MoC 047 Dr. Father Leah

July 26, 2021

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Welcome to the Cannaba Verum podcast, the cannabis truth podcast. I speak the language of cannabis freely and uncensored, while educating my audience on the safe use of this live Plant Therapy. You should know what’s in your cannabis, what’s good and what’s not. It does not come with an FDA stamp of approval yet, using cannabis mindfully, as medication is a different concept in the healthcare philosophy of the past 100 years. There’s a lot to learn and consider cannabis is not dangerous, but it is not harmless, either. This is honey Smith walls, a 21st century cannabis shaman here to explain the language of cannabis in historical, political, and scientific terms, so you can make educated decisions about the medicine you ingest.

Honey

Hey, my friends, get ready to hear Dr Leah Johnson again. I am so excited that you’re back to hear more of our conversation. She’s the formally trained clinical cannabis pharmacist out in California, CEO of alcumus cannabis consulting holds a doctorate degree in pharmacy. Oh no no, and she’s got a pedigree as long as your arm and your leg put together, I’m sure. I can’t wait for you to hear what’s going to happen today.

Honey

Do I have ya?

Leah 4:07

Yep, I’m here.

Honey

How are you, my sweet friend.

Leah

I am good. How have you been?

Honey

 just great, I’m, you know, we’re kind of waiting for that little hurricane to pass it’s not much more than a guest to bear. And, at least over here. And so we’re doing just fine.

Hey, guess what, I just got off the phone with Dr. Allen Ao, and he said very tickled to say hello to you, that he watches you and and can’t wait to catch up with you.

Leah

Awesome, awesome. Yes, it’s it’s so awesome to be able to connect with other pharmacists in cannabis around the US so it’s just, it’s awesome to be able to, to have other colleagues to, to connect with so he’s he’s great and yeah we pop in and out of each other’s LinkedIn posts and comments and support each other which is the most important thing is supporting each other in the business.

Honey

Hey, tell me a little bit about what it’s like behind the curtain of the cannabis pharmacists, when you all get together. I kind of know a tiny peek of that from being in you know a few of the conferences, but when you’re at a pharmacist conference…

Leah

so we don’t really have cannabis because cannabis pharmacists really kind of came about, like right before COVID.  So, we do have plenty of cannabis conferences but just when it comes to cannabis right now. There is the International Society of cannabis pharmacists who were trying to do an in person meeting but everything just kind of still was a little messy because of COVID restrictions.

Leah 5:54

So that hasn’t happened. Also it’s hard because most of us there’s so few of us that it’s in, we’re like in so many different states so I will say I known, a decent amount of pharmacists, a cannabis pharmacist in the state of California, because I live here. But in general, like, it’s really widespread I mean I know, I know a few from Pennsylvania, a few from New York a few from. Let’s see if you from I think it was a couple of California like so I’m working right now we, there is a coalition that was just started.

Leah 6:33

Not too long ago and I actually just got added as a member of it I’m one of six or seven members, and it’s the cannabis pharmacists Coalition of California. And we’re in the biggest reason why I’m really excited to be a part of it. And the biggest reason is I’ve been trying to find a group for forever, where the focus is fixing regulations and everything I seem to have jumped on every type of organization or call. A lot of them is focusing on cost regulations tax regulations, and I don’t And don’t get me wrong, I mean all of that is so important, It’s just, you know, my biggest thing is, if this was ever something toted as a medicine which it absolutely is and helps so many patients with so many different ailments. Why aren’t we having the Board of Pharmacy, which is the board representing medicine, You know, pharmacists, which represent medicine, why aren’t they involved and what we, what I learned is through this group is that sadly the board of pharmacy of California decided to step out and not be a part of this of this situation.

Honey

Oh my god.

Leah

Yep, so there is and this actually is not we’re not the only state there are other states where the Board of Pharmacy said the same thing this is going to be under the Food and Drug Administration. Under the pharmacy, who got to them, it’s, I personally, and, you know, and I’m sure I’m gonna get yelled out about it later but like the idea is it’s, from what I’ve been hearing from other pharmacists, it’s the desire to not want to be involved.

Honey 8:10

Oh that apathy thing.

