Cannabidiol (CBD) has experienced a major rise in popularity over the last few years. You can find CBD products in many different stores across the United States and comes in many different forms. This could leave many people wondering why is CBD so popular? Why do people love CBD so much? What are the benefits of using it and what research is backing that up?
Well, let’s talk about it.
Starting simple: defining CBD
It only makes sense to define what something is before we start talking about its potential benefits. So, what even is CBD?
CBD is one of over 113 of specific kind of chemical compounds known as cannabinoids. These compounds are commonly found in cannabis plants like hemp and marijuana. There are a lot of different cannabinoids, but there is only one other one that you have probably heard of. That would be tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
THC is one of the most well-known cannabinoids. This is because of the effect that it has. It is psychoactive. That means that it creates the inebriation (normally referred to as a “high”) that is so commonly associated with cannabis. THC is often thought to be interchangeable to with CBD, leading many to believe that CBD is also psychoactive. This is not the case, though. CBD is not psychoactive and should not have any effect on someone’s cognitive abilities.
While CBD is found in both variations of cannabis, it is more often derived from hemp than from marijuana. This is because hemp has high levels of CBD and low levels of THC (less than 0.3% to be exact). Marijuana, on the other hand, has high levels of THC and varying levels of CBD. It also helps that hemp is federally legal in in the United States. This legalization came as a result of the 2018 Farm Bill which made it legal for farmers to grow and sell hemp. Meanwhile, marijuana is still federally illegal. Some states have legalized it, but not all. This makes it easier to sell the CBD products without concern about what states have legalized the plant and which have not.
As mentioned, there has been a lot of research that has been done on CBD lately. There are a lot of different areas that have been focused on and looked at pretty extensively. But what areas in particular look the most promising?
How CBD may be able to affect your state of mind
While CBD is not psychoactive or known for having any effect on cognitive abilities, it is known for helping people achieve a greater state of calm. As a result, many studies have been focused on how CBD could work with stress.
For example, in this study researchers had test subjects with social anxiety participate in public speaking. Some of the test subjects where given CBD before they had to speak. Those who were give CBD reported feeling calmer and more confident when facing that stressful situation.
Another study looked at a test subject that had both anxiety and insomnia that were caused by Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. The subject was given a trial run of CBD. The researchers noted not only a decrease in the subject’s anxiety symptoms, but also saw that the patient’s sleep greatly improved in both length and quality.
These two studies among many others suggest that CBD may be able to help its users achieve a greater sense of calm. That could mean better sleep and better focus when dealing with stressful situations. It could also mean an overall improvement in one’s quality of life.
How CBD interacts with inflammation
Inflammation is a common issue that can cause issues within the joints and difficulty moving. Many researchers have been interested by the interactions between CBD and inflammation and the promise those interactions hold.
This study, for example, wanted to look at inflammation that was associated with oxidative stress. This is because oxidative stress has a hand in a number of conditions, including types 1 and 2 diabetes, Alzheimer disease, and specific kinds of arthritis, among many other conditions. The researchers through the course of their study found that CBD was greatly able to help reduce the inflammation caused by the oxidative stress.
Another study focused on how CBD affected the inflammation in pancreatitis in mice. The researchers stimulated pancreatitis in mice and dosed mice with placebo or CBD. After some observation, the researchers concluded that the inflammation in the mice that were give CBD was reduced significantly. Especially when compared with the mice that were give other medications or placebo.
These are just a couple of studies among a multitude that have looked at CBD and inflammation. Most of them have shown some very promising results. This could mean that there is some relief in store for those who struggle with any of a number of issues in which inflammation plays a part.
How CBD may be able help with skin health
This particular area of study may come as a surprise to those who are not very familiar with CBD. After all, what could something made from cannabis do to help skin? As many studies suggest, it may be able to help to improve overall skin health.
For example, this study wanted to see how CBD effected the sebum production in skin. Sebum is the oil that your skin produces in order to protect it from outside forces like dirt and sun. However, it is not uncommon for the skin to produce too much of the oil. The sebum then mixes with dirt and other residue on the skin and clogs up the pores. The blockage of the pore triggers an immune response as the body tries to restore skin function, resulting it the condition we call acne. Researchers who conducted this study found that CBD was able to help stem the production of sebum, which could be a great help for those who skin produces too much of the oil. There are also two human clinical studies (here and here) that will report soon on CBD effects on acne.
