CBD has become extremely popular for medicinal use and its growth is only expanding. Forbes predicts the CBD market will pull in $16 billion by 2025. This means there is a lot of money to be made in CBD and this means there are a lot of counterfeits out there.
So, what is CBD?
CBD and THC are the two active components of marijuana. THC is the main psychoactive component of marijuana (it’s what gets you high). CBD has most of the health benefits and does not have the same psychoactive effects as THC.
How does it work? In the 1980’s researchers discovered another system in our body – the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This is just like every other system in our body like the cardiovascular system, digestive system, nervous system, etc. This system contains endogenous cannabinoids or natural cannabis-like substances that exist naturally within us.
This system helps keep everything else in check. If something is out of whack, our body calls upon the ECS to help fix it. It does this through cannabinoid receptors found in certain tissues.
The two main types of cannabinoid receptors are CB1 which is in the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and CB2 which is in the peripheral nervous system (everywhere else). Because both of these receptors are in our main nervous system, the ECS can regulate so many important functions like appetite, mood, sleep, inflammation, immune system, memory, pain, and pleasure/reward and more!
When someone smokes marijuana, THC attaches to the CB1 receptor in the brain causing a high. The endocannabinoid or the cannabinoid in our body that also attaches to the same receptor is called anandamide. This does not cause you to get high because enzymes break it down fast enough but THC is harder to breakdown leading to a high. Butttt our natural anandamide does have a very calming effect on our body helping with mood, pain, and sleep.
Fun fact: “Anand” is the Sanskrit word for bliss or happiness. That’s why they named our natural cannabinoid anandamide.
The way exogenous CBD works is not fully conclusive. However, Research is finding that CBD actually may not directly act on either CB1 or CB2 receptors and actually works by blocking the re-uptake of anandamide and serotonin so it slows down the breakdown of these two. Serotonin plays a huge role in our bodies and is considered the “happy neurotransmitter” and many anti-anxiety medications like Prozac also block the re-uptake of serotonin. This is why CBD can help with people suffering from anxiety unlike THC.
If you’re using marijuana to help with anxiety, you may want to consider using CBD instead.
I’m sure at this point you’re thinking, if we have this natural cannabinoid within us, then why would we take exogenous CBD?
Just like any other system in our body, there can also be dysregulation in the endocannabinoid system as well. This is when supplementing with CBD can be helpful.
I personally use CBD when sleeping in new environments like when traveling. It helps calm my mind allowing my body to go into a more restful sleep. It does not work for everyone in the same way. We all are unique individuals and what works for me may not work for you. This is why it is important to talk to a licensed healthcare provider who is knowledgeable in this field to help you understand what is right for you whether its CBD or any other herb, supplement, or drug.
Where to get CBD?
Like I stated in the beginning, CBD is a huge industry and there are a lot of people trying to profit off of it. This means they’ll give you low-quality products that will at best not work and at worst harm you.
When it comes to your health, QUALITY MATTERS!
There are a few brands I know of that I like but unfortunately they are few and far between.
If you want to get more information on CBD and want to know if it would be right for you, set up a 15 minute complimentary phone call with me.
Corroon, J., & Phillips, J. A. (2018). A Cross-Sectional Study of Cannabidiol Users. Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research,3(1), 152-161. doi:10.1089/can.2018.0006
Pacher, P. (2006). The Endocannabinoid System as an Emerging Target of Pharmacotherapy. Pharmacological Reviews,58(3), 389-462. doi:10.1124/pr.58.3.2
Russo, E. (2008). Cannabinoids in the management of difficult to treat pain. Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management,Volume 4, 245-259. doi:10.2147/tcrm.s1928