Leah

It’s very involved that we have to find protocols we have to find regulations we have to do all this work, and they’re on the board of pharmacy members like yes they’re all very overloaded, that’s the first thing. But the second thing is a lot of them if not all of them have no knowledge of cannabis, how cannabis therapy, because it’s not required at any pharmacy school so I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s similar to a lot of the physicians that say the answer, I honestly don’t know much about it and I don’t feel comfortable being talking about it right. Right, I understand it, but then when it comes down to is, there are plenty of other pharmacists in the state that do work with it I mean there’s, I mean, Dr. Bonnie Goldstein is one of the most well known, you know, educators, and physicians, when it comes to the use of cannabis especially for pediatric and autistic patients and for many other things. She’s absolutely brilliant. And so, you know she would be a great person to reach out to me, she’s got many books which are awesome. So the way I think about it is, I don’t think that they did it to be harmful. I don’t think they did it to be mean I do think that it was an oversight that they didn’t work about how important it was for them to be involved, is what I think. So, this coalition is what we’re trying to do with this coalition is fix this issue, and to really you know, get the idea that because there was a I don’t um she’s on LinkedIn all the time so you might know her. Her name is, Ilana and I think it’s Goldstein as well.

Leah 9:48

She’s from I believe from Israel, she’s from the canagan I believe it’s called the nice people. But she either way she went to one of the dispensaries in a few of the dispensaries actually in San Francisco. And what she found by going there, just to clarify, her name is. I’m sorry, a lot of Goldberg, it’s El a Goldberg, and she is the CEO of Kent, Canada, cannot Gam Kenna can can Nigma sorry Can Nygma sorry, I apologize. Sorry, a lot of you’re listening this, but she’s amazing. She’s, she’s very well known, she’s very you know she’s, she’s, she’s doing a lot to really help the industry, and she came to San Francisco and even has in Rhoda entire like kind of posts or blog about the fact that you know the bud tender really tried and they got a lot of SLPs from the back and a lot of paperwork but the bud tenders really couldn’t help, and it’s not the bud tenders fault, It’s, it’s the regulations fall because the way I see bud tenders in a really positive way as I see them very much like a farm.

Honey 10:56

Oh, did I lose Yeah, I’m here. Can you hear me. There you go. You started to say, you see them as a, as a pharmacist, like almost like a pharmacy technician or, or as like, you know, an assistant.

Leah

Like, I think that they should be absolutely should they be trained and educated on, you know, don’t focus on the strains you’re focusing on the ratio of cannabinoids, I also think that, I mean California we test CBD we says THC. That’s if we say that there’s another cannabinoid in there that would test that I’ve never seen anything with like terpene ratios, where Connecticut, which I always touted being an really great example of cannabis infrastructure is what Connecticut’s doing and their packages every single product even if it says only has THC in it, we’ll still list every single cannabinoid every single terpene and list, what’s in there. And that’s what we really need because that’s how we, that’s how we as professionals know healthcare professionals in the cannabis field prescribe you know help educate and make suggestions or recommendations. But with all that stuff missing, it’s not really helpful. So really for a budtender, it’s not their fault they’re left with a lot of they’re left with a lot of empty information like they’re not left with info they’re missing stuff and, but then also, they’re not, you know, legally if you’re not a healthcare professional, you’re not allowed to educate on health care, things because what if you say oh well this is great for anxiety but little do you know that another medication they’re on my interacts with something for anxiety.

So Father Leah, I have to make a confession.

Leah

Okay.

Honey

All right, I’m really embarrassed about it and I got a huge smackdown over exactly what you just said, from our beloved Dustin Sulak in his brand new book. Have you read it yet?

Leah

I’m actually in it I mean, I’m a very slow reader, but I’m already in it I’m actually reading his and Dr Goldstein’s books.

Honey

I read hers, you know, not very long ago and and she just gobsmacked me, I agree with everything you say about Dr. Bonnie Goldstein… everybody should read every single word she ever writes, but oh my lord. Wait till you read Dustin… well you already know… because you know, Dustin, and

Honey 13:18

he was he was my teacher I got certified under him, you know, through his healer program, and, and then I wrote a book. Well, I sent it to my friend Dr Genester Wilson King for her to read.

Leah 13:34

She’s fantastic!

Honey

And I sent it to her before I published it… I haven’t published it yet. And I told her I was so excited because I was reading Dustin’s book, and she sent me back very cryptic note that said, “Honey, read every single word Dustin wrote with a fine-tooth comb, and then reread it!”

 And I went back with an open mind to his book, and I’d only got to chapter three. Anyway, so that was mostly just about the history and the politics and blah blah blah. I already knew all that. Yeah.

Honey 14:17

And so, I, I suddenly got into the clinical part of it. And I realized instantly. Oh my god, I couldn’t see the forest for the trees Leah!

