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How Does CBD Work?

What is CBD?

This is a question we hear frequently at Sonder Grace. In many cases CBD is misunderstood and sometimes unheard of all together. CBD stands for cannabidiol and is a compound found  in both hemp and cannabis plants that has medicinal effects.  CBD does not make people feel “stoned” and actually counters some of the effects of THC.  CBD is one of the many active cannabinoids identified in the cannabis plant and is a major phytocannabinoid, accounting for up to 40% of the plant’s extract.

How Does CBD Work?

The Endocannabinoid System is why CBD works in our bodies.  Cannabinoid receptors, located throughout the body, are part of the Endocannabinoid System.

There are two cannabinoid receptors in the body.  The first discovery was CB1, predominantly present in the nervous system, connective tissues, gonads, glands, and organs; and CB2, predominantly found in the immune system and its associated structures. Many tissues contain both CB1 and CB2 receptors, each linked to a different action.

The graphic below helps to understand just how many receptors humans have in our bodies.


endocannabinoid system

graphic credit: folium biosciences

So what does it mean to have a cannabinoid system inside the body? It means that we were designed to regularly supply our Endocannabinoid System with the nutrients it was designed for, in support of vital communications between the control centers of the body and every other system.

If this communication is happening consistently, the body is back on balance!  CBD is that vital nutrition.

The Benefits of CBD

As you can see from above, the cannabinoid receptors and other enzymes are involved in an increasing number of pathological conditions. When we are feeling stressed and run down or we are experiencing less than ideal sleep patterns, our system is out of balance.  Unfortunately, some of us know too well how things like sleep, anxiety, pain and stress are all  tied to one another.  When one thing like anxiety is present, so too is insomnia or chronic pain.  This is were CBD can help to restore the balance.  As more and more research emerges, it is thought we will find even more benefits to supplementing with CBD oil. Though individual results may vary, here is an overview of how CBD can be helpful for the following:

 Anxiety relief
• Pain relief
• Stress Management
• Improving symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
• Helping improve sleep
• Anti-seizure
• Immune health
• Acts as a neuroprotective (which is important for the following conditions: Alzheimer’s
disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s disease)
• Anti-acne
• Weight loss

CBD is safe for the whole family and the latest research continues to validate this fact[1].  Unlike synthetic pharmaceuticals, there are no safety issues to cause concern when taking CBD.


  1. Acute effects of a single, oral dose of d9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) administration in healthy volunteers.   2012;18(32):4966-79.


* These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease and have not been evaluated by the FDA.


CBD Paleo Perfect Pancakes

These paleo pancakes are super delicious, gluten-free and vegan. They are also the perfect weekend breakfast if you are following an anti-inflammatory diet. It only took me a few minutes to whip them up and each pancake has approximately 3-4 mg of organic, full-spectrum Sonder Grace Lemon Flavored CBD Oil tincture.  Fun fact: Research shows cannabinoids can stop inflammation by activating CB2 receptors found in the endocannabinoid system*.

This is my favorite product we sell because it is so delicious.

Vegan, Paleo and Gluten Free, Makes ~6 smallish pancakes cakes.


1 1/4 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 TBSP freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 droppers of 250 MG Sonder Grace Hemp Oil tincture – Lemon Flavor
1 TBSP coconut oil (melted) + more for cooking
1 TBSP maple syrup
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup  almond flour
1 TSP baking soda
1/2 TSP salt
Maple syrup and fresh fruit for topping


Whisk together almond milk, lemon juice, CBD oil, melted coconut oil and maple syrup.  In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients, coconut flour, almond flour, baking soda and salt.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry.  Mix well, but don’t overdo it.

Start a griddle or large non-stick pan on medium heat.  Add coconut oil to coat so your pancakes will not stick.  Avoid making your pancakes too thick.  Cook on both sides until golden brown.  Serve with lots of fruit (especially blueberries to increase the anti-inflammatory benefits) and maple syrup.

*see all the latest studies on CBD and inflammation

Vegan Energy Blend Coffee with Sonder Grace CBD Oil

Whether you are going to work, workout or tote around your littles, this coffee is the best way to start the day.  It is so completely delicious and is packed with nutritional benefits including Sonder Grace CBD oil that our nutritionist, Elaine, outlines below. Enjoy!


