With its wide variety of proven health benefits, limited side effects, and no chance of addiction, it’s simply unfortunate that CBD has been given such a bad rap. Although cannabidiol (CBD for short) is derived from the same cannabis plant as marijuana, it has none of the psychoactive properties of its cannabis cousin. Instead, CBD contains chemical compounds that even the most respected bodies of physicians — including Harvard Medical School and the World Health Organization — have touted for natural, near-miraculous relief from many afflictions.
Anxiety, stress, and depression
Stressful lives, an overload of obligations, hectic schedules, and genetic factors have contributed to a diagnosis of anxiety disorder in more than 18 percent of the US population. Similarly, depression is one of the leading causes of disability among Americans.
Although psychotherapy and prescription medications provide effective relief for patients suffering from anxiety or depression, or both conditions, medical and mental health professionals have found that CBD offers the same psychiatric benefits as antidepressants. CBD binds to receptors in the brain to stimulate processes that improve mood and stress control. Basically, readily available CBD products such as oils, vapes, or edibles have an overall calming and relaxing effect on the body — without producing any sort of “high” or potential for misuse.
Within the last two years, patients with epilepsy and their families have been encouraged by multiple studies proving that CBD can reduce the number of seizures in both children and adults. In fact, the use of CBD for the treatment has been so promising that in July 2018, the US Food and Drug Administration approved Epidiolex, the first marijuana-derivative drug to treat two of the most severe forms of epilepsy. These two crippling diseases, Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, have been resistant to anti-seizure medications; however, patients responded positively to CBD-based treatment.
Chronic pain, arthritis, and inflammation
New studies by the National Institute of Health have shown that CBD is a “novel” anti-inflammatory drug with potential as an agent against a number of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. One of those ailments is rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune disease that causes the body’s immune system to attack the joints, resulting in inflammation. Tests with CBD products have proven that CBD offers dual relief to arthritis patients by reducing both inflammation and joint pain in RA patients as well as those with degenerative osteoarthritis. This is amazing news for the more than 50 million Americans who suffer from arthritis.
Cannabis has been used to relieve chronic pain for centuries; in fact, Sir John Russell Reynolds, British neurologist and physician to Queen Victoria, wrote in 1859, “For the relief of certain kinds of pain, I believe, there is no more useful medicine than cannabis within our reach.” Studies with CBD products indicate that in addition to its relaxing and anti-inflammatory benefits, CBD can bind with neuropathic receptors in the brain to suppress chronic pain; additionally, patients don’t seem to build up a tolerance to CBD, so the benefits last even longer. CBD has even been found to be effective at soothing the pain associated with cancer — although no evidence supports claims that CBD is a cure for this devastating disease.
Do your homework
When using CBD for its many exciting health benefits, it’s best to deal with a trusted CBD retailer who can help you determine what dosage and delivery method is appropriate for you. Online retailers like The CBD Distributors sell CBD products in the form of topical oils, isolates, vape oils, concentrates, and even edibles like chocolate brownies, lollipops, or honey. Because CBD is not addictive and produces mild side effects (if any), you can also experiment with different types and amounts of applications until you find the combination that is right for you.
Remember that CBD is a supplement and not a medication, so doing some research on your products’ manufacturer is essential. Review the company’s growing practices to be sure that their hemp crops are grown in an organic, pesticide-free manner and that CBD is extracted from the plants in a manner that ensures purity. And of course, before buying a CBD product, be sure that your state allows the purchase. State laws are evolving as legislators and the public gain a better understanding of hemp-derived CBD and its distinction from marijuana, but your best bet is to check out the legalities before placing your order.