The ABCs of CBD

Health-conscious consumers are taking greater interest in alternative ways to manage chronic pain, stress, anxiety, inflammation, and sleep. In the wake of the opioid crisis and in tandem with a society seeking effective, affordable, and safe options to prescription drugs, Cannabidiol or CBD, as it is commonly called, has found its way into everyday conversation. CBD is an extract from the cannabis plant that has an amazing number of natural health benefits.

First, there is an important distinction to be made. Both hemp, from which over-the-counter CBD is derived, and marijuana come from the same Cannabis Sativa plant species. These strains though contain different properties. The marijuana plant contains something called Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC. This is also a cannabinoid and medicinally helpful but has side effects to your body and mind which some may describe as “getting high.”


Hemp does not contain THC so the CBD from hemp is safe and does not have these negative effects. Hemp contains barely a trace of THC - less than 0.3-percent. Many products are refined to contain zero THC.

Why should you take CBD? Cannabinoids are important to the human body on many levels. There are cannabinoid receptors found in the brain, nervous system, GI tract, bone, immune system, skin, and nearly every other organ in the body. These receptors are like little docking stations for the CBD and helps to regulate functions such as:

  • Appetite

  • Bone health

  • Caloric metabolism

  • Fertility

  • Immune function

  • Inflammation

  • Mood

  • Memory

  • Pain sensation

  • Skin health

  • Sleep

  • Stress response

When comparing CBD products, look for full spectrum CBD oils because these contain the most comprehensive profile of cannabinoids. Full spectrum oils use the whole plant, not just the hemp seed or specific portions of a cannabis plant, like leaves or stems. A full spectrum CBD oil contains other cannabinoids such as CBN, CBD-V, CBD-G, CBD-C, CBDN, all of which have their own unique healing properties.

Another CBD option would be a product made from an isolate of just CBD that does not use the whole hemp plant - everything is removed except the CBD constituent. The difference between isolate and full spectrum CBD is in the extraction process. Not that there is anything wrong with just plain CBD but if you want total pain management, full spectrum CBD oil is the best choice.

Lastly, the best hemp, necessary to produce the best CBD, is organically grown in the U.S. and non-GMO without the use of pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, chemical fertilizers and heavy metal residues. Beware, there are products selling CBD derived from non-organic hemp (maybe genetically engineered cannabis plants) as well as from unknown locations and sources. Using these products may have some unwanted health effects. Please choose your CBD oil wisely!

The author, Dr. David Berv, is a certified chiropractic sports physician, acupuncture diplomate. He is a co-owner of The Float Zone, and can be reached at david@myfloatzone. To read other posts visit our blog page.

Chronic Pain, Opioids and Floatation Therapy, Part 2

Chronic Pain, Opioids and Floatation Therapy, Part 2

Floatation therapy is proving to be a viable alternative and adjunct to managing chronic pain. Opioid managed chronic pain may respond well to floatation therapy. A new case study on chronic pain, opiate usage and floatation provides a window into the benefits of this mind and body therapy.

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Improve Sleep Quality by Floating?

Improve Sleep Quality by Floating?

All of us have experienced the consequences of a sleepless night. Everything the next day requires more effort. You lack energy and motivation.  You feel groggy and irritable.   Try floating.  It might help you sleep.

Sleep has been of significant interest to the floatation therapy industry as evidenced by thousands of anecdotal instances of improved sleep after floating.  While floating, like sleep, you are essentially "offline". with minimal to no external stimuli.  Both floating and sleep require sensory disconnection as an essential requirement.  Many floaters actually do fall asleep during part or all of their float. Most are somewhere in between sleeping and wakefulness.

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Chronic low back pain improves with floatation therapy

Chronic low back pain improves with floatation therapy

Chronic back pain is of epidemic proportions. Medical professionals are seeking complementary ways to manage pain. Floatation therapy is showing promise and proof through case studies such as those being conducted at The Float Zone in Richmond, VA. 

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Sculpture Dedicated to True Value of Floatation Therapy

As a pain management specialist for over two decades, I have seen how pain can change and manipulate a person’s brain, behavior and being. Despite my best efforts to practice what I preached, my own chronic pain was a distraction and the source of significant physical and emotional disability. Chronic pain was a primary catalyst for the eventual expression of my multiple sclerosis.  The combination of these issues played games with my brain and my body. 

Coincidentally at this time,  I discovered floatation therapy which lightened both my physical and emotional burden.  One of the most remarkable benefits of floating is how effortlessly it allows for a state of internal reflection and focus.  It’s like meditation on steroids.  I’ve spent numerous hours floating atop 10” of super salty skin temperature water, visualizing the reduction and elimination of both pain and lesions in my brain and spinal cord.  During this time of deep inner reflection to heal myself, it brought me to some realizations about myself, my surroundings, my emotional health, my relationships with others, gaining clarity on my purpose, my goals, future and direction. 

One such result is that floating encouraged my transition towards retirement from clinical chiropractic and acupuncture to that of helping others through providing floatation therapy services to others in need.

                                                                 Internal Focus by Lee HAZELGROVE                                                                                      The FLOAT ZONE

                                                                 Internal Focus by Lee HAZELGROVE
                                                                                    The FLOAT ZONE

In July 2017, the week of my retirement, I was visiting the United Network For Organ Sharing, here in Richmond, VA. Within this beautiful modern, life saving facility are artistic displays from local artists.  As part of the exhibit, there was a ceramic sculpture hanging on the wall, entitled “Internal Focus”.  It spoke to me. And in one moment, it captured years of thoughts and visualizations and emotions -  tears, pain, joy, excitement, and hope.  It reminded me of my relationship and journey with the float tank. I immediately purchased the sculpture with the intention of displaying it at The Float Zone.  

Internal Focus, by Lee Hazelgrove, now hangs in the entry of The Float Zone as a dedication to all who come to float with the hope they too will find relief, calm, focus, direction, awareness, and the healthy state that naturally follows.  

Beginning in February, 2018, The Float Zone will be featuring the work of local artists that too have been inspired by floating.

-Dr. David Berv, Chief Experience Officer, The Float Zone