Break

Promo 14:38

Hello, my friends, you have a unique opportunity to have a real pharmacist who is also a cannabis specialist, evaluate your prescription regimen to see if you can lessen the side effects of all those prescriptions. With cannabinoid therapy in mind.

Are you bothered by a bunch of pills that you have to take every day, just can’t get rid of those dang side effects and don’t know how to get through your day anymore you know it’s going to be lousy.

Yes, you could get any of your local pharmacists to evaluate all of those prescriptions, and you probably should. But they won’t have cannabinoid therapy understanding, like the fabulous Dr Laya.

Not only will she go over your entire medical history and current prescription regimen, she’ll work in concert with your primary care physician to tame your symptoms. And if needed, or so desired, try cannabis therapy to help. This is an affordable investment into lifting the quality of your life. All that mix ology in your tummy can be controlled with the help and knowledge of Dr. Leah.  Yeah you can get in touch with her now. You don’t have to wait.  You can send an email to drleah@alchemistcannabisconsulting.com. Don’t worry about spelling it. I’ll leave it for you in the podcast episode description. Okay, so just go look in the description. Up at the top or wherever, and you’ll see her name there, an email address but also… She said that you could text her!  That’s just mind boggling to me. I’ve never had any of my pharmacists or primary care physicians, give  me their cell phone number, I just find that amazing. So here it is. Area code 408-418-8802, again, it’ll be in the, in the podcast notes. She said it’s best to email her, if it’s not an emergency, but you can always text her, she said, “Don’t be shy!” And now, the gab continues.

Honey 17:22

I didn’t realize that after studying for so many years under scientists, then I’d had no connection to the actual patient, other than what was in the test tube and what they were finding and Dustin made me see so very clearly that it takes the patient, plus the primary care physician, and you told me this too the last time we spoke, they are the diagnosticians, that part of the puzzle.

Leah

You gotta have the diagnosis of those symptoms that you’re trying to quell, and somebody monitoring you because I mean,  I’m only a provider in the state of California and only under a physician’s license just a thing of pharmacists thing in California, but my biggest thing is I always say it’s like, that’s why I always get very frustrated on two things I get frustrated when people say, Okay, well, what dose should you start at… you know I have anxiety so what do you recommend as an anxiety dose for patients?

I go, Well, what meds are you on, what, what is your blood work look like? Do you have any side effects?  What is your what is your BP and enzymes, how are they functioning? Like there’s so much more to it and that people go, even physicians are like, Oh, I thought it was just like, you just add it to everything! I go, “No, you should never just add things you should always check and see cuz a lot of times it’s like a lot of times, one of my patients”.

I didn’t even get her on cannabis therapy because the second I changed her meds around better timing,  off with unnecessary meds, she’s fine. And that’s my biggest focus. I always explain to patients. And that’s why when people say, Oh, there are people I’ve run into who say, Oh, I’m a cannabis coach, okay great. And then I’m like, oh, you know, are you a healthcare professional nope not okay, that’s fine too. I mean there are people who are very knowledge and they I’ve known technicians that are smarter than the pharmacists they worked with, like, you know I always want to feel things out, I never want to assume, and then I’ll say, Okay, well, what do you do? Oh I recommend cannabis therapy to patients. Okay great. Do you look at their labs? No. Do you look at their other meds? No.

Leah 19:37

Okay, well how do you know if it interacts with that interaction. Oh, and it’s like, oh well, they you know, it’s like, well, how do you monitor their dose, I just ask them how they’re doing okay fine. Well, you know, have you checked to see, you know, what do you know to do if they take too much THC. Not really. I’ll just tell them take less I’m like well what do you do at that time when they have too much?

Leah 20:01

How do you control the THC? I don’t know…  I’m like whoa… okay like nothing against coaches, I think there are a lot of great coaches out there, but at the end of the day, everybody needs to in my opinion, know where their line is. My line is diagnostics. I will not be the one to tell you that I’m a diagnostician because I absolutely am not.

I will 100% go to your PA or NP your physician, they’re gonna know better than I am about diagnostics, right, but when it comes to meds, that’s my forte. So everybody just needs their health care. There are cannabis coaches, who go into the growing, and the cultivating which that’s also not my area so I don’t want to be, and I never want to be rude and say stay in your lane because everybody should, you know, strive to keep learning. But all in all, the biggest thing is if you have medical issues and your medications aren’t helping you… reach out to somebody who understands both meds.

