What is CBD and How Does it Work?

What is cbd?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of more than 100 unique “cannabinoid” compounds that are found in the oily resin of the cannabis plant. On a daily basis, new therapeutic properties of this amazing plant are being realized. CBD, unlike the more familiar compound Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is not psychoactive.  CBD is a safe, non-addictive substance that is one of more than a hundred “phytocannabinoids” found in the hemp plant. 

When comparing THC to CBD there are several key differences. Both are medicinally active phytocannabinoids that have been known to have medicinal properties dating back thousands of years. Unlike THC, a person utilizing CBD will not experience the high or “stoned” feeling that comes with ingesting or using marijuana. On the contrary, CBD has been shown to counteract the feelings caused by THC. 

As CBD is better understood and making its way into mainstream pharmacology, there has been benefits shown to people suffering from anxiety, pain, menstrual cramps, depression, insomnia, and nausea. With the stigmas slowly fading, more and more uses will emerge. The choice to use CBD, which has virtually no side effects, over pharmaceuticals with harsh side effects will only reveal how versatile this compound is alleviating countless ailments people choose to utilize it for. 

With detailed and extensive research done, often funded by the US government, studies have shown relief in the following: 

  • Autoimmune diseases (inflammation, rheumatoid arthritis)
  • Neurological conditions (Alzheimer’s, dementia, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, Huntington’s chorea, stroke, traumatic brain injury)
  • Metabolic syndrome (diabetes, obesity)
  • Neuropsychiatric illness (autism, ADHD, PTSD, alcoholism)
  • Gut disorders (colitis, Crohn’s)
  • Cardiovascular dysfunction (atherosclerosis, arrhythmia)
  • Skin disease (acne, dermatitis, psoriasis)

In early stage studies, there is evidence of CBD having neuroprotective properties. This means that is serves to protect the nerves from outside and internal toxins. Numerous other tests have shown that it can cause neurogenesis (growth of new brain cells).  

The way CBD effects our bodies is being understood ever since the discovery of the “endocannabinoid system”. In essence, this is a system inside of us that mimics the chemicals in CBD since they are molecular cousins. With the further understanding of how these mechanisms correlate and interact, we gain a better understandingly how the have a direct reaction with health. 

The endocannabinoid system has been shown to impact numerous physiological process. It has effects on digestion, our mood, immune system, metabolism, uptake of nutrients and cell regeneration (this is to just name a few). The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) has shown that when this system isn’t functioning properly, diseases arise.  There will be a better understanding, at a molecular level how when this system is functioning properly, health is maintained. 

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