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Article: What Are The Benefits Of CBD? What We Know About This Mysterious Oil

What Are The Benefits Of CBD? What We Know About This Mysterious Oil

What Are The Benefits Of CBD? What We Know About This Mysterious Oil

CBD rode in on a massive wave of popularity over the past few years- and with good reason. It is being heralded as one of the best “discoveries” to have been made in decades, helping with everything from immune support to the brain and skin. 

And yet, it is also shrouded in controversy. For this reason, many people tend to shy away from it, often suffering from a case of mistaken identity with its sibling, THC.

But let’s set the record straight. If you think there’s more to this compound that meets the eye, then sit back, kick your feet up, and read on.

What is CBD Anyway?

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant. It has gained significant attention in recent years due to its potential health benefits and therapeutic properties. Unlike its other well-known counterpart, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD does not produce the psychoactive effects commonly associated with marijuana use. 

This means that you can experience the potential benefits of CBD without the "high" or altered state of mind.

CBD is one of over 100 cannabinoids naturally present in the cannabis plant, but it stands out for its promising medicinal applications. These potential benefits have led to a surge in the popularity of CBD products across various demographics, from athletes to seniors seeking natural alternatives for their health concerns.

When comparing CBD to THC, it's important to understand their distinct differences. THC is the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana, responsible for the feeling of being "high." It interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system, specifically binding to CB1 receptors in the brain, which can alter perception, mood, and cognition. 

In contrast, CBD has a much weaker affinity for CB1 receptors and does not produce the same psychoactive effects. Instead, CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system in a more subtle way, helping to regulate various physiological processes and maintain homeostasis.

CBD products come in a wide range of forms, each with its own advantages and considerations. One of the most popular options is oral CBD oil, which is typically administered sublingually (under the tongue) using a dropper. 

This method allows for quick absorption into the bloodstream, and you can easily adjust the dosage to suit your needs. CBD capsules are another convenient option, providing a pre-measured dose in a familiar pill format. These are ideal if you prefer a tasteless and odorless alternative to oils.

For those seeking targeted or localized relief, CBD topicals such as creams, balms, and lotions can be applied directly to the affected area. These products are designed to be absorbed through the skin, providing localized benefits without entering the bloodstream. CBD topicals often include additional ingredients like menthol or essential oils to enhance their therapeutic effects.

Other CBD product options include edibles (such as gummies or chocolates), vape liquids, and even CBD-infused beverages. It's important to note that the onset and duration of effects may vary depending on the form of CBD you choose. 

For example, edibles may take longer to take effect but provide longer-lasting relief compared to sublingual oils or vaping.

How CBD Works In The Body

To understand how CBD works in the body, you need to first grasp the concept of the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a complex network of receptors, enzymes, and endocannabinoids that play a crucial role in maintaining homeostasis—the body's natural balance. This system is involved in regulating various physiological processes, such as pain perception, mood, appetite, sleep, and immune function.

The two primary receptors in the ECS are cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2). CB1 receptors are predominantly found in the central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are more abundant in the peripheral nervous system and immune cells. Endocannabinoids, such as anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), are naturally produced by the body and bind to these receptors to trigger various biological responses.

When you consume CBD, it interacts with the ECS in a unique way. Unlike THC, which binds directly to CB1 and CB2 receptors, CBD has a low affinity for these receptors. Instead, CBD indirectly influences the ECS by modulating the activity of other receptors and enzymes.

One of the key mechanisms by which CBD exerts its effects is through the inhibition of the enzyme fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH). FAAH is responsible for breaking down anandamide, one of the primary endocannabinoids. 

By inhibiting FAAH, CBD can increase the levels of anandamide in the body, leading to a phenomenon known as "endocannabinoid tone enhancement." This increased anandamide level can contribute to the various therapeutic effects associated with CBD.

In addition, CBD has been shown to interact with several other receptors in the body, including serotonin receptors (5-HT1A), vanilloid receptors (TRPV1), and GPR55 receptors. 

For instance, CBD's activation of 5-HT1A receptors is believed to be one of the mechanisms behind its anxiolytic effects. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays a vital role in mood regulation, and the 5-HT1A receptor is known to be involved in the modulation of anxiety and stress responses.

Notable Benefits Of CBD

Pain Management

When it comes to managing pain, CBD has emerged as a promising natural alternative for many people, including fitness enthusiasts and athletes. 

This is particularly relevant if you engage in regular physical activity or exercise, as intense workouts can often lead to muscle soreness, joint pain, and inflammation. CBD has been shown to be effective in reducing exercise-induced muscle damage and promoting faster recovery. By reducing inflammation and pain, CBD can help you get back to your training routine more quickly and with less discomfort.