8-12 oz. Organic coffee (brewed) 

1/2-1 tbsp MCT oil- we love Bulletproof XCT Oil (*you can start with 1/2 tbsp if your body is not used to large amounts of fat at a time)

1-2 tbsp organic full fat coconut milk (to taste)

1 dropper Sonder Grace Peppermint CBD oil tincture

2 tsp raw organic cacao (optional)


Take all ingredients and blend in a high speed blender for 30 sec and enjoy immediately.  You may want to start with half the amount of fat if you are sensitive to the coffee (experiencing slight nausea at first).

Health Benefits of Energy Blend Coffee

  • Fat Loss- Daily consumption of medium-chain triglyceride oil (MCT), found in coconut and palm oils, has been shown to help with fat loss and results in less weight gain.
  • More Energy – MCT oil is metabolized more efficiently into ketone energy.  Ketones are what the body produces when it’s using fat for energy instead of glucose.
  • Gain Muscle – Both exercise and caffeine (from coffee in this case) raise cellular energy in the body while simultaneously inhibiting your “muscle building mechanisms” (mTOR) for a brief period of time.  This causes our muscle building potential to “spring back” and build even more muscle as soon as you eat. There are 3 known ways to raise mTOR: Intermittent fasting, exercise, and caffeine.


PubMed Anticancer Agents Med Chem. 2010 Sep;10(7):571-81

Geliebter A, et al. Overfeeding with medium-chain triglyceride diet results in diminished deposition of fat. Am J Clin Nutr. (1983) 

All other studies can be found through https://examine.com/supplements/mcts/

Paleo Ramen Noodles in Slow Cooker Chicken Bone Broth

This recipe was created by our Nutritionist, Elaine.  It fits into so many spectacular nutrition categories, such as Paleo, Detoxifying and Gluten Free, but the best part is that it resembles comfort food and tastes delicious.


Makes 4 servings

12 oz kelp noodles Sea Tangle – Kelp Noodles – 3 Pack – 12 oz. each
2-4 cups Slow Cooker Bone Broth
3 cups sliced vegetables (we like carrots, mushrooms, zucchini, onions and jalapeno* (*Optional)
Sliced  lime (optional)
2 T cilantro for garnish


There are many ways you can assemble your ramen bowl.  We steamed all the vegetables for about 15 minutes to soften in a 5-Quart Food Steamer.  While vegetables are steaming, combine noodles and broth in sauce pan and heat until desired temp and noodles are soft about 15 minutes at a medium heat.  If you are making slow cooker bone broth  you can also add the kelp noodles about 3 hours before to soften them. Once the noodles are soft and broth is hot, divide into 4 portions and add desired veggies.  Ladle bone broth and kelp noodles into each bowl and top with vegetables and garnish with cilantro. Squeeze a ¼ lime over top and season with salt and pepper to taste.

You can also arrange veggies and chicken in a fun way to make it a ramen “bar” and let your family or guests pick and chose their own combinations.  I topped mine with sriracha sauce (link to our favorite Non-GMO sriracha) for some extra spice.

Supplemental Equivalents for the days you want the benefits, but do not have time to cook:

All supplements can be purchased through our DFH Select Store or the individual supplement links below. There are many times we can not consume a fresh cup of bone broth or maybe you’re a vegetarian* and it’s not your thing, we have some supplement recommendations that can help keep you going:

Amino Acid Synergy:  Amino Acid Synergy is useful as a general supplement for individuals whose diets are insufficient in quality protein, such as athletes who require additional amino acids to maintain or achieve greater lean body mass, and for those who have confirmed amino acid deficiencies from metabolic testing. Amino Acid Synergy provides a mixture of essential amino acids in the free-form, meaning they are immediately available for absorption and can be put to metabolic use much more readily and rapidly, as compared to amino acids contained in dietary protein.

  • vegetarian friendly

PurePaleo™ Protein is a novel, great-tasting, dairy-free protein powder, yielding 21 g of protein per serving.  It contains HydroBEEF™, a highly concentrated, pure beef protein, produced through an exclusive proprietary process that allows the protein to be hydrolyzed into more peptides, resulting in easier absorption and assimilation. This product contains beef from animals raised in Sweden without hormones or antibiotics, and is free of any GMO grains, grasses, and/or ensilage.

