Best explanation of the benefits of CBD we could find. Coming straight from a nutritionist. Seeing as for nearly 20,000 years hemp was a staple in man life, it’s only now that its back to being legal that we can benefit from what we’ve been missing out on.
One of the subtler, yet heavier epidemics facing our country has to do with weight loss. Recent studies show that CBD has a very positive effect on weight loss. CBD interacts with the bodies’ Endocannabinoid System, which has been recently linked with playing “an important role in how the body regulates energy (calorie) balance, as well as carbohydrate and fat metabolism.” In short, it does a wide variety of things in our bodies to make sure the body is in tip top shape, and CBD literally feeds it by interacting with system’s cannabinoid receptors.
The Endocannabinoid System is essentially a giant network of cannabinoid receptors spread out throughout the human body. It’s made up of “a group of specialized fatty acid-based signaling chemicals, their receptors, and the metabolic enzymes that produce and break them down.” The most well-known cannabinoid receptors in the body are CB1 and CB2, which are most active when interacting with cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Obviously, the stimulation and control of appetite, cravings and other food seeking behavior is an intricate interaction between different areas in the brain, because different areas of the brain receive different types of information, “in the form of nutrients, hormones, and signaling molecules from body fat tissue, the gut, blood, and peripheral sensory receptors.” Simply put, people eat for different reasons; but the parts of the brain that stimulate hunger, appetite and energy intake are believed to be influenced by the CB1 receptor. Marco Torres wrote an article in Waking Times that references a study published in the American Journal of Medicine that found:
“that regular cannabis consumers have fasting insulin (insulin in your body before eating) levels 16% lower than non-consumers. The study also found that cannabis consumers had 17% lower insulin resistance levels and lower average waist circumferences. The researchers concluded that there were significant associations between marijuana use and smaller waist circumferences.”
We know that the two main ingredients in the cannabis plant are CBD and THC, the latter being the psychoactive ingredient. Recently researches have studied the effects of CBD on fat cells in relation to the fight against the rise in obesity and the collective weight of the current world. “Remarkably, CBD was found to…stimulate genes and proteins that enhance the breakdown and oxidation of fat, increase the number and activity of mitochondria (which increases the body’s ability to burn calories), and decrease the expression of proteins involved in lipogenesis (fat cell generation).” (Leafly, 2016) This is all comes from CBD being able to convert white adipose tissue (WAT) into beige and brown adipose tissue. The white adipose stores energy whereas the brown and beige adipose burns energy. This is a process called fat browning. The body creates fat as a filter to shield our organs from the different toxins in our bodies. So the more toxins in our the less easy it is to burn that fat. However, CBD also helps our bodies release toxins which help protect our organs from harmful substances and also reduces the need for more fat cells in the body. The best part is the fact that it is completely natural and can be derived from hemp as well as cannabis.
Cannabidiol is a popular natural remedy used for many common ailments.
Better known as CBD, it is one of the 104 chemical compounds known as cannabinoids found in the cannabis or marijuana plant, Cannabis sativa (1).
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the main psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis, and causes the sensation of getting “high” that’s often associated with marijuana. However, unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive.
This quality makes CBD an appealing option for those who are looking for relief from pain and other symptoms without the mind-altering effects of marijuana or certain pharmaceutical drugs.
CBD oil is made by extracting CBD from the cannabis plant, then diluting it with a carrier oil like coconut or hemp seed oil.
It’s gaining momentum in the health and wellness world, with some scientific studies confirming it may help treat a variety of ailments like chronic pain and anxiety.
Here are seven health benefits of CBD oil that are backed by scientific evidence.
1. Can Relieve Pain
Marijuana has been used to treat pain as far back as 2900 B.C.
More recently, scientists have discovered that certain components of marijuana, including CBD, are responsible for its pain-relieving effects.
The human body contains a specialized system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is involved in regulating a variety of functions including sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response.
The body produces endocannabinoids, which are neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors in your nervous system.
Studies have shown that CBD may help reduce chronic pain by impacting endocannabinoid receptor activity, reducing inflammation and interacting with neurotransmitters.
For example, one study in rats found that CBD injections reduced pain response to surgical incision, while another rat study found that oral CBD treatment significantly reduced sciatic nerve pain and inflammation.
Several human studies have found that a combination of CBD and THC is effective in treating pain related to multiple sclerosis and arthritis.
An oral spray called Sativex, which is a combination of THC and CBD, is approved in several countries to treat pain related to multiple sclerosis.
In a study of 47 people with multiple sclerosis, those treated with Sativex for one month experienced a significant improvement in pain, walking and muscle spasms, compared to the placebo group.
Another study found that Sativex significantly improved pain during movement, pain at rest and sleep quality in 58 people with rheumatoid arthritis.
2. Could Reduce Anxiety and Depression
Anxiety and depression are common mental health disorders that can have devastating impacts on health and well-being.
According to the World Health Organization, depression is the single largest contributor to disability worldwide, while anxiety disorders are ranked sixth.
Anxiety and depression are usually treated with pharmaceutical drugs, which can cause a number of side effects including drowsiness, agitation, insomnia, sexual dysfunction and headache.
