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    The Cannabis and women learning curve

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    April Pride, right, founder of Van der Pop with Olivia Harris, head of brand for Levo oil infuser.

    If the year 2019 can be described in one word it’s this: Cannabis.

    From history to food to drinks to makeup, medicine, recreational, philanthropic – you name it, cannabis is in there. And it’s only February.
    Now that the evocative herb has been legally entrenched into our Canadian boundaries – and edibles coming in the spring – who doesn’t want to discuss weed?
    April Pride wants discussions taking place coast to coast. The founder of Van der Pop, one of North America’s most popular female-focused cannabis brands, was in Toronto recently to head up the company’s Women & Weed Summit, a free education series that addresses questions around cannabis education and consumption “as it relates to sex, parenting, fitness and cooking,” says Pride.
    The summit featured prominent women in the cannabis industry and included such speakers as Dr. Carlen Costa, who discussed the role of cannabis and sex, Ashleigh Brown on cannabis and parenting, and Olivia Harris on how to cook with cannabis as well as to discuss the LEVO patented kitchen appliance that, although it looks like a coffee maker, actually infuses oil and butter at home without the mess.
    This was Pride’s fourth sold-out event that Van der Pop hosted, following similar events in Vancouver, Winnipeg and Calgary.
    Pride, a tall, elegant former model and designer, advocates for clearer understanding of the role of cannabis in today’s society, guidance for women who choose to pursue cannabis as a profession, and for the benefits through personal consumption. What she has found throughout her travels is women want more information: “Women are interested in knowing the proper protocol – everything from personal usage to how to discuss it at home with your children.”
    Plus, cannabis differs between men and women, says Pride. “Cannabis affects women differently. Their hormones are different – cannabis impacts a woman’s pelvic region,” she notes, adding that women can have a completely different reaction than men.
    And women are still shying away from use, she says. “Despite legalization, women are still abstaining from consuming cannabis due to a lack of understanding and awareness about how to go about obtaining or using it,” says Pride, who carried out a pre-legalization survey that showed 70% of women believe cannabis consumption carries a stigma.

    Yet, her findings also revealed 1.5 million Canadian women are interested in how it complements exercise, not to mention such activities as sleeping better and having better sex. Pride’s research found that 87% of women who use cannabis as a sexual aid find it effective. (Recent findings led by the Stanford University of Medicine found that cannabis use can increase sex drive but not hinder performance.)
    Top reasons for women’s interest in cannabis? “Anxiety, pain management, stress and relaxation,” says Pride. Areas open for discussion? “Talk to your kids! It’s time for serious discussion – and understanding that cannabis is legal to those 19 years and older. That said, it’s never too early to talk about how to (do) it responsibly.”
    Do parents really want to sit down and share some weed with their adult children? “It’s uncharted territory and one up for much discussion.” Dialogue is key, adds Pride.
    “People are curious,” says Pride, who brought along a variety of cannabis essentials, including rolling papers, grinder cards and a gorgeous “Poppins Stash Bag” that came with special features including a discreet combination code lock. “We went to Italy to find the right designer for the bag,” said Pride. “Cannabis is a culture, a lifestyle, and people are looking to make the right choices, and find the best information to suit their own quality of life, whether they use it in food, medicine or to just socialize.”

    Last edited by Dr.Chas-THC; 02-15-2019 at 03:21 AM.
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