Despite literally millions of articles flooding the internet and over half a century of research, many potential users remain skeptical about cannabidiol, or CBD. Understandably so, for after a lifetime of prohibition and propaganda against all things cannabis, the indoctrination is well ingrained. Nowadays, skeptics can relax a bit; since 2014 the United States has been singing a different tune. A legal industrial hemp tune. CBD is bountiful in the hemp plant’s leaves and hemp CBD oil is now a widely sought after as a naturopathic remedy and health supplement. So why try CBD versus the myriad of synthetic drugs and supplements? There are a few CBD facts that are deeply compelling.
CBD is a naturally occurring cannabinoid of the classical phytocannabinoid classification. While it is present in both male and female plants, most CBD supplements that hit the market are male, industrial hemp derivations. Cannabinoids have a system already designated within our bodies, called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Our bodies naturally produce cannabinoids, called endocannabinoids. As far as induction of therapeutic properties within the ECS, CBD does it through the increasing endocannabinoids. Particularly anandamide, AEA. So, a natural plant compound naturally increases a natural compound in our bodies already. Seems like a pretty good deal.
Minimal Side Effects
CBD, especially in comparison to synthetic counterparts, has a minimally displeasing side effect profile. Most people who take CBD, either as treatment or health supplement, report few to no side effects. Those reporting side effects report drowsiness, light-headedness, low blood pressure and/or dizziness. The latter three might be due to cannabidiol’s vasorelaxant properties. CBD has blanket effectiveness rather than target treatments which are more common in pharmacothereapeutics. CBD has even earned a medal of “good safety profile” from the World Health Organization.
Another side effect, or rather lack there of, is CBD’s non-pyschoactive nature. Unlike THC, found in female cannabis plants in highest concentrations in buds and the trichomes, CBD does not bind directly at the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the endocannabinoid system. As previously noted, through increasing endogenous AEA, CBD increases ECS activity. The reason CBD does not bind is because the shape is awkward and does not easily fit in the receptors. Due to this little quirk, farmers have Federal permission to grow, cultivate and research industrial hemp. By law, the industrial hemp may not have more than .3% THC. Far below the necessary threshold to induce a euphoric high.
An often overlooked fact about CBD is that it is non-habit forming without potential for abuse. This is noted by the World Health Organization in their 2017 pre-review of CBD. CBD treatment can end without physical withdrawal symptoms. This is absolutely not the case when it comes to many drug counterparts, particularly any type of opioid pain regime or psychiatric medication. Most studies surrounding cannabis dependency center around THC consumption.
So, to summarize – why try CBD? It is a natural, non-addictive, non-psychoactive compound is gaining popularity for its efficacy in various therapeutic and health conscious researchers and communities. CBD comes from male hemp plant and is available in 46/50 states plus D.C. with online sales as well. For patients out of options, CBD is a pretty safe bet. Why try CBD? Why not?