Curious about therapeutic cannabis?

March 2019 – Lauren Watson, Director of Education at Berkeley Patients Group joined us Around the Table last month to discuss therapeutic cannabis. Lauren, also our neighbor here in Sausalito, is a wealth of knowledge on THC, CBD and other cannabis extracts that are quickly becoming more accessible. Cannabis is commonly used to treat many conditions, including arthritis, chronic pain, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, PTSD and weight loss.

Of course cannabis can be taken in its complete form — by consuming or smoking marijuana. But cannabidinoids, which are compounds extracted from marijuana, can also be used separately to suit your specific needs. Two of the most prominent cannabidinoids are THC and CBD.

THC is the psychoactive component of cannabis, so in addition to its medicinal properties, it can also give you a high feeling. THC products are available at marijuana dispensaries like Berkeley Patients Group in Berkeley and Harvest in San Francisco.

CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning you won’t feel stoned when you use it. CBD is available in products like body creams, capsules, and drinks. It is used to relieve pain and anxiety. We carry a growing number of CBD products here at Driver’s.

Lauren’s advice:

Keep a journal. “Treatment requires an open mind, experimentation and careful documentation to be most effective,” said Lauren. Take an active role in your healing journey and document your therapy. Keep track of: • Type of product • Potency • Other medications or supplements • Feelings before consumption (such as pain or anxiety) • Dosage (drops, pieces, puffs) • Time and date • Feelings after consumption (feel great? too strong? have the munchies?) • Overall experience 1-10

Lauren’s suggests bringing your journal when visiting a dispensary, so you can discuss treatment with a trained staff person.

Ensemble effect. THC and CBD can be used together for improved medicinal impact.  Set up a consultation at a licensed dispensary like Berkeley Patients Group to learn which cannabis therapy is right for you.

Lauren recommends Dosist’s cannabis oil vaporizer pen which has a 2:1 THC:CBD ratio.

Get a medical recommendation. Nugg MD is an online service where you can get a medical recommendation from a doctor via video conference on your computer or phone. The cost is $39. Your recommendation will be emailed to you in 15 minutes, and an ID card sent to your home.

For serious conditions, Lauren recommends seeing Dr. Frank Lucindo, MD. Contact his office at 510-848-0958 or

Hemp: Source matters. Some products extract CBD from hemp oil, also derived from cannabis. Since hemp contains very little CBD, it requires large quantities of hemp to extract CBD. Hemp does a great job absorbing contaminants and pesticides from the soil, but those toxins could also make their way into your CBD. “Most hemp CBD has not been tested,” said Lauren. “Always check the source.” Lauren recommends researching CBD products before buying them so you know their potency and purity. Purchase CBD from a licensed retailer like Berkeley Patients Group or Harvest if you’re treating serious conditions.

Medical marijuana.  If you have a medical recommendation, you can order from Ona.Life for delivery to your home or office in Marin. Go to

Don’t combine cannabis with caffeine or alcohol.

Do have fun. Ensure a great experience by using cannabis in a comfortable place, like your home. Surround yourself with companions you’re comfortable with. Have water, snacks and calming activities on hand. Know your limits, and take consumption slowly, especially with edibles.

Too high? In case of over consumption, Lauren suggests taking CBD, smelling or chewing black pepper kernels, and relaxing.  Watch a funny cartoon — you’ll return to normal soon!


Additional Resources:

Berkeley Patients Group • 2366 San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley • 510-540-6013 •

Set up a free consultation: 510-540-6013 x 3 or email

Special thanks to:

Lauren Watson • Director of Education and Outreach •