FECO is fast becoming one of the most popular forms of cannabis, especially for those who suffer from severe conditions. Here is everything you need to know about FECO, why you would want to use it, how it differs from RSO (or “Rick Simpson Oil”), and how to make sure that you are getting the highest quality FECO oil cannabis for your needs.
What is FECO?
FECO stands for “full extract cannabis oil.” It is a thick oil, usually dark in color, that is normally consumed from either a syringe or packed in capsules.
The main thing to remember about FECO oil is that it is very highly concentrated. Also, like the name implies, it is “full spectrum.” This is a key component of what sets FECO apart as a helper for many physical conditions.
What is the Difference Between FECO and RSO?
Many people who are just learning about FECO get it confused with another substance called “RSO,” or Rick Simpson Oil. It is true that both FECO and RSO are concentrated forms of cannabis that contain high amounts of cannabinoids, including THC. It is also true that both are used by many people for major ailments, including cancer. (1)
The biggest difference between the two, however, has to do with how they are produced. Both require a solvent to extract the medicinal properties of the plant. However, RSO is produced using either a substance called naphtha, which comes from paint thinner (and is basically a product of distilling petroleum), 99% isopropyl alcohol, or ethyl alcohol. All of these substances come with hazards, naphtha especially. If you are making RSO at home, experts caution, first off, it is highly flammable and you must take care to remove all traces of the solvent before taking RSO internally. Even the types of alcohol used in making RSO can be extremely hard on the digestive system and can lead to other health issues down the line. (2) The true RSO is high THC and RSO protocol is taking up to a gram a day, which in 99% of the cases is way too much for the body to handle, especially if you’re already in a weakened state due to illness.
FECO, on the other hand, and in most cases is made from simple grain alcohol. Grain alcohol is a purified form of ethyl alcohol that is made from grains such as rice, corn, rye, sugarcane, tubers, beets, wheat, and even grapes. Grain alcohol is used in spirits (i.e., alcoholic drinks) and is sometimes called neutral grain spirit or rectified spirit. A popular brand of 100% grain alcohol is Everclear.
Grain alcohol can still be harsh if taken straight so it is still important that you process FECO in the right way or purchase it from a quality brand that places safety and low toxic load first!
Why Is “Full Spectrum” Cannabis Important?
Both FECO oil and RSO are “full spectrum,” meaning that they are derived from whole cannabis plants, including the flowers and sometimes the leaves. This is often the better choice for medical purposes because the whole plant will contain vastly more nutrients overall than extracts.
Both FECO and RSO are potent full spectrum oils that contain the properties of over 400 different phytonutrients. Some of these include essential vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, terpenes and, of course, dozens of different cannabinoids besides THC and CBD.
All of the phytonutrients found in full spectrum cannabis products like FECO and RSO work together synergistically in what is known as the “entourage effect.” Many experts believe that the entourage effect is the key to unlocking the true therapeutic potential of the compounds found in cannabis. (3)
Because Rick Simpson Oil is usually heated to higher temperatures for extraction than FECO, it is generally assumed that RSO is not as potent in terms of the entourage effect and phytonutrient content than FECO.
FECO is mostly used by people suffering from serious illness and pain and whose condition is non-responsive to lower amounts of THC. Some of the conditions that may be responsive to FECO include:
- Wasting disease
- Severe pain
- Severe anxiety
- Severe PTSD
- Crohn’s Disease
- Epilepsy (4)
FECO Oil Side Effects
The main side effects of FECO Oil are related to its high cannabinoid content. When cannabinoids like THC enter the human body, they bind to receptors in the brain and central nervous system. This binding process often produces feelings of euphoria, but THC can also produce a multitude of side effects. These include:
- Dry mouth and throat
- Increased thirst
- Headaches and migraines
- Pupil dilation which can affect sight and visual perception
- Decreased motor control and coordination
- Disorientation and difficulty understanding spatial relationships
- Change in heart rate
Other side effects may include:
- Mood changes (especially irritability)
- Panic Attacks
- Slow digestion
- Issues with sleep
How Do You Use FECO?
FECO is potent and contains high amounts of THC. This is why the normal dose is usually the size of a single grain of rice! This minute amount is usually enough for a person to manage pain or symptoms throughout the day. This is unlike what RSO protocol states. Please remember, Rick Simpson successfully treated himself with a gram a day from skin cancer, not brain, liver, pancreatic, breast, etc… The media and marketing in this industry state differently. Please note, it is not a one size fits all type of protocol.
If you purchase FECO at a cannabis pharmacy or dispensary, it will usually come in a syringe or in capsule form. Some forms of FECO are taken sublingually, and often orally. FECO has a strong odor and taste. Most individuals choose to take it via capsules or mix it in juice, in applesauce, yogurt or in a baked good. Some people use FECO topically for targeted pain or directly on a blemish as well. Some find success in mixing it with a lotion, topical cream or directly on the spot. Please note, it can stain clothing as it is very similar to tar in consistency.
