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Care by Design 18:1 Sublingual Spray Review

Care by Design 18:1 Sublingual Spray Review

If you’ve ever taken more than the recommended dose of acetaminophen or ibuprofen, it’s often because more is needed. Maybe you’re suffering from the flu and need to break a fever, or have an especially bad headache. Most painkillers, prescription or over-the-counter, work in this way: more medicine means more relief.

One of the largest learning curves when it comes to cannabidiol is that it’s biphasic: more CBD does not necessarily mean more relief. It means different relief. The science of cannabinoids is still developing and there’s a lot of trial-and-error for patients and caregivers. The ratio of CBD to THC is also important rather than a straight dose of CBD. Researchers are unclear as to why small amounts of THC bring out the benefits of CBD, but they do. I’ve noticed a pattern that suggests the higher the ratio of CBD to THC, the better it works for medical conditions that are difficult to treat.

Multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia and Dravet syndrome are diseases CBD can potentially treat when conventional methods have failed. MS an\d fibromyalgia occur often enough in the population that pharmaceutical companies have devoted resources towards developing new treatments, but Dravet syndrome is more rare. It presents in children less than a year old and is devastating to their quality of life. Treatments for epilepsy in general requires heavy doses of tranquilizing drugs, and this can cause long term harm to a growing child. CBD’s potential to treat Dravet syndrome is significant enough that pharmaceutical companies have taken notice and are studying CBD in full scale clinical trials.

I was curious if an 18:1 ratio could work for my seasonal affective disorder. Luckily, southern California has very few cloudy days, but those days can stop me in my tracks. Care by Design’s collection of CBD sprays has been great for my pain and IBS symptoms in lower ratios, but I didn’t notice any antidepressant qualities. During a rainy week, I tried their 18:1 sublingual spray.

Having used Care by Design’s sprays before, I knew 3-4 sprays works well for me. For reference, I’m 5’11” and height and weight should be considered when determining a proper dose. The company suggests 1-2 sprays and that is an excellent place to start for a full grown adult. While I’ve heard patients sometimes mix the spray into a drink or food, I would not recommend this when you’re relying on this medicine for acute conditions. I find the taste of the sprays to be very mild, but “chasing” the spray with water will all but eliminate the cannabis flavor after you’ve used the spray.

On a typical cloudy day, normal tasks require a lot of motivation for me. I have to force myself to get up, make coffee, read my email and so on. Each step feels like my mind and body are saying “NOPE.” After three sprays in the morning, it felt like a totally normal day. Compared to typical antidepressants, I noticed a change rather quickly. I also noticed when it tapered off in the afternoon, so I took 3 more sprays around 4pm. With a week’s worth of El Niño weather, I was able to see what daily use was like. It was a nice feeling to know that the spray works as needed and doesn’t linger in my system. I’m not opposed to long-term therapies at all, but I am opposed to taking something when it’s not necessary. As soon as the sun came back, I wanted to go back to my normal routine. Even when I was using the spray, it felt like my normal routine. I didn’t feel “high” or even a reduced amount of anxiety (there are other ratios and other cannabis products I would use for that effect). I simply was able to function normally without the heaviness that depression brings to the mind and body.

One of the great aspects of CBD, and cannabis in general, is that I experience no withdrawal. While there is anecdotal evidence that suggests marijuana withdrawal exists, I personally have not had that experience, nor have I with any CBD product (in contrast, my caffeine withdrawal symptoms might be the worst withdrawal I’ve ever experienced!). That can’t be said for prescription antidepressants, some of which can lead to seizures and comas when stopped abruptly. Because of this, antidepressants in general require a significant time commitment to see if they work, and more time to taper off should they be ineffective or produce unwanted side effects. For those who experience temporary depressions, this could be an option in dealing with those situations. Depression is a complicated illness with many causes and even more treatment options, and this product is unique among those options.

In choosing a CBD treatment, dosage is critical. Care by Design thoroughly tests their products, and I’m confident that I’m getting what I pay for when I choose their products. CBD products are an investment and Care by Design has taken steps to establish trust with patients by being transparent about their manufacturing process and their testing. I will continue to search for their products when looking for a reliable CBD medication.


