I recently had the chance to chat with Amy Van Dyken, a 6-time Olympic gold medal-winning competitive swimmer for the U.S. Olympic team who recently got involved in CBD advocacy.

Back in 2014, Amy suffered a dreadful ATV accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down. Amy told me the recovery process was hard, long and painful – and still is. However, she noted, CBD from hemp has unexpectedly made her neuropathic pain a lot more tolerable, allowing her a live a normal life – challenging her beliefs related to CBD products. In fact, CBD has had such a big impact in her life, that Amy decided to join Kannaway as a spokesperson.

Interested in her views on CBD products for athletes and health buffs, I decided to reach out again and ask a few additional questions.

CBD & A Healthy Lifestyle

I often get the question of how CBD fits into a healthy lifestyle. So, I asked Amy what she thought about it.

"Well, for me, when I'm having a nerve pain flare up, I can't go work out, I can't go and take good care of myself. So when I take [hemp-derived CBD] Kannaway products I chose, I'm able to go and work out, I'm able to be up in my wheelchair all day, walking the dog, doing active things… So, I would tell people to definitely give it a try," she said.

Now, what about about CBD for athletes specifically?

"For athletes, specifically, from my understanding, because hemp-derived CBD products do not have THC in them, it is a legal thing to take," she added, referencing the recent change in the World Anti-Doping Agency’s rules.

WADA is the organization in charge of drug testing among Olympic athletes. It normally sets the criteria for anti-doping in a big majority of the world’s sports. Late last year, the agency removed CBD from its list of banned substances.

"So, it's one of those things where it's natural. If it is natural, and if it is legal, and if it is really helping you I say 'take it; it would definitely help for sure, if you're having any kind of pain'," she said.

FIFA & CBD

The FIFA World Cup 2018 took place last month. I was fascinated when I heard that, for the first time ever, some athletes were using CBD products during the event. Bringing this up, I enquired about other interesting applications for CBD. Other than pain, have you tried it for recuperation, or to work out? – I asked.

"I have not. I mean, my main source is taking this for pain relief. But athletes have aches and pains all the time…And when you are not hurting your body naturally recovers easier and faster. So I would recommend CBD for athletes," Amy said.

By means of conclusion, she added:

"I would just tell people not to be afraid of it. I think there is such a stigma, and I think that people believe that CBD will have the psychoactive effects that THC has, but it definitely does not."

"I mean like I said, I take a bunch of this sometimes, and the only thing that it does is it reduces the inflammation, it reduces my pain. So, don't be afraid. And if you're hurting, I really do recommend you know going on the web and looking up Kannaway. I cannot live without it, and I will not live without it."

Banner Image: Olympic gold medalist Amy Van Dyken-Rouen reacts after throwing out the ceremonial first pitch before the MLB game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and the New York Mets at Chase Field on June 7, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)