If you have been around cannabis for any amount of time you have heard of RSO, or Rick Simpson Oil, and I hope you have checked out what it is and his amazing story. If not, let’s take a quick moment to discuss who Rick Simpson is, and what he created. Rick Simpson is a long time cannabis activist from Canada who suspected the oils in his glass topped vaporizer might have some medicinal use, so he collected them and to make a long story short, he was correct! After years of purification, trial and error, and using his concentrated oils on his own skin cancer’s and others, in 2003 the famous Rick Simpson Oil came to be known (phoenixtears.ca; Hanna, 2018; Rough, 2020). The evidence continues to be anecdotal, as there hasn’t been any specific research done, to my knowledge, at this point on RSO alone, but patients report it helps with not just Cancer, but Multiple Sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, asthma, anxiety, depression, chronic pain, inflammation, Parkinsion’s, skin ailments and a wide variety of other conditions (Sraders, 2018). The original oil produced by Simpson was made using a variety of Indica plants so the oil would be packed with a wide variety of cannabinoids, not just one. Today, unfortunately, most of the products carrying the “RSO” name are strain specific, made using other methods, and are often lacking the chlorophyll which is known to have it’s own tumor fighting capabilities, in reasonably small amounts, according to a study from Oregon State University (Bailey, 2012). This is one of the reasons you can visit Rick Simpson’s website, pick up his book, or even check out Leafly and find his original recipe to make your own RSO at home to ensure the highest quality of your medication. So, you wonder why I bothered to make this post, other than to just tell you what RSO is, and to say it has a lot of benefits, well, there is a recent trend of products that say they are RSO, but in all reality they are far from it. The first clue that there has to be something going on in the cannabis world in regards to RSO is the disclaimer on Rick Simpson’s websites that reads, “
The only way to know that you have the real thing, is to produce the proper oil yourself.
There are many criminals who say that they are producing RSO, and who are using Rick’s name. Rick Simpson has no connection with these suppliers…(phoenixtears.ca)
In December I started to use RSO on a daily basis, instead of just an occasional thing because I realized how much it was helping my body. My pain stays at a point it is manageable, my muscles function better and I think my mood is more stable when I take my three, rice-sized doses a day, not to mention it seriously cuts down on the need to medicate every few hours for breakthrough symptoms as well! I was lucky enough to be directed to a good source early on, a place who believed in what Rick Simpson had done and the healing power in the oils he had created, but shortly there after I began to notice the market being flooded with other RSO’s carrying hefty prices, for a product, as we all now know, can be made at home rather inexpensively. So I began to ask questions, sometimes HARD questions to companies, dispensary Managers and brand representatives. Questions like….”Do you remove the fats and lipids? I don’t have a gall bladder, I need the fats to help me process the product.” “Do you remove the chlorophyll?” Many times, people didn’t actually know the answer and I found myself educating people about fats and lipids, chlorophyll and RSO. In my head I kept thinking to myself, isn’t this what you should know if you are making something bearing the name?!?!?!?!
The process that Simpson created, by nature, strips the terpenes and flavanoids from the oil, but not the chlorophyll. Yet, you will find products on the market that say they have high terpenes and flavanoids, and are missing the chlorophyll. While I am sure these products have their own value, they by no means fall into the category of the real medicine Rick Simpson created, and in some ways, shouldn’t even use the name. Full spectrum cannabis oil (FSCO) or Full Extract Cannabis Oil (FECO) are better descriptions for many of these products, and some of the more reputable companies are beginning to use these names instead of RSO, and they should get your attention when they do! No matter what illness you are treating or attempting to relieve the symptoms of, you should be using clean, GOOD medicine that does what it says it does and stays true to the type of medicine it should be. The only way to keep companies from making inferior products is to stay informed as consumers and to demand better medicine!
So when you are shopping for RSO, or even considering adding it to your cannabis regimen, talk to your advisor about the process, find out all you can about how it was made, and if you are in doubt, , shoot me a message and I will send you in the right direction, or, as Mr. Simpson says, just make your own!!
- Bailey, George. Chlorophyll can help prevent cancer – but study raises questions. Oregon State University, 2012.
- Hanna, Ab. “What is Rick Simpson Oil (RSO)?” High Times. April 4, 2018.
- Rough, Lisa. “Who is Rick Simpson and what is Rick Simpson Oil (RSO)?” Leafly. July 7, 2020.
- Simpson, Rick. Phoenix Tears. phoenixtears.ca
- Sraders, Anne. “Rick Simpson Oil (RSO): Benefits, Effects and Research.” October 29, 2018.
Cannabis is a gateway to better health and wellness and only you can begin your own journey, let me be your educated guide!!