Cannabidiol is a popular natural remedy used for many common ailments. Better known as CBD, it is one of the 104 chemical compounds known as cannabinoids found in the hemp part of the cannabis plant, Cannabis sativa . Unlike Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD has analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antidepressant properties, without the psychoactive or "head high" effects that THC provides. Hemp CBD products, like oils, edibles and topical treatments are made from "industrial hemp" and must have no THC cannabinoids to be sold legally in the United States.
This quality makes CBD an appealing option for those who are looking for relief from pain and other symptoms without the mind-altering effects of marijuana or certain pharmaceutical drugs. CBD oil is made by extracting CBD from the hemp part of the cannabis plant, then diluting it with a carrier oil like coconut or hemp seed oil.
It’s gaining momentum in the health and wellness world, with some scientific studies confirming it may help treat a variety of ailments like chronic pain and anxiety.
Here are seven health benefits of CBD oil that are backed by scientific evidence.
The human body contains a specialized system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is involved in regulating a variety of functions including sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response.
Studies have shown that CBD may help reduce chronic pain by impacting endocannabinoid receptor activity, reducing inflammation and interacting with neurotransmitters. CBD may also be effective in reducing pain associated with diseases like multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Anxiety and depression are common mental health disorders that can have devastating impacts on health and well-being. According to the World Health Organization, depression is the single largest contributor to disability worldwide, while anxiety disorders are ranked sixth. Anxiety and depression are usually treated with pharmaceutical drugs, which can cause a number of side effects including drowsiness, agitation, insomnia, sexual dysfunction and headaches.
What’s more, medications like benzodiazepines can be addictive and may lead to substance abuse. CBD oil has shown promise as a treatment for both depression and anxiety, leading many who live with these disorders to become interested in this natural approach. Using CBD has been shown to reduce anxiety and depression in both human and animal studies.
CBD may help reduce symptoms related to cancer and side effects related to cancer treatment, like nausea, vomiting and pain. CBD may also help reduce chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, which are among the most common chemotherapy-related side effects for those with cancer.
Though there are drugs that help with these distressing symptoms, they are sometimes ineffective, leading some people to seek alternatives. Though CBD has been shown to help reduce symptoms related to cancer and cancer treatment, and may even have cancer-fighting properties, more research is needed to assess its efficacy and safety.
Acne is a common skin condition that affects more than 9% of the population. It is thought to be caused by a number of factors, including genetics, bacteria, underlying inflammation and the overproduction of sebum, an oily secretion made by sebaceous glands in the skin.
Based on recent scientific studies, CBD oil may help treat acne due to its anti-inflammatory properties and ability to reduce sebum production. CBD may have beneficial effects on acne due to its anti-inflammatory qualities and its ability to control the overproduction of sebum from the sebaceous glands.
Researchers believe that CBD’s ability to act on the endocannabinoid system and other brain signaling systems may provide benefits for those with neurological disorders. In fact, one of the most studied uses for CBD is in treating neurological disorders like epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. Though research in this area is still relatively new, several studies have shown promising results.
Though research is limited at this time, CBD has been shown to effectively treat symptoms related to epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease. CBD was also shown to reduce the progression of Alzheimer’s disease in test-tube and animal studies.
Recent research has linked CBD with several benefits for the heart and circulatory system, including the ability to lower high blood pressure. High blood pressure is linked to higher risks of a number of health conditions, including stroke, heart attack and metabolic syndrome. Studies indicate that CBD may be a natural and effective treatment for high blood pressure.
One recent study treated 10 healthy men with one dose of 600 mg of CBD oil and found it reduced resting blood pressure, compared to a placebo. Though more human studies are needed, CBD may benefit heart health in several ways, including by reducing blood pressure and preventing heart damage.
CBD has been studied for its role in treating a number of health issues other than those outlined above. Some studies suggest that CBD may be an effective treatment for diabetes, substance abuse, mental disorders and certain types of cancers. However, more research in humans is needed.
Are There Any Side Effects?
Though CBD is generally well tolerated and considered safe, it may cause adverse reactions in some people. Side effects noted in some studies include anxiety and depression, psychosis, nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, dry mouth, dizziness, diarrhea, changes in appetite. Before you start using CBD oil, discuss it with your doctor to ensure your safety and avoid potentially harmful interactions.
CBD oil has been studied for its potential role in treating many common health issues, including anxiety, depression, acne and heart disease.
For those with cancer, it may even provide a natural alternative for pain and symptom relief.
Research on the potential health benefits of CBD oil is ongoing, so new therapeutic uses for this natural remedy are sure to be discovered.
Though there is much to be learned about the efficacy and safety of CBD, results from recent studies suggest that CBD may provide a safe, powerful natural treatment for many health issues and aid you in your search for relief and happiness.
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