What’s more, medications like benzodiazepines can be addictive and may lead to substance abuse.
CBD oil has shown promise as a treatment for both depression and anxiety, leading many who live with these disorders to become interested in this natural approach.
In one study, 24 people with social anxiety disorder received either 600 mg of CBD or a placebo before a public speaking test.
The group that received the CBD had significantly less anxiety, cognitive impairment and discomfort in their speech performance, compared to the placebo group.
CBD oil has even been used to safely treat insomnia and anxiety in children with post-traumatic stress disorder.
CBD has also shown antidepressant-like effects in several animal studies.
These qualities are linked to CBD’s ability to act on the brain’s receptors for serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and social behavior.
3. Can Alleviate Cancer-Related Symptoms
CBD may help reduce symptoms related to cancer and side effects related to cancer treatment, like nausea, vomiting and pain.
One study looked at the effects of CBD and THC in 177 people with cancer-related pain who did not experience relief from pain medication.
Those treated with an extract containing both compounds experienced a significant reduction in pain compared to those who received only THC extract.
CBD may also help reduce chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, which are among the most common chemotherapy-related side effects for those with cancer.
Though there are drugs that help with these distressing symptoms, they are sometimes ineffective, leading some people to seek alternatives.
A study of 16 people undergoing chemotherapy found that a one-to-one combination of CBD and THC administered via mouth spray reduced chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting better than standard treatment alone.
Some test-tube and animal studies have even shown that CBD may have anticancer properties. For example, one test-tube study found that concentrated CBD induced cell death in human breast cancer cells.
Another study showed that CBD inhibited the spread of aggressive breast cancer cells in mice.
However, these are test-tube and animal studies, so they can only suggest what might work in people. More studies in humans are needed before conclusions can be made.
4. May Reduce Acne
Acne is a common skin condition that affects more than 9% of the population.
It is thought to be caused by a number of factors, including genetics, bacteria, underlying inflammation and the overproduction of sebum, an oily secretion made by sebaceous glands in the skin.
Based on recent scientific studies, CBD oil may help treat acne due to its anti-inflammatory properties and ability to reduce sebum production.
One test-tube study found that CBD oil prevented sebaceous gland cells from secreting excessive sebum, exerted anti-inflammatory actions and prevented the activation of “pro-acne” agents like inflammatory cytokines.
Another study had similar findings, concluding that CBD may be an efficient and safe way to treat acne, thanks in part to its remarkable anti-inflammatory qualities.
Though these results are promising, human studies exploring the effects of CBD on acne are needed.
5. Might Have Neuroprotective Properties
Researchers believe that CBD’s ability to act on the endocannabinoid system and other brain signaling systems may provide benefits for those with neurological disorders.
In fact, one of the most studied uses for CBD is in treating neurological disorders like epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. Though research in this area is still relatively new, several studies have shown promising results.
Sativex, an oral spray consisting of CBD and THC, has been proven to be a safe and effective way to reduce muscle spasticity in people with multiple sclerosis.
One study found that Sativex reduced spasms in 75% of 276 people with multiple sclerosis who were experiencing muscle spasticity that was resistant to medications.
Another study gave 214 people with severe epilepsy 0.9–2.3 grams of CBD oil per pound (2–5 g/kg) of body weight. Their seizures reduced by a median of 36.5%.
One more study found that CBD oil significantly reduced seizure activity in children with Dravet syndrome, a complex childhood epilepsy disorder, compared to a placebo.
However, it’s important to note that some people in both these studies experienced adverse reactions associated with CBD treatment, such as convulsions, fever and diarrhea.
CBD has also been researched for its potential effectiveness in treating several other neurological diseases.
For example, several studies have shown that treatment with CBD improved quality of life and sleep quality for people with Parkinson’s disease.
Additionally, animal and test-tube studies have shown that CBD may decrease inflammation and help prevent the neurodegeneration associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
In one long-term study, researchers gave CBD to mice genetically predisposed to Alzheimer’s disease, finding that it helped prevent cognitive decline.
6. Could Benefit Heart Health
Recent research has linked CBD with several benefits for the heart and circulatory system, including the ability to lower high blood pressure.
High blood pressure is linked to higher risks of a number of health conditions, including stroke, heart attack and metabolic syndrome.
Studies indicate that CBD may be a natural and effective treatment for high blood pressure.
One recent study treated 10 healthy men with one dose of 600 mg of CBD oil and found it reduced resting blood pressure, compared to a placebo.
The same study also gave the men stress tests that normally increase blood pressure. Interestingly, the single dose of CBD led the men to experience a smaller blood pressure increase than normal in response to these tests.
Researchers have suggested that the stress- and anxiety-reducing properties of CBD are responsible for its ability to help lower blood pressure.
Additionally, several animal studies have demonstrated that CBD may help reduce the inflammation and cell death associated with heart disease due to its powerful antioxidant and stress-reducing properties.
For example, one study found that treatment with CBD reduced oxidative stress and prevented heart damage in diabetic mice with heart disease.
7. Several Other Potential Benefits
CBD has been studied for its role in treating a number of health issues other than those outlined above.
