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Marijuana in the Workplace: The 2022 Guide for Employers and Employees 

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With more US states and cities legalizing marijuana and reducing prohibitions, businesses that wish to keep cannabis out of the workplace face new challenges. In 2022, multiple cannabis regulations were updated in almost all states, and it’s important to keep them in mind when developing a drug policy in the workplace. Moreover, both employers and employees should be aware that medical marijuana laws vary by state. If you are an employer with offices in many states, you must adhere to each state’s medical cannabis rules. If you are an employee that is transferred from one state’s office to another, remember that the new state’s rules should be applied to your medical marijuana status and use.

Laws on Marijuana Use at Work by States

Approximately two-thirds of the US states now have medical marijuana legislation allowing people with serious medical illnesses to consume marijuana with a doctor’s approval. However, just because marijuana is legal in many places does not mean that its use is permitted in the workplace. Employers in most states have the right to terminate, punish, or otherwise penalize an employee who uses marijuana at work or shows up to work under the influence of marijuana, even if they require it to treat a medical condition.

The states are divided when it comes to off-duty medical cannabis use. Approximately 20 states ban employers from discriminating against medical marijuana cardholders or terminating employees who test positive for marijuana while on the job. Moreover, some states additionally require employers to create appropriate accommodations for employees that use medical marijuana to treat a medical condition. For example, employees suffering from glaucoma can be allowed to start work later in the morning to have enough time for treatment. Other states, however, specifically enable employers to terminate employees for using medical marijuana in the workplace. 

In recent years, more states have legalized marijuana for recreational use. However, most of them enable companies to impose zero-tolerance drug policies and dismiss employees for using drugs while on the job. So far, only the state of Maine protects off-duty recreational marijuana usage. To demonstrate how different the regulations are from place to place, you can check the situation regarding cannabis use in the workplace in some of the US states: 

Medical Marijuana Laws in Arizona

Regulations: The Arizona Revised Statutes §§ 36-2801 to 36-2819

Legal: medical marijuana only

Rules for employers: Employers may not discriminate against medical marijuana users based merely on their status as registered cardholders or for testing positive on a marijuana drug test unless it would result in the employer losing money or license under federal law. According to Arizona’s laws and rules, employers have the right to terminate or otherwise penalize workers who use, possess, or are impaired by medical marijuana on company property or during work hours.

Medical Cannabis Laws in California 

Regulations: California Health & Safety Code §§ 11362.5, 11362.7 to 11362.9;  §§ 11362.1 to 11362.45

Legal: medical and recreational marijuana

Rules for employers: Employers are not obligated to accommodate medical or recreational marijuana usage in the workplace. Employers may terminate employees who test positive for marijuana, even if the usage was off-duty and for a legitimate medical reason with a valid medical marijuana card.

Medical Marijuana Laws in Ohio

Regulations: Ohio Revised Code Ann. §§ 3796.01 to 3796.30

Legal: medical marijuana only

Rules for employers: Employers are not compelled to facilitate an employee’s medicinal marijuana usage or possession. Employers may impose zero-tolerance drug policies, and medical marijuana users may be disciplined, fired, or refused employment. Get to know the current regulations on medical marijuana use in the workplace and how to get a medical marijuana card online in the state of Ohio. 

Medical Marijuana Laws in Utah

Regulations: Utah SB 109 (2022), Utah Code Ann. 26-61a

Legal: medical marijuana only 

Rules for employers: Government employers must treat medical cannabis patients the same way as they would treat employees with valid opioid prescriptions. This means that such staff cannot face discrimination unless their use of medical cannabis impairs their performance or creates harmful circumstances. Private employers, on the other hand, are permitted by state law to undertake drug testing to detect cannabis usage. They are also permitted to use their current anti-cannabis rules for employees who test positive. This is not to imply that they must, but they do have this option.

Get to know more detailed information about legal cannabis use for medical purposes in other states on this State Cannabis Laws page. 

Marijuana Laws and Employment FAQs 

  1. Is There a Conflict Between State and Federal Laws Regarding the Use of Marijuana at Work?

Yes. Workplace norms are established by the Fair Labor Standards Act, as well as other federal laws and agency regulations. Marijuana is forbidden under federal law. As a result, businesses can freely restrict their employees from using cannabis while on duty. Moreover, sometimes, they can even restrict using cannabis outside the workplace. The case of “Coats v. Dish Network” proves this fact: in 2015, an employee, Brandon Coats, claimed unfair dismissal after testing positive for marijuana, and the Colorado Supreme Court found that form of termination was permissible. Conflicting laws also cause issues in some professions. For example, marijuana is considered to be a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act, so doctors cannot lawfully prescribe it. In some states and cases, they are just allowed to “recommend” it. 

  1. Can an employer discipline an employee for consuming marijuana on the job?

An employer is not prohibited from taking disciplinary action against an employee if the employee is impaired by cannabis while at work, which means the employee manifests specific articulable symptoms of impairment that: 

  • Reduce or diminish his/her performance
  • Violate safety and health regulations in the workplace
  1. Can an employee be fired for having a noticeable odor of cannabis? 

The smell of cannabis, on its own, is not evidence of articulable symptoms of impairment under Labor Law Section 201-D.

  1. Must an employee be dismissed for consuming cannabis or being impaired by cannabis on the job?

No, employers are authorized but not compelled to take action in such cases.

