CBD American Shaman, a store selling items using cannabis-derived CBD, opened April 2 at 3702 W. Truman Blvd. in Jefferson City, following a trend of new shops across Missouri and nationwide marketing the hemp product.
The store offers a variety of products containing CBD (full name cannabidiol) that users say help with issues like arthritic pain, anxiety and difficulty sleeping.
Congress legalized hemp, including its products like CBD, with the 2018 Farm Bill. Under the law, hemp is defined as cannabis and cannabis derivatives with no more than 0.3 percent of the psychoactive compound THC, according to the Food and Drug Administration. The limit means use of hemp or CBD will not result in a head high or addiction.
Still, the belief CBD is illegal continues to exist, Charlene Pingleton, store manager for the Jefferson City location of American Shaman, said.
"Right now, what were doing is kind of education more than anything else," she said.
Charlene's father, Charlie Pingleton, of California, opened the franchise after having personal success with CBD products. Charlie has rode motorcycles for years, resulting in pain in his hands, Cheryl Pingleton, another daughter of Charlie's, said.
"That's how he came across CBD, and it helped him a lot," Cheryl said. "He's going to be 80 this year, and he still rides. And he said that, you know, it's just helped him incredibly."
Among American Shaman's products is "The Cloud," a tincture which is water-soluble and can be used in vape pens. Charlene said customers have reported the product has lowered anxiety, improved focus, helped with sleep and provided pain relief. It is the store's most diverse product, she added.
Other products include capsules, gummies, cookies, honey sticks, candy, face products, lotions and bath bombs.
For pain relief, Charlene said, some customers are switching to CBD, which is not addictive, from opioids.
"What's really up and coming is for your pets," Charlene said. The store has animal treats which may decrease a dog's separation anxiety, help with hip pain or reduce seizures.
By establishing a CBD shop in Jefferson City, the business hopes to give shoppers a better alternative than driving to another city like Columbia.
"They're like, 'You know, I don't mind going to Columbia once in a while to pick up stuff,' but they were just so happy that there was something here that they can just pop in," Charlene said.
While CBD is legal, the product falls under FDA oversight. FDA requires cannabis products marketed with claims of therapeutic benefits to be approved by the FDA before being introduced to interstate commerce.
It is also "unlawful to introduce food containing added CBD into interstate commerce, or to market CBD or THC products as dietary supplements," FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said in a Tuesday statement announcing a public hearing May 31 on how CBD will be regulated in the future.
Gottlieb told Congress earlier this year that enforcement of that law is being limited to sellers who make false health claims.
The lack of regulations has led to online sellers and small pharmacies selling products that falsely report how much CBD is used, causing issues for the entire industry, Charlene said. American Shaman's products are third-party tested, she added.
If a person interested in taking CBD is concerned about health issues, Charlene said, they should speak to their physician before trying it. People on other medications, in particular blood thinners, should also follow that advice, she added.
According to MedlinePlus, the online information service produced by the U.S. National Library of Medicine, CBD is likely effective for treating epilepsy, having been shown to reduce seizures in adults and children.
Early reports indicate CBD may help with insomnia, psychotic symptoms in Parkinson's disease and quitting smoking. There are conflicting reports on its effectiveness regarding social anxiety disorder and reducing symptoms of multiple sclerosis.
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This article was edited at 2 p.m. April 8, 2019, to add the store's address.