Though more studies are needed, CBD is thought to provide the following health benefits:
Antipsychotic effects: Studies suggest that CBD may help people with schizophrenia and other mental disorders by reducing psychotic symptoms.
Substance abuse treatment: CBD has been shown to modify circuits in the brain related to drug addiction. In rats, CBD has been shown to reduce morphine dependence and heroin-seeking behavior.
Anti-tumor effects: In test-tube and animal studies, CBD has demonstrated anti-tumor effects. In animals, it has been shown to prevent the spread of breast, prostate, brain, colon and lung cancer.
Diabetes prevention: In diabetic mice, treatment with CBD reduced the incidence of diabetes by 56% and significantly reduced inflammation.
Spurred by growing reports of the medical efficacy of cannabidiol (CBD), the second leading active ingredient in marijuana, patients are increasingly seeking out high-CBD varieties for treatment of conditions ranging from severe epilepsy and multiple sclerosis to anxiety and cancer pain.
CBD has long been overshadowed by delta-9-THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the primary active ingredient in marijuana, because unlike THC, it does not produce a psychoactive “high.” CBD has nonetheless long been known to have useful anti-spasmodic, anti-epileptic, anti-anxiety, and anti-psychotic properties.
Although CBD lacks noticeable effects when taken alone, it has a calming, sedative effect when combined with THC, cutting down on the anxiety, paranoia, and memory impairment that many users find unpleasant or debilitating with regular marijuana. CBD-rich strains accordingly have particular appeal to older users and medical patients who are uncomfortable with the THC high.
Public interest in CBD was aroused by a recent CNN report on medical marijuana by Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Previously a skeptic on medical marijuana, Dr. Gupta admitted to having been “brainwashed” by government propaganda. Gupta featured the story of a 5-year-old girl, Charlotte Figi, who suffered continual epileptic seizures from a rare disease known as Dravet’s syndrome. Conventional treatment having failed, Charlotte’s condition dramatically improved after she was treated orally with an extract of CBD-rich cannabis.
In the wake of Gupta’s show, providers of high-CBD strains have been besieged by requests from parents of children with Dravet’s, including from non-medical marijuana states. Utah recently held hearings at the state legislature about drafting a bill on the topic.
Meanwhile, Modesto City Council denied a request by Jason David and other parents to allow them to grow and test their children’s medicine, and David’s son Jayden is no longer allowed to take his medicine at his school.
A survey by Stanford researchers of 19 severely epileptic children found that 84% experienced substantial seizure reductions from CBD-enriched cannabis.
In the U.K., GW Pharmaceuticals has developed a natural cannabis extract known as Sativex, consisting of equal parts CBD and THC. In tests with multiple sclerosis patients, GW researchers found that subjects responded better to equal parts CBD and THC than to either pure THC or CBD. Sativex has been approved in the U.K for treatment of MS, and has shown promise in human subjects for treatment of cancer pain and neuropathic pain.
GW is also developing a pure CBD extract known as Epidiolex, which is undergoing FDA “orphan drug” studies for treatment of pediatric epilepsy.
CBD has been shown to suppress colon cancer tumors in mice and to kill breast cancer cells in lab studies by Dr. Sean McAllister at the California Pacific Medical Center. However, cancer specialists caution that the efficacy of CBD for cancer remains to be demonstrated in actual human studies.
CBD also has anti-inflammatory, neuro-protective, and anti-oxidant properties. Anti-oxidants are thought to fight degenerative diseases and aging. CBD has also been shown to stimulate bone fracture healing in laboratory animals.
Until recently, CBD-rich marijuana was generally unavailable in the U.S. because breeders had concentrated on developing plants with high THC, breeding out CBD in the process. Fewer than 5% of samples tested show appreciable amounts of CBD. Only with the advent of laboratory testing, first pioneered by Harborside Health Center and Steep Hill Labs in Oakland, did it become possible to detect and breed high-CBD varieties of cannabis, since CBD is otherwise undetectable by appearance or odor.
In response to growing demand, numerous strains of CBD-rich varieties have been developed by breeders in California and elsewhere, although they are still difficult to find in many dispensaries. Consumers are cautioned not to buy CBD-rich varieties unless they have been laboratory tested.
Contrary to popular misconception, so-called indica varieties are no more likely to have CBD than sativas. Lab studies by the WercShop, co-sponsored by California NORML, found no relation between chemical profiles, as measured by cannabinoid and terpene content, and varietal types, whether indica or sativa. Breeders have developed special high-CBD hybrids from various genetic stock. Some have virtually pure CBD, while others typically have THC; CBD ratios ranging from 2:1 to 1:2.
The optimal dosage levels of CBD are uncertain due to a lack of human studies. Chronic high doses of up to 1500 mg per day are well tolerated and produce no noticeable physiological effects. However, there is evidence to suggest that the medical benefits of CBD disappear when dosages become excessive. For inhaled medical use, most users prefer varieties with THC:CBD ratios between 2:1 and 1:2. Extremely low-THC varieties are useful for making CBD extracts and tinctures. Unlike THC, CBD does not show up positive on standard drug tests for marijuana.