What Is CBD?
CBD (cannabidiol) is one of the most buzzed-about health products at the moment, and for good reason…
It’s the second-most common compound in hemp and cannabis plants, and it comes with a boat-load of benefits.
There’s a lot of confusion about what CBD is and how it affects the body, but this short, sweet, and sassy article should help clear up the confusion.
Early research shows that CBD can…
- Reduce inflammation
- Relieve pain
- Calm anxiety
...and even treat severe cases of epilepsy. (1)
By the time you’re done with this quick 3-minute read, you should know what to expect from CBD.
Is it the elixir of life? No!
But it’s absolutely worth a closer look.
Let’s dive in!
How Does CBD Make You Feel?
CBD will not make you high, the floor will not melt into a liquid, and your friend’s faces will not turn into cartoons.
In fact, CBD has zero psychoactive effects.
However, it very well may reduce anxiety and soothe inflammation.
When you take CBD, you can still drive a car, run errands, take your kids to soccer practice, and do everything else that your busy life demands.
And as a cherry on top, it often produces a pleasant warming sensation when applied to the skin.
Now, let’s take a closer look at how CBD works its magic:
How Does CBD Work In the Body?
CBD works by mimicking the effects of natural cannabinoids in the body.
Believe it or not, your body makes its own cannabinoids.
That’s right, you were born to use CBD!
As a matter of fact, you have an entire “endocannabinoid system” running throughout your body. (2)
This network of receptors controls immunity, neurology, and all other body systems, which is why CBD has such broad effects.
When you ingest CBD or apply it topically, it activates endocannabinoid receptors and boosts overall health.
Benefits of CBD
Why should you take CBD?
For starters, CBD can rejuvenate the skin and scalp by reducing inflammation. (3)
But that’s not all...
According to recent animal studies, here are some of the top potential health benefits of CBD:
- Kills cancer (4)
- Soothes inflammation
- Reduces anxiety and improves sleep (5)
- Manages diabetes
- Supports gut health
- Protect neurons
- Strengthens the immune system
- Treats nausea and vomiting
- Relieves pain (6)
CBD’s most powerful benefit, however, is its ability to reduce, and sometimes even eliminate, severe seizures.
Believe it or not, in 2018, the FDA approved the first-ever CBD medication called Epidiolex: an oral solution that treats two rare forms of seizures. (7)
CBD Side Effects
There’s got to be a catch, though, right?
Although more human research still needs to be conducted, current studies have found minimal side effects of CBD, which are limited to:
- Changes in appetite/weight (8)
Because CBD is fat-soluble, it may also interfere with the absorption of other medications in the blood, so it’s always a good idea to check with your doctor before taking CBD.
How to Take CBD
Feel like CBD might be worth a shot?
Ultimately, there’s a whole lot to gain and very little risk.
The only question is, with so many different types of CBD products out there, where do you even begin?
Here’s a quick rundown of the different types of CBD products available today:
- Tinctures: These are extracted with alcohol or another solvent and are taken sublingually, meaning you let them sit under your tongue while they soak into the bloodstream.
- Oils: Ingested orally (swallowed). The downside to oral oils is that CBD is not as bioavailable when it passes through the digestive system.
- Powders: Can be added to juice, water, or smoothies. Also less bioavailable due to the effects of digestion.
- Capsules: One of the most convenient ways to take CBD on-the-go, but absorption is limited by the effects of the digestive system.
- Edibles: Chocolates, gummies, lozenges, and other CBD-infused products can be delicious, but the dosage is often less consistent and bioavailability can be poor.
- Topicals: Creams, gels, salves, lotions, and body oils are best for joint and muscle pain.
- Vape oil: Vaping is associated with lung inflammation and other unhealthy side effects. It’s also more difficult to control the dose and is not recommended for beginners.
Choosing the Best CBD Products for You
For most people, a full-spectrum CBD tincture will be the best place to start.
Full-spectrum products not only contain CBD, but they’re also packed with other beneficial cannabinoids like:
- CBG (cannabigerol): Antibacterial, anti-cancer
- CBC (cannabichromene): Anti-fungal, anti-microbial, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, analgesic (pain relief)
- CBDA (cannabidiolic acid): Anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-emetic (reduces nausea/vomiting)
- CBDV (cannabidivarin): stimulates bone growth
- CBN (cannabinol): Anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, analgesic (pain relief)
Always buy from a reputable company that has taken the extra steps to make sure their CBD is safe and high-quality.
This means that it should be formulated by a medical professional, third-party tested, organic, and free of toxins and other harmful pollutants.
Keep in mind that it’s still the “wild west” when it comes to CBD.
The market is relatively unregulated, and that means it falls on the shoulders of individual companies to watch out for the health of their consumers.
Fortunately, there are plenty of safe, high-quality brands out there going above and beyond.
CBD has an incredible natural connection with the body, and this connection is well-worth exploring.
Your health will thank you for it!
Reference 1: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6514832/
Reference 2: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4789136/
Reference 3: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30993303
Reference 4: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6387667/
Reference 5: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6326553/
Reference 6: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2503660/
Reference 7: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6396837/
Reference 8: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5569602/