If you search CBD online, you’re met with tonnes of information about its health benefits, describing it as the next ‘big thing’. Indeed, the health, food and beauty industries have embraced it with open arms to create some exciting new and innovative products.
This article offers a brief overview of CBD, providing a medical insight into CBD and its uses within the health industry.
What are Cannabinoids?
Cannabinoids are natural chemical compounds that are most abundant in the cannabis plant. They can also be found in popular herbs and spices like oregano, rosemary, and black pepper.
As humans, we also create cannabinoids in the body through the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Our ECS plays a vital role in the homeostasis of our bodies, regulating physiological processes, pain perception, mood regulation, appetite, and cognitive functions. When we use CBD, the cannabinoids that react with our own are thought to be the main reason CBD has so many health benefits, as listed on https://cfah.org/.
What is CBD?
CBD (Cannabidiol) and THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) are the two most studied compounds found in cannabis. CBD is the second most prominent plant compound. Where THC causes psychotic ‘highs’, CBD does not. This difference is due to the various structures of atoms within each and how they bind to receptors in our brain. For this reason, scientists have been fascinated by both and have conducted plenty of research into the effects of both on the brain and body.
CBD has been shown to have excellent protective properties for the nervous system, relieving pain, reducing insomnia and muscle tension. Plus, it’s also been used as a successful therapeutic supplement for psychosis, depression, and anxiety symptoms.
How can you take CBD?
CBD can easily be incorporated into different kinds of products. The most popular CBD product is oils used as oral drops. However, you can also get CBD vapours, oral sprays, capsules, creams, edibles, and drinks. The versatility of CBD means we can use it in a way that suits our needs and preference.
How Can CBD Be Used in Medicine?
As mentioned above, research suggests the primary way CBD offers medicinal properties is through the different ways CBD cannabinoids interact with our ECS system.
Research has found that CBD can activate, antagonise, or inhibit our cannabinoid receptors. Specifically, our CB1 and CB2 receptors. The way CBD activates our CB2 receptors causes a reduction in oxidative stress and inflammation, hence why CBD is thriving in relieving inflammation associated with pain and why it’s praised for its anti-inflammatory effects on the body in general.
Studies have also shown those who use CBD as a form of medicine don’t build up a tolerance to the relieving effects of CBD, as is often seen in drugs. There is also a lot of concern for the addictiveness of traditional medicines, which is why more patients are seeking more natural and non-addictive pain relief like CBD.
Due to the way CBD interacts with our ECS, studies have also found its ability to improve symptoms of nausea and vomiting. This is particularly important for arthritis patients as many drugs have unpleasant side effects on digestion and appetite.
CBD can support better emotional wellbeing by relieving symptoms of anxiety, stress, and depression. Nowadays, mental health is becoming widely spoken about alongside the negative impacts of social media. Poor mental health can affect our relationships, academic performance and overall health and wellbeing. However, it’s very typical to experience poor mental health at times in life. Plenty of research has indicated the beneficial effects of CBD on mental health, but the optimal dosage is yet to be confirmed.
Other medical areas CBD has been proven to help is:
- Brain cell protection
- Skin health
- Blood pressure