When we think about taking medicine, we normally don't associate it with ingesting loads of sugar too. Why is this same logic not generally applied to edibles? MoonMan's Mistress is a company focused on pairing the benefits of whole-plant cannabis extraction and clean eating. "All our ingredients are intelligently chosen, locally sourced and quality tested to provide you with the healthiest medicinal edible available." Organic, non-GMO ingredients are crucial in the making of these paleo, dairy-free, soy-free and low glycemic medicated bites.
After being diagnosed with Celiac and Hashimoto's Disease, diseases that affect the immune system, Liz decided that western medecine had failed her after a long and trying battle with pharmaceuticals. She finally found relief when she made switch to clean eating and cooking, living a very paleo-centric lifestyle and eating nutrient dense food. Since this change, Liz says she now feels better at 37 than she did at 27, when she was originally diagnosed. Health and fitness had always been a focus in Jamel's life, and after finishing his career in the military and corporate America he decided to follow his passions and become a personal trainer. Jamel uses Cannabis for pain management and inflammation, but recognizes the variety of ailments and individuals that can be cured by Cannabis. These two saw a void for truly health-centric edibles in the Cannabis industry, and their expertise in clean eating made them the right people to fill it. But these two do more than just make edibles, along with their non-medicated baking company and digital detox fitness retreats, adding the goodness of Cannabis to these was just another way to help improve lives. They focus on helping clients reset their rhythm and find their balance. The key to their partnership is a shared lifestyle and set of values. They really do practice what they preach, and stand by Cannabis and food as medicine.
Pharmaceuticals stop working, and we even build a tolerance to Cannabis, so finding alternatives is key! Clean eating is a lifestyle choice. It is NOT a diet. This lifestyle focuses on eating whole, unrefined foods. Great care and consideration go into the ingredients chosen to make these edibles truly medicinal. The entire Cannabis plant is used during extraction. This ensures every ounce of goodness in the stems, leaf, roots as well as the flowers is used. Organic, sustainable and California sun grown Cannabis is what's used here, and I believe it is very fitting for the work being done. Just after launching in 2015, they were awarded Healthiest Edible by Edible's List Magazine for their Trail Mix Super Nova Cookie.
Jamel & Liz believe (and I agree) that Cannabis should always be considered a wellness product, and there will always be a need for healthy and effective edibles. Through the trials and tribulations this industry brings, they believe they are here to stay! And I definitely think it's important to support companies who are really out to help people. They call themselves healers, not dealers. As they continue to grow, they hope to work with patients more directly. To focus on the education of Cannabis, food, cooking and training to obtain a healthy and comfortable balance and rhythm.
Last week I had the opportunity to try some really amazing vegan food. If you know me, you know I tried my hand at vegetarianism and it only lasted about a year, and I always broke the rules a little bit anyways. It's definitely a challenge to feel satisfied when you feel like you're missing all these flavors and textures you love. S+M Vegan does such an amazing job at recreating those, I wish I knew how to cook like them! I've seen this vegan chef couple coming up in the Bay Area food scene over the last few years, so it was really a treat to experience one of their last pop-up dinners in San Francisco.
Feastly is a service that provide chefs and diners with a unique dining experience. One reminiscent of a home cooked meal, where guests are encouraged to interact with the chefs and fellow diners. This particular pop-up was hosted at a location named The Lab, a warm, modern space located in San Francisco's Dogpatch neighborhood.
The first course of this four course meal was a delicious spreadable garlic herb cheese, whole grain mustard, and a romaine salad with sesame Caesar dressing with pickled red onion and radishes along with some freshly baked ciabatta. At one point I leaned over to my boyfriend and asked 'is the bread vegan too?' and of course it was. I really didn't know it was possible to achieve such soft spreadable cheese without using dairy, or to replace the umami flavor anchovy gives to Caesar dressing.
