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My Top Three Cannabis 101 Reads

It probably won’t surprise you that I have a lot of books on cannabis. I do love to read and I wish there was some sort of aggregator that would alert me to new or upcoming books on the market. (Hey, if you know of one, HMU please.) I was thinking of slightly 101 levels of cannabis books I’d recommend to women looking to start their weed journey. Ones where you would not get only relevant science info about what the plant does but you would also come away with excitement about your journey. So here are three I’d suggest you either purchase or reserve at your local library*:

The Little Book of Cannabis – Amanda Siebert

Amanda is a seasoned cannabis journalist from BC, and this slim little volume–it clocks in at a little over 200 pages if you don’t count all the citations–breaks down the chapters by people’s interest in cannabis use. Sex, sleep, pain management, even the science behind the possible use of weed as an exit drug for drug and alcohol addiction, The Little Book of Cannabis is a good choice for beginners because you can dip in and out to whichever chapter calls to you. Another thing I like is that the science behind the ECS (endocannabinoid system) is at the end of the book, mostly because it sort of gently sways you with options for use and then wham! Here’s the science that backs that up. 

The CBD Bible – Dani Gordon, MD

Another Canadian woman writing about cannabis! I love to see it. Dr Gordon is the book you want if you’re looking for clear guidelines about cannabis use for medical and mental health. Anything from anxiety to autoimmune conditions, she outlines entire doable programs for adding cannabis to your wellness routine and beyond. She tells you what products and doses would work best for you to try and treat whatever issue you’re having. Also, she has a whole chapter about optimizing women’s health. This shouldn’t be revolutionary, but here we are.

A Woman’s Guide to Cannabis – Nikki Furrer

Real talk: I love this book and if I were able to give one weed book to lady friends, it would be this one. Nikki is a former bookseller and a cannabis lawyer. This book is fun, colourful, and there are so many recipes for topicals, edibles, and oils. (If you’re into bacon, she has a recipe called Wake’n’Bacon.) She’s worked in dispensaries, relates common stories about questions women have had about trying weed, and what to look for when you buy it. Like, this book is super relatable. Gah, I love this book so much. This will sound off but Nikki’s book more or less solidified my internal query about whether cannabis could be for me.

There are still others that I didn’t mention but honestly, good cannabis books alone could take up a huge chunk of space. I didn’t cover books about growing your own, more serious cannabis science, cookbooks, etc. I love reading them because every author brings their own style to the party. And when someone writes a legit vegan edibles book, I will be tossing my money at them in gratitude. Do you have some cannabis book recommendations? If so, what would your Top 3 be?

*you might be surprised how many cannabis books your local library has; seriously! It never hurts to check their catalog. Just saying. 

CBD For You and Me (Mostly Me)

Somehow I forgot about CBD. Like, I forgot that this major cannabinoid can be useful during a tolerance break, or heck, even for regular consumption full stop. I say that I am surprised that I forgot about CBD because I honestly search for products that have equal parts THC/CBD all the time. The balance is important to me, and while the Canadian legal market is better about having 1:1 (1 part CBD to THC) or higher products–always favouring CBD because there are rules about THC dosage–available, it can still be hard to find them. You are more likely to find either high CBD or just pure CBD products at your local dispensary. Right now the Canadian market has something for everyone, but I am hoping that 2022 is the Year LPs (Licenced Producers) Stop Raising THC Percentages and Start Doing More Ratio Products.

Yeah, that will never fit on a t-shirt, I know. 

CBD has definitely been the It Girl for a few years now, making appearances in everything from face creams to dog treats. It can be hard to separate the woo from the real, and even harder if you’re in an illegal state to find quality lab-tested products that are worth your money. (Here’s a quick tip: that CBD cream you’re finding in the drugstore? Put it down. Unless you can pull up third party lab testing about the product, there are a lot of bad operators out there selling you something shady.) CBD can do what it says on the tin within reason. It has legitimate health benefits but it won’t cure cancer, for example. 

My first introduction to legal cannabis was a CBD vape pen. But since this was very early in my journey, I had no idea that CBD wouldn’t get you high. I thought I had gotten a bum product because I didn’t feel stoned. I didn’t know that while the ingestion of CBD can promote a sense of well-being, it won’t get you high. 

Think of CBD like an antidepressant: when you take it, you know you feel the benefits of what it does but you don’t feel high. On its own, it’s a pretty benign actor. A lot of older new users gravitate towards CBD because they expressly don’t want to feel the euphoria associated with THC rich products. But if you’re on a tolerance break like I am, a little CBD can go a long way for homeostasis while you cleanse those CB1/CB2 receptors of THC. I have been neglecting just plain CBD for a long time now, well before this break, and I think it’s time she and I hang out one on one. 

If you have CBD questions, hit me up! I love answering this stuff, and if I don’t know the answer off the bat, I will find out for you. 

New Year, Not A Lot of Weed

So I decided to kick off 2022 with a lengthy tolerance break, or a “T-break.”

While I don’t consider myself a super heavy user, I have to admit that in the past few months, I would indulge in a mini joint nearly every night before bed. Cannabis relaxes me, soothes the more fiery parts of a very busy brain (thanks to anxiety and panic disorder), and it doesn’t incapacitate me the way alcohol used to do. I love cannabis for many reasons, but I’d be lying if I said didn’t love it expressly for those very chill effects.

But you can burn out those lovely cannabinoid-receptors to the point where it takes more to get you high, or the issues you were looking to treat with cannabis–sleep, energy, sex, etc–can feel very dampened. There are ways of skirting this issue that don’t have to involve a T-break: switching up methods of consumption, reducing your use, or trying different strains. I have tried those, and while they do (and can) work, sometimes you just have to put the dry vape away for a bit and recalibrate.

The beauty of our ECS (endocannabinoid system) is that, unlike booze, you can reset your tolerance pretty easily. Depending on how often you use cannabis, you can go from 24 hours to 30 days, and voila! Lowered tolerance is back, baby. If you are a light user, even just going without a day or two is going to bring back that sweet buzz.

I myself am going for the full 30 day reset. THC and other compounds take about 30 days to completely exit your system, so if you’re looking to hit the reset button so hard you might see God next you smoke up, go for it. (If you’re a light user, you could do this too, but I think you’re fine going a few days.) Again, I love cannabis and it will always be part of my life, but it’s okay for us to take a break from our relationship every now and again.

Cannabis should be a plant that adds to your life, not one that takes it over. I mean, I am definitely looking at this 30 day T-break as a way to examine my consumption habits, and where I would like to add cannabis–weekend yoga, or walks around my neighbourhood, as an example–as an enhancement, not the means to an end.

There is no shame in consuming weed, and not every reason has to be medicinal. Sometimes we just want to feel good or get a good night’s sleep!

So if you’re not on a T-break right now, consider looping one into your cannabis routine. My plan going forward after the 30 day break is incorporate more breaks at the beginning of each month so as not to overload those sweet receptors.

Have you ever been on a T-break? If so, how did it go? What advice would you give folx that haven’t done it before?