GI Revive offers comprehensive support for optimum gastrointestinal health and function. The lining of the gut must have proper permeability and integrity so it can not only absorb nutrients, but also prevent toxins, allergens and microbes from gaining access to the blood stream. Maintaining gut health is the key to maintaining overall wellness.

Getting Your Head in Shape: 5 Apps for Meditation

If you have not already jumped on the meditation train, these apps can get you up and running quickly and easily. You will enjoy the benefits of living the mindful, stress-free existence you have only dreamed about. Or maybe you haven’t been dreaming because you haven’t been sleeping. Meditation can help with your sleep routine as well. In fact, studies show that it has benefits in many areas of health and lifestyle challenges like anxiety, depression, chronic pain, Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and even weight loss.  This guide below will help you chose the right app for those just getting started or the experience Meditator wanting to change up their practice.


Headspace is listed first because it is my favorite. I have a thing for soothing male British accents. It is also highly rated by others on both Apple and Android.  You can get started for free with the Basics pack and then once you are hooked, you pay an auto renew subscription for 100s of meditation packs geared towards a variety of life challenges like relationships, better sleep, better performance and more.  You can even share your progress with your friends to help you stay in practice. In the latest version they have included lots of new content to help your kids get into a better headspace as well.  It is not cheap at $12.99 monthly or $94.99 annually, but if you get hooked your hippocampus will thank you

Meditation Studio

Developed by Gaiam Brands, Meditation Studio lets you choose your style of meditation. It has won oodles of awards, including Apple’s 10 best apps of 2016. In a 2016 interview with Forbes Magazine, Gaiam’s Chief Operating Officer, Cyd Crouse talks about what makes Meditation Studio is unique. “Our uniqueness is that we don’t just have one voice or one teacher that reads a script.Our teachers teach based on their passion, expertise and experience. Next is our content depth — we have in-depth courses on topics like Meditation Essentials and Uncovering Happiness, as well as over 160 solution focused meditations.” The price of Meditation Studio can not go unmentioned. There is no try before you buy, but who cares at $3.99 with no subscription fee. It’s a no brainer to get your brain in shape.


If you miss your Mom reading to you at bedtime, your should check out this app. Calm covers all the basis of improving different areas of your life through the practice of meditation, but also dives into better sleep with various aids, including over 50 adult bedtime stories. You can track your progress, improve your breathing technique and once you are an expert, use Calm’s timed unguided meditation feature. You can try before you buy, but once your hooked you will have to subscribe $12.99 monthly or $59.99 annually. 


Described as meditation on the go, buddhify is for the busiest of peeps, trying to achieve bit of nothingness in their otherwise chaotic existences. It caters to 15 different parts of your day including traveling, being online, taking a work break and going to sleep. The founder of Mindfulness Everywhere, the makers of buddhify, Rohan Gunatillake, is a modern urbanite from Glasgow. Rohan believes in using everything around us as a prompt for mindfulness, calm and compassion.  He was also named by Wired Magazine in their Smart List of 50 people who will change the world. buddhify is hugely accessible to everyone at the price of $4.99 for everything. No subscription required.

Stop Breathe & Think

With over, 55 guided meditations, friend sharing and an emotion tracker, Stop, Breath & Think (SBT), covers the basis and then some when setting out to deliver a comprehensive Meditation app. It checks in with you through a short survey to find out what kind of mood you are in and then leads you to a meditation to accommodate that mood. I love the thought SBT makers put into its mission by giving back. Not only are they helping their users achieve a greater state of mind, but the company is also sharing 10% of our net revenue with Tools for Peace, a non-profit dedicated to helping at-risk youth experience the benefits of mindfulness and meditation. SBT is free to start, but if you really want to dive in you will subscribe $9.99 monthly or $72 annually.

As first seen by Kathleen Tremblay on everandivy.com

Meditation For a Better Day

When you hear the word meditate, you may think of a robed man in a Himalayan temple.  Or perhaps you think of an angular women sitting in lotus with her fingers on the edge of her knees channeling peace and tranquility.  You would not be wrong on both accounts, but these days you should also include your Uber driver, rock stars, and your Aunt Betty when classifying your stereotypes of the typical meditator.

