It seems like there is a new miracle compound out every week. Luckily, cannabidiol, or CBD is not a new health fad. CBD is the non-intoxicating compound found in hemp that may have the potential to help with a number of health issues and is currently legal in all states per the US Farm Bill.
Here we will give a brief overview of the compound, as well as how it may help the body.
What is CBD
CBD stands for cannabidiol. It is one of the popular cannabinoid compounds found in the cannabis plant.
CBD is not psychoactive, meaning it does not alter a person’s state of mind or make them feel “high”. In fact, there is no way to get high from ingesting CBD.
CBD enters the body through ingesting products containing the compound, such as CBD oil. The compound may be smoked, eaten, or added to various goodies such as baked goods, gummy bears, and the like.
How CBD works
CBD acts on the body’s own endocannabinoid receptors. The body contains two cannabinoid receptors, labeled CB1 and CB2. CBD mainly activates the CB2 receptor, which is responsible for the many potential benefits of the compound.
People who use CBD will recommend the compound for a number of potential benefits. New advancements in medical research allow for more studies to be done on CBD, but so far the results indicate a few potential benefits for the compound, including:
Relief – while not yet proven, CBD is currently being studied to determine its ability to reduce chronic pain
Anxiety – while not yet proven, CBD is currently being studied to determine its ability to reduce anxiety
Inflammation – CBD is known to have anti-inflammatory properties and is being studied to determine its ability to broadly address inflammation
Neurological Disorders / Brain Trauma – Cannabinoids were patented by the US Dept. of Health as “neuroprotectants”
Antioxidant – Cannabinoids were patented by the US Dept. of Health as “antioxidants”
Substance abuse – being non-psychoactive in nature, CBD may help the brains of people dealing with addictions
These are just some the most popular potential benefits.
Is CBD safe?
The World Health Organization (WHO) recently ruled that CBD is harmless and non-addictive. For the most part, CBD is safe to take and has little risk for side effects. Some especially sensitive people may experience fatigue with heavy doses.
Importantly, CBD may interact with many drugs. Anyone who is considering taking CBD should talk to their doctor and review all medications they are taking.
It is also important to ensure the CBD is coming from a trusted, high-quality source. Preferably the CBD is derived from US grown hemp and tested by 3rd parties for safety and purity.
The Science behind CBD
In 2003, the US Department of Health and Human Services patented “cannabinoids as antioxidants and neuroprotectants.” Five years ago, Dr. Sanjay Gupta helped create the CBD craze by famously changing his mind on the topic after witnessing the miraculous impact CBD had on the life of a desperate little girl, and in 2018 the FDA approved CBD isolate for a specific use case.
However, largely because of the legal grey area surrounding CBD products, the compound is just beginning to truly gain ground medically. This is likely why it is becoming so popular – more journals are able to learn more about it thanks to evolving laws in the United States in general.
Luckily, as the compound is researched, we are likely to find more concrete evidence into how we can use the compound to benefit our health. Our understanding of the potential for CBD is just beginning!