History of CBD
Hemp as a plant has had a long and storied history. Despite the more recent trend of adopting CBD, or cannabidiol, into daily life, hemp and its byproducts have been around for an extremely long time. Humans have been growing and cultivating it for thousands of years, for reasons ranging from the more commonly known medicinal, all the way to use in everyday life for things like rope and paper. To understand what CBD has evolved into, one must first know about society’s interaction with the plant it comes from.
Records show that farmers as early as the Qin and Han dynasties of China were growing and utilizing the hemp plant on a daily basis. History becomes a bit clearer as you move forward and see that in the sixteenth century, King Henry VIII required his farmers to designate a quarter acre of land for every sixty they had to hemp cultivation or face a fine. Even one of the founding fathers of America, Thomas Jefferson, demanded farmers to designate some of their best land to grow the plant. Back then, it was already plainly clear that the plant had uses both industrially as well as psychologically. No research was conducted, but it was widely used regardless.
Some of the first organized research was conducted by a doctor named William Brooke O’Shaughnessy. O’Shaughnessy began studying the effects of the cannabis plant while working in India in the mid 1800s from speaking and working on the locals. In his studies he noted how long the people of the region had been using the substance and how helpful it had been that whole time.
It wasn’t until the 1940s though, that scientists were able to isolate CBD itself and begin working toward the enormous benefits it allows us access to today. American organic chemist Roger Adams was the scientist who eventually isolated CBD to be used on its own, even if he didn’t know what exactly he had isolated at first. It wasn’t until 1960 that Israeli organic chemist Raphael Mechoulam isolated and was able to analyze the chemical structure of CBD, proving that it was the non-psychoactive element of the hemp and cannabis plant. From that point on, research was able to begin on its benefits, from the potential to reduce chronic pain, the effects of seizures, and even possibly slow the growth of cancerous cells.
After CBD was isolated, however, it was still illegal in many places around the world. It has taken years of research and study to prove its benefits but in 2017 the FDA began legalizing the compound for medicinal purposes at a federal level. Now, while certain parts of the law vary slightly from state to state, CBD is widely accepted as a beneficial substance and its popularity has grown exponentially over the past few months. With this growing popularity, the possibilities for CBD’s future have only grown brighter.
More and more organizations are beginning to bring this information to light and making it easier than ever to find information about hemp and its byproducts. One of the more prominent organizations and events currently working to spread information is Hemp History Week. They operate primarily during June, but their information is available year round. Their goal is to celebrate the legalization of CBD and the slow progress of legalizing cannabis as a whole. They operate all over the United States so if you want to find out more, their might be a local event near you!