Who doesn’t want a more stress free existence?  Recent studies have shown meditation to help decrease anxiety, depression, some GI disorders, chronic pain, high blood pressure and even Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD).  It can help aid in sleep disorders and post traumatic stress and the list goes on.

In a 2014 study over an 8-week period, a Harvard-affiliated team of researchers based at Massachusetts General Hospital relied MRI scans to track changes in the brain.  The results showed that meditation produced significant increase in grey matter of the hippocampus.  The hippocampus is the part of our brain that is responsible for compassion, empathy and self-awareness.  All of the stuff that makes us good people and makes us feel good as people. 

“Although the practice of meditation is associated with a sense of peacefulness and physical relaxation, practitioners have long claimed that meditation also provides cognitive and psychological benefits that persist throughout the day,” says study senior author Sara Lazar of the MGH Psychiatric Neuroimaging Research Program and a Harvard Medical School instructor in psychology.  In other words, it’s been scientifically proven that if you start your day with meditation it will go way better.

Now that I have convinced you of the benefits, you may be asking how you get started. Or maybe you are the “try before you buy” type. How do you go about just testing out the practice?  Here are 5 tips to getting started for the meditation rookie:

  1. Use a guided meditation App. This is a great place to start because you have a soothing voice in your ear guiding you through the process and, in most cases, helping you learn how to get the best out of your time meditating. Headspace is my personal favorite.
  2. Pick a comfortable spot.  It’s hard to do anything when you are not comfortable especially emptying your mind and focusing on your breath. You don’t want to spend your precious meditation minutes focused on why your back hurts.  Use pillows or even a chair in a quiet place to get comfortable. 
  3. Meditate at the same time everyday.  Meditating at the same time everyday makes it part of your routine and you will be more likely to build a daily practice. Many experienced meditators practice first thing in the morning when the mind is most clear and the belly is empty.  It provides a great way to start off the actions of the day, however trivial or monumental, in a mindful way. 
  4. If it’s not working for you, change it.  The sooner the better.  If you are not connecting with your guided meditation app or your spot is not working or you find yourself looking at the stock market exchange or nursing your baby more in the morning than meditating, change it.  Find a new app, new time or new place.  Keep trying and you will eventually find the formula that works for you.
  5. Let go of control. We can’t control what thoughts pop into our head, but we can accept the thoughts and move on.  Meditation is about acceptance and acknowledgment of the moment – not control.  Your practice will be much better if you remember this from the very beginning. 


Chen KW, Berger CC, Manheimer E, et al. Meditative therapies for reducing anxiety: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Depression and Anxiety. 2012;29(7):545–562.

Brook RD, Appel RJ, Rubenfire M, et al. Beyond medications and diet: alternative approaches to lowering blood pressure: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association. Hypertension. 2013;61(6):1360–1383.


As First Seen On EveryAndIvy.com

5 Baby Steps Towards a Year of Balance

Today at the gym the trainer running the class looked and me and said, “too much holidays.”  He is a Ukrainian and his English is still emerging, but I think he hit the nail on the head.  I am not sure if he was looking at the solid 5 lbs I gained or the fact that I am still walking funny from Wednesday’s class.  Either way, he was so right.  Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year are heavily celebrated in our house which means lots of friends, family, cooking, baking and cocktail making.  Having family visiting kept me from the gym on a regular basis.  Now, here I am feeling sluggish and sore while trying to get back into my normal routine of eating and working out.  In a way I  am grateful for all the overindulgence of friends and food, but in another way I want to find the key to bringing in balance over the holidays.  My personal edit for the year is “balance” and here is my plan to achieving it.

As many of you know the key to feeling great and fit, is not just about working out, but about the balance of healthy personalized nutrition with a realistic approach to everything that life throws us.  My steps towards balance for 2018 are in a way resolutions, but really I am just seizing the opportunity to reset a few things in hopes that they are sustainable. Here are my 5 baby steps to balance for my mind and body.

