Along with the legalization of medical marijuana, Cannabidiol has become all the rage on the market. Better known as CBD, it is an extremely popular remedy used for common ailments.
CBD is derived from the flower of hemp or marijuana plants. Although legal marijuana does produce a “high” CBD does not which is why it is so highly sought after.
Even with the current wave of states legalizing CBD as well as medical marijuana, Cannabis as medicine is still in its infancy.
In fact, many doctors are hesitant to prescribe cannabinoids such as CBD. This is because:
- Doctors are only allowed to recommend CBD because there is no daily allowance or universal dosage.
- Medical schools are not covering CBD/Cannabidiol as medication in their pharmacology courses.
This means that as the consumer, you are responsible for determining if CBD/Cannabidiol is what is best for you.
In this guide, you will be able to make an informed decision about CBD and will learn the following information:
- The History of CBD
- What is Cannabidiol
- Benefits of using Cannabidiol
- The Types of CBD you Can Use
- How to Dose Yourself with CBD
- How to Determine if Cannabidiol is for You
The History of Cannabidiol
Although it may seem like Cannabidiol is a new discovery, people have been cultivating cannabis since 4000 BCE.
In fact, records show that King Henry VIII that for every 60-acres of land that each farmer set aside ¼th an acre for hemp cultivation
Around 1563, a Portuguese doctor noticed that when he gave hemp to his patients, they did not feel the pain of work, were happier, and ate better than before.
During that same time, it was recorded that a Chinese doctor documented the anti-nausea effects of cannabis.
However, the history we notably remember did not start until the 1940s. At this time, an American Chemist, Dr. Roger Adams isolated the CBD compound.
Although Adams could not determine what he isolated, further research was done in the 1960s by Raphael Mechoulam who isolated and described the chemical structure of CBD. At this point, chemists were able to confirm CBD was non-psychoactive
By the 1970s, British Pharmacies were referring to the CBD tinctures as a medicinal supplement.
It wasn’t until the story of Charlotte Figi, a girl who had severe epilepsy, appeared that Americans publicized the medicinal use of CBD/cannabidiol.
Following this incredible story of CBD miraculously lessening epileptic seizures, the battle to make CBD legal ensued.
In 2003, the US patented the first CBD based patent. Today, CBD has been demonstrated to help reduce anxiety and stress, relieve pain, promote sleep, and encourage a happier and healthier life.
What is Cannabidiol
Cannabidiol is known best as CBD. It is derived from both hemp plants and marijuana plants. It is one of over 100 different cannabinoids that are found in these plants.
Cannabinoids are a diverse class of chemical compounds that are found in both the human body and in cannabis plants.
Cannabinoids found in cannabis plants are called phytocannabinoids. The two most well-researched phytocannabinoids are Cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
However, there are other phytocannabinoids, in their infancy of study, that we have found in the cannabis plants which include:
- Cannabigerolic (CBG)
- Cannabichromene (CBC)
- Cannabinol (CBN)
- Cannabidiol (CBL)
Research has also found that our body creates its own cannabinoid compounds that bind to receptors in our endocannabinoid system
The Endocannabinoid System
When you were in school, you probably learned about all of the different systems that make up the human body; however, you probably never learned about the Endocannabinoid system.
In fact, the Endocannabinoid system still is not taught in formal education as a system of the body. However, just because something isn’t taught doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.
In trying to educate yourself, you have probably run into information about the endocannabinoids system, but aren’t entirely sure what it is. So, here is the low down.
- Within all of our bodies, we have a system called the endocannabinoid system. This system is very complex and can be found throughout our entire body including the nervous system and brain.
- We do not know everything about the endocannabinoid system. What we do know is that it helps fine tune our vital physiological functions.
- The endocannabinoid system promotes homeostasis. This system makes sure everything is in balance from our sleep and mood to our pain and appetite.
- It ensures everything in the body systems are working together properly. When this system is out of whack or we don’t have enough cannabinoids, our whole body can feel out of sorts.
Within the endocannabinoid system, we have studied two types of endocannabinoids:
- 2-Arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG)
Within this system, we have found receptors for cannabinoids which we talked about above. When a cannabinoid such as CBD enters the body, it interacts with these receptors.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is almost identical to the endocannabinoid Anandamide, so it fits like a key into a lock with our receptors. Therefore, CBD activates the receptors to put our body in homeostasis.
What Do the Receptors Do?
We have two main cannabinoid receptors in our bodies: CB1 and CB2. These two receptors work in your body in the following ways:
The CB1 Receptor
The CB1 receptors can be found in parts of our brain including the hypothalamus, hippocampus, and amygdala. These receptors keep our nervous system, intestines, connective tissues, gonads, and other glands throughout the body in homeostasis.
This means that when you receive extra cannabinoids that interact with the receptors, you can have the following effects in the body:
- Relieving depression
- Lowering blood pressure
- Decreasing intestinal problems
- Increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factor (vital to learning, working memory, and higher thinking).