  1. What are articulable impairment symptoms?

There is no definite list of impairment symptoms. By “articulable symptoms of impairment” people usually mean objectively visible signs indicating the wrong, reduced, or harmful employee’s execution of the tasks. Employers should be aware that such articulable symptoms may also be an indicator that an employee has a disability protected by federal and state law (e.g., the NYS Human Rights Law), even if the employer is unaware of the impairment or condition. Before taking any measures, employers should get advice from qualified specialists on applicable local, state, and federal laws prohibiting handicap discrimination. For example, the hazardous and careless operation of heavy machinery may be regarded as an articulable indication of impairment.

  1. Can an employer drug test an employee if federal law permits it?

No, an employer can not test an employee for cannabis just because it is legal or illegal under federal law. (See, for example, USDOL TEIN 15-90, which explains that neither the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988 nor the regulations enacted under it permit employee drug testing.) However, if federal or state law demands drug testing or makes it an obligatory condition of employment, an employer may drug test an employee.

  1. May employers force employees to promise or agree not to consume cannabis, as a compulsory condition of work?

Employers may not ask employees to relinquish their rights under Section 201-D of the Labor Law to hire or continue employment.

  1. Can businesses forbid employees from using cannabis outside the workplace? 

No, unless the employer has the authority to do so under Labor Law Section 201-D. (4-a).

  1. Can companies forbid employees from using corporate vehicles?

Yes, employers can restrict usage of corporate cars or company property even beyond regular business hours or work shifts.

  1. Can companies forbid employees to possess cannabis at work?

Yes, companies may ban workers from bringing cannabis into their property, which includes leased and rented space, business vehicles, and employee-only areas inside such property.

  1. Can companies limit marijuana use at the “worksite” for remote employees?

The Department of Labor does not regard an employee’s private house utilized for remote work to be a “worksite” under Labor Law Section 201- D. However, if a person that consumes cannabis demonstrates visible articulable signs of impairment during work hours, as indicated above, an employer may take action and implement a general policy barring marijuana usage during working hours.

Takeaway

There is no one-size-fits-all solution to the issue of workplace marijuana policies. This topic is still in its infancy. Right now, the main problem is uncertainty. In order to avoid expensive mistakes, experts recommend getting legal advice, researching state laws, revising procedures, and educating staff. 

Writer: Alice Sava, a result-driven content manager, writer, and translator with 9 years of experience in a variety of writing styles. Committed to producing exceptional content for Internet blogs, journal publications, TV advertising, and social media.

Thailand To Distribute One Million Cannabis Plants in June

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Thailand-TheWeedBlog

The Public Health Minister of Thailand plans to distribute one million free cannabis plants in June, when home cultivation and use of the cannabis plant are due to be officially legalized under Thai law for medicinal users.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul announced that starting June 9, Thai citizens will no longer be required to obtain a permit to cultivate cannabis in their homes. The cannabis cultivated must be of medical grade and used exclusively for medicinal purposes.

Anutin announced the decision in a Facebook post on Sunday (8 May), in which he outlined the benefits of commercial cultivation.

The sale of cannabis products containing less than 0.2% THC, the psychoactive compound, is currently legal in Thailand.

According to Anutin, cannabis and hemp products could generate up to 10 billion baht in annual revenue if both public and private enterprises are permitted to operate freely under the new regulations.

The minister of public health added that the new rules allow small operators to launch marijuana-related businesses without registering with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), while large-scale operations will continue to require authorization.

Thailand became the first south-east Asian country to legalize medical cannabis in 2018.

Check out this cannabis ice-cream from Black Canyon in Thailand – Video (Instagram)

Switzerland To Trial Adult-Use Cannabis Sales This Summer

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Cannabis-TheWeedBlog

Switzerland will start adult-use cannabis sales this summer over a trial program that will involve 400 people. On the 19th of April, the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) authorized the first pilot on the sale of cannabis for recreational use.

The initiative is a joint project with the University of Basel and will also take place in the third most popular city in the country, Basel. The study on the legal sale of adult-use cannabis aims to educate to regulate cannabis in the whole country.

The pilot program is intended to provide information and educate consumers about low-risk consumption, knowledge, and benefits of the effects of controlled access to cannabis, and information on consumers’ behavior and physical and mental health.

The cannabis sales trial program will follow strict rules. There will be about 400 pre-selected adult volunteers with previous experience in cannabis consumption will be involved in the pilot, and their state of health will be monitored throughout the trial.

All cannabis products must meet high-quality requirements, come from Swiss organic crops, have to be sold in pharmacies, and can’t be advertised.

The path that brought the pilot on adult-use cannabis sales started in 2016.

In an interview with market intelligence firm Prohibition Partners, Dr. Lavinia Flückiger, co-leader of the study, explained that the project was developed in 2016 and was approved by the local scientific ethics committee in 2017. However, it was never able to start due to the lack of a legal basis. But when the Swiss parliament changed narcotics law in 2021, the project got the green light in August 2021.

According to Dr. Flückiger, recruitment of the participants is expected to take place in August 2022, and the trial program will officially start at the end of the month.

Swiss German daily newspaper Blick reported that volunteers would have access to four cannabis strains and two types of hash available in ten selected pharmacies in Basel produced by Switzerland’s cannabis company Pure Holding AG. Prices of cannabis products will match the ones offered by the illegal market: between $8 and $12 per gram, depending on the product and the level of THC.

The project, which involves authorities and researchers from the local government, the University of Basel, and the University Psychiatric Clinics, Basel, will run for two and a half years.

While cannabis with a THC level below 1% (also known as hemp) is legal, growing, importing, producing, or selling cannabis with a high level of THC is prohibited. Personal consumption of up to 10 grams is tolerated. However, law enforcement officers can fine individuals caught using cannabis with a fixed penalty fine of $100.

