What is CBD & How Does It Work

May 19, 2020

What is CBD & How Does It Work

CBD is short for cannabidiol.  Hemp is where this phytocannabinoid is found and is not to be confused with the oil found in hemp seeds which does not contain cannabinoids. 

It also does not come from marijuana.   CBD comes from hemp plants.  Hemp plants are a relative of marijuana but they are not the same and the main difference is that hemp contains no more than 0.3% THC which is the psychoactive compound found in marijuana.  CBD is a non-psychoactive compound that helps maintain health and overall wellness. 

A quality CBD product is derived from the whole hemp plant and contains a full spectrum of cannabinoids and other beneficial compounds such as terpenes and flavonoids.  

How Does CBD Work?

The quick definition of how CBD works is that it enhances the Endocannabinoid System (ECS).

Now I know you are wondering what the ECS system is… 

The ECS system is thought to be a vast receptor system for sustaining our health.  It is also considered very vital and an important modulatory system in the proper functioning of the endocrine system, and the brain. 

Inside the Endocannabinoid System there are receptors called CB1 and CB2.  Only certain molecules unlock these receptors and CBD is one of those keys that unlock these receptors.  CB1 receptors tend to reside in the nervous system and brain where CB2 receptors are located in the spleen, thymus, immune cells and other peripheral organs.   

Benefits of CBD

The fact that CBD can enhance the important ECS system in our body makes this an appealing addition to our healthy lifestyles and also for those looking for relief from pain and other symptoms that other remedies have not been able to solve. 

Here are some benefits of CBD oil: 

 Pain Relief

I had briefly talked about the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) and how important it is.  Well, it is also involved with the regulation of pain as well. 

Research studies have discovered that CBD may help reduce chronic pain by reducing inflammation and interacting with the endocannabinoid neurotransmitters.1 

Anxiety Reduction

Anxiety is a common mental health disorder and the impact it can have on a person’s overall health and well-being is significant.  

Usually anxiety is treated with prescription medication which can cause a number of side effects such as headaches, drowsiness and insomnia.2

Other medications may also be addictive and can lead to a host of other problems.3 

CBD oil has been promising in research studies as a natural approach to treating anxiety and even depression.

In one study they found that a 300mg dose of CBD administered orally before a simulated public speaking test reduced anxiety during the test.4  

These benefits are linked to the ability for CBD to act on the brain’s serotonin receptors.  Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that regulates mood. 

Heart Health Benefit

Recent research has been released showing that there may be several benefits to consuming CBD for heart health.  This includes the ability to lower high blood pressure.  

In a recent study men were treated with one dose of 600mg of CBD oil and they discovered that it reduced resting blood pressure when compared to the placebo.

They also administered stress tests to these men and found that they experienced a smaller blood pressure increase than normal in these tests.5

Researchers believe that the stress and anxiety reducing properties that are in CBD are responsible for the ability to help lower the blood pressure in these participants.  

Other animal studies have noted that CBD may help to reduce the inflammation that is associated with heart disease thanks to the powerful antioxidant properties.  

Summary:

CBD has been researched for its role in providing relief of common health issues that include pain, anxiety, depression and even heart disease.

Research on new potential benefits of CBD is ongoing and new therapeutic uses for this natural CBD remedy will for sure be discovered.

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Citations:  

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5922297/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4970636/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4657308/
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30328956/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5470879/