Unless you’ve been living under a rock or haven’t had time to take a breath from Netflix binging, you’ve probably heard people ranting and raving about CBD, CBD products, and specifically CBD oil – but…what is it, and why are people raving about it?
CBD stands for cannabidiol. It’s one of 104 chemical compounds that are found in the cannabis, aka marijuana, plant. To narrow it down even more, it’s one of the two main chemicals in marijuana–the other being THC (tetrahydrocannabinol…try to say that five times fast). When most people think of cannabis, they think of THC. THC is the main psychoactive cannabinoid in marijuana and causes the “high” sensation. CBD, on the other hand, is not psychoactive. It is, however, a popular natural remedy that is used to treat lots of common ailments.
THC and CBD essentially have the same exact molecular structure, but there is a subtle difference in the arrangement of atoms (don’t worry, we won’t get too science-y here) that create the effects of getting high or not. If you’re looking to get more info on the THC side of things–this isn’t the article you’re looking for.
It turns out that your body has an endocannabinoid system, which basically means that it has receptors for both THC and CBD. Both the THC and CBD chemicals interact with our bodies through this endocannabinoid system. Biologically, this system controls certain functions such as pain, mood, appetite, memory, sleep, and our immune response.
In a nutshell, THC causes mind-altering, ‘euphoric’ effects. CBD does not–like, not even in the slightest. So, if you’ve been wary about CBD, don’t worry–it’s not the same as smoking pot.
So–what is CBD oil, how is it made, and what does it do?
Since CBD is not mind-altering in any way, but still reacts with our endocannabinoid system, it’s a super appealing option for people that are looking for pain relief (in many ways) or relief from other ailments without resorting to sketchy or dangerous pharmaceuticals.
CBD oil is made by extracting the CBD from the cannabis plant (more on this here, if you’re interested), then diluting it with another oil like hemp seed oil or coconut oil. More and more research has been done confirming the positive effects CBD oil has on treating things like chronic pain and anxiety.
CBD Oil – What We Know So Far
The science and research is still underway when it comes to the benefits and uses of CBD oil, but the findings so far have been very exciting. Check out a few things that have already been demonstrated in CBD studies:
- CBD has been shown to trigger the death of breast cancer cells and even down-regulate the gene that causes it to exist in the first place.
- Increased alertness in humans (and rats) when taken in small doses (around 15 mg).
- When combined with THC, it has been shown to dramatically relieve chronic pain.
- By helping regulate the amygdala (a part of our brain that controls emotions), CBD oil can help curb both anxiety and depression.
- CBD oil has been shown to potentially treat acne symptoms due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
- CBD oil can help alleviate cancer-related symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, and pain.
- When it comes to trauma and brain health, CBD oil has been shown to help create resilience to trauma and maintain brain health
In large doses (around 160mg), CBD oil has helped people sleep–even those with insomnia.
The possible benefits of CBD and CBD oil are still being researched but the findings so far have been super exciting. It allows people to feel better and heal without the harmful chemicals of many pharmaceutical drugs.
Alright, all sounds good–but, is there anything you should worry about?
Again, the research and studies behind CBD and CBD oil are still underway, but everything so far has been extremely promising. It’s well-tolerated by many, however, some people have reported that it makes them a bit sleepy or makes their blood pressure take a dip. Another side effect symptom to note is that, if taken topically, you might notice some dry skin.
Another review showed that when taken in super high doses daily (like, way too much), it could affect liver metabolism or fertility. However, just like anything–everything in moderation.
What you should know is that thorough reviews and studies have shown that CBD does not affect:
- Food intake
- Sensory perception
- Heart rate
Great! How do you use CBD oil?
Interested in trying some CBD oil for some of your ailments? That’s great! But…how, exactly, do you use or take it? Well, it varies. Whether it’s tinctures, edibles, vaporizers, or topicals–there are so many options. Below is a handy little guide to help you decide how to use it and how much to consume. If you want some more in-depth info on this, please do your research. There’s tons of it and we’d have to take up hours of your time to get detailed.
Your Go to Guide on How to Use CBD
The easiest way to consume or try CBD oil is orally. It is offered in capsules as well as pills and even infused within beverages. It’s just like popping aspirin and it’s easy to monitor the dosage because it will come in labeled pre-measured sizes. Another perk? You won’t taste anything. Keep in mind that the effects will take a bit longer to enter your system.
Another option is to apply CBD oil topically. This is a perfect option if you’re trying to treat joint pain or arthritis. CBD oil topical treatments come in lotions, creams, soaps, and even shampoos. If using a cream, be sure to wait a while before washing your hands or body because your skin will need time to absorb it.
Taking CBD oil sublingually is another option, similar to a pill, but with faster effects. Using this method, you’d place some oil under your tongue. Your saliva would then dissolve the oil and absorb it into your bloodstream. Since there’s no need to enter your digestive system, you’ll feel the effects much faster.
Lastly, inhalation is another option for you–this is done by using a vaporizer. This would be considered a more ‘advanced’ option and is only recommended for people that have used CBD oil and vaporizers before.
Do you, boo–do you.
The bottom line with CBD oil is to use it the best way you see fit for you. There are so many ways to reap the benefits of this ‘wonder-chemical’ and the way it’s used should feel comfortable to you. And, as always, consult your doctor or physician about starting the use of CBD oil to make sure it doesn’t interfere with any medications you’re currently taking.