Swiss authorities recognize widespread consumption and that the illegal market thrives. Therefore, the launch of an adult-use cannabis sale trial program may be the proper response to fight back against the illicit market and safeguard public health.

In fact, the goal of Swiss drug policy is to minimize drug use and its negative consequences. It is based on the four pillars of prevention, therapy, harm reduction, and repression.

One of the brightest examples of such a drug policy is the Heroin Assisted Treatment Program (HAT), which supplies controlled heroin under medical supervision to a limited number of addicts. The program, introduced in 1994, was meant to keep addicts off the streets and reduce crime. However, it soon became a game changer in Switzerland’s drug policy.

It showed to be an efficient alternative to “zero-tolerance” drug policies as it focused on prevention, harm reduction, medical care, and counseling for the drug addicts and their reintegration into society.

What You Need To Know

  • There will only be 400 pre-selected volunteers
  • Products must meet a high-quality requirement
  • Cannabis must be from Swiss organic crops
  • Strictly access only via a pharmacy
  • Prices start from $8 / $12 per gram – depending on THC levels.

The scientific approach to testing adult-use cannabis in Switzerland follows a series of attempts to review cannabis legislation all across Europe.

According to a 2022 report, 55% of Europeans support legalizing recreational cannabis.

New Yorkers With Cannabis Convictions Will Get First Retail Licenses

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As New York gets ready for recreational cannabis sales and prepares to open up its first dispensaries by the end of 2022.

The state’s Cannabis Control Board has approved and passed a bill last month that will allow New Yorkers with convictions related to cannabis to be eligible for a retail/cultivation license, who will be among some of the first!

The new legislation also provides existing hemp farmers in New York with the opportunity to apply for a license to grow in the 2022 season. If you are currently own and operate a hemp farm in New York and you want to apply for a license, you can do so here.

Mr. Alexander said he expected between 100 and 200 licenses to go to people who were convicted of a marijuana-related offense before the drug was legalized, or those who have “a parent, guardian, child, spouse, or dependent” with a marijuana conviction.

“I am proud to sign this bill, which positions New York’s farmers to be the first to grow cannabis and jumpstart the safe, equitable and inclusive new industry we are building,” Governor Hochul said. “New York State will continue to lead the way in delivering on our commitment to bring economic opportunity and growth to every New Yorker in every corner of our great state.”   

“I could press the green button right now and have 40 dispensaries online,” said Mr. Alexander, speaking of the state’s extant medical dispensaries. “But instead we’ve decided that the folks who have been most impacted actually have the space and the real runway to participate in a meaningful way.”

Governor Kathy Hochul announced that the policy, which is what she calls the Seeding Opportunity Initiative, is an effort to make sure communities that have been impacted the most by marijuana prohibition have a head start in the state’s multi-billion-dollar industry. Most states that have legalized marijuana have banned people with drug felonies from entering the legal market.

The state also hopes that some in the existing black market — sometimes known as “legacy” candidates — may be persuaded to apply for licenses instead because some could be considered equity applicants.

Chris Alexander is the executive director of the state’s Office of Cannabis Management.

He also went on to say that he expects the first handful of dispensaries to be opened by the end of 2022. The state has not set a limit on the available amount of retail licenses for the time being, officials said it all depends on market demands.

You can read more on the bill and changes, here.

Photo by Florian Wehde

Cannabis and Mushroom Combination That Kills 90% Of Colon Cancer Cells

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Israeli biomedical company, Cannabotech, who develops alternative and preventive medicine based on based on cannabis and mushroom extracts, has recently found promising results in a study involving it’s Integrative-Colon product.

According to statistics, researchers have forecasted there are going to be over 160,000 new cases of colon cancer that will be diagnosed in the United States, and worldwide it’s the third most diagnosed type of cancer.

The Integrative-Colon products are based on a combination of several cannabinoids from the cannabis plant and various mushroom extracts and then tested on subtypes of colon cancer. The research has been a success so far with 90% of cancer cells killed.

The mushroom extracts had a high concentration of PSK, which is derived from the Turkey Tail (Trametes) mushroom, which is renowned for its cancer-fighting properties. In case you didn’t know, the Trametes mushrooms are already approved for cancer treatments in countries like South Korea, Japan and Taiwan. It’s also been used in Chinese medicine for centuries.

CannaBotech intend to combine the formulation with chemotherapy treatment in the next phases of the research, and also combine it with the Cyathus Striatus mushroom.

In addition, their study outlines that there are different impacts of each cannabinoid on various colon cancer subtypes. Cannabotech said it demonstrates the importance of tailoring medical care for each patient’s unique needs. However, the goal of biomedical firms’ work is not to completely replace conventional cancer treatments though they hope that with the new formulations, cancer patients need fewer treatments to get the same benefits.

“This is a significant milestone in Cannabotech’s growth to becoming a leader in integrative oncology medicine. The integrative products developed by Cannabotech are intended for use in combination with chemotherapy treatment to reduce its side effects. Cannabotech’s solutions will be launched in Israel and the US towards the second half of 2022, while the company’s goal is to define a new standard for the medical cannabis industry,” said Elchanan Shaked.

Learn more about Cannabotech here

Safely Travel With Cannabis Thanks To This Bag By Alien Tech

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If you bring your herb everywhere with you, keep reading. Whether it’s in the form of a vape or a couple of joints – 99.9% of the time I leave the house I have my dry herb vape or a few joints stashed away for a fun and anxiety-free day.

