Los Altos chiropractor Gregory Dabb’s passion for his patients and practice at Better Life Chiropractic Center left him believing he had found his true calling.
And then he met Cory Schwaderer.
Schwaderer, a patient of Dabb’s, had undiagnosed Lyme disease that metastasized into spinal meningitis. He had been in the hospital for weeks at a time and was going to the hospital for immunotherapy daily when a doctor told him about cannabidiol (CBD) products. Schwaderer’s doctor said research showed that CBD could help his pain. It did – and at a time when CBD products weren’t widely available, largely because people weren’t educated on the ingredients in CBD, which contains no THC, the psychoactive component in cannabis.
“I was put on a lot of heavy-duty medication – I’m sure a lot of people are right now especially with the opiate crisis. … People are (being) heavily prescribed medication for pain,” Schwaderer said. “I was going through a lot of pain, but the pills and my system just aren’t cohesive. I needed something else.”
Although Schwaderer was skeptical of chiropractic treatment, he made an appointment with Dabb at his brother’s urging. Schwaderer was already using CBD for pain management when he first entered Better Life Chiropractic Center with a cane at 26 years old.
“I was pretty upset at life in general,” Schwaderer recalled. “(Dabb) laughed at me when I met him and told me, ‘You’ll be off that cane when you leave the office today.’ I didn’t take it very well.”
Schwaderer did walk out without assistance, and he and Dabb forged a friendship.
Organic pain relief
Using CBD products changed his life, so Schwaderer approached Dabb a few years later with a proposal to launch a business together that was people-oriented and offered simple products.
The result of their partnership: Dr. Dabb’s Everyday CBD products. They sell a cream and a tincture on their website – Soothe and Relax, respectively, with a price tag of $80 each – in Dabb’s chiropractic office and in select specialty and nutrition shops across the South Bay.
“Whenever we can have a business meeting at Cory’s on Sunday mornings or afternoons, we will have Sunday dinners, too,” Dabb said, noting the familial roots of their new venture. “Kids are cruising around, so it’s organized chaos and fun. That’s how we live our life.”
The business partners are aiming for organic growth, spending no money on marketing, turning down potential investors and selling products from Dabb’s El Camino Real office via word-of-mouth endorsements – the same way Schwaderer ended up on Dabb’s doorstep in the first place. So far, they’ve contracted with Zanatto’s Market and Homewood Suites by Hilton.
There’s something cathartic, Schwaderer said, in knowing that patients are going out of their way to buy Dr. Dabb’s Everyday CBD products from niche locations to mitigate their pain.
“People are looking for therapeutic relief, and that’s why we have just the two items,” Schwaderer said. “We just wanted strong medication that works in two simple forms.”
Dabb and Schwaderer have been soliciting feedback from the local community to gauge their level of interest in CBD products. The challenge they face is a general misunderstanding of CBD, derived from the hemp plant, and how it differs from marijuana. Although anyone can use CBD for relief in areas such as sleep, physical recovery and anxiety, Dabb said, it’s especially helpful to seniors who need alternative pain mitigation options after taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs their entire lives.
“They have stomach ulcers, or kidney issues, or small intestine issues,” Dabb said. “(They say), ‘My doctor says I can’t take Tylenol anymore, I can’t take Advil anymore. … I think a lot of seniors, for health reasons, are being forced to find something without side effects.”
The science behind CBD
Dabb was interested in hemp long before he met Schwaderer, noting how it could be used as a material for clothing and to produce hydrofuel. But discovering its oil extracts could be used to replace narcotics his patients relied on piqued his interest.
Hemp, a “cousin plant” of marijuana, does not contain the THC required to alter someone’s brain functions. Rather, it positively affects the body, Dabb noted.
“Your body has cannabinoid receptors in its central and peripheral nervous systems,” he said. “That is what the CBD binds to. So it’s not like you’re taking something that affects you in some way. It’s part of your body’s own natural regulatory system. It literally drives homeostasis.”
After studying the science, Dabb and Schwaderer recommended a therapeutic dose of 1,000 mg. They relied on a government study about the benefits of CBD, information on where the line’s hemp is sourced from organically in Colorado and the lab results of each lot, produced and tested by an in-house third party – available for customers to check on the bottom of each product. They plan to add research on CBD and how it reacts to the body’s nervous system, as well as other educational tools, on their website soon.
To purchase Dr. Dabb’s Everyday CBD and for more information, visit drdabbscbd.com.