Honey

There you go, the specialist. The problem is a lack of data we need to determine which chemovars are proper, no matter who you are. Yep. And we need everybody to understand that cannabis is not like normal meds. Tdechnically no medicine, in my opinion is actually used correctly, but like very few actually used correctly but in general, like, you know, I got a patient where more wasn’t better, you know, it’s like, oh it’s already doing this, if we add a little bit more, it will do the effect more…

Not cannabis products.

So, yeah, it’s like you know what Dr Leah… I’m in pain. Okay, well, you know, based off all your background, let’s start you on this dosage. How’s that working, it’s working pretty well. Okay, well, are you in as much pain?  Or do you still have pain? I still have pain.  Okay, well let’s up the dose a tiny bit. Next day, oh no, that was way worse I couldn’t sleep at all, it’s like, wait, the higher pain medication caused you to be in more pain, meaning that something is going on in the endocannabinoid system that we didn’t factor in. There could be so many things… it could be the type of pain. It could be the other meds being used for the pain, it could be so many things so to just blindly advise somebody without actually knowing patient care and medicine. It’s not that I don’t consider cannabis to be safe… and that’s why I definitely encourage people I’ve worked with… many different types I’ve worked with.

Leah 22:35

I’ve worked with teenagers, up to, you know, people as young as 15 and as old as 94 was my oldest so far.  So like, oh my goodness, even beforehand I was, I mean when I was in long term care of a lot of my patients were in their 100s but like one on one, you know.

Unknown 22:53

I’ve worked with people with MS, I’ve worked with people with cancer, I’ve worked with people with anxiety, schizoaffective disorder so many different ailments and one schizophrenic to another is not the same one as one depressive patients and another is not the same. So, you need to just kind of work with the patient and that’s what I always do is step by step I hold my patients hand and say, This is what we’re doing. Okay, great. How did that work. Great, okay, you’re doing more. This is what I think you should do, what are your thoughts, okay you agreed great do it let me know the next day how it went. And then I work with them on it. If the next day they say didn’t go well I figure out what happened, how we can improve it and go from there. Like, it’s, it’s like a daily change until they’re starting to get stable, and that’s the biggest thing, is if you’re not willing to work so closely with your patients then I wouldn’t recommend cannabis therapy. I wouldn’t recommend that that person advise on cannabis therapy. There really needs to be much more handholding, and they need to be made sure that they are monitoring stuff, especially their blood pressure and blood sugar, since some really strong and amazing cannabinoids, such as CBG, you know can affect your blood sugar in your blood pressure.

Honey 24:22

Cannaba Verum. All right friends. I’m sorry I had to interrupt but I’m sitting out back right now in post production of my two hour long gab with the fabulous Doctor Leah, you know, I can’t tell you how honored I am to be learning, under the tutelage of such smart women who have taken the lead in cannabis science to help all of us. It’s going to change the world. But back to why I had to interrupt.

Honey 24:54

I’m only bringing these to you in little, you know, small batches so that you can mull over what was said and think about it for a little, little while you know have had a little time to digest what was said. That always helps me to instead of just cram in the brain with, you know flashcards of information. So, I’m breaking up that wonderful conversation with Dr Leah and me, and I will present them to you in the next few episodes of the Cannaba Verum podcast. And listen, be sure and tell your friends who might be interested in the cannabis industry, and, you know, in any facet that they may have skills or talents you know. The industry is calling all of us. And with that, We’ll see you next time my friends Pax Vobiscum

Host: Honey 26:57

You’ve been listening to another Cannaba Verum podcast with 21st century cannabis shaman Honey Smith Walls, about the importance of using safe hemp and marijuana products. Unless otherwise proven by a reputable third party lab test, please be advised that all street weed is contaminated. It may do grave harm to a patient with a delicate immune system. I challenge you to check the veracity of my statements in each episode by checking the medical citations posted on my blog at Cannaba Verum.com.

That’s C A N N A B A   V E R U M.com

  1. plant specifically grows, the acid form, the THCa –  https://academic.oup.com/pcp/article/46/9/1578/1812749
  2. all street weed is contaminated: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5022003/
  3. Handbook of Cannabis for Clinicians, Practices and Principles by Dr. Dustin Sulak – https://www.amazon.com/Handbook-Cannabis-Clinicians-Principles-Practice/dp/0393714187 and healer.com
  4. Certificate of Analysis (COA) https://www.pharmtech.com/view/certificates-analysis-don-t-trust-verify

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