I’ve used a handful of other smell-proof storage solutions in the past although neither of them isn’t constructed like this. The Alien Tech smell-proof storage bag gives you all that and with the multiple storage compartments it gives you more options with what you’re able to bring along with you, there’s even a spot for your rolling tray so you’re able to roll up anywhere. It allows me to conveniently store my papers, grinder, and herbs all in an easy-to-carry protective case.

IMG 5400 1 The Weed Blog - Cannabis News, Strain Reviews & More

The exterior fabric is constructed with heavy-duty nylon and waterproofing material to safeguard your herbs and accessories from the weather or any accidents. It’s fitted with an activated carbon filter system that provides odor-absorbing technology to ensure ultimate discretion during your travels. When Alien Tech launches a product they spare no expenses during the product design phase to provide you with the best experience possible within their collection.

Thanks to the child safety lock your precious herbs, vape cartridges, or whatever accessories you decide to store will be safe from unwanted visitors, roommates, and children. In fact, some US states require medical patients and recreational users to keep their herbs locked away from children by law.

IMG 5390 1 The Weed Blog - Cannabis News, Strain Reviews & More

Product Highlights

  • Perfect for carrying vapes, jars and papers
  • Designed to house the Alien Tech range
  • Child safety lock
  • Odor-absorbing
  • Waterproof
  • 4 adjustable compartments

Traveling With Medical Cannabis In Australia

Medical cannabis in Australia has come a very long way in recent years since its legalization in 2016, there are now more than 300 products and 100,000+ patients Australia-wide. If you are a patient, you might be wondering – Can I travel with my medical cannabis in Australia? Yes, you can! This only applies to patients who hold a valid prescription from their licensed GP / Doctor.

Long as your medication is legally prescribed by a licensed GP, just like any other prescribed medication, you have the right to freely travel with cannabis. This includes all forms of cannabis whether it be dried flower or oils, it’s legal. All legally prescribed cannabis (Oil and flower) packages will display the pharmacy label, doctors’ instructions, and of course your prescription.

To minimize complications while traveling, we would advise you to do the following:

  • Request a written letter from your clinic nurse or Doctor outlining the prescribed medication.
  • Keep your medicine in its original packing with your pharmacy label and prescription is visible.
  • Take it with you in your carry-on bag.
  • Ask your Doctor or Clinic nurse for a TGA approval letter.

To avoid even further complications and anxiety while traveling interstate, I highly recommend you consider an odor-absorbing bag like the one in this review from Alien Tech. It’s big enough for all your essentials and convenient enough to store in your carry-on or a duffle bag, as mentioned above these bags will ensure you travel with peace of mind and allow you to go about your business.

To find out more about what Alien Tech is all about, head on over to www.alientech420.com and for the odor-absorbing bag – shop here.

https://www.tga.gov.au/medicinal-cannabis-importation-and-travellers-exemption

Mike Tyson Drops New Ear-Shaped THC Infused Edibles Called “Mike Bites”

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Former Boxing World Champion and Entrepreneur, Mike Tysons has launched a new line of cannabis-infused candy, ear-shape edibles named Mike Bites, under his cannabis brand, Tyson 2.0.

In 1997 at the WBA Heavyweight Championship, Mike Tyson bit a piece of Evander Holyfield’s ear during the fight and was of course shortly fined and disqualified as well as having his boxing license revoked. Since then his life has been full of highs and lows but there’s no need for me to get into all of that, he opens up another side of himself on his podcast, Hotboxin with Mike Tyson.

Mike-Tyson-Edibles
Courtesy of Mike Tysons Instagram

The Tyson 2.0 brand is currently in 100+ dispensaries across California, Nevada, and Colorado with a selection of about 16 cultivars to choose from as well as a collection of merch and various 420 accessories. In an interview with Yahoo! Finance, company CEO, Chad Bronstein said the ear-shaped edibles will be available in selected Californian dispensaries starting from the 17th of March, and then eventually they will expand to other states.

Mike approves ✅

Do They Have THC In Them?

Yes! The Mike Tyson Bites contain 10 ear shape edibles in each pack, and they are infused with 10mg of THC per ear. I read on the CEOs Instagram that these were sold out on day 1!

Where Can I Get Mike Bite Edibles?

Multiple sources suggest that you can also buy them via the website and even have them delivered to you, it looks like the edibles are out of stock online but I’d use their store locator to get your edible fix 😋 As mentioned above these THC infused edibles are said to be available in dispensaries across California, Nevada and Massachusetts.

Check out the Tyson 2.0 website here.

Guide To Microdosing Psilocybin Magic Mushroom

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Magic-Mushroom-MarioAlpha
Photo x Mario Alpha

People microdose for a variety of reasons. Common intentions include spiritual growth, alleviating anxiety or depression, and entering flow states. Microdosing is most effective as part of a holistic, healthy lifestyle that prioritizes service, community, and truth.

What Is Microdosing?

Microdosing refers to the practice of taking a miniscule amount of a psychedelic substance – usually one-20th to one-tenth of a full dose. This guide will focus on microdosing with psilocybin mushrooms, but you may find parts of the text applicable to microdosing with other types of substances such as LSD, ketamine, iboga, mescaline and cannabis.

Microdosing can help you get in touch with your Inner Healing Intelligence, which knows exactly what’s necessary for your health and happiness. The psychedelic substance can be a reliable and powerful ally to remind you of your innate capacity to heal yourself. Some people may refer to a microdose as a “spiritual vitamin.”

