John Malanca talks with Elana Frankel who is the founding Editor-in-Chief of Women and Weed, a biannual magazine that focuses on the power of personal narratives to bring a better understanding to complex cannabis issues. She is a co-founder of Indigo and Haze, a plant-based, CBD marketplace for health, wellness and living, that provides access, education and inspiration. She is a yoga teacher, as well as a meditation mentor. She is a frequent public speaker on cannabis and wellness and consults regularly with companies who value creative thinking. Elana’s previous work as a creative director, editor and writer has appeared in the Wall Street Journal’s Off Duty, The New York Times and The New York Time’s magazine, One Kings Lane, New York Magazine, Architectural Digest and Martha Stewart Living, among others.


Women and Weed: One Amazing Journey with Elana Frankel

John Malanca 0:00
Welcome back, everybody. This is John Malanca. With united patients group be informed and be well and today I have an old friend Elana Frankel…how are you doing?

Unknown Speaker 0:47
Good. How are you? It’s so great to see you again.

John Malanca 0:50
Good to see you as well. And so a little background a lot of her she’s the founding editor of Chief, a woman and weed and it’s a bi annual magazine that focuses on the power of personal narratives. To bring a better understanding to the complex cannabis issues which I see in my grocery store. I’m certain everyone will see it in theirs as well. And so it’s always good to see that up there. She’s also the co founder of indigo and haze, a plant based CBD marketplace for health wellness as well as living that provides access and education and as well as inspiration. She’s a yoga teacher as well as a meditation mentor. She is a frequent public speaker on cannabis and wellness and consults regularly with companies who value creative thinking way to go Elana his previous work as a creative director, editor and writer has appeared or appear excuse me in Wall Street Journal’s off duty. The New York Times and The New York Times Magazine, One Kings Lane, Architectural Digest, Martha living Martha Stewart Living among others and good to have you on there and and at the beginning. I called her a different last name because I’ve interviewed a couple Elana has and that’s what I was chuckling so you probably won’t see me mess up or mess up her name. But Elana Frankel Good to see you. How are you?

Elana Frankel 2:00
I’m well, thank you. Considering it’s the end of 2020. I am doing really

Unknown Speaker 2:07

John Malanca 2:08
Way to go by by last year at this exact time a buddy. So I grew up overseas and the school I went to we had a reunion. It was 100 year that our school had been 100 better school. Let me do my calculations 1920 to 2020s. All right. And we had about 16 1700 alumni that showed up from class in 1950, the class of 2020. I think 16 1700 included wives and partners and stuff like that as well. But people from all over the world showed up and but right now is when I booked my ticket just thinking what has happened in the year, you know, but went over there. And in January and everyone was talking about this China virus China virus China virus while we were there in January, and then coming back. You know, I shared with a lot of friends over here, Mike, there’s some stuff happening. And look at this a year later, we’re in the midst of all this too. So hope you and your family are healthy and everyone else is watching as well. And so. So you haven’t always been in the cannabis industry and i and i your story. Many have a story that brought them into the industry and yours was kind of scary. Can you share that it was just an evening.

Unknown Speaker 3:32
It was a definite

Unknown Speaker 3:34
definite moment. Yeah.

