Hollywood's Smoking Hot Trend: Weed for Health

Hollyweed for Health - SAKARA Superfood- CBD Chocolates-H 2017
Courtesy of Azione PR

With a recent vote to legalize recreational marijuana use and "Hollyweed" vandalism of the Hollywood sign, cannabis also is at the forefront of a growing health movement in Los Angeles.

Hollywood's affinity for marijuana may go back decades, but with the November vote to legalize recreational use — and the Jan. 1 vandalizing of the Hollywood sign to read "Hollyweed" — it has hit a fever pitch.

The town's 420 entrepreneurs abound (Melissa Etheridge makes a wine tincture; Wiz Khalifa and Margaret Cho have their own strains; Whoopi Goldberg markets a bath soak to reduce menstrual cramps) while stoners even enjoy their own yoga sessions at Culver City studio Goda Yoga ($15 per class). "On any given day in this city, it's safe to say that the next hit song or screenplay is being written with a little help from this plant," says Adam Steinberg, co-founder of craft cannabis brand Flow Kana, who in addition to well-known pothead Seth Rogen cites reported industry users Richard Branson, Jennifer Aniston and Morgan Freeman.

But the real news is hot new wellness ingredient CBD, a cannabidiol from hemp that's low in psychoactive THC and, studies suggest, reduces inflammation and the effects of PTSD. Torii Labs' Giles Hayward says its Re-Leaf hemp-oil tonic lessens anxiety and pain ($45/box; ToriiLabs.com). Aceso sells calming oral sprays and powders to put in drinks (from $10; MyAceso.com). L.A. insomniacs soon will be able to mix into their nightcaps Seattle-based Prohibition Gold's Zzzshotz, with a sleep-inducing 10 mg of THC and 5 mg of CBD per serving. Chocoholics can try raw dark-chocolate morsels by meal-delivery company Sakara Life (used by Gwyneth Paltrow), which contain 2 mg of CBD oil to ease anxiety and PMS.

Brand-new CBD Clinic creams ($49 to $69; IndieGogo.com to purchase) are nonprescription and contain hemp extract for topical pain and inflammation relief. And actors and athletes swear by Hmbldt's vaping pens ($100; Hmbldt.com to find a dispensary) for stress relief and better sleep. "I'm a dad now," says Veep star Reid Scott. "A dose of Hmbldt Calm after the boy is asleep, and Daddy's chill." 

This story first appeared in the Jan. 20 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.