About CBD Oil

With more and more states approving the use of medical, and even recreational, marijuana, its less controversial extract, CBD often gets overlooked. It is important to remember that CBD, or cannabidiol, is not intoxicating like THC– the active ingredient in marijuana that makes you feel “high.”

Thankfully, with loosening restrictions on marijuana, scientists and doctors find new ways that this supplement can be used to treat a wide range of health issues all the time. Below are just 8 benefits of using CBD oil, though keep in mind many of them are still being studied.

That said, with no chance of addiction or intoxication and positive signs for improving numerous parts of your health, this supplement is definitely worth looking into.

Benefits of Using CBD Oil

1. Pain Relief

This is likely one of the most commonly recognized benefits that you hear other people reference– and with good reason. CBD oil is noted for its anti-inflammatory effects on numerous systems in the body. While this quality comes into play for a fair number of its benefits, one of the most obvious boons of anti-inflammation offers is towards pain relief.

To be fair, some of the studies on CBD-based pain relief involve treatments that include THC. However, there are arguably as many studies that focus exclusively on CBD alone.

Regardless, the various studies seem to all point in the same direction: this treatment can serve as a reasonably effective and non-habit forming analgesic. It accomplishes this by acting on the body’s natural endocannabinoid system which regulates neurological signals of inflammation.[1]

One of the more promising results of these studies involves its use for alleviating joint pain caused by rheumatoid arthritis.[2] On top of that, chronic pain sufferers also saw benefits through the regulation of pain signals along their nervous system.[3]

Another potential use for CBD products is with treating pain caused by malignant cancers. Though the study is limited, there are positive signs that cannabinoids can be effective in treating pain caused by cancer. However, this study also included the use of THC which may confound the results in terms of exclusive cannabidiol’s effectiveness.[4]

It is important to keep in mind that these studies focus primarily on rodents with far fewer human studies completed. Still, there is growing evidence that CBD oil can be used to treat a wide range of different pain issues.

2. Epilepsy

While pain relief may be one of the more well-known benefits of CBD treatments, its use with epilepsy might be the most important. A big part of this has little to do with the treatment’s efficacy and more to do with its effect on regulations.

Specifically, for states that still place heavier restrictions on CBD products, one of the most common exceptions come with its use in treating epilepsy. The regulating bodies are often tight-lipped as to why this particular treatment gets such an exception, but a good guess might point towards the numerous videos circulating online of epileptic seizures stopping dead in their tracks once CBD is administered.

In fact, many states that do not allow medical marijuana still allow CBD products to be used for the treatment of epilepsy, if nothing else. While this may seem like an odd exception, the medical evidence suggests there is a good reason for it.

To wit, the evidence for CBD‘s effectively treating epileptic seizures is so strong that the FDA recently approved a pharmaceutical drug for that purpose. The drug Epidiolex is a 98-percent pure oil-based extract that does not contain THC, so there is no risk of intoxication.

That said, getting to the point that the FDA approved a cannabidiol-based prescribed drug was no easy task. On the other hand, two extremely rigorous studies which included double-blind methodologies focusing on Dravet Syndrome concluded that CBD oil helped alleviate severe convulsive seizures in children.[5]

Another study, which included 3 clinical trials, expanded the evidence further to include seizures caused by Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. In this case, not only did the severity of seizures decrease but so did the incidence of them too– meaning the children suffered fewer seizures altogether.[6]

3. Anti-Addiction

Addiction is an often stigmatized but extremely common disease with 19.7 million Americans suffering from drug addiction at some point in their life alone.[7] While efforts to get addiction to be treated as a disease by judicial institutions still proves difficult, most medical professionals are not sitting on the fence.

Keep in mind that the evidence supporting the use of CBD for the treatment of addiction is not quite as strong as for other issues. However, with addiction affecting so many people, it is definitely worth looking into. If nothing else, it likely offers a relatively safe option to include with other treatments for addiction.

One of the more surprising examples of this comes from a study on cannabidiol’s effectiveness with smoking cessation. Smoking cigarettes is widely considered to be one of the more addictive and debilitating habits to long term health. While the study does not point to CBD preventing the desire for nicotine altogether, it did show a decrease in the desire to smoke by 40-percent.[8]

As encouraging as that may be, the potential of CBD to aid with other addictions provides even stronger evidence. Specifically, CBD products may very well offer another valuable tool in the fight against the country’s opioid crisis.