Elana Frankel 3:37
They always say like, you know, the universe has to hit you over the head really hard to be heard. And it did. And while I haven’t been in the industry above ground, many years I have been underground for a long time. But what brought me above ground and more into the full term, a full time realm is I was about six, seven years ago. I was out with some girlfriends, a restaurant in Miami. We had ordered appetizers, I stood up and said you know what? I’m not feeling too I’m just gonna use the ladies room. And next thing I knew it opened my eyes. I was having a CAT scan. I had either no one’s really sure what happened, but somehow on my way to the ladies room. I fell whether it had a seizure fainted fetus and had a seizure. I fell I hit my head I fell back I hit my head fractured my skull about four and a half inches. It was such a hard impacted thrusted my head forward. I bruised the frontal part of my brain. I had two huge black eyes. And when I woke up having a CAT scan in the hospital, I was presented as a stroke victim. I couldn’t speak. My language was garbled. I couldn’t move. My brain was constantly short circuiting. I had no sense of where I was who I was how to even move I did have the wherewithal, though, somehow to stay still, because I saw that they knew I was in some sort of contraption. And then once I came out and was put into a room, I just sort of lost all ability to function and was, just, like I said, presented as a stroke victim. It ended up my mom had to fly down. I have a husband and I, at the time, there are two small kids. My husband stayed with the children in New York. My mom came down. And she really started to advocate for me to figure out what was going on because I was unable, I just couldn’t understand what was going on around me. And anytime I did understand, I just couldn’t communicate. The words weren’t coming out. Like I said, my brain was short circuiting. And I was also in a lot of pain. I fell in and really hurt myself particularly toxic my back. And eventually, after about a week of being in the hospital in in Florida, they allowed me to fly back to New York, which was another story. Yeah, fly that airplane with a it was then I was I was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury, TBI. So to fly with a TBI is another story. Also another story while I was in the hospital, when I first got out of the CAT scan, they didn’t have a private room for me. So to share room for a little bit with a gentleman in his 60s who had Tourette’s. So you can only imagine somebody who is suffering from a traumatic brain injury and has no sense of anything. There’s a man but you know, six, seven feet away, cursing up a storm. I mean, it’s funny now, but at the time, I did sort of try to communicate that I needed some sort of drug to shut this out. But I finally got back to New York. And once you get to New York, everybody’s got a doctor unique, you know, you definitely have to get a you know, this one’s you know, best friend’s nephew went to Stanford, Harvard, Yale, Princeton, wherever they went, um, they all had very fancy offices with big diplomas on the walls, but they all pretty much said the same thing. You have a traumatic brain injury. And we recommend brain and bed rest, which is laying in bed, a dark room, no outside stimuli. And once the swelling comes down, then we can assess what the damage is. And I remember my husband asking, how long is that going to take? And one doctor said it could take up to a year, another said it could take three years. That’s when it really hit me and my family pretty hard that this was a serious injury. And that I was I was, it was going to be a long haul, there was going to be a long recovery process. And of course, being the type a New Yorker that I am, I’m like, okay, I can beat this in six weeks, like, I’ll just lay down and rest sleep, you know, you know, I’ll have breakfast in bed a couple, you know, and then I’ll just be fine. Well, three days into this bed rest in this dark room without any stimuli and without any noise, because any thing would set me off. So if somebody was talking with me, and then someone came in the room and started either moving or talking with me coming from the side, I would just freak out, my brain would just shut down and I just couldn’t focus, communicate. I just like I said, it shut down. So we realized pretty quickly after a couple of days, that we were in for a long haul. And we also realized we needed an alternative. I couldn’t

John Malanca 8:36
get this, this, this is serious, like you.

Elana Frankel 8:40
And I wasn’t gonna be able to do this for a year or three years. Like just you know.

John Malanca 8:45
I mean, I knew your mom as well. But how old are you? Were your kids and

Elana Frankel 8:49
kids at the time were four and six.

Unknown Speaker 8:52
And how long were they was about 810 years?

Elana Frankel 8:55
Yes, seven years ago. So you know, it was really apparent to me that we needed to find something but I was in no position to figure what that is figure out what that is. So my husband, who is an incredible human being came back a couple days later and said, Listen, I’m doing some research online. And I think I found this alternative and at that point, I was open to anything. You know, I have practiced yoga meditation. I have an acupuncturist, reiki, acupuncture, reiki, yoga, all of these things.

Unknown Speaker 9:25
Sure, sure, sure. He’s

Elana Frankel 9:26
like, No, he’s like, don’t freak out. But I think we’re gonna try cannabis. And I remember at that moment, because, you know, having having been underground for so long. My my cousin is a cultivator in Oregon, and has been for 30 years, my other cousins as an investor, you know, knowing what I know or what I thought I knew about cannabis. I immediately was like, No, you know, I’m not doing any THC. I’m already in a brain fog like, no and I really just I remember putting my hands up. And he said, you know, no, it’s not THC and CBD. And I was like, I don’t know what that is. And this was seven years ago. And, you know, the idea of it now is so comical, but at the time, you know, I was like, I don’t know what that is. I don’t, I don’t know what you’re talking about. He’s like, Okay. And he took some time to explain to me what it was. And he based that, you know, my husband knows me really well. He done all this research online, all this clinical research that he’d found, and a paper from Israel, and all the research that was being done with PTSD and soldiers and head injuries. And he knew that if I if there was that clinical research that I would listen. And so he started talking with me, he started explaining to me and you get more and more comfortable with it. And I was like, Okay, you know what, let’s try it. Like at that point, I just was like, we got to try something because I can’t live like this. And so it’s one thing to sort of open up your heart to cannabis and CBD. And then there’s quite another when you say yes, and the crickets start chirping because you’re in a, you know, your prohibition state. And, you know, it’s seven years ago, and nobody knows what CBD is. So there was a couple of days we were like, now, but, but we put up the word to friends and family, especially on the west coast. And they heeded the call. And we were able to get a whole bunch of different types of products, everything from topicals, and tinctures, to vape, pens, and edibles. And we were very grateful and thankful. But it all came unmarked, and no dosage information. I didn’t know hemp derived, I didn’t know it was marijuana drug. I didn’t know any ratios. I didn’t know if they were giving me an indication of tiva hybrid. I didn’t know terpenes nothing, it was just a blank slate. And so I started to do what I tell people to do now, which everybody tells people to do now is you know, start low and slow and titrate up to your optimal dose. And I just trial and error tested out really, really tiny bits, small, small amounts of certain things. figured out what it felt like how it made me feel, and either did more or less, or none at all. And then it started to work started to change how I felt the swelling was going down. The doctors were kind of like, what are you doing. And at that time, I was ready to tell anybody what I was doing. Because it sounded a little strange. I’m healing myself through cannabis. But eventually I found the right protocol for myself and I found the right therapeutics, and I found the right way to you know, in jest, and I felt a lot better. And within three months, I started getting up, I started walking, I started going to work one day, a week, two days a week, three days a week, four days a week. And eventually, within six months, I was I was back at work. And it was great. It was an amazing feeling. And again, you know, people were amazed and they asked me lots of questions. And I wasn’t really ready to say anything yet. But I was like, Oh, you know, doing alternative stuff. You know, I’m lucky, whatever. But eventually I quit my job and turned to my husband and said, Hey,

