Did you know that our bodies have cannabinoid receptors? They are on immune cells in our blood, on our nerves, our spinal cords, and almost every cell in our brain. We even have these receptors in our skin. If we have all these receptors that means our bodies must be created to receive cannabis. There is an entire system in our body, the endocannabinoid system(ECS), that plays a major role in our survival not just ours but fish, reptiles, birds, and mammals. If we have these receptors, then maybe we should use it.
What is CBD?
There are 60-plus cannabinoids unique to the plant genus Cannabis. The two most people are familiar with are THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol). THC is the compound that causes you to get high and CBD is the compound used most for medical purposes. Both marijuana and hemp contain CBD, it is the manipulation of the levels of CBD and THC in marijuana that develops the level of potency of a strain. CBD products do not get you high and are legal to purchase and use in all 50 states. THC, on the other hand, could get you in trouble.
FYI: The more THC in the plant, the stronger the strain. If you find that a strain is too strong and makes you paranoid then it contains little or no CBD and lots of THC. The CBD helps to level out the high and make you feel buzzed, not psychotic. In the 80s the THC levels were around 10% or lower now they are 30% or higher. That is why this new stuff really affects old heads.
What Does it Do?
According to Dr. Vincenzo Di Marzo, who literally wrote the textbook on Cannabinoids, the ECS system is involved in everything from regulating appetite to reducing stress. His work has found that:
- Endocannabinoids are key regulators of food intake, gastrointestinal function, energy storage in the adipose tissue and energy processing by the liver and the skeletal muscle.
- Endocannabinoids are deeply involved in pain processing at peripheral, spinal and supra‐spinal sites.
- Endocannabinoids regulate both male and female reproduction.
- Endocannabinoid can differentially affect cell fate in healthy and cancer cells by regulating differentiation, proliferation and apoptosis.
Di Marzo, Vincenzo(Jun 2011) Endocannabinoid System. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester.
Have I lost you yet? I hope not, stay with me for another technical paragraph and then we will get into the basics.
In July 2018, The Journal of the American Heart Association, published an article Cannabinoids, the Heart of the Matter that concluded that Endocannabinoids and cannabinoid‐related compounds may be a promising approach as therapeutic agents for cardiovascular diseases.
The ECS is implicated in a great number of physiological processes. At the cellular level, the ECS controls cell proliferation, differentiation, cell survival, and apoptosis in different tissues such as adipose tissue,34 epithelial cells, bone, blood, gonads, as well as the brain. Endocannabinoids are synthesized in the central nervous system and regulate pain perception, motor functions, control of tremor and spasticity, learning, memory, thermogenesis, regulation of weak/sleep cycles, axonal pathfinding, synaptic plasticity, emotional behavior, stress response, feeding and appetite, reproductive function, and sex behavior. Besides the brain, endocannabinoids can be synthesized and function in peripheral tissues eg, the heart, GI tract, blood cells, adipose tissue, muscle, liver and pancreas; where they influence inflammatory responses, platelet aggregation, blood pressure, heart rate, vasodilatation, and energy balance. Consequently, the endocannabinoid system is involved in many pathologies and can be correlated to neurodegenerative disorders, obesity, diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disorders, cancer, and inflammatory processes.
I know you’re asking what does this even mean. All this means that the research points to the fact that our bodies are made to use CBD and it has the potential to help with an untold number of things. So maybe we should be using it.
CBD has been used and worked to stop epileptic seizures, treat neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis, and Parkinson’s. It can relieve pain, fight cancer, reduce inflammation and treat mood disorders like anxiety and PTSD.
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How Do You Use it?
First off, before you even think about using any type of oil, supplement, pill, lotion, or cream as a medicine, always talk to your doctor. There could be interactions with your current medications. Make sure you also let your doctor know about any vitamins or over the counter medicine you may be taking too. I am not trying to give you any medical advice and the FDA has not approved this yet, I am just sharing information.
CBD comes in many forms oils, crystals, syrups, creams, waxes, edibles, tinctures, and lotions.
Creams and Lotions – can be used for pain relief by rubbing them on the affected areas.
Oils – oils can be used to vape or for sublingual dosing. Most people prefer to vape as they say they feel the benefits faster that way.
Edibles – these are premade items such as gummy bears or lollipops that contain CBD. You could also make your own edibles with the oil or tinctures. Check out this article in Epicurious for some great tips for cooking with CBD oil. I think I would like these sour gummy frogs. The problem would be eating just one.
I am not a scientist or a doctor, but I am a person with PTSD who suffers from panic attacks that lead to bouts of agoraphobia which leads to depression and more anxiety. Anyone with PTSD knows this terrible cycle. There are prescription medications that help with some symptoms in some people but often the side effects can be worse. My medications take the edge off but some days it just doesn’t work and I am always on the lookout for new things that might help. I had been looking into CBD oil as a treatment and decided I would create this post to share some of the things I found. I have not tried it yet but would love to hear from anyone who has.
Update, I started taking CBD and it has worked amazingly.
Have you tried CBD oil? Did it help?
Let me know in the comments.
This post features products by CBD Vape Juice a retailer of CBD products.
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