What is CBD?
Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, is one of over 60+ naturally occurring cannabinoid compounds found in Cannabis, an annual herbaceous flowering plant.
CBD oil is derived from an organic substance formed in the plant’s secretions. Both marijuana and hemp are forms of cannabis.
However, cannabis does not mean marijuana. Cannabis is the genus name and general umbrella term, under which all forms of marijuana and hemp fall.
Until recently, delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, was the most well-known and studied cannabinoid due to its abundance in marijuana.
However, as the second most prevalent cannabinoid in marijuana and the top non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in hemp, CBD has been gaining momentum in the scientific community and media.
Unlike THC, CBD does not cause any feeling of “high,” which contributes to its legalization across the United States. CBD does not typically have any immediate noticeable effect, though some customers have reported otherwise when using isolates.
How does CBD work?
CBD primarily interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system. A grouping of millions of cannabinoid receptors found throughout your body, but are primarily clustered in the brain and central nervous system.
While CBD is a phytocannabinoid, or plant-based cannabinoid, your body also naturally produces cannabinoids, known as endocannabinoids.
Almost every organ of your body, including your skin and digestive tract, contains cannabinoid receptors.
The endocannabinoid system has four primary purposes including neuroprotection, stress relief, immune response. And regulating the body’s general state of balance, impacting faculties such as appetite, sleep, mood, and pain.
Unlike THC, CBD does not interact directly with the two classical cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2). This is why CBD does not cause any psychoactive effect.
Instead, CBD inhibits the enzymes that break down endocannabinoids, leading to an increase in your body’s naturally-produced cannabinoids.
CBD’s molecular formula is C21H30O2, and it has a molecular mass of 314.4636.
Health Benefits Of CBD Oil
CBD Could Protect Against Neurodegenerative Diseases
This was found to prevent toxic effects of neurotransmitter glutamate and radical oxygen species (ROS) in the brain, thus preventing brain cell death.
CBD has antioxidant activity greater than vitamin C (ascorbic acid) or vitamin E (α-tocopherol).
This may also protect brain cells from beta-amyloid toxicity, making it a potential therapy in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
It may also protect the brain in cases where blood flow is reduced (ischemia).
Early human studies showed a dose-related improvement in patients with Parkinson’s disease treated with 100 to 600 mg/day of CBD over a 6-week period.
However, another study failed to show any beneficial effect of a mixture of THC and CBD either on Parkinson’s disease or dyskinesia.
In animal models, CBD reversed the cognitive deficits of Alzheimer’s disease.
Due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, CBD may be a promising agent to treat and prolong survival in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) patients.
CBD Can Relieve Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms
Cannabis derivatives may relieve symptoms in multiple sclerosis patients.
A combination of CBD and THC is effective and well tolerated in the treatment of muscle tightness, pain, sleep disturbances, and loss of bladder control (urinary incontinence) in people with multiple sclerosis.
CBD Relieves Pain
Studies suggest that cannabinoids may be a new class of drugs for the treatment of chronic pain.
CBD significantly decreased chronic inflammatory and neuropathic pain in rodents.
Cannabidiol, especially in a combination with THC, shows promising results for the treatment of postoperative pain, chronic pain associated with multiple sclerosis, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and neuropathic pain.
Sativex, a combination of CBD and THC as a sublingual spray, is effective in treating neuropathic pain in patients with multiple sclerosis and in cancer patients with advanced pain.
Studies show that CBD and opioids act together to relieve pain.
CBD May Be Beneficial for Rheumatoid Arthritis
Due to its anti-inflammatory effect, cannabinoids may provide relief of joint pain and swelling, and decrease joint destruction and disease progression.
Administration of CBD protected joints against severe damage, decreased progression, and produced improvement of arthritis in animal models.
The first controlled trial showed that administration of Sativex over 5 weeks produced significant improvements in the intensity of pain on movement and at rest, quality of sleep, and inflammation. No serious adverse effects were observed.
Cannabidiol May Help with Insomnia
Research suggests taking CBD before bed improves sleep in people with insomnia.