Unknown Speaker 13:18
wanna start a cannabis business?

John Malanca 13:21
Here we are,

Unknown Speaker 13:22
here I am. Here we are.

John Malanca 13:24
Yeah, you know, I think hearing your story, and that’s why I didn’t want to interrupt anything you were saying? It’s kind of very similar to ours, you know, where trial and error you know, and we didn’t have any air and it sounds the same thing with us. It was the blind leading the blind, what do we do? What you know, back? You know, 766 76 years ago for you 1011 for us, California, there was no labeling it’s a night and day difference from six years to the present and 1011 years to the present. There was no guidance there was no you know, United pace group or a lot of Frankel you know, sharing your success of what formulations and ratios so what what did you find success with I you said that I was gonna ask you then you went into the story of all the products that were sent topicals Yeah. vaporization you had tinctures Where did Where did you end up going? And you try them all?

Elana Frankel 14:24
Yeah, I started out with topicals because that was the, at the time, the sort of the scariest thing for me. And the most and the most sort of pressing, quite frankly, the most pressing issue at that time. Was my toxic. I had fallen on my toxic and I thought I cracked it or broke it. It was I was in a lot of pain. Yeah. And so that was my sort of first priority if I wanted to actually stand up. Round and topicals felt appropriate. It started to work. It was helpful. The the formulation with THC was a little bit more helpful than just the straight over hemp derived but I ended up working also with vaporization at that point and and that sort of helped. So the topic was more CBD oriented and the vaporisation was the THC. Weirdly, though, very, very quickly, but soon thereafter. Whether I, you know, whether I built up a tolerance or whether my body changes is, you know, ages and stages, you know, women’s bodies are different than men’s, all of those things. It’s sort of started to change. And so I tried tincture, and I hadn’t really never been a not a fan, but I just tissue wasn’t part it was it was inhalation and vaporization. And so I tried the tincture, and I noticed immediately a lot of relief. Well, that was a big moment for me, was tincture. A really, really a newer

John Malanca 16:11
pain or relief in in your mindset, where were you? Where were you?

Elana Frankel 16:15
Well, so during the day, I really focused on a one to one or even a you know, one to 20 Yeah, New York, it’s opposite that the low THC high CBD.

John Malanca 16:28
Yeah, so we got before you move on to that, and I was an ask you then but you said New York stops it so. So what is your What is your one? And what are your 20? Yeah,

Elana Frankel 16:39
so let me tell you something, I found out off the hard way that

John Malanca 16:44
make sure you know that

Unknown Speaker 16:46
you’re in New York.

Elana Frankel 16:49
You know, the

John Malanca 16:51
DC 120. And, you know, when we were introduced when we were kind of adopted in this industry when we were looking for stuff for Chris father back, you know, 1011 years ago, all the ratios. were safe. We use four to one ratio. It was four parts THC, one part CBD. And then that switched. And I and I’ve spoken to a lot of scientists, a lot of pharmacists, and they’re like, you know, I wish it was the other way around for parts THC. So I so I’m glad you throw that out because that can be a very uncomfortable feeling. Next, so always know what that what that number was for our audience that’s out there right now always know what that number. The first number is. So anyway, go on. Sorry.

Elana Frankel 17:36
Yeah. So so I really started to focus on tincture and, and so during the day, it was a higher CBD ratio. Sometimes there was no THC during the day. But then at night to sleep. It was a higher THC level. For me. That really worked. And it was tinctures because it lasted longer. I’ve never, you know, any sort of ingestible That’s why I was so nervous about tinctures is because I’ve never really done well with any sort of ingestion edibles. I don’t find mixing sugar. With any sort of cannabis product works for me, it actually doesn’t work at all, it makes me feel just not good. So that was a that was a concern. So that’s why the team sure I was a little nervous, but the tincture work. And what really also helped was tea. So any sort of infused tea, because I think I had that, you know, I’m a tea drinker, and the warmth and the ritual of making tea, and the relaxation of tea that really helped as well. So I started finding that, what worked at what time of day, and what would help me sleep and what would keep me focused, and what would alleviate some of the pain and what would bring me relief from the inflammation. Because that was the one thing too, like, I could feel the inflammation in my brain, I could feel it against my skull. And I could also be and I could also start to feel it diminish. And so I was really able to keep track of that, which I thought was also very helpful in a journal so that I could understand what was happening when so I can either repeat it or change it.

