churgai for our AFSA segment.Key Points From This Episode:A few of Perfect&apos;s innovative products!Michael&apos;s issues with migraines and how this led to him rediscovering cannabis. The dispensary that Michael opened in Eagle Rock in 2006.Michael shares some of his insight and research into what we know about terpenes. Tracing and verifying different famous strains in today&apos;s climate.  Michael unpacks the meaning of the terms &apos;chemovar&apos; and &apos;cultivar&apos;.  Thoughts on how to treat and care for your cannabis products.Sipping instead of ripping; Michael shares the safest smoking practices.  The challenges of building a better medical cannabis model.  Looking to the short term-term future with Michael and what to expect from Perfect!How Perfect is tackling the issue of consistency with their products.  The need for more care and control over the supply chain in the cannabis space.  Today&apos;s AFSA segment featuring a rundown of the organization&apos;s mission. Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:CannigmaMichael Backes on InstagramCannabis PharmacyPerfectPick Me Up Infused Mini Preroll 3-packsMJBizConNational Institute on Drug AbuseStorz & BickelAlien LabsEmerald CupDebbie Churgai on LinkedInAmericans for Safe Access
Cannabis, food, and healing with Chef Jordan Wagman Today on the show we welcome chef Jordan Wagman to talk about the work he is doing to incorporate cannabis into his amazing cooking as a way of advocating for its health benefits. Jordan starts by talking about how his early relationship with cannabis began when he was diagnosed with psoriasis and used it as a way of easing the pain. Years later, after he had become a chef, he made drastic changes to his diet involving the inclusion of cannabis along with the exclusion of refined sugar, and thereafter experienced tremendous health benefits.Now Jordan is on a mission to help others have a similar experience to him and we spend our discussion asking him about how he cooks with cannabis, his favorite recipes, and how the average person can start to build their own amateur cannabis kitchen. Jordan talks about his method for making delicious cannabis-infused emulsifications and the value of using a cannabinoid that you purchased as far as incorporating the right dose. He speaks about his famous fruit leather recipe and why it makes such a good on-the-go snack. He also shares top tips for the best kinds of appliances and methods to use at home so that you can make delicious food using cannabis as an ingredient.After our enlightening conversation with Jordan, we welcome William Dolphin onto the show for our ASA segment, where we discuss the journey to understanding the relationship between cannabis and mental health. William Describes a discrepancy between what doctors say about cannabis and the way it is used, shares case studies that disrupt the perception that it is dangerous for mental health, and speaks about the challenge posed by doctors who are doing their research from within a ‘harm paradigm’. For all this and more, tune in with us today!Key Points From This Episode:Perspectives on cannabis as a source of food.An introduction into Jordan and the work he does with food and cannabis.How Jordan ended up being a cannabis chef.Jordan’s struggle with psoriasis which led him to seek sunshine and smoke pot.How Jordan realized the health benefits of cannabis in food and began to advocate for them.How the removal of refined sugar from his diet helped Jordan’s health.Jordan’s method of preparing for that contains cannabis but not refined sugar.How to start experimenting with making your own edibles a home.The importance of immersing your cannabis product well into your cooking.How important it is to purchase your own cannabinoids.How much easier it is to introduce people to cannabis consumption over food.The must-haves when it comes to building an amateur cannabis kitchen.Jordan’s favorite recipe and why he loves his fruit leather so much.Whether it makes a difference what food you consume cannabis with.Perspectives on the new frontier of consumption lounges and cannabis restaurants.William Dolphin joins us for our ASA segment.How different what doctors say about cannabis is from what people who use cannabis experience with it.That cannabis is often associated with mental health disorders although people use it to self-medicate those.New case studies that disrupt perceptions that cannabis causes mental illness.The need for more careful research on how cannabis affects mental health.The need to get away from the harm paradigm that cannabis is studied under. Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:Chef Jordan WagmanChef Jordan Wagman on Twitter
