Here at Big Easy Magazine, we believe in supporting small, local businesses. We also believe in empowering the community in their lives and in their health. This is why we’re proud to tell the story of Mountain Pure, Louisiana’s first CBD company; their values are akin to our own. We are unapologetically progressive and uniquely New Orleans; Mountain Pure is unapologetic about helping people manage their health with plant based medicine and they are uniquely Louisiana.
The trio behind Mountain Pure, Heather, Natalie, and Chad, aim to empower the community to take charge of their own health so that they can become their own healers. In becoming their own healers, folks would not have to rely as much on doctors and what are often dangerous prescription medications.
The story of Mountain Pure CBD is a story of three friends seeking to help their community manage pain (and a variety of other conditions) with plant based medicine.
“I started this company with my best friend because I have seen first-hand what true suffering looks like and I never want anyone to feel like they are out of options,” said Natalie Ourso. “I want to bring hope to the many hopeless. Everyone deserves to be happy and healthy. We were put on this Earth to help and serve others, and that’s just what we’re going to do!”
After serving eight years in the military, with a fifteen month deployment to Baghdad, Natalie returned home with PTSD, Anxiety and Depression diagnoses. Before her second deployment (which she didn’t end up making), Natalie tore all the ligaments in her left knee in a motorcycle accident on a military base. Immediately following this she was prescribed narcotics in order to manage her pain. After a second surgery a year later for the same injury, she was prescribed an astounding 240 opiates a month, 90 benzodiazepines (anxiety medications), 30 SSRIs, and 30 amphetamine salt tablets to counteract the benzos. This cycle went on for over five years and spiraled into full blown opiate addiction.
About five and a half years ago, Natalie reached her bottom and went to receive treatment for her addiction. Although she got off the narcotics, the doctors still prescribed her about five to ten different medications. Around three years ago, she found that she was still miserable because although the narcotic pharmaceuticals were gone from her life, the diagnoses remained. The non-narcotic medicines she was prescribed just did not give her any relief. It was then that Natalie began exploring more holistic ways to approach her health issues. A family member came over one day with some hemp derived CBD and told her that it would relieve a lot of her symptoms. Natalie was initially skeptic because of CBD’s associations with Marijuana, but her family member assured her that CBD would not get her high, so she gave it a go.
Upon trying CBD, Natalie’s knee pain became nearly non-existent when she tried squatting down (where before it would have been a painful struggle to get back up). She was sold, and thereafter stopped taking all of her medications and solely started taking CBD to manage her pain and other symptoms. (Editor’s note: please consult your doctor before beginning any new therapy regimen or stopping prescribed medications – every body is different!)
Today, her knee pain has decreased tremendously, her PTSD symptoms aren’t nearly as heightened, and her anxiety is manageable. Natalie also found that pairing the CBD consumption with a healthy diet has helped her in her process of healing. For almost three years, she hasn’t needed any pharmaceuticals.
Simultaneously (as the Universe sometimes will do), while Natalie was on her journey of healing, her business partner, Heather Carter, was also on a journey of personal discovery. Prior to recovering from opiates, Heather had been using pharmaceuticals and most over the counter medicines to heal her family. After she recovered, and after being let down by Western medicine and Big Pharma, she detoxed the chemicals from their home and food as best she could and was on a path of alternatively caring for her family. After several years of this, her then 7-year-old began to battle panic attacks, dysgraphia, and ADD symptoms. Heather immediately turned to what she knew – plant based medicine.
When Heathere went on her search initially, there was almost no CBD oil to be found in Baton Rouge. She went to a couple of local smoke shops to find they only had one or two different brands, and when she tried them, she knew immediately it wasn’t something she was comfortable giving her child. This is when Natalie recommended the Colorado farm and processor that she’d found and had come to trust. Heather reached out to them and began making her own oils for her family. Within a week, her son’s dysgraphia caused panic attacks at school stopped and his teachers reported to her that his behavior had improved greatly. It was that experience that would a year later highlight the need for the Mountain CBD team to bring education and quality CBD to Louisiana. It simply did not exist – so they would provide it!
Heather has been on the holistic naturopathy path for over six years, so when she discovered CBD, it completely changed the game for her and her family. “I believe everyone should have a wonderful quality of life,” Heather said. I do not believe that it is just part of life that we have to suffer daily. I believe in joy and I hope that this company can bring joy to other families.”
Heather’s husband is a cannabis advocate who understands that the plant is changing lives, will continue to change lives, and he sincerely believes it has the power to change the world – for so much better. He is also a dreamer that had been working in various plants (as an electrician) for years trying to provide for his family. After multiple lay-offs, he quickly understood that the “stable” job, wasn’t so stable after all. His reach was for something better for himself and for those around him.
After a year of the three of them and their family taking CBD, Chad suggested his wife start a company because he felt it was their responsibility to share what they had found with others, in order to better lives. “This plant is and will continue to change our world for the better,” Chat stated. “We have to keep showing people.”
When Heather expressed to Natalie that she wanted to start the company, but didn’t want to mess with the operations part of it, Natalie immediately responded “Well, I’ll do that part! That’s my thing!” That day a dream turned into a reality – and Mountain Pure was born. When Chad came up with the idea for Mountain Pure, he saw the greater picture; the bigger vision: to give other people their ability to dream back. Their goal was for Mountain Pure to provide jobs, careers, and visions of a better life to the people they meet every day. They wanted to educate people towards gaining confidence – in themselves.
Now, almost two years later, they are doing just that. Mountain Pure doesn’t just provide CBD products. They also provide education and support to the community around them, and to the team that works with them daily.
They offer pure, filler free, organic, THC free, non GMO, and cruelty free tinctures, muscle rubs, capsules, soaps, lotions, massage oils, e- liquids, Chapstick, and bath bombs for therapeutic relief. Their products are both potent high quality so that they fill a therapeutic need in the community. They specifically avoid selling the low potency products that many people purchase for novelty and enjoyment. They believe NO ONE should have to suffer in life if they are able to help with improving it.
They needed change in their community, so they became the change. “If you do nothing, nothing changes. But if we all do a little, we can win together,” Natalie says.