As most of you know, 5 years ago, I was diagnosed with Lupus (SLE). Life as I knew it completely changed that day – even though I was devastated, I was grateful to finally have a diagnosis after years of symptoms with no answers. I met with a rheumatologist and was given a list of medications to begin taking, including prednisone & methotrexate, which is a chemotherapy drug. I was terrified of the side effects of these drugs & threw myself into researching my disease. I was determined to educate myself as much as I could about managing my symptoms & preserving my quality of life for the sake of my family.
Since that day, I’ve learned so much about my auto-immune disease and what my personal “flare” triggers are. I’ve changed my diet (focusing on organic whole foods; cutting out most grains, sugar & some dairy), added supplements & made lifestyle changes (switched to lower-intensity exercise, made sleep a priority & adjusted my schedule to minimize stress). I’m proud to say that I’ve been able to completely avoid the chemo drugs & I’ve only had to take steroids twice for flares that were more severe (one time being last summer when I contracted Pertussis).
I’ve talked before about joint pain being the most persistent symptom that I still struggle with. Some days are worse than others but when it’s bad, it can be quite debilitating. So, when Jess shared with me about Equilibria and their CBD products, I was really intrigued and hopeful that it might just be the missing piece to managing my disease.
I started doing research & found that there is actually a Yale doctor who’s currently conducting a clinical trial testing the benefits of CBD for Lupus patients (read the article here). Research has also been done that shows CBD reduces sleep disturbances in people with sleep apnea, fibromyalgia, chronic pain & multiple sclerosis. After discovering this, I was really encouraged & very anxious to give it a try!
My last step was to consult with my functional medicine doctor about CBD – she did her own independent research on Equilibria and determined that it would be a good addition to my current treatment plan, so she gave me the green light and I began taking the softgels each morning, one full dropper at night (about an hour before bed) & applying the cream as needed for joint pain.
I’d only been using it for a week when I started to notice my joints didn’t ache like they normally do when I first get up in the morning. I also started sleeping all the way through the night, rather than waking up repeatedly like I used to. The cream was the biggest miracle worker of all – I could apply it to my knees after a long run and get INSTANT relief…unlike anything I’d tried before! My husband borrowed it to rub on a shoulder muscle he pulled while doing yard work & he was equally as impressed. I’ve since chatted with others who use the cream for migraines, TMJ, menstrual cramps & even nerve pain.
If you’re an information junkie like me, you’ll appreciate understanding the science behind how CBD works – I think it’s fascinating! CBD binds to certain receptors in the body, which results in the production of specific proteins (“resolvins”) that work to reduce inflammation. Inflammation is what drives many auto-immune diseases & chronic illnesses and creates symptoms that are debilitating and even life-threatening.
CBD works with your Endocannabinoid System to create balance in the body. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) plays a crucial role in regulating a broad range of physiological processes that affect our everyday experience – our mood, energy level, digestion, immune activity, blood pressure, bone density, glucose metabolism, how we experience pain, stress, hunger, and more.
What happens if the endocannabinoid system doesn’t function properly? What are the consequences of a chronically deficient or overactive endocannabinoid system? In a word, disease. By modulating the endocannabinoid system and enhancing endocannabinoid tone, CBD can slow – or in some cases stop – disease progression.
But, not all CBD is grown and processed equally – Equilibria is rare because there are no middle men or third parties involved. They have their own 1,100 acre organic farm in Colorado, where everything is in their hands from start to finish. Their bioscience team also has 30+ years of experience in agriculture, and their products feature 3-4x the cannabinoids and terpenes versus the average, mainstream over-the-counter CBD product.
I love that their company is run by women & for women (though my husband has stolen mine more than a few times to use for himself!). They have dedicated dosage specialists & continued support to help you as you begin your CBD journey. I’m a big believer in this brand & I am so grateful because their products have truly changed my life for the better! They have graciously offered a discount for all PPF readers – you can get 15% off your first-time purchase with code “pennypinch”. While you can purchase the products separately, you’ll get the biggest cost savings by signing up for a subscription (you can cancel at any time).
Several of you submitted questions via Instagram Stories so I’m answering all of those for you below. If you have additional questions, feel free to leave them in the comments and I will work with the Equilibria team to get back to you with an answer!
Is it safe to use during pregnancy?
Unfortunately, there isn’t enough data to say for sure. For most women, it comes down to whether CBD is helping them manage anxiety and reduce the amount of pharmaceuticals they’re taking. Some women decide it’s the lesser of two evils, and some women decide not to use it during their pregnancy or while breastfeeding. It really comes down to a personal choice.
Are the ingredients natural and/or approved?
Equilibria‘s products, from their own organic farm, are third party lab tested every step of the process. You can see their lab tests here. The ingredients list for each product are:
- Daily Drops: Activated full spectrum hemp flower oil CBD concentrate, MCT oil
- Daily Softgels: Activated full spectrum hemp flower oil CBD concentrate, kosher beef gelatin, MCT oil, vegetable glycerin, and purified water
- Relief Cream: Full Spectrum Hemp Flower Oil, Coconut Oil, Shea Butter, Arnica, Menthol, Lavender, Rosemary
How did you know what dosage to start out with?
I worked with a dosage specialist & she recommend starting with a 10mg dose in the evening. I was able to stick to this dose for the drops & I also take two softgels every morning and use the cream as needed. A good rule of thumb as you’re experimenting with finding the right dose is to dose up in small amounts of 5mg-10mg at a time, with consistency, every 3-5 days until you start to see some effects. CBD is a completely safe product – you cannot overdose on it & you cannot become addicted to it.
Does it have THC in it? Will it show up on a drug test?
No members of Equilibria have tested positive for THC when using the products. If you’re not sure, you can pick up a drug test at your local pharmacy to see how it affects your body personally.
Does it help with anxiety?
Anxiety is the number one reason women are choosing Equilibria. This isn’t something that I personally struggle with, but I’ve spoken with several women who’ve tried it & swear by it for managing anxiety. Try the daily softgels for maintaining a consistent drip throughout the day, and the daily drops for fast acting relief if you’re in the middle of a particularly rough season.
Could it help for migraines?
While everyone reacts to CBD differently, many women are using Equilibria to help control their migraines. The most effective results come when you use a combination of the ingested products as well as the relief cream to help manage them.
Is it safe to use with other medications?
You should ALWAYS ask your doctor and/or pharmacist to make sure it won’t interact with anything you’re currently taking. Equilibria also has a quick-reference page here that may help with this.
my honest review of what has worked well for me. As per FDA guidelines,
Equilibria CBD is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent
any disease or ailment. As always, consult with your physician
before starting any new program that may
interact with your current health plan.