Cannabidiol (CBD) is often discussed in the media, and you may have heard that it may be added to your post-workout smoothie or morning cup of coffee as a boost. You may even purchase a sports bra that contains CBD. But precisely, what is cannabidiol? And what is the reason for its widespread acceptance?
What is the difference between cannabidiol and marijuana, cannabis, and hemp?
Cannabidiol, sometimes known as CBD, is the second most abundant active component in cannabis (marijuana). When it comes to medical marijuana, CBD is obtained straight from the hemp plant, which is a cousin of marijuana, or it is synthesized in a laboratory. CBD is a vital component of medicinal marijuana.
CBD is one of hundreds of components in marijuana, and it does not, by itself, provide a “high”. Several reports from the World Health Organization (WHO) state that “In humans, cannabidiol shows no signs of abuse or dependency, and there is no evidence of any potential for abuse or reliance. To present, there is no indication that the consumption of pure CBD relates to any public health risks.”
Is cannabidiol a legal substance?
CBD is widely available in most regions of the United States, while the actual legal status of the substance has been up in the air for some time. All 50 states have passed legislation legalizing cannabidiol, but with various degrees of restraint.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) relaxed regulatory regulations in December 2015 to enable researchers to undertake cannabidiol experiments. Because hemp was legalized under the Farm Bill in 2018, it is difficult to keep CBD illegal in the United States – it would be analogous to making oranges legal but keeping orange juice prohibited in the country.
Because of the Farm Bill, all hemp-derived products, including cannabidiol, are no longer included by the Controlled Substances Act, which makes drug possession a criminal offense. It basically implies that CBD may be obtained legally from hemp, but that it cannot be obtained legally from cannabis (marijuana), even though they are both made up of the exact same molecule. Many individuals are already obtaining CBD online without the need for a medical marijuana license, which is permitted in most states at this time.
The evidence for cannabidiol health benefits
CBD has been promoted as a treatment for a wide range of health issues, but the strongest scientific evidence supports its use in the treatment of some of the cruelest childhood epilepsy syndromes, such as Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), which typically do not respond to anti-seizure medications.
CBD has also been promoted as a treatment for a variety of other health issues. In multiple trials, cannabidiol was shown to be effective in reducing the frequency of seizures and, in some instances, eliminating them. Epidiolex, which includes cannabidiol, is the first cannabis-derived drug to be authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of these disorders.
CBD is beneficial in the following areas, according to animal studies, self-reports, and human research:
- Anxiety Studies and clinical studies are being conducted to investigate the widely reported ability of CBD to decrease anxiety.
- According to some research, cannabidiol may be beneficial for both falling asleep and staying asleep.
- Pain that lasts a long time. Additional human trials are required to confirm claims that CBD is effective in the treatment of pain. When cannabidiol is administered topically to the skin, according to one animal research published in the European Journal of Pain, it may assist to reduce pain and inflammation associated with arthritis. Other study has shown that CBD may be effective in treating inflammatory and neuropathic pain, which are both difficult to treat.
- CBD has been shown in humans to be effective in reducing cravings for cigarettes and heroin under specific circumstances. According to animal addiction models, it may also be effective in reducing cravings for alcoholic beverages, cannabis, opioids, and stimulants.
Is CBD a safe substance to consume?
Nausea, tiredness, and irritability are among the side effects of cannabidiol consumption. CBD has the potential to boost the levels of blood thinning and other medications in your bloodstream by competing with the liver enzymes that break down these medications. Grapefruit has a similar impact on the body as several prescription medications.
People who use enormous amounts of cannabidiol may have anomalies in liver-related blood tests. Many over-the-counter medications, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), have the same effect as prescription medications. As a result, you should inform your doctor if you are consistently using CBD.
Is CBD supplement or medication?
The fact that CBD is advertised and sold as a supplement, rather than a prescription, raises serious safety concerns about its use. Currently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not oversee the safety and quality of dietary supplements.
As a result, you cannot be certain that the product you purchase contains active chemicals at the concentrations specified on the label. In addition, the product may include additional, yet unidentified, components. In addition, we do not know what the most effective therapeutic dosage of cannabidiol is for any specific medical condition or disease.
What is the best way to consume CBD?
CBD is available in a variety of forms, including oils, extracts, capsules, patches, vapes, and topical preparations for topical application to the skin, among others. It’s possible that a topical CBD-infused oil, lotion, or cream — or even a bath bomb — will be your best bet for reducing inflammation and relieving muscle and joint pain.
Alternatively, using a CBD patch, a tincture, or a spray that is meant to be applied under the tongue enables CBD to enter the bloodstream more directly.
In countries other than the United States, the prescription medicine Sativex, which contains cannabidiol as an active component, has been licensed for the treatment of muscular spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis and cancer-related pain. In the United States, Epidiolex is licensed for the treatment of certain kinds of epilepsy as well as tuberous sclerosis.
The bottom line on cannabidiol
Some CBD producers have come under fire from the authorities for making outlandish, unjustified claims, such as that cannabidiol is a cure-all for cancer or that it is effective against COVID-19, which is simply not true. However, more investigation is required to determine if CBD is an effective and non-toxic choice for the treatment of anxiety, sleeplessness, and chronic pain.
We can’t estimate effective levels since we don’t have enough high-quality information from human research, and because cannabidiol is presently accessible as an unregulated supplement, it’s difficult to know precisely what you’re receiving.
If you decide to experiment with CBD, be certain that you are purchasing it from a reliable source. Also, consult with your doctor to ensure that it will not interfere with any other medications you are taking.