CBD has seen increased popularity in recent years, with a seemingly ubiquitous presence in almost any form of consumable product on the market. CBD has made its way into most beauty and food products such as lip balms, facemasks, café lattes, cookies, and even potato chips and toothpicks. But what are the Positive effects of CBD?
Though you can obtain CBD across the world with ease, within Australia, there still is a lot of confusion around it access and use, with many people still not fully understanding whether or not it is even legal. Downunder, CBD is only legally available through a doctor and pharmacy for medicinal purposes. Purchasing CBD through the internet or other sources is considered illegal in Australia, though many people still engage try with varying levels of success.
What is CBD?
CBD is short for Cannabidiol, a chemical compound found in the Cannabis Sativa plant. Most people know CBD as hemp, which is one of the two main species of the Cannabis Sativa plant along with marijuana. Both forms of cannabis contain CBD, however, hemp has a much higher percentage of it.
Commonly use in oils and edible form, CBD is a non-psychoactive natural substance. The effects of CBD are often associated with a sense of calm and relaxation. Unlike the other major cannabinoid, THC, CBD does not make a person ‘high’. People who consume CBD will not have euphoria or psychoactive, mind-altering effects. The main medical uses for CBD include chronic pain management, anti-anxiety and sleep aid. Every person has the potential to react differently to medication, so even though most people will not feel altered or negative effects, it is always advised to consume CBD under medical supervision.
The other main compound found in the Cannabis sativa plant is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the active ingredient, which means it has psychoactive properties. When consumed, it can lead to a feeling of euphoria or what is commonly known as a ‘high’. However, research does indicate that despite its psychoactive properties, it can help reduce nausea and pain & improve sleep and appetite. Much like CBD, THC to has health benefits, when taken in controlled amounts.
With CBD oils gaining momentum in the medical world, the question then comes down to the effects of CBD oil.
Positive effects of CBD
CBD oil has gained popularity in the use for the treatment of multiple conditions, and the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has given the green light on its use for around 25 medical conditions in Australia. While we cannot look into all of them in a single blog post, below are some of the benefits of CBD oil.
CBD for pain relief
While marijuana has commonly been used for pain relief, its pain relief properties are owed to the presence of CBD. Before we delve into that, an explanation of the functioning of the human body. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) of the human body is responsible for maintaining the body’s homeostasis. Homeostasis is the self-regulating process of the body to maintain stability. ECS is like the support system for homeostasis and kicks in to help the body to return to ideal operation, in the case of an imbalance.
Research suggests that ECS is linked to a multitude of body functions/conditions including appetite and digestion, chronic pain, cardiovascular functioning, muscle formation, sleep, and stress among others.
Coming to pain management and CBD oil. How this works is that when a person consumes CBD oil, it interacts with the neurotransmitters in the body. There is then an impact on the endocannabinoid receptor activity. This leads to the ECS reducing inflammation caused by pain as one of the main functions of ECS is to regulate homeostasis. Ultimately leading to pain relief.
CBD oil has been found effective in pain relief related to multiple sclerosis and arthritis. Read more on the positive effects of CBD on chronic pain here.
CBD for reduced anxiety and depression
When it comes to anxiety and depression, CBD might be worth a try to help you feel better. Anxiety and depression are two mental health disorders that can have a devastating impact on a person’s wellbeing. Pharmaceutical drugs are commonly used to treat these conditions. However, these drugs come with a lot of side effects including insomnia, agitation, headaches and sexual dysfunction. Certain medication taken for these conditions can be addicting and can lead to substance abuse.
With a lot of people gaining interest in natural treatments, the use of CBD oil has been a promising one. CBD has the ability to act on the brain’s receptor for serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and social behaviour & generates feelings of well-being and happiness.
While a whole lot of medical professionals prescribe low amounts of CBD for anxiety and depression, there is a lot of confusion around it. This is because the Cannabis Sativa plant has over 100 chemical compounds classified as cannabinoids, with the most known ones being CBD and THC. The presence of contradicting research does not help to clear out the confusion as well.
However, it is safe to say that when taken in low doses, there are definitely positive effects of CBD on anxiety and depression.
CBD for cancer
The use of CBD along with THC to treat cancer symptoms and side effects related to cancer treatment has increased. Chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting can be reduced with medicinal CBD oil, based on studies done. While there are drugs that do this, they haven’t always proven to be completely effective, hence searching for natural alternatives. There are a lot of studies going on about this at the moment. Currently, due to limitations on research information available, it is hard to say if CBD can help with curing cancer. But it certainly has proven to be effective against cancer-related side effects, as mentioned above. Read our blog post that talks about medicinal CBD oil for cancer where we dig deeper into this.
CBD for acne
Acne, as we all may know, is a very common skin issue. Genetics, bacteria, inflammation and overproduction of sebum are some of the common causes of acne. CBD skincare products are starting to become popular, with claims of hemp and CBD being the miracle products for the skin. The research associated with this is very limited. CBD oil does have inflammatory properties that help with acne in particular, it is hard to say to what extent it helps with overall skin health. Based on the very limited research, many skin specialists consider topical CBD and hemp products containing CBD to be safe for application. However, the debate on the positive effects of CBD on the skin is yet to be settled.
CBD for heart health
Research links CBD to several health benefits for the heart, circulatory system and blood pressure. Hypertension or high blood pressure increases the risk of strokes, heart attacks and metabolic syndrome. CBD oil helps to reduce the risk of these by working on lowering blood pressure. To support this, a few studies have been carried out. A significant one being where 9 perfectly healthy men were given 600 mg of CBD oil before a stress test (that would normally result in an increase in blood pressure). This single dose of CBD led to the men experiencing a smaller blood pressure increase as compared to taking a placebo before a stress test. This can also be associated with CBD’s stress and anxiety reduction properties, which ultimately help with regulating blood pressure.
It must be noted that there is no evidence to suggest that CBD can be used on its own to treat hypertension or prevent it. But it can definitely work as a compliment to medical treatments for the condition.
With CBD, there is still a lot of research and speculation happening on its use and benefits. CBD has also been associated with helping with schizophrenia, substance abuse and tumor, among others but once again research on the positive effects of CBD for these conditions is limited and ongoing.
Negative effects of CBD
There have been a few cases where people have faced an adverse reaction from taking CBD. However, it is generally considered safe for use in monitored amounts. Some of its known side effects are diarrhea, fatigue, fevers, drowsiness, changes in mood and appetite, and dry mouth.
Negative and Positive effects of CBD Conclusion
When taking CBD products, one must be careful. There are quite a few inferior or fake CBD products out there, which may not be safe for you. When taking CBD oil for any health condition, it is always better to consult a medical professional. In Australia, it is legal only when purchased with a prescription.