Microdosing VS Macrodosing

Taking a full dose of psilocybin mushrooms or truffles may be an ideal option if you have proper integration support and can afford to take at least one or two days away from your normal routine. On the other hand, microdosing can be a gentle method to enhance your life without disruption to your daily activities.

There are several reasons why you may choose to microdose instead of
macrodose. Compared to taking a full dose, microdosing:

  • Usually requires less integration support, as the effects are more subtle and less jarring;
  • Requires less intensive preparation (although you will find that incorporating various preparation and integration practices into your life is a vital part of the healing and growth process);
  • Allows you to metaphorically dip your toes in the water before making a full commitment to dive in;
  • Allows you to retain some control instead of having to let go completely
  • Gives you the ability to carry on your daily activities in a normal or even enhanced manner;
  • Causes no hallucinatory, visual effects;
  • Is more flexible as you can take a microdose anytime during the day. Some people like to take it first thing in the morning, while others like to take it in the afternoon or even right before they go to sleep (although some may find taking the last option may keep them up for longer than expected);
  • Allows you to adjust dosage more effortlessly on dosing day
  • Gives you the opportunity to more easily experiment with and track dosages from day to day and week to week.

What Are The Effects Of Microdosing Magic Mushrooms?

Technically, a microdose is sub-perceptual, which means the effects are unnoticeable. In reality, however, many people can and want to feel the impacts of a microdose.

Some of the most commonly reported effects of Psilocybin users are:

  • Increased energy
  • A sense of presence and being grounded
  • Heightened sense of emotional, mental, and physical well-being
  • Increased emotional and mental maturity
  • Increased optimism
  • A sense of openness, brightness, or lightness
  • Heightened sensory perception
  • Decreased anxiety, stress and/or depression
  • Improvement in relationships and social behaviors
  • Decreased negative self-talk
  • Increased sense of empathy, compassion, and love
  • A heightened sense of being in touch and in tune with the body
  • A feeling of interconnectedness
  • An expanded sense of self
  • Increased creativity
  • Decreased need for caffeine, alcohol, tobacco or other stimulants or depressants
  • Decreased addictive or destructive tendencies
  • Improved eating and sleeping habits
  • More clarity and less mental fog
  • Less intense headaches
  • Improved memory and vocabulary

Janet Chang, a mental health advocate who tracked her results during a
one-year microdosing experiment, shared the following:

“Over the year I microdosed, I became a more empathetic, compassionate, and affectionate person. I began to live with more acceptance, gratitude, and presence of mind. My workaholic lifestyle turned into one of spontaneity, creativity, self-expression, and lightheartedness. I continued to live out my values, feeling even more connected than before. ”

One Redditor said:

“I’m on day 6 now of microdosing ~0.08 to 0.12g. The difference is subtle yet profound. Nothing in my life has changed, yet everything has. The empty void that sucks the life out of everything I do is still there, but somehow I can see how beautiful it is and it doesn’t impede what I do

I feel how that vacuum is actually part of my ability to connect deeply with others and the world, that it’s one side of the coin, and the other side is God. These are all things I ‘knew’ consciously through mindfulness but couldn’t feel in my being.

Now it’s being embodied. I am more present, I don’t overthink, I am in my body. I can simply be without worrying about everything. I feel inspired to do more with my life for the betterment of the world. I am interconnected. All of this happens at such a subtle, unconscious level. So even though my day-to-day hasn’t changed, I feel like I am the person I’m meant to be, when the gunk is cleared away.”

Another journeyer says:

“I’ve been MD for about 3 months and I have never felt better. I have diagnosed depression and anxiety and was prescribed lexapro but after reading about how hard it is to get off antidepressants I opted to try MD. My energy levels are back to normal, I used to want to sleep all the time and never wanted to go out. I’ve been a lot more productive at work and home, I’ve even had enough energy to go back to the gym. It’s such a mood booster too, I am always a bit chattier on the days I MD (I MD 0.2g about 2-3 days a week).”

Many microdosers claim the practice allows them to more easily enter flow states
and “be in the zone.”

Mikhaly Csíkszentmihályi, the originator of the idea of flow, describes it as “being completely involved in an activity for its own sake. The ego falls away. Time flies. Every action, movement, and thought follows inevitably from the previous one, like playing jazz . Your whole being is involved, and you’re using your skills to the utmost.”

Microdosing seems to be a perfect tool for some people who wish to experience a determined, focused mindset free from distractions and negative thoughts. Microdosing may open you up to more cyclical, instead of linear, thinking. You may find yourself being more curious and less dogmatic. You may find yourself listening more and talking less. You may start to question your assumptions and all the things you thought you knew.

Magic-Mushroom-MarioAlpha
Photo Courtesy of Mario Alpha | Fungi x Myco Oakland

What Is The Ideal Microdosing Dosage?

Everybody reacts differently to various doses; some people consider .3 grams (or more) of dried mushrooms a microdose, whereas others are more comfortable with a much smaller dose in the range of .05 – .08 grams. The species or strain of mushrooms you consume also affects dosage, as some are stronger than others.

For example, the azurescens species or the penis envy strain of the cubensis species are noted for being much stronger than the average cubensis strain. It may take a few trials to find your ideal dose.

You may find it beneficial to maintain a journal or log during the first few weeks of your microdosing journey, so you can reflect on the tracked results and make adjustments as needed. When in doubt, it’s usually better to start small and work your way up.

During your exploration phase, it may be helpful to take your doses in a space where you feel completely comfortable, safe, and free. Until you have a clear understanding on how psilocybin affects you, it may be safer to prepare just as if you were taking a larger dose just in case the effects are stronger than you imagined.