John Malanca 19:15
So again, trial and error, you know what works for you. And so for all of our listeners that are watching or listening this, you know, it’s not a one size fits all what works for us may not work for you. And so trying to find that balance.

Elana Frankel 19:31
I think that’s hard for people to understand with plant therapeutics, I think that’s very challenging because we’re used to, you know, take two aspirin and call me in the morning and that’s a very consistent experience that for not everybody, for majority of people, that when you start to talk about plant based therapeutics, that it is it is a little bit different in how your body reacts to it, and why it reacts to it and so that level of understanding While a doctor can because I’ve spoken to tons of doctors, those who are pro those who are not so pro cannabis. But all of them really say the same thing is like I can give you guidance, I can give you advice, this is what I suggest. But you really have to be in tune with your body and understand what is happening. So that I could tell them what was working best for me. And then they could talk about adjustment from that point of view. And that patient centric point of view for plants from is is an amazing paradigm shift. And it it’s empowering, and it’s wonderful. But it is a little different and scary at first.

John Malanca 20:39
Yeah. You know, I always talk look at it, like throwing the pebble in the pond, it was the ripple effects of you know, the education out there and you sharing What’s going on? So are you working? Your new york right now? And are you six years ago? were you working with a neurologist? And the naisha? they did? They did? How often? Did they have two brain scans showing that the shrinking?

Elana Frankel 21:03
Yeah, so I, I went for I went for two brain scans. And after that, I just sort of was like, you know what I’m done like it was it. What it was showing me was that the brain was healing. And that’s all I needed to hear. I didn’t need to continue to go because to be honest with you, the the neurologists were just sort of maintenance, they weren’t telling me anything or giving me direction or guidance. And so I needed to find health practitioners and partners that I could work with that were pro cannabis and having my back in terms of integrating cannabis into this healing experience. And so once I was connected with that sort of tribe, that group, um, that’s where I focus my energies on.

John Malanca 21:55
There’s some good cannabis neurologist and in Florida if you’re

Elana Frankel 22:00
I mean, they’re not I mean,

John Malanca 22:02
and actually, he’s a he’s a dear friend, and not to take the spotlight away from you here. Oh, no, it’s fine. It’s good. I

Unknown Speaker 22:08
love this. But

John Malanca 22:09
he’s from New York, Dr. Daniel Stein. Great guys in Sarasota. And for podcast listeners, you’ve probably seen me, we’ve done a few brain master classes. But there’s a podcast in here. You know, probably about six months ago that Dr. Stein and I did. But he’s, he’s great. And I don’t know. I mean, I’m glad you’re back back to normal.

Elana Frankel 22:37
It’s, it’s, it’s, it’s an amazing thing. I mean, I never thought I could get to this clip, to be honest. There were times when I was like, Okay, this is it. But you know, there’s still definitely some lingering effects that have been, you know, fixed. And I still work with those on it on a daily basis, I lost my sense of smell and taste. I think because of the bruising in the front part of my brain. Yeah. The taste has come back somewhat, not fully, but enough, but smell is still completely elusive.

John Malanca 23:12
Sounds like the symptoms of COVID not to make a joke.

Elana Frankel 23:16
When everybody’s talking about lack of smell test, I was like, Oh, yeah, I’ve been there. done that. Yeah. But it was funny, because I tested positive for COVID about COVID, about six weeks ago. And everyone’s like, Oh, you know, what happened? How did you know I was asymptomatic? And I was like, I have no idea. They’re like, what did you lose smell and taste. I was like, I don’t know, like, I

John Malanca 23:40
have that come back. Or that you still don’t have the smell and taste.

Elana Frankel 23:42
I have no smell taste has come back out fully, but enough like a lot that it can feel good about eating again. But it’s strange clothes. That smell would come back first. Smell is still a blank state.

John Malanca 23:55
It’s just wow,

Elana Frankel 23:57
this is blank. This is weird. It’s just a weird way to live. Because you don’t really think about smell until someone’s like, Oh, God, that smells so good. Or, Oh, that smells so bad. Then you’re like, Oh, I

Unknown Speaker 24:07
can’t smell that.

Elana Frankel 24:09
But on a daily basis, you know, walking around in life, you know? Yeah. Don’t worry about it too much.

