With CBD becoming ever more popular in the world of natural wellness, you’re likely to come across all sorts of claims on the Internet about how it can improve your health. But what does it really do?
Scientists are still finding answers to that question, and likely the most exciting discoveries about CBD’s potential health benefits are still in the future. But since research on CBD started in earnest back in the 1970s, we’ve learned a lot about CBD oil as well as its source: cannabis.
Cannabis, CBD, and Your Body
Although medical cannabis has only been a thing in the United States since the 1990s, the herb has a long history in places like India and the Middle East as a remedy for nausea, anxiety, insomnia, and various other ailments.
But of course, in the modern west it acquired a stigma because of other effects: intoxication, loss of motor co-ordination, and in some users increased anxiety and paranoia.
Fortunately, scientists have been able to pick apart what causes both the good and bad effects of cannabis. Each cannabis plant contains over 100 compounds called cannabinoids, which act on a network of receptors in your nervous system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
The ECS helps regulate many of your body’s systems, including mood, memory, appetite, cell regeneration, and the immune system. A natural transmitter in the ECS, anandamide, is sometimes called the “bliss molecule” because it’s associated with the “runner’s high” that some people get from exercise.
Cannabinoids activate the ECS, which explains why most people associate cannabis with good feelings. But there’s just one cannabinoid that pushes its effects beyond the runner’s high into the illegal druggy high: tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC.
Why CBD Will Not Get You Stoned
THC does have some medicinal uses, especially for controlling nausea. But it’s also the cause of most of the negative effects of cannabis. Therefore, it remains federally illegal, though state regulations vary.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a different cannabinoid, and one thing that research has definitively proven is that it will NOT get you stoned. If you do find yourself feeling wiggy from a CBD product then it probably contains some THC. To avoid that, don’t purchase products labeled “full spectrum,” since that means that they contain the full range of cannabinoids—including THC.
All CBD products that are legal at the federal level come from industrial hemp, which by law must contain no more than 0.3% THC. If you look for hemp-based products labeled CBD isolate or broad spectrum, that should keep you clear from any intoxication.
So that’s what CBD doesn’t do. What does it do then?
CBD and Stress
In surveys of CBD users, the number one reason given for taking the product is that it helps them relax and de-stress. So even without the stoned feeling, CBD seems to share in cannabis’ mellowing powers.
There’s some research to back this up. Experiments putting both animals and humans in stressful situations—such as public speaking, in the human case—found that those on CBD showed fewer signs of stress and less self-reported nervousness than those in the control groups.
CBD and Sleep
For related reasons, CBD is also popularly used as a sleep aid. Some users report that it directly makes them feel sleepy, while others just find it helps calm their minds when they go to bed.
Many CBD companies are taking advantage of this effect by combining CBD with sedatives in their products. Since cannabis-based products are especially popular with fans of herbal remedies, these often include natural ingredients like melatonin, valerian, and chamomile.
CBD and Exercise Recovery
Some of the earliest and most fervent CBD fans out there are athletes, especially in bruising sports like mixed martial arts. Many use it as a tool to recover from the strains of their activities.
This may have to do with the ECS’s role in regulating the immune system. Research suggests that CBD and other cannabinoids can modulate the body’s inflammatory response, which is what causes effects like swelling, redness, and soreness.
To amplify this, many topical CBD products come blended with over-the-counter painkillers such as menthol and herbal remedies. A good CBD bath bomb in a tub of hot water can do wonders after a workout.
Try It Yourself!
With all of these benefits, it’s easy to see why an increasing number of people are adding CBD oil to their daily health routine as part of improving their overall health. Explore the many health benefits of CBD with our best selling CBD oil.