Another way CBD can help with pain management is by addressing post-workout delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). DOMS is a common phenomenon experienced by many fitness enthusiasts, typically occurring 24 to 72 hours after a particularly intense or unfamiliar workout. The pain and stiffness associated with DOMS can be quite debilitating and may hinder your ability to maintain a consistent exercise regimen. Fortunately, CBD has been shown to help alleviate the symptoms of DOMS by reducing inflammation and promoting muscle relaxation.

We recommend combining with Radiance collagen peptides to support the recuperation of the body’s connective tissue and to be of particular benefit to the joints.

Improved Sleep

In contrast to THC, which can have stimulating properties, CBD is very helpful for getting you more shut-eye.

One of the main ways CBD helps with sleep is by reducing anxiety and stress levels. When you're feeling anxious or stressed, it can be difficult to relax and fall asleep. CBD interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in regulating mood, stress response, and sleep-wake cycles. By promoting a sense of calm and relaxation, CBD can help you unwind and prepare for a restful night's sleep.

DreamZzz Double Pack

Another way CBD supports better sleep is by alleviating pain and inflammation, as previously noted. If you suffer from chronic pain or inflammation, it can be challenging to find a comfortable position and fall asleep.

The pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce discomfort and promote more restful sleep. By addressing the underlying causes of pain and inflammation, CBD can create a more conducive environment for quality sleep.

CBD may also help regulate sleep-wake cycles by interacting with the body's circadian rhythm. The circadian rhythm is the body's internal clock that governs when you feel sleepy and when you feel awake. Disruptions to the circadian rhythm can lead to sleep disorders and difficulty falling or staying asleep. CBD has been shown to influence the production of melatonin, a hormone that plays a crucial role in regulating sleep-wake cycles. By supporting the body's natural production of melatonin, CBD may help you establish a more consistent and healthy sleep schedule.

Combining CBD with a non-habit sleep aide such as Dreamzzz might be the real “dream team”, helping fix your circadian rhythm problems and allowing you to experience deep, restful sleep.

In addition to using CBD, there are other sleep hygiene practices you can adopt to support better sleep. These include establishing a consistent sleep schedule, creating a relaxing bedtime routine, avoiding screens before bed, and ensuring your sleep environment is cool, dark, and quiet. By combining CBD with healthy sleep habits, you can set yourself up for a more restful and rejuvenating night's sleep.

Digestive Health Support

When it comes to digestive health, CBD may offer several benefits. Firstly, CBD has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties, which can be particularly helpful for those suffering from inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. By reducing inflammation in the gut, CBD may help alleviate symptoms like abdominal pain, cramping, and diarrhea.

CBD may also help reduce stress and anxiety, which are often linked to digestive problems such as a nervous gut. When you're stressed, your body releases cortisol, a hormone that can disrupt the balance of your digestive system.

 By interacting with receptors in your brain and body, CBD may help lower cortisol levels and promote a sense of calm, thereby supporting healthy digestion.

Another way CBD may benefit your digestive health is by regulating your appetite. If you struggle with overeating, CBD may help normalize your appetite by interacting with receptors in your brain that control hunger signals. This can lead to more balanced and mindful eating habits, which are essential for maintaining a healthy digestive system.

In addition to these benefits, CBD may also help alleviate nausea and vomiting, which are common symptoms of many digestive disorders. This also explains why it is sometimes used by cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy as a means to reduce nausea.

Neuroprotective Actions

The prevalence of neurodegenerative diseases is on a constant upward trajectory.

One way CBD exerts its neuroprotective actions is by reducing inflammation in the brain. Inflammation is a natural response to injury or infection, but chronic inflammation can lead to damage and cell death. 

CBD has been shown to interact with the body's endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in regulating inflammation. By reducing inflammation in the brain, CBD may help protect against the development of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.

healthy brain

Another mechanism by which CBD may protect the brain is through its antioxidant properties. Oxidative stress occurs when there is an imbalance between the production of free radicals and the body's ability to neutralize them. Free radicals can damage cells and contribute to the development of neurodegenerative diseases. CBD has been shown to have powerful antioxidant properties, which means it can help neutralize free radicals and protect against oxidative stress in the brain.

CBD may also help protect the brain by promoting the growth and survival of new brain cells. This process, known as neurogenesis, is important for maintaining cognitive function and preventing age-related cognitive decline. Studies have shown that CBD can stimulate the growth of new brain cells in the hippocampus, a region of the brain that is important for memory and learning.