John Malanca 24:15
So with you being you know, your bio, may you speak my language, you know, I’m big into health and wellness, but yoga, acupuncture, meditation, I’ve done a couple of silent retreats and big fan of those. Acupuncture and chiropractic is you can’t have you have you got me gone that route to shoot you get no back

Elana Frankel 24:40
since COVID. You know, acupuncture hasn’t been high on my list, unfortunately. And hopefully

John Malanca 24:46
things have been

Elana Frankel 24:47
I know so waiting to get back into that. But you know, I think what I’m actually waiting for is CBD tipped acupuncture needles. That’s What I’m waiting for,

Unknown Speaker 25:01
that’s gonna

John Malanca 25:02
do it. I was talking to if I was talking to a pharmacist recently and he was talking about a woman who made CBD toothpaste, and I guess, Johnson and Johnson or crest or

Elana Frankel 25:18
they’ve done it. Well, they haven’t done it. They’ve done it they caught they say it’s hemp oil.

Unknown Speaker 25:23
hemp oil, okay, their hemp oil.

Elana Frankel 25:26
Yeah. And they have a little leaf on it. But it’s only a matter of time. And

Unknown Speaker 25:30
everybody’s gonna be, you know,

John Malanca 25:33
I think they’re gonna have it like you said, Yeah, CBD toilet paper. They’re coming out with everything. And so you do a lot in indigo and Hayes with that as well. And so what are some products you you see out there? What do you what are you seeing out there? Right?

Unknown Speaker 25:49

Elana Frankel 25:50
So when I first started the business, it was really focused on the three things that you mentioned was access education, inspiration was a really good product, because I didn’t want anyone to have to go through what I went through in terms of, you know, what am I doing, if I google the words DVD, what you know, oh, my God, you know, what comes up. So really was about curating a very small group of product that I knew from soil to shelf, I knew how it was grown, where it was grown, who was growing it, how is extracted, how was formulated, how it got to the shelves, making sure that it was tested, lab tested, that everyone had their, you know, series. And so I took all the guesswork out. And so what I really wanted to focus on was just a small suite of products, it didn’t have to be an extensive group of, you know, as big e commerce site, because I don’t believe you need that much to be honest with. And so that was the initial focus. But there were some things that I didn’t see on the market that I wanted, I wanted an everyday body lotion, there was a lot of pain selves. And so we created a everyday body lotion, 200 milligrams of CBD, broad spectrum. And then we partnered with a tincture company, we partnered with a vape company. So you know, that sort of e commerce experience was happening, they started the magazine, and then eventually became a book to focus on education so that people really could understand not only about the plant, its history, its incredible racist history, but also understanding who was working in the industry now and what they were doing so that women especially could feel that if they worked in industry, a and they had these skills, it is transferable to the cannabis industry. And so that there were opportunities and there was, and there were, there were moments that they, you know, women could see themselves working in the industry, and it didn’t have to be behind the counter to dispensary. And it didn’t have to be on a farm, there was a lot of, you know, happening in between, particularly in manufacturing and, and distribution. And so with the access happening with the education happening, inspiration started to happen with imagery design, making sure that people understood that this was an industry that was moving in a certain direction away from any sort of, you know, stereotypical stigma visuals, away from the babes boobs and bongs, and much more towards health and wellness, adult use in rec as well, but hoping that it can be a little bit more focused on women and their and their needs in their ages and stages. And really focusing on women 45 and older. You know, it was really important for me that as women age and understand their bodies, that they would be more open to trying the plant and using the plant and working with the plant, especially as their bodies change.

Unknown Speaker 28:51

John Malanca 28:53
I think I think Korean would have been a big fan of your, your magazine, that’s, that’s my wife who passed away and because she was not like you. Come on, you know, she’d always put her hands up, you know, especially in California has been legal since 1996. She just thought everyone just wants to an excuse to get high, you know, and and then we were thrown into this, just like you were thrown into this with her father. And we started seeing the benefits, saved his life knock on wood. And then we started doing all the research. And she’s like, Whoa, totally changed my mindset. She said, I’m, you know, hitting my, my 50s maybe I should do this if I’m proud. You know, let me practice what I preach. And so she was taking tinctures and she was someone I called her Mary Poppins didn’t drink didn’t smoke, you know. And I mean, I literally left that in our wedding vows, you know, and I in your mind Mary Poppins, but you might she just thought, Gosh, if I’m doing if we’re putting on conferences like we’re doing, we had, you know speakers from all over the world that would come in our conferences had CME, you know, continuing medical education credits. And we’re learning all this, why I should be doing this myself. So she would take it for health and wellness, you know, inflammation, which is a start of many disease in the body. For sure, what’s that? Sorry,

Unknown Speaker 30:20
chronic pain, inflammation, anxiety, stress, sleep issues, I

John Malanca 30:24
mean, all that all that and so, um, you know, so what you’re doing, I applaud you. Because, you know, education is huge. And I can’t tell you.

