Hemp CBD has positive health benefits. Cassandra Hope’s journey to healing from severe anxiety and chronic infections illustrates this from a personal standpoint.
Thirty-six-year-old Cassandra Hope is a happy, healthy registered holistic nutritionist (RHN.) She is also a certified life coach, and a certified personal trainer, based out of Leslieville, Toronto. Cassandra is also the founder of The IBS Academy & the founder of Healthstyle by Cassandra Hope. She is an award-winning entrepreneur (Notable.ca 2015 entrepreneur of the year). Today, Cassandra lives a positive, uplifting, and spiritual life in Toronto. But, this hasn’t always been the case.
Cassandra had to learn to overcome a lot of personal hardships – including mental health challenges and chronic infections. In the beginning, life was tough for Cassandra whose mother suffered from alcoholism. 21% of the Canadian population is at risk or suffering alcoholism. The disease impacts not only those who have it but also hurts those around them.
The root of all issues
Cassandra was no exception. She had to grow up quickly and take care of herself as her mom couldn’t do so. At the age of 10, she watched her parent’s relationship fall apart. Her mother quickly moved into a relationship with another man, who after a few short weeks, turned out to be mentally and physically abusive.
For two years, Cassandra sat by and wondered whether her mother would feed her. She didn’t know if there would be enough money for hydro. She could have been woken up in the middle of the night to acts of violence so horrific they are unimaginable to the average person.
Thankfully, after two years, Cassandra reached out to her father to seek safety. At the tender age of 12, Cassandra would say her last goodbye to her mother.
Her life improved with her father, but the lack of nurturing in those early years would severely impact her emotional development. Eventually, she developed high anxiety, depression, insomnia, and unhealthy relationships. All these symptoms reflect post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As she got older, Cassandra eventually chose to self-medicate, using high amounts of alcohol and a variety of drugs to ease her pain and suffering.
Anxiety takes over Cassandra’s life
Drugs and alcohol are a fairly typical mix for those in their 20’s, but for Cassandra, her usage was excessive. She was unable to turn it off, and her anxiety was overwhelming, sometimes leaving her bedridden for entire days at a time.
In her 30’s she knew she wanted to change. Cassandra wanted to live and wanted to clean up the “mess” she created for herself. In addition to her mental health, she knew she was suffering physically. Eventually, the Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) was the diagnosis for her symptoms.
From her family history, she knew she was vulnerable to addiction and chose to do some genetic testing to identify her susceptibility. At no surprise, the results determined that Cassandra had the at-risk allele for the gene associated with an inability to bind dopamine in the brain efficiently. This created a failure to carry dopamine for an average amount of time – leaving her at risk to addiction in times of stress.
Cassandra’s journey to recovery
As she started her journey to recovery, she first tried Neurofeedback Therapy which is direct training of the brain to function more efficiently. Observing the brain waves and actions from one moment to the next, rewards the brain for changing its own activity to more appropriate patterns through a gradual learning process. Neurofeedback trains self-regulation, which is a necessary part of proper healthy brain function. Self-regulation training allows the central nervous system to function more efficiently.
Cassandra had great success with this therapy, but it still didn’t get her to where she wanted to be. She continued to suffer physically with digestive issues and decided to meet a homeopathic and naturopathic doctor. But the recommended health plan still wasn’t working. She continued to suffer from intermittent IBS, sleeplessness, and anxiety. For Cassandra, her biggest desire was to only “hold down a job.”
She then began the SIBO program, which is a restore program for those with stomach problems and IBS. It provides the tools, products, and motivation in a step-by-step system to reduce symptoms of stomach issues. The program works to improve gut health for the long-term and develop the necessary habits to prevent a recurrence.
After completing the program, Cassandra felt relief in all areas of her life. She was able to identify that the IBS was a root cause of much of her emotional and mental health difficulties. For the first time, she was excited to have recognized a solution finally. She could work all day without needing a nap and be addiction-free. But, she still had inflammation; creating poor ventilation for toxins. This would mean, that while she had significant improvement and relief, she would again go through regular cycles of feeling poorly.
Relief from pain with hemp CBD capsules
During the summer of 2017, Cassandra started smoking cannabis with her boyfriend. In a few short weeks, she began to experience feelings of depression. Cassandra stopped immediately. While she reflected on those weeks, she realized that all her IBS symptoms had disappeared. Meaning, her stress levels were low, the nervous system was calm and generally felt pretty well.
She knew she needed to investigate. This was the first time she had experienced this level of relief. She completed some research and identified that cannabis increases melatonin but reduces serotonin – the reason for her depression. So, continuing to smoke, it was not an option. With the vast array of cannabis options available, she decided to seek help and recommendations for the right product. This would lead her to hemp CBD capsules.
“The instant results were amazing,” said Cassandra. “I had high energy levels, and all my symptoms disappeared. I was finally at 100% that I had wished to be at for so long.”
Cassandra takes one pill at the end of her day, and it helps her sleep, “like a baby.”
She has been taking the hemp CBD capsules for six months and says the results are “undeniable.” For her, PTSD created a downstream effect on all areas of her health. She did everything she could to respond to the stress. Pharmaceutical medication, healthy diet, active lifestyle, and spiritual healing – but nothing seemed to work fully. The personally identified treatment finally gave her the relief she had sought after.
Now, Cassandra hopes to help break the stigma against this therapeutic plant and hemp CBD. She wants to support people in changing their perceptions and help them understand the true abilities it has, including inspiring – hope.