- Lowering anxiety
- Reducing fear
The CB2 Receptor
As CB1 receptors work on your brain as well as your nervous system, the CB2 receptors work on your bodies spleen, tonsils, thymus, immune cells, monocytes, macrophages, B and T cells, and the microglia.
This means that when a cannabinoid such as CBD activates CB2 receptors, it can quite literally affect every type of human disease in your body including:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Gastrointestinal diseases
- Neurodegenerative diseases
- Psychiatric diseases
- Autoimmune diseases
- Kidney function
- Bone and Skin Health
The Benefits of Using Cannabidiol
As you can see above, cannabidiol is a natural remedy that has positive effects throughout the entire body. By isolating CBD from hemp and marijuana plants, we have found many benefits of using cannabidiol.
#1 It relieves Pain
Marijuana has been used since 2900 B.C. to relieve pain, but since isolating cannabidiol, we now have a way to relieve pain without the psychoactive effects of marijuana.
More importantly, science is finding that the main component that worked to relieve pain in marijuana was in fact CBD.
The CBD binds to endocannabinoid receptors in the nervous system to help alleviate pain. It does this by impacting endocannabinoid receptor activity, reducing inflammation, and interacting with neurotransmitters.
What the Research Says
One study found that giving CBD injections to rats reduced pain response to a surgical incision, while another study found that oral CBD treatment reduced sciatic nerve pain and inflammation.
There have also been several studies which have that CBD and THC is effective in treating pain in humans with multiple sclerosis and arthritis. In fact, this is especially true of patients who used Sativex.
Sativex is a combination of THC and CBD with higher CBD count. In a study of 47 people, they experienced significant improvement in pain, walking and muscle spasms compared to others.
#2 Cannabidiol Reduces Anxiety and Depression
Anxiety and depression are common ailments and can have devastating impacts on your health and well-being.
Many people turn to anti-depressants and anxiety medications prescribed by doctors. Although these medications are helpful, they come with a plethora of side effects and can, in some cases, make it worse.
What is more concerning is that these medications such as benzos for anxiety can be habit-forming and lead to addiction, withdrawal and other psychological disorders.
However, CBD has proven to provide a great, natural alternative to combating anxiety and depression.
What the Research Says
In a study of 24 people with social anxiety disorder, they received a placebo or a 600mg dose of CBD before public speaking. The group that received CBD had significantly less anxiety and discomfort during their speech.
Science has also found that CBD has had antidepressant-like effects in many different animal studies.
These benefits are linked to the fact that CBD has the ability to act on the brain’s receptors for serotonin.
#3 Helps Alleviate Cancer Symptoms
Cancer affects nearly a million people per year. It is a devastating disease and many treatments only make it worse.
What the Research Says
- It decreases the growth of cancer cells. CBD has been found to decrease the growth of cancer cells in mice because it causes the cells to die through blocking the development of blood vessels needed to feed tumors.
- It moderates inflammation. One of the main symptoms of cancer is the overproductions of inflammation. CBD at is core reduces inflammation by inhibiting the COX-2 enzyme that produces inflammation.
- It changes how cells produce. Due to the fact that CBD inhibits tumor growth, it changes how the cells reproduce. Basically, CBD puts the body back in homeostasis by making the cells go back to their programmed life cycle in which they grow, divide, and then die.
- It Reduces Pain. Inflammation creates and causes a lot of pain. Thus, the fact that CBD helps to inhibit inflammation, it also helps to control the pain that cancer patients may have.
- It Reduces Nausea. Not only does cancer cause nausea and vomiting, but treatment through chemo causes it as well. CBD aid in decreasing nausea b binding with intestinal receptors in the body helping you keep food and nutrients in your body.
- It Reduces Anxiety in Patients. Those with cancer are struggling with more than just physical symptoms. CBD has been shown to reduce anxiety in various situations.
#4 It Has Neurological Properties
If you haven’t heard of Charlotte, you probably aren’t familiar with the neurological properties of CBD. Because CBD acts on the endocannabinoid system in the brain and nervous system, it provides benefits for those with neurological disorders.
What Research Says
In fact, most of the research done for CBD has been for treating neurological disorders such as epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and other seizure disorders.
Although research in this area is new, CBD has been very promising at alleviating symptoms associated with Neurological disorders.
A study found that Sativex (a mix of both CBD to THC ratio), has been proven as a safe yet effective way of reducing muscle spasms in people with multiple sclerosis in 75% of people studied.
Another study gave those with severe epilepsy CBD oil in the amount of .9-2.3 grams of CBD per 2-5 KG of body weight for seizures. It reduced seizures by 36.5%.
CBD has also been studied in children with Dravet Syndrome. These complex childhood epilepsy disorder symptoms were greatly reduced with the use of CBD.
#5 Helps Hair, Skin, and Nails
Have you ever wanted a way for your hair, skin, and nails to grow longer, faster, and stronger? CBD has been found to help maintain scalp health, stimulate hair and nail regrowth, curb hair fall out, and prevent hair damage.
