Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of at least 113 active cannabinoids identified in cannabis. In hemp, however, THC is only present in trace amounts, while CBD dominates the plant’s makeup.
CBD interacts with our naturally occurring systems but is non-psychotropic, it doesn’t cause a high. This makes it a safer, less controversial alternative, while still offering significant health benefits.
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Although scientists first isolated CBD’s from cannabis chemical structure in 1940, it was not until several decades later that investigators first reported its ability to offset the psychoactive effects of delta-9-THC.
For example, a 1974 clinical trial reported that the addition of 60 mg of CBD to 30 mg doses of THC in healthy volunteers was associated with reduced anxiety and greater pleasurable effects as compared to the administration of THC alone.
Later clinical trials reported that CBD administration reduced the number of THC-induced adverse effects, such as disconnected thoughts and depersonalization.
Separate studies further determined that CBD dosing mitigated dysphoria (a state of unease or generalized dissatisfaction with life) in subjects with experimentally induced psychotic symptoms.
Some Facts About Industrial Hemp-Derived CBD
Hemp or industrial hemp (from Old English hænep), typically found in the northern hemisphere, is a variety of the Cannabis sativa plant species that is grown specifically for the industrial uses of its derived products.
There’s been much debate suggesting that CBD derived from industrial hemp has the same properties as cannabis-derived CBD, making it a potential alternative for patients who can’t legally access medical marijuana but can legally acquire hemp-derived CBD products.
Some people may not be entirely familiar with hemp-derived CBD, however.
Here are a few facts about CBD derived from industrial hemp:
- Agricultural hemp and medical marijuana both come from the Cannabis Sativa L. plant.
- Agricultural hemp, which is often referred to as “hemp stalk,” grows differently than THC-containing cannabis, and looks similar to bamboo.
- THC-producing marijuana plants are grown to an average of five feet in height, spaced six to eight feet apart. Agricultural hemp is grown to a height of 10 to 15 feet or more before harvest, placed three to six inches apart.
- Hemp has little potential to produce high-content THC when pollinated.
- As long as agricultural hemp plants are pollinated by members of their own crop, the genetics will remain similar with low levels of THC.
- There is a strong legal argument that production and distribution of CBD oils/products derived from imported raw material industrial hemp are not a violation of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA); in fact, one Colorado law firm has published a written opinion making the case.
Hemp is grown for fiber, but it also can be grown for seed and for many other uses. Hemp grown for seed has large buds and looks very much like the cannabis plant that contains THC.
If the hemp plant for seed production is grown and not fertilized by male plants, they are an excellent source of resin for CBD and other cannabinoids. Seed hemp plants produce resin, at comparable levels of any other outdoor-grown cannabis plant that contains THC.
CBD is considered to have a wide scope of potential medical applications.
Why Use Cannabidiol CBD Oil?
CBD has become a highly sought after compound in recent years, taking the natural products industry by storm after receiving highly publicized exposure in the media, including in Sanjay Gupta’s special, “Weed”, which first premiered on CNN. Since then, CBD oil products have appeared on shelves in doctors offices, medical marijuana dispensaries, and grocery stores alike, with no medical card required to purchase.
CBD communicates with the body’s own endocannabinoid system. First discovered in the late 1980’s, the endocannabinoid system regulates the body’s homeostasis, or general state of balance, impacting such functions as mood, sleep, appetite, hormone regulation, pain, and immune response.
Found in all mammals, the endocannabinoid system is made up of millions of cannabinoid receptor sites located primarily throughout the brain and central nervous system (CB1 receptors) and immune system (CB2 receptors) that act in neural communication.
However, the endocannabinoid system doesn’t simply rely on plant-based cannabinoids and phytocannabinoids.
The human body is capable of making its own cannabinoids.
Similar in function to CBD, Anandamide and 2-AG are the body’s own endocannabinoids, created to control communication between cells, mediating your body’s functions.
The Scope of Treatments With Cannabidiol (CBD)
This chemical compound makes up about 40% of the active cannabinoids in cannabis. Don’t confuse this amazing compound with THC, the psychoactive ingredient responsible for the infamous “high” effects of marijuana. In many ways, CBD is the exact opposite of THC, in that it not only is non-psychoactive, but it has shown to ward off the psychotropic effects of THC, according to several studies.
