What Does CBD Oil do, and what are it’s Side Effects?
CBD oil is quite a new phenomenon in the health supplement world, and it has a history of being used to help with different ailments in one form or another for millennia. The first recorded uses of substances derived from the cannabis plant (like CBD) date back all the way to 2900 B.C.E, and it has been in steady use in different cultures steadily since then.
CBD oil has been quite controversial in the past few years because it originates from the same cannabis plant as marijuana does, but it’s important to note that there are some key differences between the two. Even though most botanists consider the plant that CBD oil is extracted from as being the same as the plant that marijuana is harvested from, the plant CBD oil is extracted from contains an insignificant amount of THC (the psychoactive chemical in marijuana)
CBD oil is extracted from the hemp plant. That same plant is also used for the production of health supplements, fibres for textiles and many other useful products. For the hemp plant to be legally considered for the production of CBD oil and these other materials, it has to contain 0.3% or a lower level of THC.
Can CBD oil get you high?
Both the marijuana and the hemp plant can be used to extract CBD oil, so technically it is possible. But it’s important to note that for CBD oil to be legally sold in most places, it has to contain less than 0.3% THC.
However, just about everywhere CBD oil is available for purchase it’s derived from the hemp plant and doesn’t contain a significant enough level of THC to have any psychoactive impact. In other words, the CBD oil available for sale cannot get you high.
What is CBD oil used for?
CBD oil has many uses and this is one of the reasons that it has become so popular in recent years. Here are the most common reasons people use CBD oil:
- Pain: CBD oil is used for dealing with chronic pain as a substitute in many cases for very harsh and potentially addictive pharmaceuticals, such as opioid pain medications
- Arthritis pain: for the same reasons that CBD oil is used to help deal with other chronic pain, it’s also effectively used to deal with pain caused by arthritis. CBD oil not only helps to manage and reduce pain, but it’s also effectively reduces inflammation
- Anxiety & depression: CBD oil has been found to target receptors in the brain and it produces very similar results to anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications
- Sleep disorders/insomnia: for many of the same reasons that CBD oil helps with anxiety and depression, it can help with sleep disorders. Since sleep disorders and insomnia are often caused by secondary health issues such as depression or chronic pain, CBD helps treat many of secondary issues responsible for trouble with sleeping
- PTSD: for many of the same reasons that CBD oil helps with other psychological issues, it can also be very effective in treating PTSD
- Reduces nausea
- Helps with allergies
- Helps with asthma
- Helps with MS
- Can help with certain lung conditions
- Parkinson’s disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Certain skin conditions
How does CBD oil work?
CBD oil works by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which is a regulatory system in your body. These endocannabinoids work similarity to neurotransmitters sending messages around the body to help maintain a state of health. CBD interacts with two receptors in the endocannabinoid system, CB1 and CB2.
- CB1: These are receptors present in the brain and are involved in motor skills, cognition, pain and memory. They are also present in the peripheral nervous system which consists of the liver, thyroid, uterus and other organs.
- THC connects with these receptors, stopping the release of neurotransmitters and consequentially increasing the release of others. It’s not yet clear the role that CBD plays when it comes to CB1 receptors
- CB2: These are receptors that are present in the immune and gastrointestinal systems and the brain and nervous system as well. It used to be thought that CBD interacts with CB2 receptors in the same way that THC interacts with CB1, but that recently has been shown to be false.
- The way that CBD interacts and affects our bodies is not yet completely understood, but scientists think that it encourages the body to produce more endocannabinoids. That is what is thought to bring the medical benefits attributed to CBD
What to watch out for?
There are a very large amount of CBD products on the market with different amounts of CBD and of different quality. Since this industry is not yet well regulated that are some recommended precautions that should be taken when choosing the right CBD oil for you and your symptoms:
- Not all CBD oils are the same quality. CBD oil is not regulated in many countries, so it’s a good idea to base your purchasing decisions off of user testimonials and user reviews
- Full spectrum or isolate CBD? It’s a good idea to know the difference between these two main types of CBD oils. Full spectrum CBD oil includes many other compounds from the hemp plant, while CBD isolate is pure CBD
- Hempseed oil is not CBD oil. Vendors will quite often try to convince buyers that hempseed oil is an alternative for CBD oil. This is not true, hempseed oil contains a very small amount or no CBD oil at all
- CBD oil is sensitive to light and air. If you see CBD oil in a clear bottle, there is a good chance it has become weaker and lost potency due to light exposure. It’s a good idea not to risk buying CBD in clear bottles
- Know which product you want to buy before going to a CBD store or ordering online. Do your research before buying and using, and not risk buying the wrong product recommended by the sales person in the store
- There are shady dealers when it comes to CBD products, it’s a good idea to check that the retailer has an online history of transactions and many good reviews
Does CBD oil have any negative side effects?
Yes it does, although most people respond well to CBD. Some people can experience mild side effects:
- Changes in body weight
- Appetite changes
There also are concerns regarding liver health and CBD oil. A study has found that CBD may interfere with an enzyme called P450 complex. This enzyme is there to support the liver’s mechanism to break down different toxins. Due to this, there is a risk that CBD may increase the liver’s toxicity.
It’s a good idea to talk to your doctor before taking CBD as well. There is a chance that CBD may interfere or interact with other medications you may be taking.
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CBD Oil References and CBD Oil Information
- Medical Marijuana.org: https://medicalmarijuana.procon.org/historical-timeline/
- Medical News Today: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/317221#benefits
- Healthline: https://www.healthline.com/health/cbd-for-depression
- Harvard Health: https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/cannabidiol-cbd-what-we-know-and-what-we-dont-2018082414476#:~:text=CBD%20is%20commonly%20used%20to,different%20types%20of%20chronic%20pain.
- Healthline: https://www.healthline.com/health/cbd-oil-benefits
- The UCLA Cannabis Research Initiative: https://cannabis.semel.ucla.edu/
- CNET: https://www.cnet.com/health/what-is-cbd/
- Healthline: https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-take-cbd
- Panacea Life Sciences: https://panacealife.com/nine-top-things-to-watch-out-for-cbd-safe/