Another study looked at how CBD interacted with melanogenesis. This is a process that helps protects the skin against ultraviolet light, keeping down burns and skin damage. The researchers found that the cannabinoid was able to help give a boost to the melanogenesis process, potentially help providing more protection for the skin from external forces.
Everyone has at some point spent time worrying about their skin and how healthy it is. These studies, among others, suggest that CBD could help provide your skin with a little bit of a boost to its overall health.
What CBD products are out there?
Now, that we have gone over some of the exciting potential benefits of using CBD, let’s talk about what your options are for taking it. There are a lot of different CBD products out there, because extract is easily added to basically anything. So, we are going to talk about some of the overall categories of CBD products.
You can probably guess what these are. They are food and drinks that have been made with CBD extract. They are one of the most popular CBD products available. There are a few reasons for this. One is that they taste good, the other is that they are easy to take (as in you just eat or drink them). The one downside is that they are often slow to start working. This is because the food or drink needs to digest before the CBD can enter the system and start working.
Tinctures & oils
Oils and tinctures are CBD extract that have been mixed with a carrier oil, like coconut oil. These you take either by mixing them in with food or drink, or by putting the drops directly into your mouth, under your tongue. Most manufacturers recommend the under-the-tongue route because the skin under the tongue is thin. This allows the CBD to absorb into the system and start its work much more quickly.
Capsules & Tablets
These are pill-like products. The capsules are generally soft gels. They are pills made with liquid CBD. These are flexible and easy to take. However, they do need to digest before they can start working, so tend to take a bit longer. CBD tablets are usually sublingual tablets. These you place under your tongue and allow to dissolve. Much like tinctures and oils, they work quickly because they absorb through the thin skin under the tongue.
CBD topicals are basically any lotion, cream, or salve that has been made with CBD extract. These do not provide the same overall effect that the oral products are likely too. This is because the CBD does not typically enter the bloodstream like it does with the other products. Instead, it absorbs through the pores, generally stay where it is applied. This work best when they are used regularly.
How to find the right amount of CBD for you
There is no one set amount of CBD that is right for people of a particular age or weight. Everyone reacts to the cannabinoid a little bit differently, and while weight and age can play a part, they are not the only factors to consider. So, when starting CBD for the first time, you may have to do some experimentation.
Before we can talk about how to find the right amount of CBD, we need to talk about what to avoid while taking the cannabinoid. CBD is considered to be safe overall. However, it does have some negative side effects. They are normally associated with taking too much CBD and consist of things like nausea and dizziness. While not life threatening, those side effects are still not fun, and you should do your best to avoid them. Of course, the way to do that is by finding the right amount of CBD for you.
The best way to go about starting to take CBD is by keeping the initial amount as low as you can. After taking that, wait a little while and see how it sits with you. If after an hour or so you do not notice any negative side effects, but you also are not seeing the effects that you are looking for, then you can try taking some more. It is important to go about this carefully. Do not just take CBD until you experience negative side effects. Whatever is the smallest amount that does not give you any negative side effects but does give you the positive effect you are looking for, then that is amount for you.
You should also note that CBD does not mix well with all medication. It causes some medications to have a lessened effect and others to stop working entirely. If you are taking medications and want to start using CBD, be sure to discuss it with your healthcare provider first. They should know whether or not your medications will safely mix with CBD.
It is also important to know that most CBD products are intended for those who are 18 or older. Keep CBD products out of reach of children. Especially products, like edibles, that do not look very different from their non-CBD equivalents.
The examples of research that has been done on CBD in this article are just that, examples. This article only went over a couple of the areas that researchers have been looking into, so there is even more to know. There is so much research that has been done on the cannabinoid. There is even more yet to come. As the years pass, we will likely learn more about what potential benefits the cannabinoid may hold for us.
If you are interested in learning more about CBD or getting your hands on a CBD product, you are on the right site. Here on the Panacea Life Sciences website we have articles covering just about anything and everything there is to know about the cannabinoid. We also carry a line of high-quality CBD products. You can find something for everyone, even your pets. If you have any comments, questions, or concerns please let us know. You can get ahold of us either through our website or by emailing us at [email protected]