Can’t fall asleep at night and wake up feeling more tired in the morning than you did the night before?
Biohacking Insomnia is the only sleep resource guide that looks at all the possible factors you’re missing out on restorative sleep and works to get you sleeping better from a holistic viewpoint so you can finally get your nights-and your days-back the way they should be.
Chronic inflammation is a huge problem in our society that contributes to many non-infectious diseases including heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s, autoimmune disease, and more, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information.
Diet and lifestyle play a huge part in chronic inflammation but when folks are already eating a healthy, nutrient-dense diet and optimizing their lifestyle (getting enough sleep and exercise for example), CBD oil can help. Research also shows that CBD oil can reduce chronic inflammation that leads to disease.
Many small-scale studies have looked into the safety of CBD in adults. They concluded that adults tend to tolerate a wide range of doses well.
Researchers have found no significant side effects on the central nervous system, the vital signs, or mood, even among people who used high dosages.
The most common side effect was tiredness. Also, some people reported diarrhea and changes in appetite or weight.
There is still a lack of available long-term safety data.
Also, to date, researchers have not performed studies involving children.
Side effects of Epidiolex
Concerning the product that the FDA approved to treat two types of epilepsy, researchers noticed following adverse effects in clinical trials:
- liver problems
- symptoms related to the central nervous system, such as irritability and lethargy
- reduced appetite
- gastrointestinal problems
- rashes and other sensitivity reactions
- reduced urination
- breathing problems
The patient information leaflet notes that there is a risk of worsening depression or suicidal thoughts. It is important to monitor anyone who is using this drug for signs of mood change.
Research suggests that a person taking the product is unlikely to form a dependency.
How to use CBD Oil?
So, how to best use CBD oil? CBD comes in a variety of forms, such as oil, tincture, oil for vaping, sublingual spray, edibles, and topical creams, so you can choose the method that is most suitable in your case.
The main idea behind all the methods of using CBD is to make sure that this cannabinoid ends up in your system in an easy manner, producing the results you want.
But when it comes to choosing the right method, it depends very much on the optimal dose in your case, the results you wish to achieve, and how long you want its effects to last. So, there isn’t a general rule when it comes to using CBD products.
Most people that use CBD prefer the varieties that are not for smoking, contrary to what people may believe, although vaping is great for alleviating symptoms in a matter of minutes, with effects ranging up to a few hours.
CBD administered orally can produce effects that last longer, a couple of hours in a row, but it takes longer for them to kick in, which is somewhere between 10 minutes or an hour and a half since the administration of the product. So, again, it is a matter of personal preference and desired effect.
What is the best way to take CBD?
You can take CBD under the form of oil, which can come in the form of capsules, pre-made edibles, or as it is, added to the foods and drinks you consume daily.
It is worth knowing that CBD oil is extracted through a variety of ways, the CO2 extraction method being the one you should prefer best because it is the cleanest and most efficient. This doesn’t mean that the others methods don’t work, but, in case of solvent use, such as butane, toxic residues can be left behind if the process is not performed with maximum attention.
You can also use CBD in the shape of a tincture, which allows you to put a few drops directly in your mouth, under your tongue, or in your food and drinks. This form is quite appreciated by many people, as it is a discreet way of taking CBD, even in public spaces.
There are the CBD oil that is specially made for vaping pens, a method ideal if you want to enjoy the effects of CBD in a very fast manner. And don’t worry, vaping CBD does not have the same unwanted side-effects as smoking. If you are not sure if this method is for you, do know that there are disposable vaping pens, with a limited number of uses, just in case you want to try it out before deciding.
Sublingual sprays, just like tinctures, were meant to be used discreetly, by pulverizing the product under your tongue. They can be found with a various amount of CBD content, depending on the desired effects, representing a fast and easy way to get the treatment you need.
If you experience muscle and joint pains, you can opt for using topical CBD products. Which are made to be used externally, by applying them on the skin, on the painful spot.
They are created and used due to their pain relieving and anti-inflammatory properties. Helping people that suffer from conditions like arthritis.