Are you curious about CBD oil and how it can improve your health in a natural way? Here’s how you can reap the benefits without effect.
You may have recently heard the rumor about a substance on the market: CBD oil. You know it comes from cannabis, but you don’t know exactly what it is, minus the fact that people praise its ability to relieve pain and reduce anxiety.
Read on to find out what all the hype is about, what CBD oil is, what the benefits are, and whether it’s right for you.
What Is CBD (Cannabidiol)?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the main compounds found in the marijuana plant, Cannabis sativa. It belongs, along with THC, to a class of substances in cannabis called cannabinoids. Although THC is responsible for the psychotropic effects of cannabis, CBD is not psychoactive.
For this reason, marijuana grown for recreational purposes in the past generally had little CBD and a lot of THC to produce an altered mental state. However, as research begins to show the benefits of CBD, manufacturers are starting to actively promote blends with higher CBD content.
CBD has been researched for its anti-inflammatory, anticonvulsant, antioxidant, anti-emetic, and antipsychotic effects, among other benefits.
CBD vs THC
The main difference between THC and CBD is that THC is psychoactive and CBD is not psychoactive. In other words, CBD does not give you the “high” associated with THC.
Both cannabinoids interact with your body’s own endocannabinoid receptors. However, CBD affects these receptors differently than THC and binds weakly (or not at all) to receptors in your brain that cause a mild euphoria. This allows you to enjoy the benefits of cannabis without changing your mental state.
In addition, CBD and THC have many of the same benefits. However, CBD has been shown to be well tolerated even in high doses, with THC capable of causing transient side effects such as increased heart rate, memory loss, slower reaction times, and red eyes.
6 Natural Benefits of CBD Oil
CBD oil is being studied extensively for its benefits and future potential as a key player in the treatment of many serious medical conditions. Below are several research-backed benefits of CBD oil.
1. Relieves Pain and Inflammation
CBD interacts with the cannabinoid receptors in our body in a way that can help reduce pain and inflammation, as well as interact with neurotransmitters to help reduce the perceived impact of pain.
For example, studies show that CBD injections can help reduce the pain response to surgical incisions, as well as provide significant relief from pain and muscle spasms in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS).
2. Reduces Anxiety
Anxiety is extremely common in our fast-paced society and can become a major obstacle in life if left untreated. CBD shows promise as an effective remedy for anxiety and the symptoms that accompany it.
One study found that 24 people with social anxiety disorder, who were given 600 mg of CBD for a public talk, experienced significantly less anxiety, cognitive impairment, and discomfort during their speech, compared to the placebo group. Researchers believe this effect is due to CBD’s interaction with serotonin receptors in your brain, which regulate mood and behavior.
3. Fights Cancer
Research also shows that CBD contains anti-proliferative effects that can help stop cancer from spreading and invasion. In one study, CBD was able to selectively target and inhibit the growth of cancer cells (in this case, breast tumor cells), while minimally affecting surrounding cells.
In addition, CBD has been shown to be non-toxic even in large quantities, so it can be used in long-term treatments.
4. Helps with Neurological Disorders
Studies show that CBD has the ability to improve synapse plasticity, reduce neural inflammation and stimulate neurogenesis (growth of new brain cells). Researchers believe this is why CBD has shown so much promise when it comes to helping treat neurological conditions such as epilepsy and Alzheimer’s.
5. Eases Depression and Psychosis
If you are suffering from depression, psychosis, or other mental health disorders, CBD can be a great option to help you cope. Studies show that CBD has antidepressant effects, can improve mood, and reduce psychotic symptoms, such as delusions.
6. Improves Sleep
CBD could also be a promising treatment for sleep disorders and insomnia. Studies show that children treated with CBD for epilepsy also experience improved sleep as a side effect, possibly due to the anticonvulsant nature of CBD. This can have a relaxing effect on your body.
CBD Oil for Epilepsy
One of the main focuses of CBD in the treatment of epilepsy. Much research has been done on CBD’s ability to reduce seizure rates.
One study showed that 39% of patients with epilepsy had more than 50% fewer seizures after three months of CBD treatment. Another study found that CBD was more effective than placebo in reducing seizures in patients with seizure disorders such as Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.
Researchers believe that CBD’s anticonvulsant properties and its ability to regulate the triggering of neurons play a role in reducing seizures.
Where Can You Legally Find CBD?
CBD is still classified as a Schedule 1 drug in the United States because it is a substance found in marijuana. Program 1 basically means that there is a risk of misuse in its use, so access is limited.
However, many states now allow for medical reasons to use products with low THC and CBD content.
Side Effects & Risks
Little research has been done on the long-term side effects of CBD in humans. However, studies with continued use show little to no side effects. CBD is generally considered safe and even protective against the negative effects of recreational cannabis.
4 Ways to Use CBD Oil
One of the ways you can use CBD oil is by inhaling it with a vaporizer. This is considered one of the best ways to get CBD into the bloodstream quickly. However, keep in mind that inhaling any type of smoke is not beneficial to your long-term health.
2. Topical Application
There are creams, lotions, and other topical products that contain CBD on the market that are used directly on the skin. CBD oil penetrates pores to reach the bloodstream.
CBD oil can also be taken sublingually (under the tongue) as a tincture.
Just like taking a vitamin, CBD oil can be taken directly as a tincture or even added to foods such as smoothies, juices, or even baked goods.