Elana Frankel 30:33
And that’s Yeah, and that’s a great sort of segue because I sort of have come back to that education part in the business plan. And now I’ve partnered with, with a medical cannabis, mentor, calm, and working with them to develop and get these educational and training videos out into the marketplace, particularly into the hands of dispensaries, or onboarding people, for pharmacists, for healthcare practitioners, with CME credits for doctors, nurse practitioners, and making sure that the education you know, education before medication is there so that people really have the necessary background, the foundation and the tools to then build on their own research. But that they because there’s a lot to learn and unlearn, quite frankly,

John Malanca 31:26
a total. And I learned every day and I unlearn every day. I mean, I still learn every day. And so I I’m a big fan of a couple of things you shared earlier, from the seed to sale, I do this soil seed to sale because I like them to check the soil to see before finding anything what’s going on, and then do that. And then education would you say I love that term,

Unknown Speaker 31:48
before medication, education,

John Malanca 31:50
education. And we would in that’s the one thing that’s frustrating about the dispensary’s. There’s some great dispensaries. And I’ve actually taken pharmacists, here in the San Francisco Bay Area, on a tour of the good, the bad, the ugly here in the San Francisco Bay Area, have good ones to bad ones. And the education in there is all over the place I’ve been in, I was down in Southern California, before COVID with some friends and their daughter is autistic. And we were looking for tcaa. And so we went in there, and that’s the dispensary worker about thca. Never heard of it, don’t carry it, I might turn around, it’s right behind you. You know, and I just think if you are going to dispense and it’s medicine to a lot of people, I mean, it’s medicine. And I just think if you’re going to be in that education is huge at all levels.

Elana Frankel 32:44
I mean, I think people are also forgetting that a dispensary is also about customer service. And that customer relation is translated to patient service and patient relation. And as you said, this is medicine to a lot of people. And so when you’re having those conversations with your dispensary worker associate, like they need to be, they need to understand that that’s where this is coming from this conversation is coming from. And that’s part of the educational process with these videos is really understanding customer Patient Relations so that you can have an informed conversation, and the person can feel heard. And if you can’t answer the question, find someone who can stop and say, Oh, you know what, this is something I don’t know, let me just take a minute to research or figure it out. Because that’s when we start to see the industry mature and change from you know, you know, illegal to, frankly,

Unknown Speaker 33:48
essential it is.

John Malanca 33:50
And that’s you made a great point, because I’ve had a lot of patients over the years. They say, God, I’ve gone into a dispensary. I feel rushed, like, move it. I have people behind you, and customer service and doesn’t matter if you’re in the restaurant industry. The garbage industry, I mean, customer service is either in your blood or it’s not in your blood. And I just think, you know, put yourself in the position going in and wanting to learn. And if if the dispensary worker does not know the answer, ask for the manager. I mean, a lot of times a manager will come out and say No, we’ll take you aside and we’ll walk you through exactly what all of our products, how they’re listed, what they could be benefit, beneficial for and so on. So, well. That’s great. I think that’s a total niche in this industry. And you know, starting from your story, but that must have scared the heck out of your girlfriend’s one and your husband who’s up in New York. Oh, my

Elana Frankel 34:50
husband. Yes, my husband was definitely It was a challenging time for him. For sure. My girlfriends were one of them. Oh Was rock One of them was a rock and was really went into like emergency mode and the other just was like, stymied, you know, like, What do I do? Now, you know, once, you know, after a day or two in the hospital, you know, she came around and she started like figuring it out. And now we can laugh about it. But we definitely all had, you know, they definitely all had their their different Yeah, their different experiences and my children to you know, my children were very aware of what was going on, you know, we could do a whole nother segment about how to talk to you about cannabis, but, you know, the, the idea of, you know, of their mother being ill and, and bedridden and and really, really incapacitated to sing her up around and being a mom again, you know, to them, they didn’t care if it was cannabis, they didn’t care with CBD didn’t care as THC, they just knew that whatever mom was doing, she went from, you know, unwell to wellness. And I think that’s that and when you talk to them now, that’s what they remember. That’s what they see. And that’s what they understand. Now they know what CBD is. They know THC because they know the plant. But at the time, they just saw their mom one way and then the other way.

John Malanca 36:25
What was the I know when the doctor originally said it could be a year could be three years. And you said I’m gonna do some three weeks what was the timeline?

Elana Frankel 36:33
So I was able to, to stand up and walk and be a part of society again after about three months. And then I was back at work. Five months, maybe a little bit like six months into it. And, and I really was able to I still need it. I seen it. I still needed help. I couldn’t drive. So I would take taxis. I was working in New York City or New Yorker. You don’t need to drive.