  1. Detox.  This is always a great way to reset after the holidays.  A detox is not about starving yourself, it is about eliminating things like alcohol and sugar – two of my favorite things.  I am starting this 5-day Goop Annual Detox with three other friends on Sunday so we can support each other and share some of the meal prep.
  2. Switch the Drink. This is, of course, a post detox strategy.  Sometimes I find myself in a social situation and I have had just enough alcohol that having another one seems like a great idea.  Switching it up while still having a drink in your hand is the key.  Whether it is decaf coffee, tea or sparkling water in a wine glass, I am going to “cut myself off.”  It will eliminate unnecessary calories and my morning self will thank me.  And I know that I will have just as much fun.  I know what you are thinking, I should just skip the alcohol all together, but I want my steps to be realistic.
  3. Better Sleep.  This is the holy grail of many women I know.  We are constantly searching for the formula for better sleep.  Supplementing with CBD Oil has truly changed my sleep for the better.  I am going to take it a step further and get rid of my screens 30 minutes before I sleep.  I have read many articles that reference blue screens suppressing melatonin.  I am going to jump on this train and see where it takes me.
  4. Low or No Carb Dinner.  This goes back to personalized nutrition.  \Over the holidays, I fell off my wagon.  “Why?”  I ask myself.  I know how good this makes me feel and it is the one of the major habits that helps me maintain weight.
  5. Tidying Up the Closet.  My friend calls this the KonMari in reference to the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, the hit book by Marie Kondo.  It is the equivalent of Detoxing your diet and though you may think this one is for your house, it is really for your mind.  Now I  am not going to go all crazy and KonMari my house because that is a bit extreme and I am trying to find balance.  I am however, going to take stock of my closet.  I am going to eliminate anything I haven’t touched in a while or that “does not bring me joy.”  The clutter has been bother me lately.  So what has been bother you?

My 5 Baby Steps to Balance – I have written them down and thrown them to the universe.  Now it’s your turn.  Write yours down and leave them on the comments – or just put pen to paper.  You have to check back for January updates on how I am doing.

Become a Sonder Grace Member Consultant

Join us is spreading the word about why we love CBD Oil. Our mission is to bring organically grown, pure, no THC, great tasting, full-spectrum hemp oil with naturally occurring CBD to everyone. With amazing health benefits and little to no adverse affects, it makes it one of the greatest supplements you can feed your body. We strive to build a team of consultants that provide education on CBD, nutrition, health and fitness so that we can all stay informed and balance together.

CBD Chocolate Mint Truffles

CBD Chocolate Mint Truffles include Sonder Grace Peppermint flavored CBD tincture. Including CBD adds a superfood ingredient to your recipes. Sonder Grace certified no-THC, Organic CBD oil is an excellent source of nutrients. CBD Oil can be safely consumed by kids and adults as part of a daily diet and has so many benefits! 

So why not cook with it? 

The CBD Chocolate Mint truffle recipe was created by our nutritionist, Elaine.  First, they taste amazing and I am picky when it comes to “healthy” treats or desserts.  Secondly, the truffles are packed with superfoods and are low in carbohydrates.  Finally, they are so easy to make.  They only require chilling. No baking.  CBD Chocolate Mint Truffles Recipe 

Makes ~12 truffles, one inch truffles 


1 c coconut oil, melted

1 tbsp honey, maple syrup or alternative sweetener equivalent

3 tsp monk fruit

1/4 c almond butter

1/2 c raw cacao powder

1tsp vanilla extract.

2 droppers Sonder Grace 250 mg Hemp Oil Tincture – Peppermint Flavor* (optional)

2 drops peppermint essential oil (optional) we use Doterra essential oil bc it is food grade.


  • Melt coconut oil and add all of the following to a vitamix or high speed blender: honey or sweetner, monk fruit , almond butter, raw cacao powder, vanilla extract.
  • Blend until smooth and poor into an 8×8 glass baking sheet and let cool in the fridge at least an hour.
  • When cool cut into 12 equal small squares and let sit on the counter to soften up (around 5 minutes) then roll each square into balls and dip in raw cacao nibs, cocoa powder, hemp seeds or coconut.  We like to make a variety of all 4.

*Note: if using CBD each truffle will have roughly 1-2 mg CBD based on this recipe

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