CBD and Panic Attacks
A study involving a predator-prey paradigm with mice found that when given CBD oil, mice displayed significant reductions in responses related to panic. Their results suggest that CBD could be effective in controlling panic attacks.
CBD and Psychosis
While a rash of recent media reports have alleged that cannabis use may trigger psychotic episodes in habitual users, a new literature review largely dismisses this claim.
Writing in the journal Current Psychiatry Reports, researchers from the University of Wyoming and from Columbia University in New York City evaluated recent studies associating the use of cannabis with psychotic behaviors. They reported that cannabis use probably does not cause psychosis, but rather, that subjects susceptible to the disorder are more likely to engage in the early-onset use of the substance. “Evidence reviewed here suggests that cannabis does not in itself cause a psychosis disorder,” they concluded.
Although the science surrounding CBD as a potential antipsychotic agency is still in its infancy, the initial research demonstrating the compound’s potential efficacy and adequate side-effect profile is promising.
While current antipsychotic medications are associated with significant side effects and poor treatment adherence, CBD has been shown to be safe and well tolerated in human subjects.
CBD and Anxiety
A common anxiety-inducer for those with social anxiety disorder (SAD) is public speaking. To test CBD’s effects on this, volunteers were asked to speak in front of a video camera. Their anxiety was measured through self-rated scales as well as monitored heart rate and blood pressure.
This double-blind study looked at two groups of 12 volunteers (all people had SAD), with one group receiving CBD and the other a placebo. Researchers resulted that anxiety levels and negative self-assessments were higher in the placebo group. These results were then compared to a control group of individuals that did not have social anxiety disorder.
The results? The group of SAD sufferers who took CBD showed very similar results to the control group. CBD Oil Relieves anxiety in most cases.
CBD and Cerebral Blood Flow
Another study compared the effects of CBD on regional cerebral blood flow with the those of anxiolytic effects. CBD was noted to significantly reduce anxiety based on rating scales. It also reportedly increased brain activity in the left parahippocampal gyrus and decreased activity in the left amygdala-hippocampus complex.
In other words, the pattern was similar to anxiolytic action, suggesting CBD has an anxiolytic effect.
CBD and Epilepsy
Dravet’s syndrome is a rare form of epilepsy that is difficult to treat. It is a catastrophic form of intractable epilepsy that begins in infancy. Initial seizures are most often prolonged events and in the second year of life, other seizure types begin to emerge.
A number of high profile and anecdotal reports have sparked interest in the treatment of Dravet’s syndrome with cannabidiol.
CBD and Anxiety
The worries and stresses of life, which can alter the neurotransmitter’s within our brain, may lead to anxiety and depression, which can, over time, harm your mental and physical health, and also lower your body’s immune system response which quietly helps defend you from viruses and bacterial infections.
CBD-rich products that are from a pure source, free of any toxic heavy metals and other contaminants, have been shown to boost the immune system, relieve anxiety and depression, which can only come from pure, medical grade, CBD Oil.
Safety of CBD
The oral administration of the non-psychotropic cannabis plant constituent cannabidiol (CBD) is safe and well tolerated in humans, according to clinical trial data published online by the journal Current Pharmaceutical Design.
Investigators at Kings College in London assessed the physiological and behavioral effects of CBD and THC versus placebo in 16 healthy volunteers in a randomized, double-blind, crossover trial.
Investigators reported that the oral administration of 10 mg of THC was associated with various physiological and behavioral effects—such as increased heart rate and sedation—whereas the oral administration of 600 mg of CBD was not.
Based on recent advances in cannabinoid administration in humans, controlled CBD has been shown to be safe in humans and animals. CBD safety in humans has been studied in multiple small studies, suggesting that it is well tolerated at doses of up to 1,500 mg a day.
Pure CBD Oils
Thousands of research articles point to the many health benefits of pure CBD-rich oils. According to preclinical trials, CBD is anticonvulsive, sedative, anti-psychotic, anti-nausea, anti-inflammatory, and CBD has also shown to kill cancer cells, as well as being a potent antioxidant compound with neuroprotective properties.
It’s critical to have the purest form of CBD sourced from reputable suppliers. The most potent type of CBD product available is pure CBD oil, which is extracted from the stalk of the hemp plant, tested for quality and purity, and packaged with no additives, fillers or preservatives. These pure oils have the highest concentration of CBD, usually 100 mg or more per serving.
If you’d like to pick up some CBD oil for yourself or someone you know who may benefit from its use, click here.
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