You’ve heard of CBD and you know it has something to do with marijuana, but that’s all you know. You wonder why so many people are raving about it and why it helps all of the things that they say it does. Does it really help or is it a scam? Let’s take a look at how CBD works and whether it can work for you.
What is CBD?
CBD is otherwise known as cannabidiol. This is a compound that comes from cannabis. It’s more prevalent in hemp than in marijuana but it is in both. In fact, CBD is only found in cannabis, unlike other cannabinoids that are found in many different plant species around the world, including cannabis.
CBD is a compound small enough to interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) which is the body system responsible for maintaining the immune system, regulation of moods, pain management, and metabolism too.
The ECS is made up of enzymes and receptors which produce endocannabinoids within our own bodies. When we ingest cannabinoids they are capable of interacting with this ECS as well. Some cannabinoids bind to the receptors and some of them work to antagonize the enzymes to produce more or the receptors to close or open. In this way, cannabinoids such as CBD can impact the body in very meaningful ways.
A short list of the things CBD has been used for with success by individuals:
- Diabetes management
- Stroke recovery
- Parkinson’s disease
- Crohn’s disease
- Panic disorder
- Pain Management
- Epilepsy seizure control
These are a few of the things people are enjoying CBD for. Many of these have research in progress with findings that support the use of CBD. Mice and gerbils with cancer were given CBD in a lab, for example. These showed a shrinkage of tumors and that CBD slowed or halted the spread of cancer cells.
CBD has been found to have neuroprotective qualities. What this means is that it coats the neural network with a coating that protects the network from the impact of aging and degradation. Your thoughts and memories have protection from injury to the head and CBD also is a natural blood thinning agent which means that the probability of clots is minimized as well. This means that your cardiovascular health is positively impacted and the risk of stroke is reduced.
Since headaches are often a result of stress and high blood pressure, the thinning of the blood and the relaxation of panic and anxiety that come from CBD use can definitely be useful in combating a headache. The pounding headache that seems to pulse with your heartbeat is relieved by the thinning of the blood, alleviating the pressure. It’s a natural relief so you don’t have to worry about an upset stomach or an overdose from Tylenol.
CBD has analgesic and pain relieving qualities that have reportedly worked better for some people than taking over-the-counter medications like Tylenol or ibuprofen without any of the harmful side effects. .
While more research needs to happen, there will undoubtedly be more progressive in learning about CBD and in the development of medications from it. So far, several new drugs have been developed, thanks to cannabis. Namely, Epidiolex for epileptic seizures.
The main ingredient in Epidiolex is cannabidiol. This was given the stamp of approval from the Food and Drug Administration, a huge step forward for the use of medical marijuana and cannabis as a therapy for many chronic conditions and diseases.
People who had children suffering from severe seizures began flocking to California in the late 90s when it was found to help with seizures and no one was exactly sure why yet. There was no doubt at all that it did help.
For Parkinson’s disease, people knew that when they marijuana they had fewer tremors and could function far more normally than without marijuana. These are the very thing that prompted states like California and Colorado to legalize medical marijuana and has allowed science to study cannabis more extensively.
This led to learning about the various cannabinoids. 112 cannabinoids have been discovered so far and they are all being scrutinized for potential in therapeutic use right now.
Private research and grants through universities and companies that have a stake in the cannabis industry are all hard at work learning everything that they can about the plant and its compounds, including cannabinoids and terpenes.
CBD and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are the most popular cannabinoids as of now, because we know more about them. CBD, unlike THC, will not cause you to get high. It isn’t addictive either.
In fact, CBD is showing us that it has a usefulness in helping to curb the cravings of nicotine for those who are trying to quit smoking. It may have a future in the fight against drug abuse by helping to create a non-addictive drug that can help people quit opioids and other hard drugs with fewer withdrawal symptoms.
While a lot more research is needed, it is happening now at a far more rapid pace than ever before. The public is becoming more savvy as to the benefits of cannabis and they are demanding that all of the usefulness be discovered as the outcry for legalization is being heard in many states. Surely more states will follow and this may have some in the pharmaceutical industry worried.