What is CBD Oil and How Does it Work?
Learn about the benefits of CBD and how it might support you.
The prevalence of medical marijuana or what others will refer to as medicinal weed is gaining popularity by the day, and among the various products consumers are looking for is CBD or cannabis oil.
Regardless of whether you’ve seen it in your wellbeing nourishment store or read about it in the news, the buzz about CBD just continues to get more intense.
People are drinking it in tea, swallowing it in capsules and putting drops on their mouth with a dropper. So, what the heck is CBD and is it the wonder oil everyone has been talking about?
I’m here to help you push past the hype and get right to the facts about CBD and about today’s top-trending supplement and what it can do for you.
What is CBD?
CBD stands for Cannabidiol which is a compound extracted from the hemp plant and one of the most prevalent cannabinoids found in cannabis Sativa plants. Cannabis sativa plant is also used to produce hemp and marijuana.
Cannabinoids are known to promote health and to keep people resilient to changes in their environment.
Cannabis oil (CBD Oil) is the concentrated liquid extract of the marijuana plant, Cannabis sativa.
CBD is non-psychoactive (it doesn’t make you feel euphoric) and is considered extremely safe. CBD counteracts the psychoactivity of THC, the component of marijuana that makes you feel “high.”
Hemp vs. Marijuana
Just like oranges and lemons are both citruses, hemp and marijuana are also both cannabis, but look different and have a different chemical makeup.
• Hemp and marijuana come from the same plant family, Cannabis sativa L., but are completely different in function, cultivation and application.
• Marijuana generally has a high level of THC, the psychoactive compound that makes you high, and is used for medicinal or recreational purposes.
• Hemp may contain a trace amount of THC (less than three-tenths of one per cent are allowed), but hemp has significant levels of CBD.
• CBD extracted from marijuana is illegal in most states. CBD extracted from agricultural hemp is legal under federal law, as long as it contains less than 0.3% THC.
HOW DOES CBD AFFECT THE BODY?
The human body is self-adjusting, constantly shifting to keep balanced and healthy – a process called homeostasis. Our body system’s primary job is to maintain homeostasis and help the body adapt to outside stressors.
One way our bodies maintain homeostasis is via the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). Marijuana and CBD work by acting on the body’s endocannabinoid system.
Endocannabinoid System (ECS)
The ECS is a network of cell receptors (CB1 & CB2) spread throughout the entire body that controls some of our most vital life functions including eating, sleeping, relaxation and cognition.
The ECS also assists in the body’s overall recovery and repair. It’s like your body’s “master control.” CB1 receptors are found mainly in the brain and spinal cord, while CB2 receptors are concentrated in immune cells in the peripheral nervous system.
Our bodies naturally produce compounds called endocannabinoids (endo=inside) that bind to those receptors, like a key fitting into a lock. CBD hemp oil is a plant-based cannabinoid – or phytocannabinoid (phyto=plant) – that similarly acts upon cell receptors to help activate the ECS.
Health benefits of CBD Oils
Many medical studies show that CBD has the potential for benefiting human and animal health via its connection to the ECS.
CBD oil is being researched for its benefits in a variety of health conditions and symptoms, including anxiety and depression, chronic pain and joint issues, migraines, skin issues, epilepsy, alcoholism, and sleep issues. CBD oil is alright for nearly everybody, as per an ongoing report from the World Health Organization.
1. Treatment for Mood Disorders.
CBD oil is a good treatment regimen for a mood disorder. It alleviates anxiety disorders and depression by working directly on the brain receptors 5HT1A (serotonin) and GABA (an inhibitory neurotransmitter) of the endocannabinoid system.
2. Decreases Chronic Pain and Joint Issues.
Studies have revealed that CBD reduces inflammation and has been found to reduce joint swelling, making it a popular treatment for chronic pain associated with arthritis, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, and cancer. CBD suppresses cytokine production and induces T-regulatory cells to protect the body from attacking itself, which can help your autoimmune conditions.
3. Effective relief for Migraines.
CBD oil offers effective relief for migraines, as it interacts with the pathways associated with migraines
4. Helps Treat Seizures
CBD has been shown in studies to offer significant relief to epileptic patients. The Epilepsy Foundation now acknowledges the ability of cannabinoids (CBD, specifically) to reduce seizures.
5. Insomnia & Sleep Disorders.
A study has also shown sleep pattern improvement in individuals with sleep disorders and/or anxiety disorders
You can consult with healthcare providers familiar with CBD if you are pregnant or on any prescriptions and use the following websites as resources as newly published research is coming out in real-time.
National Institutes of Health, WebMD, PubMed, Medscape (may require healthcare credentials), Colorado State University, Institute of Cannabis Research (ICR)