In addition to these mechanisms, CBD has also been shown to have a protective effect against traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBI is a common injury among athletes and can lead to long-term cognitive and neurological impairments. Animal studies have shown that CBD can reduce the severity of brain damage and improve functional outcomes after TBI. While more research is needed in humans, these findings suggest that CBD may have potential as a neuroprotective agent for athletes and others at risk of brain injury.

Skin Support

When it comes to maintaining healthy, youthful-looking skin, CBD has emerged as a game-changer in the world of skincare. Whether you're dealing with acne, dryness, or signs of aging, incorporating CBD into your skincare routine can provide numerous benefits for your skin's overall health and appearance.

One of the primary benefits of CBD for your skin is its ability to reduce inflammation. If you suffer from acne, redness, or skin sensitivity, CBD can help soothe and calm your skin. Its anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce the appearance of breakouts, redness, and irritation, leaving your skin looking clearer and more balanced.

healthy skin illustration

In addition to its anti-inflammatory effects, CBD is also a powerful antioxidant. Antioxidants are essential for protecting your skin from damage caused by free radicals, which can lead to premature aging, fine lines, and wrinkles. By neutralizing these harmful molecules, CBD can help prevent the breakdown of collagen and elastin, the proteins responsible for keeping your skin firm, plump, and youthful-looking.

If you struggle with dry, dehydrated skin, CBD can be a valuable addition to your skincare routine, too. It can help regulate sebum production, the natural oil produced by your skin. By balancing sebum levels, CBD can help prevent both excessive oiliness and dryness, leaving your skin feeling comfortable and sufficiently hydrated.

Then there’s the fact that CBD has been found to have a positive impact on skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis. These conditions are often characterized by dry, itchy, and inflamed skin. 

Cardiovascular Health

Turns out CBD can help your heart as well.  Emerging research seems to suggest several mechanisms through which CBD may benefit the cardiovascular system. Firstly, CBD exhibits potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which are important because chronic inflammation and oxidative stress play significant roles in the development of cardiovascular diseases (CVD).

CBD might also help induce vasodilation, leading to a reduction in blood pressure. As little as a single dose of ingested CBD can reduce both resting blood pressure and the blood pressure response to stress in healthy volunteers. 

This hypotensive effect could be particularly beneficial for individuals with hypertension, a major contributing risk factor for cardiovascular diseases. Additionally, animal studies have indicated that CBD may protect against myocardial ischemia-induced damage and reduce the occurrence of arrhythmias, with the mechanisms thought to involve the modulation of calcium homeostasis and reduction of oxidative stress.

CBD may also possess anti-thrombotic properties, reducing the risk of blood clot formation. Thrombosis, the formation of a blood clot inside a blood vessel, is a key event in heart attacks and strokes. CBD's ability to inhibit platelet aggregation, a critical step in clot formation, could contribute to its cardiovascular protective effects. 

But wait, there’s more. It might be able to favorably improve your lipid values and it’s already well established to reduce the impact of stress and anxiety, which benefits the heart handsomely.

It truly looks impressive- but of course, scientific studies on the subject are still ongoing.

Precautions With CBD

Even though CBD is generally well-tolerated, it can cause some side effects. Reported side effects might include dry mouth, diarrhea, reduced appetite, drowsiness, or fatigue. Additionally, CBD can interact with other medications, potentially altering their effects. 

For instance, CBD can inhibit the activity of cytochrome P450 enzymes in the liver, which are responsible for metabolizing many drugs, leading to either increased side effects or reduced efficacy of these medications.

Precautions should be taken by individuals with liver disease, as CBD may exacerbate liver function issues. Pregnant and breastfeeding women are advised to avoid CBD due to insufficient research on its safety in these populations. 

CBD Legality

The legality of CBD in the United States is complex and varies by state. Federally, CBD derived from hemp (containing less than 0.3% THC) was legalized under the 2018 Farm Bill.

However, CBD derived from marijuana remains illegal at the federal level, classified as a Schedule I controlled substance. State laws differ significantly, with some states allowing both medical and recreational use of CBD, while others permit only medical use or have restrictive laws.

The FDA has approved one CBD-based medication, Epidiolex, for specific seizure disorders, but otherwise, the agency maintains stringent regulations on CBD in food, beverages, and dietary supplements. 

It is essential to stay informed, as CBD laws are evolving rapidly and can vary significantly between jurisdictions. Consulting local regulations and legal advice is advisable for the most current information.

Final Words

CBD derived from hemp can offer a lifeline to many people dealing with health conditions that are otherwise resistant to conventional medical therapy. However, while this is promising, be sure to always check your state or country regulations before trying it out for yourself.

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