In this case, CBD can actually offer a one-two punch, providing benefits both during primary as well as afterward. In two different studies, the inclusion of CBD with other treatments saw a reduction in opioid cravings and other withdrawal symptoms.

4. Anxiety and Depression

It is an old trope that marijuana relaxes people and makes them less stressed, but it turns out that these effects are not necessarily caused by THC’s intoxicating effect. In fact, there is a growing mountain of evidence that suggests CBD might be one of the main contributing factors to why marijuana has such a calming effect on people.

It is worth noting that the intoxicating substance of THC may actually increase the effects of anxiety. With this being the case, it only makes the argument for CBD‘s stress-reducing properties stronger.

Still, the evidence is where you should look for confirmation, and there are ample studies to choose from. On top of that, depression and anxiety are some of the most pervasive disorders across the globe.[9]

For anxiety, the evidence seems to actually affect the way a person’s brain functions by altering the flow of blood to areas of the brain associated with the feeling. The study noted this effect even in those who suffer from a social anxiety disorder, though the study scale was small and the patients received no other treatment.[10]

In a larger study conducted in Brazil, a sufficiently high does of 300 mg of CBD proved effective in reducing the anxiety produced by speaking in public. The same effect was observed in a completely different study, though with fewer participants this time around. On top of that, this study specifically focused on people suffering from SAD and noted other symptoms decrease aside from just anxiety.[11] This is especially relevant considering that speaking in public is one of the biggest fears in America.[12]

While the studies for CBD oil efficacy in treating depression are fewer, they are no less promising. It seems that one of the main benefits this supplement can provide for depression is by acting on serotonin and the various receptors associated with its regulation. That said, the antidepressant studies are limited primarily to animals and have not yet progressed to the numerous human tests as anxiety.

5. Neurological Protection

One of the potentially best benefits that CBD products may offer is aid to those struggling with a surprising variety of neurological disorders. Unlike psychiatric disorders, these issues are primarily caused by nerve dysfunction, though they can present with psychological symptoms.

For our purposes, one of the biggest aids that CBD can offer is assistance with treating multiple sclerosis, or MS. This is a disease noted by the breakdown of the myelin sheath protecting nerve fibers and interrupts the signals sent from the brain to the rest of the body.[13]

Numerous studies show that CBD can help reduce spasticity and even improve general mobility in people suffering from MS. In fact, the studies are so conclusive that the FDA approved the spray Sativex for treatment, though it also contains THC.

Another pernicious disease that afflicts millions of Americans with a wide variety of symptoms, the most distressing often being dementia. It is important to note that CBD does not show the ability to halt or stop the development of a patient already suffering from Alzheimer’s.

That said, CBD does show promise for helping delay early-stage symptoms and may even serve as a solid option to prevent its onset. In one study, CBD oil helped prevent the development of social recognition deficit symptoms in mice. Beyond this particular effect, CBD also offers more generalized relief for different causes of symptom episodes.

Specifically, Alzheimer’s and many other forms of dementia are caused or exacerbated by inflammation in the brain as well as blood flow restrictions. In both instances, CBD demonstrates an ability to both reduce the general cerebral inflammation as well as reduce vascular constriction.[14]

In another study, CBD demonstrated antipsychotic properties for both animals and humans. That said, the tests are small in scale and require larger studies to confirm the results. But if true, this could present relief to people who would otherwise be limited to incredibly powerful drugs that often carry severe and debilitating side effects.

6. Dietary Disorders

To be clear, no marijuana-based compound or treatment should be substituted in favor of a healthy diet and lifestyle. On the other hand, there is a strong correlation between the use of cannabis and lower levels of obesity.

Because of this link, scientists have been looking for a way to use CBD to help treat diabetes, a disease commonly associated with obesity, and found positive results. The study involved non-obese diabetic mice and saw a decrease in diabetic incidences.

On top of that, various other studies show CBD able to help fight the battle of the bulge and bring down obesity. In one study, the use of CBD oil helped reduce the appetite of mice both for a given serving size and how quickly they became hungry after. A second study showed how CBD products could reduce the amount of “white fat” by turning it into “brown fat” which is healthier.[15]

7. Heart Health

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in America for both men and women, though the incidence in men was higher. It is responsible for 1 in 4 deaths with minor variations depending on race.[16]

Considering it is such a major cause of death, it is especially welcoming news that CBD shows promise for increasing heart health. That said, it is important to recognize that CBD seems to affect the heart in a somewhat indirect way compared to some of the other benefits it provides. On top of that, the studies are fewer and with smaller samples, so this is definitely not as certain as other benefits.