Telling cannabis stories with pictures with Anthony Travagliante Welcome to another episode of the Cannabis Enigma! We’ve got something a little different for you today. We’ll be talking about how visual storytelling can be used in the cannabis space with Anthony Travagliante. Hear the tale of how Anthony came to work in the cannabis space, telling the stories of cannabis brands and making them accessible to non-users. Find out how he has overcome some of the challenges caused by COVID, what he enjoys most about the industry, and the strides it is making in business. Elana is uniquely positioned to review his services for listeners, having hired Anthony herself, she closes her conversation with him with a shining recommendation.During the second half of our conversation, we are joined by Abbey Roudebush for the ASA segment, who gives us some insight on the newly published State of States Report. Learn what&apos;s included in the report, how the dataset is compiled, and who it is intended to educate. Abbey shares why they have totally revamped the scale and metric they once used to calibrate this kind of data and leaves us with the big takeaway that no state is perfect, but some are making strides. Join us to hear all this and more today! Key Points From This Episode:An introduction to today’s topic: how visual storytelling can be used in the cannabis space.Meet today’s guest, Anthony Travagliante, and how he is connected to our community.Lockdown challenges and how they sparked creativity while shooting.The story of how Anthony came to work in the cannabis space as a storyteller.What he enjoys about the industry and what it is doing in business.How he sees his role in telling the story within the cannabis space.His favorite target audience: the people who wouldn’t usually be interested.Some of the biggest challenges he faces with different clients.Who his ideal clients are for web, photo and design, and events, and what he does for them.A plug for his brother Dustin’s shop in Brunswick, selling inhalables.Elana Goldberg’s positive review of Anthony’s services after having hired him.An introduction to the ASA segment of the show with Abbey Roudebush, Director of Government Affairs at Americans for Safe Access.We discuss the State of States Report that came out this week. What the report and assessment consist of.The main audience for the report: policymakers across the country.The individualized recommendations included in the report.How they have totally revamped the scale and metric they once used. How the majority of the states are not doing well on the grading system.Where to find the full report.The big takeaway she wants to share: no state is perfect.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:Anthony Travagliante on LinkedInAnthony Travagliante on TwitterAnthony Travagliante on InstagramAmericans for Safe AccessState of the StatesTrav Media GroupWebFlowAbbey Roudebush on LinkedInCannigma
Minorities in cannabis, with Steven Philpott Jr. In light of Black History Month, we feel it is important and relevant to talk about how minorities in the United States and around the world have been disproportionately affected by drug policy and the war on drugs. Part of our conversation today centers on how we can break down barriers and find ways to build cannabis companies that are minority-owned and uplift them.Joining us for this discussion is Steven Philpott Jr., one of our science reviewers at The Cannigma and a cannabis trichome expert who is getting his master&apos;s in Plant Sciences. Steve is also one of the co-founders of the Illinois Minority Growers Association and is heavily involved in social equity and minority issues within the cannabis space. As part of his master’s degree, Steve is currently using electron microscopes to take super close-up pictures of trichomes, tiny protrusions on cannabis plants. Tuning in, you’ll hear more about what these trichomes are and why they’re important. Steve sheds light on his experience in the military and how losing friends to opioid use led him to become interested in cannabis. We also discuss the disparity between what is taught at medical school and what science actually shows us. To hear more about Steven’s research, what he hopes it will lead to, his predictions for the future of cannabis, how he is helping those most harmed by the war on drugs, and how you can help too, tune in today!Key Points From This Episode:Some background into how minorities have been disproportionately affected by drug policy and the war on drugs.The upcoming webinar that showcases Black-owned and social equity-focused brands. An introduction to Steven Philpott Jr and his involvement in social equity and minority issues within the cannabis space.Insight into the catalog of trichomes that Steven is currently working on. What trichomes are and why they’re important.How Steve’s experience with the military led him to become interested in cannabis.  