Although having an ideal setting is not as crucial for a microdose as for a full dose, you may find it beneficial to avoid certain uncontrolled situations that may make you feel vulnerable (work, social, public transportation, etc.) when you first start experimenting.

Warning: Do not drive or operate heavy machinery when you are microdosing.

How Should I Take A Microdose?

There are many ways to take a microdose. Everybody has a different preference. There are no rights and wrongs.
Most people like to grind dried mushrooms into a fine powder, and then either encapsulate the powder (with or without other healthy ingredients) this is definitely my preferred method, some eat mushrooms raw, while others chew them dried, tea, chocolates, gummies, and tinctures are also alternative delivery methods.

Is There An Ideal Dosing Protocol?

There are various microdosing protocols and schedules. To find one that works best for you, be open to experimenting and listening to your body and intuition. There’s no need to rigidly follow a protocol just because it’s popular or promoted by someone famous.

Here are the most common ones:

A “one day on, two days off” schedule is recommended by James Fadiman, the author of The Psychedelic Explorer’s Guide: Safe, Therapeutic, and Sacred Journeys.

In this protocol, you take a dose on Day 1, skip a dose on Day 2 and Day 3, and then resume dosing on Day 4. The idea behind this schedule is that the positive effects of microdosing seem to last two days, and the days off allow
any residual tolerance to subside. Although Fadiman may have designed this protocol specifically for microdosing LSD, many psilocybin microdosers also follow it.

A “four days on, three days off” schedule is recommended by Paul Stamets, a distinguished mycologist, who previously suggested a “five days on, two days off” schedule. It may be worth noting that Stamets, now in his mid-60s, who has
spent much of his adult life studying psilocybin, has just recently changed his recommended protocol. This should give you confidence to have a flexible approach and allow your own experimentation and results to guide you.

Other proponents may suggest a “every other day” or an “on, off, on, off, on, off, off” protocol, or a “go with the flow” or “as needed” philosophy. Microdosing every day is not suggested. The off-days reduce the effects of tolerance that can build up over time, and give you the opportunity to practice working with and processing emotions without the direct aid of a substance.

The idea is to become aware of the root causes of unhappiness and pain, and to live a wholesome lifestyle that avoids these causes, and not to become dependent on any substance. In fact, under certain conditions, you may decide to take an “off-week” or “off-month.” Some people recommend “stacking” other ingredients with the psilocybin.

Stamets suggests adding lion’s mane and niacin to the microdose, as they are known to work well with the main ingredient. As one fan says, “psilocybin mushrooms promotes neuroplasticity and new neural connections, lion’s mane promotes the creation of new nerve and brain cells and niacin drives these two medicines to the furthest reaches of
the nervous system

Together they work synergistically to create a compound effect that enhances learning, cognition, neuroregeneration and many other things.” The addition of niacin has its advocates and detractors. Advocates argue that the “flushing” characteristic of niacin provides a built-in control against over- or misuse and opens the blood vessels to allow the other ingredients to move through the body more quickly and fully.

Detractors say the possibility of experiencing an uncomfortable “flush,” or feeling unsettled or unwell as a result of the niacin, outweighs the benefits.
To their microdoses, others may add:

  • Turmeric and black pepper; the black pepper increases the bioavailability of the turmeric, and the turmeric acts as an MAO inhibitor, which makes the mushrooms “stronger”;
  • Dried ginger root, to reduce potential of nausea;
  • Medicinal mushrooms such as chaga, cordyceps, and reishi;
  • Adaptogens such as ashwagandha, bacopa, longjack, griffonia seed;
  • Vitamins such as d3.

Can I Simultaneously Take Anti-Depressants & Microdose?

This is a common and complex question, and there seems to be no definitive answers or formal studies conducted. To stay safe, please consult your doctor before starting any microdosing regimen, especially if you have a history of mental illness or medication use.

Some people feel that microdosing helps to wean and/or stay off antidepressants. Some report that antidepressant medications dull or even nullify the effects of microdosing.If you do decide to microdose while on these medications, you will most likely need a higher dose to feel desired effects. Some find that microdosing psilocybin is a healthier, more natural alternative to taking various pharmaceutical agents.

Microdosing may be worth a try before committing to a pharmaceutical regimen. Please note that microdosing does not guarantee happiness. Some people find it extremely difficult to come or stay off certain pharmaceutical medications.

Those who have relied on these medications for years may find many painful or difficult repressed emotions coming to the surface, and may feel an urge to return to the numbing effects of the medications. The process of coming off these medications, if that is what you wish to do, may be an uncomfortable ordeal lasting several months.

Does Diet affect My Reaction To The Mushrooms?

Taking a microdose on an empty stomach will lead to faster metabolization and more intense effects. Taking a dose right after a heavy meal will slow down or weaken your body’s reaction as the mushroom competes with other substances to be digested and assimilated into the system. The emptier your stomach and healthier your diet, the
less of a dose you will need to achieve the desired effects.

Are There Any Adverse Effects Of Microdosing?

When microdosing, some people may experience what they perceive to be adverse side effects. Psilocybin can act as a truth serum that reveals your innermost thoughts, and some of these thoughts may be painful or otherwise unpleasant to encounter. You may feel like running away, hiding or distracting yourself when these thoughts appear.

You may feel the urge to blame the medicine for unwanted emotions, but one of microdosing’s major lessons is to take responsibility for your responses to what shows up. You can choose to resist reality or relinquish control and surrender. The latter choice leads to freedom and joy.