For instance, one study showed that CBD oil helped lower the blood pressure in men both with their resting heart rate as well as during stress testing. What is more amazing about these results is that they were observed after just a single dose. However, CBD does not seem to act on the heart directly as much as it offers general stress relief which ultimately helps keep the heart healthy.

8. Acne

Compared to most of the other issues on this list, acne may seem like small potatoes. But for the millions of adolescents and adults suffering from the condition, anything that will not scour your face or include potentially horrific side effects will be a welcome addition.

Acne can result due to a few different causes, and CBD is not effective in treating them all. That said, this supplement has been shown to aid in the treatment of acne for more than one cause.

Arguably the most well-known cause of acne comes from “oily” skin, but this is actually a result of too much production of sebum. In one study, CBD was shown to reduce the production of sebum by acting on the development of the enzyme sebocyte. It is worth noting that this study did not actually involve humans and instead focused on cultures of human skin cells.

On the other end of the spectrum, acne can also occur as a result of skin actually being too dry as opposed to too oily. Once again CBD demonstrated the ability to aid in the reduction of acne caused by dry skin. However, in this instance, the main benefit derived came from CBD’s anti-inflammatory effects. Once again, the study conducted experiments on human skin cultures and not actual people.

Side Effects

It is worth noting that even though CBD is not intoxicating or habit-forming, that does not mean it is without risk altogether. The good news is that this substance does not generally carry with it serious side effects, but you might want to look out for a few specific risks.

Arguably the biggest concern comes from the interaction of CBD products with other medications. While CBD oil does not generally cause toxic reactions due to combination, it does have a tendency to interfere with cytochromes P450. These enzymes are important in the metabolization of drugs, and CBD’s interference can make prescription medications less effective.

In order to make sure that you do not suffer complications, make sure you speak with your doctor before adding any kind of CBD products to your daily regime.

The most common side effects include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Diarrhea
  • Weight change
  • Appetite change

It is worth keeping in mind that while CBD may present with side effects, they are generally mild and tolerable. On top of that, if CBD is used to replace or in conjunction with other medications, the side effects are generally less severe than those of the prescribed medications.

One potentially serious issue associated with CBD Oil is an increase in liver toxicity. To be fair, this side effect has only been recorded in rodent studies and often involves extremely high doses. Furthermore, these high doses are likely designed to test what the safe levels of CBD oil actually are rather than be used as prognostic recommendations.

One thing to be careful of where you get your oil as a number of disreputable online sellers keep popping up. While this definitely carries the risk of fraudulent potency claims, an even bigger concern is the purity of the supplement. In a recent study of 84 different CBD supplements, with almost 70-percent of the products mislabeled and ⅕ containing THC.

Conclusion

There is still a lot of work that needs to be done before most of these benefits can be verified to a scientific degree, but the early results are promising. Keep in mind that the US government did not allow serious research into the health benefits of CBD of any type until fairly recently.

As states continue to relax their restrictions and scientists conduct more studies, expect these results to be verified to varying degrees of efficacy. In fact, there are a few potential benefits that we left off of this list because the claims are a bit sensational for the actual evidence. Still, keep an eye out on the effectiveness of CBD in treating the symptoms or development of cancer in the future.

Regardless of aid coming down the pipeline, there is already a growing body of evidence to suggest that you can get legitimate assistance with a whole host of issues by using Safer CBD products. While you need to talk with your doctor before adding any supplement to your daily routine, these 8 benefits of using CBD oil are definitely worth looking into.

References

1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19675519

2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16282192

3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17157290

4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5922297/

5. https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02224703

6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5767492/

7. https://www.samhsa.gov/data/report/2017-nsduh-annual-national-report

8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23685330

9. https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/254610/WHO-MSD-MER-2017.2-eng.pdf;jsessionid=02A5FCEA66FE2D8940F338B9CC0396D4?sequence=1

10. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0269881110379283

11. https://www.nature.com/articles/npp20116?foxtrotcallback=true

12. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2014/10/30/clowns-are-twice-as-scary-to-democrats-as-they-are-to-republicans/

13. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/multiple-sclerosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20350269

14. https://www.dementiacarecentral.com/aboutdementia/treating/cbd/

15. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11010-016-2702-5

16. https://www.cdc.gov/heartdisease/facts.htm.

17. https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/can.2016.0034