How his experience as a strength conditioning coach for athletes increased his interest in cannabis.  Insight into the research he is currently doing.The disparity between what is taught at medical school and what science actually shows us. What Steve hopes his research may lead to.   The problems with a system driven by THC research and how Steve is doing things differently.The Minority Growers Association and Steve’s role in it.The importance of recruiting the people who were most harmed by the war on drugs. What Steve predicts for the future of cannabis. The connection between hemp and fungal networks and some of the other subjects that Steve is interested in.Hear about cannabinoid testing in the Americans for Safe Access segment with Heather Despres. Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:Steven Philpott Jr on LinkedInIllinois Minority Growers Association Harrington Institute  Cleveland School of CannabisHeather Despres Americans for Safe AccessElana GoldbergDr. Codi PetersonThe Cannigma
Cannabis and women's health, with Dr. Melanie Bone By now, we’ve all heard of the concept of using cannabis to treat ailments like cancer, ALS, Parkinson’s, seizures, HIV, AIDS, Crohn’s, and terminal illnesses, but fortunately, those aren’t necessarily what physicians are most commonly confronted with. What then, can be done about things like anxiety, pain, insomnia, fibromyalgia, endometriosis, and other women’s health issues? Today we are joined by Dr. Melanie Bone, a physician in Florida practicing cannabis-based medicine. Dr. Bone has an impressive medical background from working as an OBGYN and delivering thousands (literally thousands!) of babies, to doing robotic surgery, and now, helping geriatric patients navigate cannabis medicine. In this episode, we hone in on one particular sphere of interest, and that is the way that Dr. Bone has integrated her OBGYN expertise with her medicinal cannabis practice. We hear about how her son’s run-in with cannabis set her forth on her research and ignited her passion, and how Dr. Bone integrates cannabis to alleviate women’s health issues. She lists the various women’s health issues that can be treated with cannabis, from debilitating menstrual cramps to sexual function, and breaks down the endocannabinoid system and the effects of vaginal suppositories. We find out how women and other estrogen-predominant people react differently to cannabis than men and those with more testosterone, and why microdosing is far more effective for the former. As it turns out, edibles also affect women differently, and Dr. Bone explains the ‘start low and go slow’ method that they should be approached with.We move on to dissect Florida&apos;s current cannabis market and prescribing model, speculating on the dangers of over-regulation going forward. Dr. Bone fills us in on why she doesn’t believe the THC limit model to be of much use, and why she is such a fan of ratio products! Tune in for this informative episode on cannabis and women’s health, straight from the source of someone who truly has seen it all!Key points from this episode:The cannabis laws in Florida, where Dr. Melanie Bone is based.Dr. Bone’s medical background and how she came to merge cannabis with her OBGYN expertise.The science behind why women react differently to cannabis than men, taking the trans population into consideration.How Dr. Bone integrates cannabis to help with women’s health.The various women’s health issues that can be treated with cannabis!Dr. Bone breaks down the endocannabinoid system and the effects of vaginal suppositories.Why Dr. Bone takes the “start low and go slow” approach to treatment.The effectiveness of microdosing for women, and the symptoms it can resolve.Why women respond differently to edibles than men and how they should approach them.Dr. Bone dissects Florida&apos;s current cannabis market and prescribing model.The government&apos;s concerns about diversion in terms of cannabis recreational legalization.The dangers of over-regulation.The medicinal benefits of CBD to THC ratio products.Heather Despres briefly joins us to discuss the work Americans for Safe Access is doing to advance cannabis therapeutics for use and research.Links mentioned in today’s episode:CannigmaDr. Melanie BoneDr. Melanie Bone on LinkedInDr. Melanie Bone on TwitterDr. Melanie Bone on InstagramParallel