Some report that microdosing makes them feel tired or drowsy. Some complain of headaches or nausea. These are some of the body’s natural responses to energetic and emotional shifts. For some, microdosing may amplify their anxiety, instead of decreasing it. The medicine makes you sensitive to your emotions and the energies around you. Psilocybin can shake up your sense of self, and make you feel vulnerable.

Sometimes while microdosing, you may experience more fear, a natural response to the unknown. The more you face and overcome this fear, the more confident and grounded you will be. Fear is a natural part of expanding your comfort zone. You may lose productivity and a certain type of linear focus while taking a microdose. The medicine seems to weaken the analytical part of the mind and activate the feeling part. This shift may affect one’s ability to focus on a screen, a conversation, words, or numbers.

Microdosing may cause you to feel spaced out and confused for a period of time. You may feel like you are losing control. These experiences can give the thinking mind a rest and show you the causes of stress or anxiety. Microdosing may change your idea of what medicine is and what the healing process looks and feels like. There are bound to be moments of unpleasantness as the “gunk” comes to the surface.

The less spiritual or contemplative work one has done, the more difficult it may feel to face these unpleasant emotions. It takes time to build a relationship with the medicine, which is alive and organic.

Microdosing is not like taking certain pharmaceutical medications; instead of numbing emotions and allowing you to coast and ignore the root causes of your unhappiness, mushrooms require you to become aware of and actively change the causes of your states of mind.

Patience along with a commitment to long-term thinking, healthy living, and reevaluating relationships are necessary factors for the medicine to work its magic. Some people see desired results right away, whereas others start recognizing significant results only after reflecting upon several months of microdosing.

The higher your expectations, the more likely you will be disappointed in the results of microdosing. The medicine merely reflects your relationship with the world. If you expect something outside of yourself to bring you instant or eternal happiness, you will be disillusioned.

This disillusionment is part of the spiritual path. Sometimes, one must learn repeatedly that all phenomena is temporary, no matter how pleasant or unpleasant. Holding onto ideas, philosophies, or desires that do not align with the truth only prolongs one’s never-ending search for something better and more pleasant and less painful. When you let go of expectations, the world opens up and becomes more wonderful.

What Happens If I Accidentally Take Too Much?

If you do accidentally take too much, it can help to move the body, eat something, get out into nature, or just lay down and rest until you feel ready to return to your normal routine. Remind yourself that the journey will end and the medicine is showing you whatever you need to see.

What About Legality?

The legal status of psilocybin remains a challenge for many. In most jurisdictions (with exceptions in the Netherlands, Jamaica, Brazil, and a few other places), the possession, cultivation and processing of psilocybin (as well as other psychedelics) are criminalized.

However, movements calling for the decriminalization of psilocybin and other substances are gaining steam. Denver has decriminalized psilocybin, while Oakland and Santa Cruz have decriminalized all entheogens. Oregon state and Washington D.C. have psychedelic initiatives appearing on the November ballot. Canada’s government has tolerated the sale of psilocybin mushrooms through the internet and in-person dispensaries, and there are widespread calls across the nation to decriminalize simple possession of controlled substances.

With the growing number of positive testimonials about microdosing, many are taking matters into their own hands and finding ways to access the medicine. If you do enough research and read documents like this , you may discover a safe way to find mushrooms.

What If I Want To Take A Higher Dose?

Microdosing is a gradual process of unraveling and loosening the tensions in the body and mind, while taking higher doses will bring emotions to the surface in a much more intense and accelerated fashion. Once you start seeing the benefits of microdosing, you may naturally want to explore taking a higher dose. You may even find yourself skipping the microdoses altogether and going straight to bigger doses. Again, there is no right and wrong way to approach the medicine.

There are many written guides online that help you prepare for a higher dose. Here is one example . It’s important to note that taking a higher dose will require more stringent preparation and integration protocols to ensure a safe and healing journey. Set and setting become increasingly important as the dosage becomes larger. You may want to consider a guide or companion to accompany you during your higher dose journey.

Psychedelic retreats are a wonderful opportunity to experience a cohesive, supportive group setting with passionate, skilled professionals (also referred to as guides, therapists, tripsitters, or spaceholders). Here are two links ( one , two ) that list psilocybin retreats and guides. While most retreats are focused on providing high-dose psychedelic journeys, there are organizations such as Rise Wellness that focus exclusively on the microdosing experiences.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

The Third Wave – information and resources on microdosing
How One Year of Microdosing Helped My Career, Relationships, and Happiness
Microdosing’s Guide and Explainer — The Cut article that surveys microdosing
Psychedelic Explorer’s Guide — James Fadiman’s book
Self-Rated Effectiveness of Microdosing With Psychedelics for Mental and Physical
Health Problems Among Microdosers – Maastricht University, Netherlands Study
What You Should Know about Microdosing for Anxiety
/r/microdosing – subreddit dedicated to microdosing
Can You Take Shrooms on Antidepressants?
Rise Wellness Retreat – Jamaican retreat focused on microdosing psilocybin
Psychedelic Experience – mushroom retreat and guide listings
Tripsitters – mushroom retreat and guide listings
Paul Stamets Microdosing Video – Clip from Stamets’ interview with Joe Rogan in
which he discusses his recommended stack.

CREDITS

A big thank you to Mario for giving permission to use his photo of the Magic Mushrooms. Please take a moment to check out his feed on Instagram.

