By now many of us have heard the term CBD, but what is CBD?
All You Should Know About CBD: Plus What We Are Working To Find
Are you here because you have several unanswered questions about this chemical compound? Well, you aren’t alone. The buzz around CBD and its products are at an all-time high. What is CBD, and how does it work? Can CBD cause intoxication? What are the health benefits of CBD? Are the benefits evidence-backed? We regularly get these questions from communities. Consequently, we want to talk about this popular natural chemical compound.
The number of CBD products keeps growing, including CBD edibles, beauty products, pills, and drinks, with devotees making claims that these products are cure-alls for a lot of health conditions. Here, we will explore all that we know about CBD and what we don’t know but are working to establish. Irrespective of whether you have been taking CBD products or you have just started, we will give you conclusive answers to some of your most pressing questions.
What is CBD?
CBD is a shortened form of Cannabidiol, which is one of the chemical compounds found in marijuana and hemp plants. Before we tell you more about CBD, it is important to note that hemp is different from marijuana. The two plants are members of the Cannabaceae family. However, the two differ considerably in composition: hemp plants have below 0.3 percent THC (a chemical component responsible for producing the “high” associated with cannabis use), while marijuana has THC levels between 3 and 35 percent. Given this, hemp is not associated with psychoactive effects.
CBD and THC are among the most common chemical compounds in cannabis plants. These plants have additional compounds, including Cannabichromene (CBC), Cannabidivarin (CBDV), Cannabinol (CBN), Cannabidiol Acid (CBDA), Cannabigerol (CBG), and Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV). CBD is associated with therapeutic properties.
How Does CBD Work?
Each time you consume a product containing CBD, this chemical compound gets into your body. CBD will get its way into the bloodstream before it gets into your brain and other parts of your body. The compound is dispersed into specific receptors located throughout your body. These receptors form what is known as the endocannabinoid system.
Although the location of all the receptors in the endocannabinoid system is not fully understood, their general distribution is known. Cannabinoids from your weed products activate the receptors resulting in the effects associated with cannabis. In particular, CBD is an antagonist to these receptors and other receptors found in the body’s immune cells all through the body. This explains why CBD reduces body and joint inflammation.
Can CBD Get You High?
CBD in its purest form will never get you high. However, if it contains some levels of THC, then you can easily get intoxicated. Therefore, if you don’t intend to get high, go for CBD products with minimal or no THC. You can only be assured of the purity of your product if you get it from a trusted vendor because some may contain varying levels of THC than they claim. In general, if a CD product is free from THC, you shouldn’t be concerned about getting high accidentally.
What Are The Potential Health Benefits? Are They Backed With Evidence?
CBD has been associated with significant health benefits: treating anxiety and depression symptoms, chronic pain management, regulating blood sugars, treating blood pressure, managing cancer tumors, and sleep enhancement.
However, the strongest scientific evidence in the health benefits of CBD is for its usefulness in treating some of the childhood epilepsy syndromes that do not respond to conventional anti-seizure drugs. In fact, Epidiolex is the first-ever CBD-derived drug approved by the FDA for the syndromes.
Additionally, various animal and human studies have suggested that CBD could help with anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain, and addiction. While most of these studies may not be conclusive, the results are promising. It may be important to keep tabs on the progress of future scientific studies in this area.
Are There Any Risks Associated With CBD?
While CBD has a generally good safety profile, it is not without some side effects. Some of the common side effects of using CBD are fatigue, irritability, and nausea. However, these side effects are mild.
The biggest risk associated with CBD is the probable drug interactions. This chemical compound may interact with various common drugs, including blood thinners, pain medication, antihistamines, and psychiatric drugs. Therefore, you should let your doctor know about your intention to use CBD for them to review your drugs to avert adverse reactions.
Additionally, CBD products may be contaminated with impurities, including pesticides. These can expose you to risk. Breastfeeding and pregnant women should avoid these products, especially if purity is not guaranteed.
What We Are Yet To Know
The effectiveness of CBD in enhancing overall wellness has been established. However, there lacks an understanding of the effects of the long-term use of CBD. Will it result in even better outcomes? Will it get to a saturation point where there will be no more effect? Will it result in adverse outcomes? We are following closely on CBD studies and hope to get answers to this concern.
As you can see, there is a lot of information about CBD. We believe that this has been useful in answering some of your pressing questions about this component.
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- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration. “What You Need to Know (And What We’re Working to Find Out) About Products Containing Cannabis or Cannabis-derived Compounds, Including CBD” https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/what-you-need-know-and-what-were-working-find-out-about-products-containing-cannabis-or-cannabis. Accessed 1 December, 2021