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What Is CBD and How Does It Work?

CBD (cannabidiol) is one of the 100+ cannabinoids naturally occurring in cannabis. Alongside THC (delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol), they are the most popular active agents in both marijuana and hemp varieties. Other compounds include CBG (cannabigerol), trichomes and flavinoids. CBD is behind the recent wave of legal cannabis for medical use in several states and regions worldwide. According to recent STUDIES, it has many therapeutic effects that can spur reaction chains that benefit specific conditions. Anxiety, pain and sleep are among the top of potential benefits of CBD. CBD can come in many different forms including concentrates, oils, tinctures, wax, edibles and topical lotions. The form and delivery mode you choose will depend on your unique requirements, but most notably it can be used by sublingual application (like in oils and tinctures), eaten or applied topically.

How Does CBD Work?

From the research available, it appears that CBD attaches to receptors (Cb1 and CB2) in the human endocannabinoid system (ECS), a vast network of neurons and receptors found naturally in humans and some animals. The ECS regulates various body functions, including mobility, pain reception, metabolism and homeostasis. It is also networked with the central nervous system, extending its potential to impact various conditions. Although CBD exists in all cannabis varieties, most of the commercial CBD you will find comes from industrial hemp. Unlike TCH, CBD doesn’t have any psychedelic properties and doesn’t result in a “high.” CBD products are also required to contain no more than 0.03% THC.

Using CBD

CBD has several other therapeutic benefits that can improve different conditions. Epidiolex, a drug for seizures, became the first FDA-approved CBD-based medication. Since then, various studies have emerged supporting (but not proving!) CBD may be helpful for the following medical benefits:

  • Antipsychotic effects for schizophrenia and other mental disorders
  • Treating substance abuse
  • Anti-tumor effects
  • Diabetes prevention
  • Treating skin infections

The safety and efficacy of CBD still calls for further research. However, most preliminary studies hold great promise in the areas mentioned above. Currently, CBD oil is the most popular form available for most conditions. You can also find concentrates, edibles and gummies, lotions and other CBD products in online dispensaries. CBD is also available for cooking and using in drink recipes, allowing everyone to enjoy the potential therapeutic benefits. Nonetheless, it is important to discern the cause of your medical conditions and pursue expert opinion regarding whether CBD is an effective addition to your treatment regimen.

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