Photo credit: Care By Design

Mountain Medicine Boombastic Bacon Brittle Review

Mountain Medicine Boombastic Bacon Brittle Review

Bacon is one of those hot ingredients that lives up to the hype. Over the past few years, it seems like deliciously fatty bits of porky goodness have made their way into almost any kind of treat out there. It’s definitely not just for breakfast anymore. You can find bacon infused in beer and studded in kettle corn, a kind of buzzword that more or less guarantees some degree of tastiness.

Just when I thought I’d seen it all (bacon ice cream or lollipops, anyone?), I encountered Mountain Medicine’s Boombastic Bacon Brittle. Medicated bacon seemed like too much awesome to miss, and I soon found a low key afternoon to dedicate to bacon and cannabis indulgence.


Mountain Medicine makes Boombastic Bacon Brittle in medical and recreational strengths. The medical package contains two 75mg portions. The recreational brittle comes with eight 10mg servings per package.


The medical and recreational Bacon Brittles are packaged in round black containers with childproof, twist-off tops. The label design is playful and fun, with a slight vintage vibe courtesy of vibrant color and funky fonts. Each serving is individually packaged, and looks like a bite-sized praline studded with bits of what I could only assume was bacon, and maybe a few nuts. Each piece had a glossy, candied shine.

Taste & Texture

I had one 10 mg piece of the Bacon Brittle to start. My expectations were high, but the bacon brittle still managed to make me fall in love. It was sweet and savory with just a hint of salt and a deliciously rich caramel taste. There were delicious bits of bacon (local, I’m told) and nut in every bite, giving the brittle a perfect crunch to contrast the melt-in-your-mouth sweetness of the brittle, made with local, raw honey from Boulder County’s Highland Honey. The flavors were intense, but balanced, and I didn’t detect any flavor from the cannabutter.


I ate 10 mgs and immediately wanted more. After about 20 minutes, I started to feel relaxed, and at a half hour, a pleasantly low-key buzz was in full effect. After an hour, I was still feeling the mild high, and the brittle was calling my name. After another 10 mg piece and a 20-30 minutes, I felt silly and supremely relaxed. I kicked back, got comfortable, listened to music, and enjoyed a wonderfully lazy afternoon with friends. We lounged, pleasantly high, for several hours. After about five hours, the high wore off and I was ready to head out for a walk to work off the bacon (and some subsequent munchies).


For lovers of bud or bacon, this is an indulgence worth experiencing. I found the 20 mgs of cannabutter (my preferred type of edible) to be slightly stronger than other experiences at the same dosage, with nice, relaxing body and mind effects. This is an edible that everyone can love. But be forewarned – eating just one piece of the sweet and salty treat is almost impossible.

mountain medicine boombastic bacon brittle review

Health Benefits of Hemp CBD Supplements

Health Benefits of Hemp CBD Supplements

At this point in the well-publicized battle to end cannabis prohibition, most people in the United States have at least heard about the health benefits associated with the oldest medicinally used plant in the world, specifically one non-psychoactive cannabinoid called cannabidiol (CBD). While the medicinal use of CBD oil has now been legalized in 13 of the United States including Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, and Florida, hemp derived CBD products are actually legal in America and can even be shipped to your home.

While the medicinal use of cannabis has been documented in pharmacopeias dating back more than 10,000 years and was even available over the counter in pharmacies throughout the United States until the late 1930s, the use of isolated cannabinoid therapies, like CBD oil, is a relatively new concept. CBD earned national media coverage, including multiple in-depth segments from Dr. Sanjay Gupta on CNN, as the chemical compound in cannabis that can reduce the frequency and severity of seizures in children whose rare epilepsy conditions have otherwise been untreatable. Because CBD is non-psychoactive, it does not produce the euphoric feeling of being high, and therefore the administration to people of all ages, including children and newborn babies, is more accepted.