Cannabis and traumatic brain injury, with Nikki Lawley The decades-long War on Drugs campaign in America has been incredibly successful at spreading harmful rhetoric and shaping people’s perception of cannabis use. The resulting prejudice can often discourage folks from seeking out medical cannabis as an option, and can even affect state legislature, forcing patients to overcome unnecessary and prohibitive obstacles in order to receive the treatment they need.Today on the show we welcome Nikki Lawley, a Traumatic Brain Injury Survivor, and founder of NIKKI and the Plant, an advocacy group for medical marijuana use, with a special focus on helping women who have suffered a TBI. We talk with Nikki about her life-altering TBI, her previous prejudices around cannabis use, and how her journey led her to the founding of NIKKI and the Plant. After being prescribed over 60 medications and seeing dozens of healthcare professionals, Nikki finally found relief and a reason to be optimistic when she tried medical cannabis. In our conversation, Nikki shares how difficult it was transitioning from her role as a nurse, and health care provider, to being a patient. She explains how the state legislature in New York prevented her from accessing the medication she needed, as well as how difficult it was navigating the world of medical cannabis and finding a product that reliably worked for her.We delve into Nikki’s advocacy work, her approach to addressing people’s prejudices, and why she is dedicated to changing the narrative around medical cannabis use. Nikki’s story is deeply inspirational, and we are honored to have had her on the show. It’s an imported reminder of the real-world impact that medical marijuana and advocacy can have on the lives of everyday individuals!Key points from this episode:An introduction to cannabis use for traumatic brain injuries (TBI).Some of the early evidence on the positive effects that cannabis could have for TBIs.An introduction to Nikki, how she received a TBI, and her difficult journey from nurse to patient.How Nikki found medical cannabis and how it transformed her recovery.Nikki’s previous opinion of cannabis and how her worldview was shaped by the &quot;War on Drugs&quot; rhetoric.Nikki’s first dispensary experience and why the initial results were so frustrating.Why Nikki’s unique digestive system affects her ability to absorb fat-soluble products effectively.Why this hampered the efficacy of the cannabinoid products she was using at the time.How Nikki’s friends in Canada, and her support network, helped her persevere in her journey with medical cannabis.The founding of NIKKI and the plant as an advocacy and awareness initiative. How their mission focuses on helping women with TBIs.Why Nikki remains motivated in helping and empowering patients to institute change in the medical industry.How Nikki approaches naysayers and people’s prejudice against cannabis use.The Americans for Safe Access segment: the compliance, certification, and training side of ASA’s offerings to the industry.Links mentioned in today’s episode:NIKKI and the plantNikki Lawley on LinkedInNikki Lawley on InstagramNikki Lawley on FacebookHeather Despres on LinkedInCannigma
New Year, New York, with Steve DeAngelo Steve DeAngelo is the true definition of a cannabis advocate. From the first time he was introduced to the plant in the 1960’s he has dedicated his life’s work to its legalization. From his time as one of Washington, DC’s largest distributors of underground cannabis, through his creation of three iconic cannabis companies in California, to his current role as an educator and advisor, Steve has a wealth of knowledge and inspiration to share.  As you’ll hear in today’s episode, there are various ways to legalize cannabis, some that can actually do more harm than good. In Steve’s eyes (and now in ours after this conversation with Steve) New York is leading the charge in terms of progressive cannabis legislation, and the rest of the world would do well to take note!Join us today as we take a trip from the very beginnings of the cannabis-human relationship, which began in Central Asia, all the way through to the present, where this wondrous herb is used for everything from chronic pain to sparking creativity. Key points from this episode:Why Elana and Codi are such big fans of today’s guest, Steve DeAngelo.Steve’s initial motivation for becoming a cannabis activist.A brief rundown of what the first 25 years of Steve’s cannabis activism looked like.The disillusioning experience which pushed Steve from Washington, DC to California.Three companies that Steve founded, each the first of its kind in a certain sector of the cannabis industry.What Steve’s current role in the cannabis industry looks like.How perceptions around cannabis have changed since Steve became an activist, and the future he sees for the plant.Steve explains the progressive law which has put New York at the frontlines of the Cannabis Freedom Movement.The problem with the way California has handled cannabis legalization.How the corporatization of cannabis impacts those who rely on the plant for medical use.Why Steve believes there is no such thing as recreational cannabis. A brief history of the spirituality that has always been associated with cannabis.Steve shares a regret that he has from the early days of his cannabis activism.An important call to action from Steve.The Americans for Safe Access segment: diving into the microbial world.