The second course was hands down my favorite part of the meal. Pheniox Pasticifico fresh eggless organic pasta coated in cheese and black pepper cream, finished with ground black olive, shaved toasted almonds and Arbequina extra virgin olive oil. The noodles were soft but not chewy, and the flavor was tremendous. Lots of black pepper, but I was not complaining one bit.
The third course was a beautiful plate of petite roasted eggplant, seared lemon and herb sauce, roasted cherry tomatoes topped with fresh herbs and flowers. The sauce was similar to a pesto but a little more complex. The eggplant was rich and juicy. The whole meal was served family style, and the eggplant was a little tricky to split up between us all, but definitely worth the work.
I enjoyed dinner with one of my favorite beers, Tangerine de Brettaville by Almanac Beer Co. Part of their Farm-to-Barrel program, varieties of sour beers are created by aging specific yeasts and fruits in oak barrels to create a complex combination of tart, sweet and funky. This particular beer is a favorite of mine because it's the right amount of sour and the right amount of sweet.
Feastly & S+M Vegan did a fantastic job putting this dinner together. I was really happy that my first time enjoying this food was in this setting, and that my first time in this setting came with such highly anticipated food. I look forward to experiencing the food in a new setting and experiencing the setting with new food. Life is about growing, and eating too.
San Francisco in early August dosen't always mean sunshine, but it was a gorgeous sunny day at Dolores Park when I met my first interviewee, Dr.Rachna Patel. Rachna is a New Jersey native who originally trained in emergency medicine and continued schooling to become a licensed physician in the state of California.
It being my first interview, I wasn't as prepared as I would have hoped. I wanted to record our conversation but didn't have the capacity to do so, so I took notes. So rather than a word-for-word interview, this will be an overview of our conversation and the topics we covered.
Xochi: What drew you to Cannabis?
Rachna: I always knew that Cannabis helped me in my college years with sleep trouble and anxiety. One day I was browsing Craigslist and saw an ad looking for a Medical Marijuana Doctor. I decided to look further into the research around Medical Marijuana and what it meant to be a doctor prescribing this as medicine. I found the research to be insightful. The use of harmful and addictive pharmaceuticals is all too common, where Cannabis has much less negative side effects and after working with patients I have found that they also see far fewer side effects than with pharmaceuticals. Being that I use medical marijuana myself for anxiety and insomnia, I can come from place of empathy when I'm working with patients that are struggling with the same and am recommending Cannabis to them. A doctor should take adequate time to fully explain medications, dosing and side effects when prescribing their patients something new. When I meet with patients I spend anywhere from 20-40 minutes a person, analyzing their personal needs and teaching them the best way to use Cannabis to combat their ailments.
Xochi: How long have you been in the Bay Area?
Rachna: When I finished medical training on the east coast and received my license to practice in California, I moved to Sacramento to work at a clinic out there. The clinic I worked at was more focused on pumping out cards, rather than spending time with patients and teaching them about Cannabis. I moved to Walnut Creek in 2013 to start my own practice.
Xochi: What are your favorite strains?
Rachna: I don't pay attention to strains as much as I do the compounds that make up the strain. I think that there needs to be a greater emphasis on specific THC and CBD ratios as well as terpene profiles, because strain names are changed so often by dispensaries it's hard to know what you are actually ingesting. Ultimately, consistency of product is one of the most important factors in this industry. Some companies I like personally for their consistency are Pianta Tinta, Sweet ReLeaf and Cheeba Chew.
Xochi: What do you use Cannabis for and how do you use it?
Rachna: I use Cannabis for sleep and anxiety. I've tried a variety of methods, but prefer to ingest. I have heard from my women patients who use the new vaginal suppositories that it's helped increase their labido! But since the active ingredients in Cannabis will store themselves in your fat cells, you use it when you need and use it when you don't. This is why overmedicating leads to a higher tolerance and less relief from the doses you are used to taking.
Xochi: What do you think about CBD?