Like other cannabinoids, hemp derived CBD is medicinally effective because it reacts with the physiological system in the human body, called the endocannabinoid system, that maintains homeostasis by regulating mood, pain, sleep, memory and cell metabolism. Now that people are more aware of why cannabinoids react with their bodies and the potential health benefits, the everyday use of cannabinoid therapies like hemp CBD supplements have become more common.

The FDA has exposed a few bad apples in this market, leaving some consumers weary of online CBD retailers. Thankfully, as the market expands and demand increases, the quality of hemp CBD products being introduced is aligning, and some manufacturers are setting the bar much higher. One such exemplary brand is called Aceso, appropriately named after the Greek goddess of healing.

Aceso stands out from the rest for several reasons. All three of the expertly formulated Aceso products — Wellness, Soothe, and Calm — target the specific and common everyday-needs of people. Many other brands produce just one single product that doesn’t clearly explain what it’s mean to do, so Aceso disrupts the CBD and hemp supplement industry by being clear, concise and specific which allows consumers to be fully aware of what is in the product and how exactly it is intended to affect them.

health benefits hemp cbdWoman opening the Aceso Wellness Spray.

CBD isn’t the only active ingredient in the Aceso products either, which are all available in both a sprayable tincture and a water-soluble powder (sachet). To reach desired effects, the Wellness, Soothe and Calm collections also contain different ingredients known to work synergistically, thereby enhancing the overall efficacy of each product. For example, Aceso Calm pairs CBD with terpenes like linalool and limonene as well as passionflower and lavender to create a relaxing effect without drowsy side-effects.

The active ingredients in the Aceso Sprays, like the Wellness formula, are quickly absorbed into the bloodstream through the thin membranes of the mouth as well as metabolized by the liver. These Aceso Sprays are unique because instead of being made with glycerin or oil, they are water-based. This allows the active ingredients to be more readily absorbed by the body.

health benefit hemp cbdWoman using the Aceso Wellness Spray.

Like the sprays, the Aceso Powder Sachets are also water-soluble, and both can be mixed into your morning smoothie or evening tea. When mixed with water, the powder becomes a great-tasting fizzy beverage. Bernie Canter described the Aceso Calm Sachet as an “Emergen-C with cannabinoids and terpenes.” (Click here to read Canter’s review.)

Aceso is also setting the bar higher with it’s clear dedication to consumer education. While those who are already aware of how chemical compounds, like cannabinoids and terpenes, react with the human body to produce different effects, new consumers can become quickly educated from a single visit the Aceso website. To accompany the plethora of information about cannabinoids, terpenes, and the entourage effect, also provides a detailed outline of the herbalist formula behind each product.

health benefit hemp cbdMan drinking an Aceso Wellness Sachet.

Being so impressed with these cannabinoid and terpene rich supplements and what Aceso is doing as a whole, we reached out to them to learn more. The exclusive interview with Kurt Forstmann, the product manager leading the development of the formulas, is below:

Kurt, what is your background and how did it prepare you to develop an industry-disrupting formulation like the Aceso line of products?

My background is renewable energy and real estate development. While bearing zero semblance to my current field, both fields prepared me for the startup nature of Aceso. There is a lot that must get done in order to bring a new product to market. From research and development, manufacturing, marketing, finance, etc., I am good at rallying diverse teams around a common goal.

What was the inspiration behind the development of the Aceso line of products?

To give people new tools to achieve health and wellness! Most products on the market look the same and are hard to differentiate. Aceso is about bringing innovation to the marketplace with better formulas, such as aqueous cannabinoid delivery in the form of a spray or dissolvable powder to increase bio-availability. We also utilize traditional “herbalist” formulations where cannabinoids are but a small portion of the overall formula. We add essential oils, herbs and terpenes, each having their own unique health benefit, to create synergy. Finally, there is a wide knowledge gap in the consumer market, we aim to be more educational by creating products that create wellness in those dealing with stress or everyday aches and pains.

What about Aceso products make you most excited?

We are committed to exploiting the benefits of terpenes in our formula, and we utilize an herbalist pantry when developing products, not just cannabinoids alone. We’re indication specific, meaning our products target certain health demographics, and we utilize novel formulations to give consumers more than one option for method of delivery.

