CBD or cannabidiol is a chemical compound extracted from cannabis plant. It is one of nearly 113 cannabinoids found in cannabis. It may sometimes be thought that as CBD comes from cannabis, it may have mind-altering effects. However, this is not true. CBD is not psychoactive and does not cause any form of intoxication. Another compound known as THC, obtained from cannabis, gives a feeling of high or euphoria.
The use of medical CBD continues to be a charged issue. CBD oil has been used for quite some time in the medicine world. Owing to the dangers associated with use of marijuana, it was banned in 1930s. It has been only a few decades that these have started to be recognized as having therapeutic value. CBD has been proven to treat many health conditions. CBD has very low toxic potential and generally, negligible side effects.
If some researches are to be believed, CBD has neuroprotective, analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. It is also used in treating conditions like depression, addiction and anxiety. As already mentioned, CBD is a non-psychoactive compound, and also considered for the treatment of neuroinflammation, vomiting, nausea and even schizophrenia.
CBD can influence receptors in the brain and the body. Brain receptors are also sensitive to chemical messengers from outside the body, such as THC or CBD. So, when people take it in edible form or inhales its vapors, they are letting these compounds to enter their body through the blood stream and get into the brain. Upon entering the brain, these compounds change the brain activity by interacting with certain receptors.
Research has established that CBD is different from other cannabinoids. All cannabinoids attach to the binding protein site and modulate receptor’s behavior. CB1 receptors are distributed over the brain and are particularly present in areas related to movement, coordination and sensation of pain. CB2 receptors are present in the immune system and these reduce inflammation and pain. Scientists have revealed that CBD has very small effect on CB1 and CB2 receptors. That is why it does not have mind-altering effects.
The following benefits of CBD makes it good for medicinal use:
- Anti-Inflammatory Effects: CBD naturally relieves pain and inflammation. A 2012 study in the Journal of Experimental Medicine revealed that CBD suppressed neuropathic and inflammatory pain in rodents. According to researchers, CBD and other non-psychoactive compounds may be used as a class of drug for the treatment of chronic pain.
- Anti-Psychotic Effects: Research has shown that CBD has anti-psychotic effects. The pharmacological profile of CBD is similar to that of atypical anti-psychotic drugs as observed during neurochemical and behavioral studies on animals. Research claims that it help improve the symptoms of schizophrenia and psychosis.
- Anxiolytic Effects: CBD has been shown to reduce anxiety in patients with social anxiety disorder. Research suggests that it is effective in obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder and PTSD.
- Anti-Proliferative, Pro-Apoptotic Effects: These properties restricts migration of cancer cells, adhesion and invasion. A 2006 study found that CBD prevents the growth of breast tumor. The compound brings about cell death of estrogen receptor negative and estrogen receptor positive breast cancer cells. It can also be used in preventing lung and colon cancer. Further studies have shown its effectiveness in leukemia.
- Antiemetic Effects: Cannabis has been long used in the treatment of nausea and vomiting. Research has found that among all the ingredients of marijuana, the high-inducing THC and non-intoxicating CBD help fight nausea and vomiting. A 2012 study, published in the British Journal of Pharmacology, indicated that CBD has anti-nausea and antiemetic effects when the experiment was performed on rats.
- Treatment of Seizures and Other Disorders Related to Nervous System: A study had been conducted to examine the effects of CBD on child’s seizures in epilepsy. Many Children reported reduction in the frequency of the seizure when CBD was administered. Other positive effects of CBD were increase in alertness, enhanced mood and improvement in sleep.
- Reduces Incidence of Diabetes: A study conducted in 2006 on non-obese diabetic mice revealed substantial decrease in the incidence of diabetes among them. The incidence of diabetes was found to be 86% in untreated mice, which was just 30% in CBD-treated mice.
- Enhances Cardiovascular Health: Studies have revealed that CBD provides protection against vascular damage due to high glucose levels and inflammation.