No, yeah, so so I was taking taxis I was on the subway, I definitely taxes I was okay with the subway I needed help with I needed someone to be with me on the subway because there’s a lot going on. And so, um, but I, you know, I was, quite frankly, my biggest sort of fear, too was PTSD. Because, you know, every time and I still to this day, sometimes when I’m walking down the stairs in the subway, I can see I’m gripping the handrail because I’m afraid I’m gonna fall and I have the vision of me hitting my head constantly. Yeah, so there was a little bit of that happening for a while I’ve gotten a lot better. But there’s still times like I said, when I when I’m walking, and I just have a vision of falling and

John Malanca 37:46
PTSD. I think about private six months ago, I was leading my dentist one afternoon, and I was at a it’s in a residential area and I was at a stop sign 25 miles per hour, and I look at my rearview mirror. And this guy nails me. Oh, one in the afternoon. And thank goodness he wasn’t we were on the freeway. Thank goodness, he wasn’t he must have been going, I don’t know. 2530 miles per hour. But, you know, driving home and driving home, I was totally I get PTSD of watching cars on the freeway, getting off the on ramp, are they going to see me? Are they going to stop? You know, you know, it definitely sticks in your mind? What was your what was the the reason What happened? I know, you were started talking about they thought seizure and then then then you went into Wait,

Elana Frankel 38:43
I was still a mystery to a lot of people. So at first, I was put on anti seizure medication, but do have epilepsy in the family. So they immediately went to went to the seizure, but they quickly kind of rolled it out after a bunch of tests. And then there was a conversation about I had fainted, dehydration stress, maybe a virus from the plane, just like the perfect storm. And that after I hit my head falling back, I actually had a seizure. And then thrusted forward. But to be honest with you, nobody has really given me a straight answer and nobody can really tell me what happened. I went to a cardiologist who told me I had a slightly irregular heartbeat, and that I might have stood up so fast and you know, you know so there’s there’s many different things. My guess is it was a perfect storm. There was a lot of things that happened at the same time at that exact moment. But to be honest with you, like nothing has happened since then knock on wood, and so I wasn’t so concerned about how it happened. I was just more concerned about getting to this point where I can, you know, live my life. And like I said PTSD, like I don’t know what triggers it. I definitely still have some of that might sound, smell and taste. And I did develop a vertigo about six months ago, I’ve had two bouts of vertigo. And it’s in check now. You know, some doctors say that was might have been part of the head injury. Some doctors like it has nothing to do with it. So who knows?

John Malanca 40:22
Are you I know there’s how many cannabinoids in a year in the business two. And I always say there’s about 140 and more being introduced each and every day. Are you using any other cannabinoids because I know, with a lot of traumatic brain injury, they use THC a or using any of the acid forms.

Elana Frankel 40:38
I’m not yet um, I am really in a good place. So I’m like not ready to make any major changes. What I have been playing with more is the terpenes. And that for me

Unknown Speaker 40:53
smell those either.

Elana Frankel 40:54
I know, but I do know. But I but I do read. So I do know what’s in what’s. So that’s been that’s been a little bit more helpful for me then then, you know, I did? Actually, I tried CBG for a little bit. I didn’t notice any changes. I didn’t notice any you know, wasn’t made it worse or better. It just, you know, wasn’t very, but I didn’t play around too much with dosage. And it wasn’t a tincture. So you know, I think eventually Yes. I mean, if my health stays, as is I’m not willing to change it right yet. But you know, I’m always open.

John Malanca 41:33
And you still go to your doctors. I know you’re working with some doctors right now.

Elana Frankel 41:37
So first of all, the neurologist ever seeing died. No, I shouldn’t laugh I’m sorry. So he passed away. About a few years ago. I

Unknown Speaker 41:46
know. And so, I think

John Malanca 41:49
you’ve you, you I think you’ve upset the Tourette’s industry. And and, and, and, and doctors passing. So we’re on we’re on strike two, strike three, though.

Elana Frankel 42:01
Mostly I’m working mostly with, with alternative integrative health practitioners and doctors, or so the neurologist at this point, I feel much more comfortable. Yeah, somebody who has a much more holistic approach and understands the body, the brain, the mind, the spirit from a from a holistic point of view, as opposed to just a narrow vision. And that’s been really helpful. So I made some switches in that arena

John Malanca 42:27
is there sorry to hear about your doctor first off, but you know, I have other friends that are heavy cannabis users and have been, you know, they’re in the they’re in industry and, and this one friend of mine, he had a fall off a railing where the railing was there. And he was, he was at a wedding, it was chasing his little his little nephew. And he went down, hit the ground, and they said, Oh my goodness, it was in the dark. And they rushed into Montana, and they rushed to the Doctors Hospital there. He’s back to normal, but his doctor then said, If you weren’t a cannabis user, I guess. You know, you wouldn’t have had the success. And so I’m not advising everyone to go out and smoke as much cannabis as he was or is. But it’s amazing on you, when you really get down to it the on all the benefits of this plan offers?