Which Aceso product is your personal favorite and why?

I love the Calm powder because it makes me feel relaxed after a busy day at work. It’s quicker than meditation or yoga!

health benefits hemp cbd

Dr. Dabber Budder Cutter Review

Dr. Dabber Budder Cutter Review

Different viscosities among cannabis concentrates means that no one tool is perfectly suited for all of them. Finding a new use for the long-lasting batteries that power their vape pens, like the Aurora, Dr. Dabber has created a one-all solution for those who consume a variety of concentrates.

The Budder Cutter comes with seven different removable heads, all offering their own advantages for different concentrates. Instead of powering a vape pen, the battery acts as a heat source for the tool heads. Think of each tool like a drill bit, fulfilling a certain purpose depending on the job at hand. As an electric dab tool, the Budder Cutter fits in most jean pockets and comes with a carrying case for the device and the seven interchangeable heads.

dr dabber budder cutter review

To use the Budder Cutter, screw on the desired tool head, and press the button to heat it. Depending on the purpose of the tool, either scoop up or cut the material to your liking. You can even use the Budder Cutter electric dab tool to apply your dab onto the titanium, quartz, or ceramic vaporizing surface.

Any person that has trouble handling their wax will find a solution in the Budder Cutter from Dr. Dabber because using different tools and heat makes every consistency easy to work with. I found that allowing the Budder Cutter to cool down slightly before applying it to my wax made it much easier to pick up concentrates that otherwise are next to impossible t0 scoop.

dr dabber budder cutter vape review

Photo credit: Dr. Dabber

Tyler Curtis

Lemon Diesel Strain Review

Lemon Diesel Strain Review

An exotic California strain that has since migrated east and found a home at Denver Relief in Colorado, Lemon Diesel smells and tastes like an overripe lemon was infused with gasoline.

Strain: Lemon Diesel

Genetics: West Coast Sour DieselLemon Skunk

Dispensary: Denver Relief, 1 Broadway A150, Denver, CO 80203


Lemon Diesel has a pure-hybrid look with lime green buds streaked with dark bronze highlights throughout. The dense flowers form a narrow triangular shape that does not crumble under pressure. A kiefy bud, this Lemon Diesel has swollen calyxes an abundance of trichomes. No leaves remain on this properly trimmed sample from Denver Relief.

lemon diesel strain review


The terpene profile of Lemon Diesel smells like a tire with a lemon rind stuck to it ran over a skunk, poured gasoline all over it, and then set it on fire. On the first whiff, the Lemon Diesel smells like straight lemon zest (limonene). The second sniff adds in the funky, vociferous skunk odor. When you break her open to pack a bowl, the distinct petrol smell that can only be attributed to the Sour Diesel within her genetic profile becomes more apparent.


This Lemon Diesel burned smoothly and evenly in my glass spoon pipe, and delivered an unusually flavorful first hit. The diesel taste unsurprisingly overwhelmed the initial lemon punch, but both terpenes remain present throughout the exhale. This sample turned to white ash, a sign that it was flushed and cured properly.


Lemon Diesel delivers an instant head-rush of euphoria that lasts 15 to 20 minutes before transforming into a balanced relaxation of both body and mind. After about 45 minutes, the effects remind me more of those from a potent indica with a light, floaty sensation that settled in my limbs. About 90 minutes after smoking, only a general daze lingers. A potent strain, I recommend novice users not take more than a couple of hits at first.


Denver Relief nailed the lemon on the head with this interpretation of Lemon Diesel. The citrus and gas balance one another both in flavor and effect. The well-balanced effects of Lemon Diesel make it a great choice for almost any occasion, whether you’re wake-and-baking on the weekend or using it to unwind during an after-work stroll.

lemon diesel strain

Interested in trying Lemon Diesel for yourself? Support Denver Relief, the oldest operating dispensary in Denver, and consider purchasing from their store. Click here to browse Denver Relief’s current menu.

lemon diesel review

Bernie Canter

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