Cannabidiol or CBD is a non-psychoactive(does not get you high) compound in the cannabis plant. It continues to gain popularity over the years because it is benefits to health. CBD oil is extracted from marijuana and hemp plants. The popularity of CBD has given rise to the abundance of CBD products. CBD oil is easy to use and has a high bioavailability which means it can enter the body efficiently, letting smaller doses to stay effective.
There’s growing awareness about the possible health benefits of CBD oil. Here’s what you need to know about six potential medical uses of CBD and where the research stands:
1. Anxiety relief
CBD may be able to help you manage anxiety. By changing the way your brain’s receptors respond to serotonin, a chemical linked to mental health. Receptors are tiny proteins attached to your cells that receive chemical messages and help your cells respond to different stimuli.
One study found that a 600mg dose of CBD helped people with social anxiety give a speech. Other early studies were done with animals have shown that CBD may help relieve anxiety by:
- reducing stress
- decreasing physiological effects of anxiety, such as an increased heart rate
- improving symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- inducing sleep in cases of insomnia
CBD has been in the news before, as a possible treatment for epilepsy. The American Epilepsy Society states that cannabidiol research offers hope for seizure disorders, and that research is currently being conducted to better understand safe use.
A study worked with 214 people with epilepsy. The study participants added oral doses of 2 to 5mg of CBD per day to their existing anti-epilepsy medications. The study’s researchers monitored the participants for 12 weeks, recording any negative side effects and checking on the frequency of their seizures. Overall, participants had 36.5 percent fewer seizures per month.
Researchers are looking at a receptor located in the brain to learn about the ways that CBD could help people with neurodegenerative disorders, which are diseases that cause the brain and nerves to deteriorate over time. This receptor is known as CB1.
Researchers are studying the use of CBD oil for treating:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Parkinson’s disease
CBD oil may also reduce the inflammation that can make neurodegenerative symptoms worse. More research is needed to fully understand the effects of CBD oil for neurodegenerative diseases.
4. Pain relief
The effects of CBD oil on your brain’s receptors may also help you manage pain. Studies have shown that cannabis can offer some benefits when taken after chemotherapy treatments.
- chronic pain
- MS pain
- muscle pain
- spinal cord injuries
Nabiximols (Sativex), a multiple sclerosis drug made from a combination of TCH and CBD, is approved in the United Kingdom and Canada to treat MS pain. However, researchers think the CBD in the drug may be contributing more with its anti-inflammatory properties than by acting against the pain.
MMA fighters are turning to CBD for healing to help aid in their recovery. Many claim that CBD has quickened their healing time and helped them to feel better than other substances.
The effects of CBD on receptors in the immune system may help reduce overall inflammation in the body. In turn, CBD oil may offer benefits for acne management. A human study found that the oil prevented activity in sebaceous glands. These glands are responsible for producing sebum, a natural oily substance that hydrates the skin. Too much sebum, however, can lead to acne.
6. Cancer treatment
Some studies have investigated the role of CBD in preventing cancer cell growth, but research is still in its early stages. CBD may help alleviate cancer symptoms and cancer treatment side effects. The action of CBD that’s promising for cancer treatment is its ability to moderate inflammation and change how cells reproduce. CBD has the effect of reducing the ability of some types of tumor cells to reproduce.
How to use CBD oil
CBD is extracted from marijuana plants as either an oil or powder. These can be mixed into creams or gels. They can be put into capsules and taken orally, or rubbed on your skin. The multiple sclerosis drug nabiximols is sprayed as a liquid into your mouth. How CBD should be used depends largely on what it’s being used for. Talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. It hasn’t been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for any medical uses, and it can have side effects.
CBD oil can be placed under the tongue. It may also be infused in different products including the following;
- Edibles: Various types of edibles infused with CBD oil are available including gummy bears, cakes, and cookies. Edibles usually list the concentration of CBD in milligrams.
- Vaporing: CBD extract can be used in a vaporizer or vape pen. As the extract heats up, it creates a vapor that is inhaled.
- Tinctures: CBD also comes in tinctures. A few drops of the liquid can be added to drinks.