It is really important that you discover the adequate dose for you, no matter what form you take it in. With most medical cannabis products, individual dosage can be approximate, but not so with FECO. The dose must be precisely measured so that you know exactly how much would be too much (or too little) for your unique body and situation.
Another thing that FECO and RSO have in common is that they are hardly ever consumed via smoke or vape. The only way you should ever consume FECO via inhalation is if you purchase a product that is specifically designed for the purpose.
How Quickly Does FECO Work and How Long Does It Stay in Your System?
A normal dose of FECO is usually greater than 10 mg, again depending on the ratio. (For example, 4:1 ratio = 4 parts THC to 1 part CBD. It is always important to know what the ratio of any cannabis medicine is as well as what the 1st number is the ratio stands for – 4:1 is it 4 parts THC or 4 parts CBD – ALWAYS ASK).
This means that it will be stronger than a typical dose of THC cannabis, which for most people is about 5 mg. The staying power of FECO and how long it takes to “kick in” is about the same as any digested dose, however.
Since FECO is consumed typically via the digestive system, it may take 1-2 hours for you to feel the effects. These effects will usually last about 8 hours. It is not unusual for digested cannabis to stay in the system and have an effect two or even three times longer than smoked or vaped medical cannabis.
How Can I Obtain FECO?
You can buy FECO or you can make it at home. (Our recommendation for first timers is purchase it from a legal/authorized establishment. This is to make sure that everything is done correctly, measurements, ratios, testing and it is VERY flammable due to certain extraction methods).
For buying, the most important thing is to make sure that you are getting high-quality product and that it is super clean and free of any chemical residue.
Whenever possible, it is also always best to go with organic cannabis, especially if it is grown in California. The reason why is pesticide residue. A recent report put together by Steep Hill Labs in Berkeley, California found that over 60% of all the commercial cannabis grown in California that was sampled had residues of the chemical Myclobutanil in it. Myclobutanil is considered a safe “general use” pesticide for crops such as strawberries and almonds in that state. Under California’s regulations, it is safe to use for cannabis crops too. The bad news (that regulators must not have known?) is that when Myclobutanil heats up, it turns into hydrogen cyanide. Because FECO (and RSO) contains such high amounts of full spectrum cannabis, it is really important that it be grown as well as processed in as clean a way as possible!
Other considerations for purchasing FECO include THC and CBD levels, the strain of cannabis they are using, if the brand meets industry standards for extraction, if any additives are used in the making of the product, and the general reputation of the company producing it. It is also a really good idea to find out which solvents are used in making the FECO you are purchasing.
What About FECO CBD?
FECO CBD is made in the same way as high THC FECO. The only difference is that it is typically made from hemp. CBD FECO contains all the amazing properties of regular FECO, including all the phytonutrient goodness of the entourage effect. In most cases it contains high levels of cannabinoids (including potentially CBD, CBG, and CBN).
In fact, like regular high-THC FECO, your FECO CBD may contain over 100 different kinds of cannabinoids as well as terpenes, flavonoids, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, anti-cancer and anti-fungal phytonutrients and so much more. These phytonutrients are super anti-inflammatory and healing for the body, and they can help to soothe, nourish, and strengthen the endocannabinoid system. This is the widespread system of receptors and chemical messengers that help so many other systems in the body, including digestion, temperature regulation, brain function, and metabolism.
In terms of where to buy FECO oil, you will want to make sure it comes from the purest sources possible and from organically-grown hemp or cannabis. It must also be free from pesticides and other environmental toxins such as heavy metals and additives. You will also want to make sure you get your FECO CBD from a quality brand that lab tests for purity.
FECO CBD comes in a variety of forms and products. The typical way that it is taken is via syringe and a single dose can contain up to 400mg or more of full spectrum CBD per 1 ml. FECO CBD is great for those who need to manage severe stress or anxiety, who wish to lower severe inflammation, or who wish to gain the mental clarity of CBD but do not want the psychoactive effects. If your daily CBD dose is already more than 200 mg of regular CBD per day, then FECO CBD may be a good fit for you.
Should You Take FECO?
The choice to make the switch from regular high-THC or regular CBD products to FECO products really depends on your particular situation, your metabolism, and so much more. Of course, if you are healing from serious illnesses such as cancer, epilepsy, autoimmune conditions like lupus, and severe anxiety, then you maywant to seriously consider FECO that contains higher doses of THC. In any case, please consult with a medical professional who is an expert in your ailment and cannabis dosing. Remember, cannabis is not a one size fits all type of treatment plan.