Where and how did the use of hemp CBD originate? The answer is all over the world during different eras. To tell the story of the use of hemp CBD, we must also include some references to the discovery and use of cannabis. Here’s an abbreviated history detailing the origins of cannabis and hemp use. 

Cultivation dates back to between four and five thousand years ago. As early as 150 years BC, the Chinese culture used hemp to make paper. Hemp paper was durable, water-resistant and used to document works of art and scholarly text in ancient herbal medical textbooks. Some emperors used cannabis and hemp tea to treat their arthritis, gout, pain and memory disorders. There are reports the emperors’ doctors were the first to describe the medicinal properties of the cannabis and hemp plants. 

Nomadic tribes brought these plants to Central Asia, Korea, Japan and India from China. The Buddhists, as well as Hindu practitioners in India, embraced this plant medicine. Some of the ancient ayurvedic documents from India also documented the many uses of these two plants. 

The ancient Egyptians used both hemp and cannabis to reduce the growth of tumors, and Greek and Roman physicians prescribed them for many different ailments. 

Hemp’s popularity soon grew around the globe. These plants were also used in ceremonial rituals and for medicinal purposes in Africa, Arabia, and as far away as South and Central American cultures. The Spanish and the Portuguese brought cannabis and hemp from Africa to Brazil and other parts of Central and South America. From there, it spread to the Caribbean and up north into Mexico. 

Kánnavis is the Greek word for hemp and subsequently evolved into Latin as cannabis. Carolus Linnaeus, also known as the father of botany, chose the full name Cannabis sativa for the hemp plant. The terms sativa, sativus, and sativum are derived from the Latin word “cultivated.” Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, a botanical expert, noticed there were two distinct cannabis plants. The cannabis plant from Europe was very different from the one grown in Asia. He named the plant originating from India, Cannabis indica.

History shows us the use of hemp CBD is nothing new. We’ve had the knowledge all along about where, how, why and what the benefits are of using hemp CBD. Sometimes we simply need a reminder.

By Carmen Milagro

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