well versed in all things Cannabis. There was so much more to discover! To my delight, I kept learning more and more benefits about the humble hemp plant as my courses went along. The one thing that just echoes in my head and leaps to my lips daily as I meet new pet parents who are seeking information about CBD is Cytochrome P450. (Didi, whuuuut?!) Of all the things I learned, this one strikes me as vital information for all pet parents considering cannabis supplementation for their loved one. It is paramount if your bubby is already on medication, so let me get right to it, with the help of one of my famous analogies (you know I love me some analogies haha!) I have a daughter with autism. When we visit Disney, we go to guest services and get a wristband. With this wristband, my Nani can cut in line when she wants to take a ride. This is what CBD does in the body when you are already taking other medications, thanks to our good friend, the enzyme in the liver called (you guessed it!) Cytochrome P450. In a nutshell: when you take a traditionally prescribed medication, you may have noticed how it tells you to take it every so many hours, based on the half-life of the medicine in our body. Our lovely Cytochrome P450 is an enzyme in our liver responsible for metabolizing all medicines and supplements, we introduce, INCLUDING CBD… except, (analogy!) CBD cuts in line. CBD gets the wrist band that takes it straight to the front of the line. As a result, all other meds have to hang out in line (our body) for up to 60% longer, before being metabolized in the liver. OK, Didi, but what does that mean?
It means: 1) If you are already on medicines (or your bubs is on medicine), it is potentiated when you introduce CBD. Basically, because it has to hang out in the body up to 60% longer, it is bioavailable to your body for much longer than it typically would be. This is neither good NOR bad if you are aware of it, and your vet is aware of it so that adjustments in a treatment plan can be made, for harm reduction primarily. 2) Speaking of harm reduction: Because it is potentiated, the good news is, with the careful guidance of your veterinarian, you may be in the position to adjust in a sliding scale, the serving size of the medicine being given, to a smaller amount than typically would be needed, when the medicine is coupled with CBD. This is a benefit in several ways: 1) less medicine could suggest less side effects and 2) less medicine could mean less expense. 3) You are now armed with a powerful piece of information with which to request your veterinarian take a second look at Cannabis as part of your loved one’s wellness plan! I know what you are thinking: This flies in the face of what I said earlier about it being illegal for veterinarians to prescribe Cannabis. Yes, but see the keyword here: prescribe. He can’t. What he CAN do is lead the care team. What care team? You, (pet parent), the patient (your bubby), your veterinarian, and a Veterinary Cannabis Guide (such as myself once I complete certification – which by the
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