In fact, we have been using hemp in our shampoos and conditions for years. Most of us don’t recognize that these hemp products include the miraculous CBD oil for our hair and scalp.
#6 Other Potential Benefits
With all the other benefits that have been discussed, scientists believe there are even more benefits of CBD that haven’t been fully researched.
Although more research needs to be done, CBD is thought to provide the following health benefits:
- Antipsychotic treatment. CBD may help people with psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia.
- Addiction recovery. CBD has been shown to modify the brain and help reduce morphine dependence and heroin-seeking behavior in rats.
- Diabetes. In mice that had diabetes, a treatment of CBD decreased symptoms by 56%.
Types of CBD
There are several ways to get CBD into your system. The way you choose to take CBD may affect how quickly and effectively it works in your body. Here are some of the different types of CBD you can choose from:
- CBD Oil Full Spectrum Tinctures. Tinctures are taken under the tongue and absorbed through membranes in your mouth. It bypasses the digestive system giving you relieve much quicker.
- CBD Oil Vape. Vape juice is smoked through a vaporizer. It bypasses the digestive system and goes straight into the bloodstream. This is the most effective form of taking CBD if you have chronic pain.
- CBD Plant. You can also smoke the entire plant much like you would marijuana. This bypasses the digestive system and goes straight into the bloodstream. However, this method also allows other chemicals and toxins into your body. It is not as clean as vaping.
- CBD Gummies. Gummies work great for kids or those who do not like the taste of a tincture. However, they do go through the digestive system and may take longer to work. You may, also, lose some of the CBD in the process.
- CBD topical ointments. Topical ointments are used much like Icy Hot. You rub the ointment into places that have pain such as your shoulders, hands, feet, and muscles. It is absorbed and works in the same way as other muscle rubs.
- Capsules. Capsules are a great way to take your daily dose of CBD. However, a capsule does need to go through the digestive system and will take longer to be effective.
Keep in mind that if a specific type of CBD goes through the digestive system and then into the bloodstream, you may lose some of the effectiveness. It may take longer to feel the effects than other methods of use.
If you are taking a CBD dose that goes through the digestive system before reaching the bloodstream, you may have to increase your dosage, or take multiple doses per day.
How to Dose Yourself with CBD
Research suggests that because every person is different the dose of CBD will be different for each person.
It is suggested that when starting CBD, you start with a lower dose and work your way up if symptoms are not alleviated with a lower dose.
According to the Mayo Clinic, CBD dosages should also be based on the illness you have as well as other factors.
The following chart is a great way to determine how to dose yourself with CBD based on the ailments you have:
Dosage of CBD
Loss of appetite in cancer patients
1 mg of CBD for 6 weeks with THC
2.5-20 mg of CBD daily
200-300 mg of CBD daily
10 mg of CBD per KG of body weight daily
40-160 mg of CBD at night
2.5-120 mg of THC/CBD combination daily
40-1,280 mg of CBD daily
20-40 mg of CBD daily
35-90 mg of CBD daily
5-25 mg of CBD daily
40-600 mg of CBD daily
Keep in mind that you can not overdose on CBD, so if for any reason, the recommended doses are not working for you, you can increase them. Adjust your dosage starting from the lower dose of each symptom and work your way up until symptoms are alleviated.
It is also important to note that just because you have multiple issues such as anxiety and depression, you do not need to take the dose for depression and the dose for anxiety.
Instead, take the lowest dose of one of your ailments and then increase the dose as much as you need.
Who Shouldn't Use CBD Oil
Of course like any medication, there are some people who should not use CBD oil. Medicine can be tricky because not everyone's body responds in the same way.
If you are unsure as to whether or not you should try CBD, here's who shouldn't use CBD oil:
- People who are allergic to cannabis or plants.
- Those with liver problems.
- Those who plan to consume alcohol with CBD.
- Those taking certain medications that interact with cannabidiol which include the following:
- HMG CoA reductase inhibitors
- Calcium channel blockers
- HIV antivirals
- Immune modulators
- Angiotensin II blockers
- Oral hypoglycemic agents
How to Determine if Cannabidiol is Right for You
It is always important to speak with your doctor about any medicine or supplement you plan on taking. They will be able to assist you in making the best choice for your symptoms.
However, a good way to determine if CBD could be right for you is to consider what you want to alleviate. Here is a list of reasons that may mean CBD is the right choice for you.
- You are struggling with depression
- You have a lot of anxiety
- You want to regulate your weight loss
- You have severe or chronic pain
- You have diabetes
- You want to get rid of inflammation
- You have a lot of stress in your life
- You believe you have ADHD
- You have cancer
- You have other ailments that are affecting your way of life.
Remember, no matter what you want to use CBD for, it is always recommended you discuss it with your doctor before treating yourself.
Do you have any questions about cannabidiol? If you do, share it in the comments below and we will try to get back to you as quickly as possible.
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