Elana Frankel 43:26
Well, the protection. protection is there. And, you know, I say that to people all the time. You know, it’s not one and done, you know, especially with CBD that build up in the body is really important. And it’s really, for a lot of people sounds like your friend is one of them. A preventative measure. Again, you know, it’s not that level of use is not for everybody. So you really have to know what’s right for you and your body. But I am a big fan of understanding it in that way as well preventative as well as believe.

John Malanca 43:59
What can you share, you know, closing stuff, I want to I want to let you plug women in, we’d win the next mag when the next publication is coming out. Why don’t we go there? Wait, when’s the next publication or not? So

Elana Frankel 44:10
you know, with COVID we’ve been incredibly, you know, it’s been topsy turvy, and our distribution is all crazy. So I have no idea to be honest, the one that’s happening and which is why the pivot to all of this incredible video content is happening. We’re still very much focused on on women, we’re very focused on read. But we’re really trying to create content that can be scaled and really help the industry and the community in a way that is based in education. And based on communicating that education to others. It was really important for me to to focus on the content in that way.

John Malanca 44:53
It was just all through under the women and weed publication umbrella.

Elana Frankel 44:58
So it’s a partnership. Yeah. So it’s Mark more of an indigo and haze partnership and the women in need. You know, I think to the the distribution of it, the magazine, it was great. I wanted it to be print only I didn’t want it to be digital, I wanted you to be able to find it in grocery stores, bodegas pharmacies, places where, you know, you wouldn’t normally see it, or content like that. But as COVID has shut everything down, those distribution channels have been very limited. And I’d rather not do it half assed, to be honest, I’d rather be able to do really high quality content, educational content that has really focused on the science, and is really focused on the history of the planet, understanding the plants and now once you are ready to go into the industry, whatever level you’re at, if you’re working in a dispensary if you’re working on a farm, if you’re working for a formulator if you’re working for an extractor, PR whatever it is that you have the foundational knowledge to go in there, knowing what you know about the plant, and its history and the people. That to me is the next step is the next level.

John Malanca 46:14
I remember when I interviewed you probably I want to say in June, maybe so six months ago, and then I went into my local grocery store and saw your magazine and I took a picture with my COVID mascot holding up and I was looking for my phone my phone’s not here, I’d pull that picture up. It’s a great, great pitch.

Elana Frankel 46:31
It’s easy, and I love getting those photos and I love getting them. You know, I love getting them from Florida. I love getting them from Montana. I love getting from Michigan, I love getting them from California, Oregon, from North Dakota, Missouri. It’s it’s been an incredible and humbling experience to see all over the country. And that was important for me because the industry is now legalizing so fast for all different states and hopefully on the federal level. That it’s important for everybody to know what’s going on

John Malanca 46:59
that and again, bringing the stigma down. And as mentioned earlier, with the pebble in the pond, the ripple effect of you sharing your story with someone God forbid, falls and hits your head as well. And you know, and may look into this. And so I hope everyone has a husband like you

Elana Frankel 47:21
as a traumatic brain injury. If anybody has any questions, please. I wish I had me when I was going through this. So now I want to be the need that I always wished I had. So I’m I’m more than happy to talk more than happy to connect you with the right doctors with the right health practitioners, nurses, whatever you need.

John Malanca 47:40
And so how do they find you? Oh, easy.

Elana Frankel 47:46
So Ilana na at indigo and haze calm.

John Malanca 47:50
And what’s your last name again?

Elana Frankel 47:53
Yeah, but don’t say I want to Franco I need to go next.

Unknown Speaker 47:55
I need to go and he’s exactly,

John Malanca 47:56

Elana Frankel 47:57
And, and yeah, I’m more than happy to answer any questions. Or if I can’t put you in touch with someone who can

John Malanca 48:04
you know it. I appreciate that. And that’s why I love I wanted to get you back on. We have a lot in common and and hear hear hearing you speak I’m thinking that’s exactly, you know, my mindset and a lot of things you’re talking about. So bye, thank you, thank

Unknown Speaker 48:21

John Malanca 48:21
I appreciate you coming on. And and your husband give give a special bit special hug to your husband as well for

Elana Frankel 48:31
that I do it every day, multiple times a day,

John Malanca 48:34
I thank him, I was a hell of a husband too. So I applaud him I applaud him and and as you know, life life can change in a bloody instance. I’m happy that you’ve had a great outcome. And I appreciate you sharing your story. And if anybody else is going through something like this, we we both send you our blessings and love as well. But a lot of Franco, thank you so much. And we’ll see you soon. I know that and for our listeners and followers. We’ll see you again and hope you enjoyed this, this podcast as much as I did, and we did so. John Malanca united patients group be informed be well and we’ll see you soon.