Introduction To The Endocannabinoid System & Why It’s So Important

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The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a biological system in our body that naturally responds to the cannabis we consume. It is a complex and relatively new discovery that scientists are still researching. As a result, there are hundreds of videos and articles diving deeper into its complexities. Still, for the average or novice cannabis consumer, this article gives a brief run-through of the ECS, its components, and its relationship to cannabis.

What Is The Endocannabinoid System?

The ECS is a complex cell signaling system that helps the body maintain homeostasis. And for us non-biology experts: Homeostasis is any process or action that helps the body maintain a stable internal environment. Like the nervous and endocrine systems, everyone is born with an ECS. Even if you don’t smoke or consume cannabis your ECS most definitely exists and is active.

Your Endocannabinoid system helps regulate a variety of different bodily functions like:

  • Sleep
  • Mood
  • Motor Control
  • Appetite and Digestion
  • Memory
  • Immune Function
  • Reproductive System Function
  • Skin and Nerve Function
recep 3 The Weed Blog - Cannabis News, Strain Reviews & More
Endocannabinoid system cb1 and cb2 receptors human body cell infographic

Components Of The ECS

The three components of the ECS are endocannabinoids, receptors, and enzymes.

Endocannabinoids are cannabinoids that the body naturally produces. The body makes them as needed. 

The two known endocannabinoids are anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-ag). Anandamide is also known as the “bliss” molecule because it produces euphoric effects, and 2-ag plays a role in the circulatory system.

Receptors are throughout the body and bind to cannabinoids to signal the ECS to respond. There are two types of receptors, CB1 and CB2. The central nervous system and the reproductive system are where the CB1 receptors are. The CB2 receptors are not as abundant in the body, but they are in the peripheral nervous system.

The final part is the enzymes. They are responsible for breaking down the endocannabinoids once they have carried out their function in the body. These three components are all regularly in motion. Cannigma gives a great video example of how the ECS works. For example, If you trip and twist your ankle, the body sends out pain signals. Then it produces endocannabinoids and sends them to the area to balance out and reduce the pain.

The Relation Between The Endocannabinboid System & Cannabis

Humans discovered cannabis before scientists found the ECS. So that’s why the name is cannabis forward. The CB1 receptor was the first part of the endocannabinoid system to be discovered back in 1988 by Professor Allyn Howlett and her graduate student William Devane. They found that rat’s brains have a receptor site that responds to THC. This discovery also lets us know that humans aren’t the only ones with an ECS and benefit from cannabis. Since then, it’s been a slow but steady development of other ECS discoveries that lead us to know everything we just discussed.

Phytocannabinoids are cannabinoids that are within the cannabis plant like THC and CBD. There are actually over 100 others. Like endocannabinoids, phytocannabinoids, when consumed, bind to the receptor sites and tell the ECS to respond. However, each cannabinoid responds to receptors differently. For example, THC mimics anandamide and attaches to the receptors to signal different responses throughout the body. 

So since we now know that anandamide produces euphoric effects, and THC mimics that effect, it can help us understand why THC forward products give us that same feel-good feeling, CBD doesn’t have the same effect. Scientists find that it may prevent the endocannabinoids from breaking down, allowing them to impact your body more, which is why you don’t get high from CBD, but it has positive effects on this body.

Why is the ECS important?

Endocannabinoid-System-TheWeedBlog

The National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) puts why the ECS is so essential simply but beautifully:

“The endocannabinoid system, with its complex actions in our immune system, nervous system, and all of the body’s organs, is literally a bridge between body and mind. By understanding this system we begin to see a mechanism that explains how states of consciousness can promote health or disease.”

The ECS is always at work within us. We can better choose the right cannabis products for an elevated high and better overall well-being by understanding the endocannabinoid system.

Cannabis Infused Ice Cream Is Coming To Massachusetts

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Emack & Bolios, a Boston based ice cream company recently partnered up with premier cannabis brand, MariMed. The pair have plans to collaborate and launch a lineup of Cannabis-infused ( & vegan too) ice cream, in their words – outrageous flavors. I’m a simple person, Nutella or pistachio will be more than fine thank you! I don’t really want fruit loops hanging off my ice cream.

Little is known about these outrageous flavors that will be coming to dispensaries. However it’s said that consumers will see the very same terpenes and cannabinoids which derive from their high quality flower and their award winning products implemented in the recipes. It also won’t be your standard ice cream with THC but rather some of the companies highest quality concentrates will be going into the end product.

“We’ve taken great care to grow MariMed infused products to become top-selling brands, with much of our success the result of a craft-like approach to cultivation that is unlike most other national cannabis companies,” MariMed CEO and President Bob Fireman said in a prepared statement.

“We’re excited to bring our unique formulations and technologies to a collaboration with a brand partner like Emack & Bolio’s, which has such a fantastic history.”

Bob Rook the man who founded Emack & Bolios, started the company in 1975 for his rock star clients – he was a music attorney at the time – so they can enjoy ice cream after late night gigs. Some of those stars go by the name of Aerosmith, Boston, U2 & James Brown.

You’re probably wondering when and where the new ice cream flavors are available, unfortunately the company advised that they are looking for a late 2021 launch.

Where Can I get Cannabis Infused Ice Cream From?

Although this isn’t the first company to bring infused ice cream, a special mention to Cloud Creamery who launched their range of infused ice cream sometime in June and guess what? It’s available – see below:

Cloud Creamery has decided to start with three flavors that include two types of ice cream, Tanzanian vanilla and dark chocolate truffle, and one sorbet, mango yuzu, which is dairy-free. The vanilla is actually sourced from Tanzania.