Rachna: I think THC and CBD are both beneficial in their own ways and together, but ultimately the most important thing when looking at Cannabis as medicine is the active ingredients in the specific product you are using. It all goes back to the specific THC and CBD ratios and terpene profiles.
Xochi: What do you hope to see come of this industry in the future?
Rachna: The proof of Cannabis as a healthier alternative medicine is there and real, but I think outright legalization will help this system tremendously. There are too many barriers for legal patients, especially in states with newer programs where regulations are more strict. People want the privacy to use Cannabis as they wish without having to add their name to a list or become a part of some database. As a doctor, I am concerned about prescribing Cannabis to everyone as I don't think it will be helpful for every condition. I think that Cannabis as medicine needs to have more education about the specific chemicals working in your body and how they affect you as an individual. When you walk into a dispensary looking for relief from a certain ailment, what the budtender suggests works from them may not be the same for you. Also, certain conditions should stay away from certain chemicals found in certain types of Cannabis. If there was more emphasis on specific chemicals and how they affect us individually, it would be easier for people to find the right type of Cannabis for them. If Medical Cannabis continues, these are the types of things that need to be focused on more. I'm also concerned about the regulations that cultivation facilities follow, and how so much Cannabis tests positive for harmful pesticides and fungicides. I hope that outright legalization or a more refined medical system will help with some of these bigger picture concerns.
Xochi: Are you the only person in your family who uses Cannabis?
Rachna: Coming from a very traditional Indian family, I initially avoided talking to them about my profession. They knew I studied medecine, and I had told them I started a general practice in California, rather than tell them I was prescribing people Cannabis. There was a big family get-together happening and I was anxious about having to bring up my work at the party. At the end of the day, I wanted my parents to find out from me, and not from another relative at the party, so I opened up to them about my job. My mom's family is much more conservative than my dad's, but it was still surprising when I found out that some family members had used it before. I am relieved that it's out in the open and that my family continues to be supportive, and some even reach out to ask how Cannabis can help their life too!
My meeting with Rachna was very insightful. There was so many times during our conversation where I said 'wow I never thought about it like that.' She is very eager to learn about the array of products available for her and her patients and encourages companies to reach out with her with information about what they have to offer. You can reach her via her website, and she's also on YouTube!
I'll be honest, I don't know much about cultivation. I did work in an indoor Cannabis grow for quite a few months, and my family has been working the land and cultivating food for generations, but for some reason I just don't think I learned as much as I could have, but I guess that's what happens when things just seem like work.
In all agricultural fields, there has been a huge emphasis on organic growing in the past few years. And I'm so happy to see that translated into Cannabis as well. In the black market days, harmful chemicals and pesticides were used in the cultivation of Cannabis. Since there were no standards for selling on the street, people didn't need to flush properly or test flowers for residual pesticides. I cringe at the thought of how much dirty weed I probably smoked as a kid.
Veg+Bloom is simple powder amendment 'containing all essential elements and beneficial additives your plants need to succeed.' It's part of a 4-part series by Hydroponic Research. Veg+Bloom, +Life, Push, and Shine.
Terpinator is pretty hard to miss on a table. I don't know much about it, or anyone who uses it but I know it's filled with potassium sulfate to help make flowers more pungent and resinous.
Fox Farm Ocean Forest was the potting soil I used the very first time I grew on my own! I was happy to see their products, the art is so cute!
Can't talk about soil without mentioning Mills X DNA Genetics Cork Soil. I first saw this at the 2016 Spannabis in Barcelona. You know what they say, mills pays the bills.
Hustle Butter Deluxe is a vegan, non petroleum based and all natural. It was originally created as a tattoo aftercare product, but has been discovered to have many uses. It's a great way to repel and remove resin from the hands and arms of trimmers and gardeners alike.
stoneyxochi. 30 year old California native. proud pothead, Mexicana and woman.