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:Steve DeAngelo WebsiteLast Prisoner ProjectHarborsideSteep Hill LaboratoryThe Arcview GroupFlow KanaAmericans for Safe AccessCannigma
Cannabis in Israel, with Itai Rogel Israel is world-renowned for the research and innovation that is taking place there, and unofficial data suggests that around 20% of the Israeli population uses cannabis. Despite this, being in possession of a prescription is the only way that cannabis can be legally consumed. Though hopefully this will not be the case for much longer. Today’s guest is Itai Rogel, the Vice President of Business Development at Israeli cannabis company, Bazelet. Bazelet currently has two registered patents, 40 applications out in various stages, and is one of the two largest cannabis companies in Israel.In today’s episode you’ll hear about some of the unique qualities of the Israeli cannabis market (and Bazelet), why it is such a challenge to legalize cannabis in the country, and the approach to legalization that Itai thinks makes the most sense for his country.  Key points from this episode:Itai shares a picture of what the cannabis market currently looks like in Israel.The forms of cannabis which can be purchased by consumers in Israel.Conditions for which people in Israel are able to receive cannabis prescriptions.Tensions that exist within the Israeli cannabis market.A quality that differentiates Bazelet from other medical cannabis companies.An overview of what Bazelet does, and how it has evolved over the years.The brand Bazelet has developed which is specifically focused on women&apos;s health.Itai weighs in on what he thinks the cannabis industry is going to look like in Israel in the future.Unofficial data on cannabis usage in Israel.The angle through which Itai believes cannabis legalization should be approached. Similarities between the Israeli and Australian cannabis markets.Why cannabis should not be subjected to the same level of clinical trials as pharmaceuticals.The Americans for Safe Access segment: focusing on the difference between medical cannabis and adult use cannabis.Links mentioned in today’s episode:Bazelet GroupItai Rogel on LinkedInAmericans for Safe AccessCannigma
Behind the scenes on cannabis normalization with JM Pedini Anyone who has ever tried to convince someone to change their mind over something they feel strongly about knows that it can be an impossible battle, and the only way to succeed is by taking the long view and embracing gradual change. The same can be said for changing public attitudes towards cannabis. In today’s episode, we speak with JM Pedini, Development Director for NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. NORML has been representing responsible consumers since 1970, and through their efforts and activism have seen public opinion change drastically in the past fifty years. By sufficiently moving the needle on public opinion, NORML aims to legalize the responsible use of marijuana by adults, and subsequently ensure access to products that are safe, convenient, and affordable. In our conversation with JM, we discuss their work as Development Director for NORML, how their experiences with cancer led them to NORML, and how NORML supports its affiliate chapters that are doing grassroots work to affect public policy changes both locally and internationally. We discuss the changes that have taken place since NORML was founded, and why advancing public policy is reliant on understanding where your state legislature currently stands and what they’re emotionally comfortable with. To hear more of JM’s thoughts on the importance of small victories, how to build momentum, and patient rights, tune in today!The Cannabis Enigma podcast is a co-production of The Cannigma and Americans for Safe Access. Elana Goldberg is the executive producer and co-host. Dr. Codi Peterson is co-producer and co-host. This episode was edited by our friends atWe Edit Podcasts. Music by Desca.Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:JM Pedini on LinkedInNORMLVirginia NORMLSubscribe to NORML NewsCannigma
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