CBD, cannabidiol, is quickly gaining mainstream popularity, and while there is a ton of information floating around about it, much of it can be biased, unfounded, and even conflicting. So, let’s work through the hype and the nonsense to see if CBD is really right for you.
CBD is derived from the cannabis plant, which causes many people to confuse it with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the compound in marijuana that gives the euphoric “high”. But CBD doesn’t affect the same receptors as THC. While it one of more than 120 compounds categorized as cannabinoids, each of those has a slightly different effect on the body. So regardless of the fact that they may both be a similar compound, they are completely different in how they affect the body.
You see, our bodies have an endocannabinoid system (ECS) that receives and translates signals from cannabinoids. The ECS regulates functions like sleep, immune system responses, your digestive system, and pain. The body even makes cannabinoids of its own, referred to as endocannabinoids and CBD influences the body to use its own endocannabinoids more effectively. The effectiveness of CBD in your body depends on the cannabinoid receptors that are receiving the messages. CB1 receptors are primarily found in the brain. Their job is to control movement, pain, thinking, appetite, and memories. CB2 receptors are located throughout the body and they regulate things related to our immune response such as pain and inflammation. Now let’s dig into what CBD really does.
CBD reaches the vanilloid receptors which helps with lowering pain perception. This can help those suffering from an acute injury, chronic pain, or any kind of painful medical condition.
CBD increases serotonin levels in those who suffer from depression and anxiety. This chemical is one of the feel-good, mood boosting compounds naturally released by the body, but often far too low in those with anxiety and depression.
Lowers blood pressure
Whether you find your blood pressure rising due to a stressful situation, or you regularly experience high blood pressure, CBD may help. It has been shown to calm the nervous system, returning the body to a more relaxed state, thereby lowering blood pressure.
There are numerous other benefits of CBD, both mentally and physically. For example, CBD has been shown to help with acne, PTSD, and even epilepsy. Because of the stigma surrounding anything to do with the cannabis plant and legal issues, research on CBD is still in its infancy, but so far have been very promising.
While you may want to go out right this second and get whatever CBD product you can, there’s some things to consider. First, there are some possible negative effects of CBD. One of the concerning potential side effects of CBD is that the phytocannabinoid version of CBD can inhibit Cytochrome P450, enzymes that metabolize the majority of pharmaceuticals in the liver. This can alter the way the medication is metabolized, changing the strength and side effects. Secondly, you need to be very careful as to who you’re purchasing your CBD from, and the type of product you use. You’ll want to know everything from the growing process, to how it’s manufactured, and the concentration of CBD in the product you’re using. The company should be quite open about all of this. CBD is like so many other things; companies will often try to sell an inferior product in order to increase their profits. So be careful what type of products you purchase. And lastly, be sure to talk to your doctor before introducing any supplement into your regimen. This is especially true if you’re currently taking any medications or are being treated for any medical condition.
While there is so much information swirling around about CBD, the ultimate decision is up to you. We’re here to help you decipher all of it and give you the best quality products on the market if you decide to try CBD for yourself.