The therapeutic properties of CBD

In this article, we will explore the therapeutic properties of CBD, observing the various scientific studies that have addressed this topic.

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Table of Contents

The Endocannabinoid System and its Interaction with CBD

Scientific research has focused on studying the interaction between cannabinoids - the active components of the hemp plant - and our body. Humans are equipped with a "network" comprised of millions of receptors capable of interacting with cannabinoids: substances that can be produced within the body (called endocannabinoids in this case) or that can come from outside (referred to as phytocannabinoids in this case).

This network of receptors is termed the "Endocannabinoid System."

Cannabidiol is a phytocannabinoid that indirectly acts on receptors of this system. CBD exerts its effects through numerous different mechanisms: it doesn't act on a specific pathology, but intervenes when our Endocannabinoid System is disturbed by a stimulus, as is the case with pain.

For this reason, Cannabidiol (CBD) is increasingly used for its therapeutic properties.

Cannabidiol does not have a specific action against any particular disease or body area. Instead, it acts as a "modulator" of our Endocannabinoid System. CBD and cannabinoids in general act indirectly on the receptors of this system.

Consequently, it can be said that CBD modulates pre-existing mechanisms and restores normalcy in a situation of imbalance or decompensation in the Endocannabinoid System. Therefore, Cannabidiol (CBD) can be beneficial and alleviate the symptoms of a disease or inflammation.

But what are the most common applications of Cannabidiol?

CBD and chronic pain

Cannabidiol and its analgesic properties:

How does CBD interact with the body, and how does it control pain?

Studies have shown that Cannabidiol is capable of influencing chemical processes characteristic of the endocannabinoid Anandamide, one of the neuromodulatory molecules associated with pain perception. Other research reports that CBD can activate receptors involved in the transmission and chronicling of pain. Cannabidiol has also proven promising in treating two specific types of chronic pain, namely neuropathic pain and inflammatory pain.

CBD and neuropathic ain

The mechanism of action of cannabinoids has been studied in relation to various diseases and conditions leading to a chronic neuropathic pain state, such as trigeminal neuralgia or chemotherapy cycles. Studies conducted so far have shown the efficacy of Cannabidiol in intervening with neuropathic pain. While other active ingredients of cannabis are already used in oncology for their efficacy in relieving nausea, Cannabidiol has proven particularly promising in peripheral neuropathic pain caused by chemotherapeutics.

CBD also reduces those consequences often associated with chronic pain, such as anxiety and depression. According to some studies, CBD reduces these comorbidities through its interaction with the receptors of the serotonergic system, helping the patient cope better with their condition.

CBD and inflammatory pain

Cannabidiol is also used to treat pain related to inflammation. Numerous scientific studies have investigated the efficacy of cannabidiol in many inflammatory diseases, such as osteoarthritis. It has been shown that taking CBD protects the joints from severe damage and reduces inflammation. CBD could be a good option for treating various ailments characterized by inflammatory pain. A study published in the European Journal of Pain demonstrated that applying CBD topically can help reduce pain and inflammation caused by arthritis.

Scientific research regarding the relationship between CBD and pain has made significant progress in recent years. The diverse health applications of the cannabis plant for both humans and animals are increasingly being studied. There's still a long journey ahead. However, today, cannabidiol can be considered a valuable ally in alleviating the suffering caused by a chronic pain condition. In fact, more and more doctors are suggesting its use alongside other therapies to accompany the daily life of those who have to live with pain.

CBD and anxiety

"A single dose of CBD can reduce anxiety during the SPST (simulation public speaking test) in patients with social anxiety disorders and enhance it."

Anxiety and stress are common in our societies. An anxiety condition can have various forms and causes, manifesting differently in every individual. In 2015, the journal Neurotherapeutics published an overview of studies conducted thus far to explore the potential effects of CBD in treating anxiety. The results are very promising. The review examined 49 preclinical, clinical, and epidemiological studies. It also encompassed research using neuro-imaging techniques (the technologies that allow for the examination of brain metabolism).

From the review, authored by Esther M. Blessing, Maria M. Steenkamp, Jorge Manzanares, and Charles R. Marmar from the New York School of Medicine, it was found that preclinical studies have demonstrated the efficacy of CBD in reducing anxiety behaviors caused by many disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and many others.

In 2018, a study by scientists from the University of Washington was published in the Journal of Affective Disorders, in which more than 1,400 subjects and volunteers examined the efficacy of cannabis products against anxiety and stress.

Participants provided their (anonymously collected) data, the quantity and type of cannabis consumed, and finally the effects observed. From the 12,000 responses the authors of the study received, it emerged that more than half (58 percent) felt a significant reduction in anxiety. In particular, cannabis with a high CBD and low THC content was cited as an effective remedy for treating anxiety and depression.

CBD an depression

Depression is one of the most widespread mental illnesses, affecting the daily lives of many individuals. In recent years, CBD has increasingly gained significance as a potential means to alleviate symptoms of depression. Scientific investigations suggest that CBD may have a positive effect on the brain's serotonergic system, which plays a central role in mood regulation. An imbalanced serotonin level is often associated with depression.

Moreover, there are indications that CBD may promote neurogenesis, or the growth of new neurons, in the brain, which in turn could contribute to alleviating depressive symptoms. While CBD shows promising results in treating depression, it should not be seen as a replacement for conventional therapies but can be considered as a supportive measure.

Before taking CBD, it is always advisable to consult with a doctor or therapist.

CBD and sleep disorders

CBD, found in hemp, has a proven ability to reduce anxiety. Scientific findings in this area have also sparked research interest in the potential use of cannabidiol to improve sleep quality and combat insomnia. In recent years, among other things, it has been found that CBD can help reduce REM sleep disorders in individuals with Parkinson's disease. These disorders often manifest in physical actions during sleep, exposing the affected individuals to numerous safety risks. Results like these have prompted researchers to further investigate the role cannabis can play during sleep.

CBD and sleep. Current Research

A review of all preliminary research results on cannabis and insomnia suggests that Cannabidiol (CBD) might have therapeutic potential for the treatment of insomnia. Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), on the other hand, may reduce sleep latency but potentially impair long-term sleep quality.

CBD has shown promise in treating sleep disorders and, when taken in low doses, such as drops, in excessive daytime sleepiness. Research on cannabis and sleep has yielded positive outcomes.

CBD, Anxiety, and Sleep

Patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) often report sleep disturbances like insomnia or various anomalies during REM sleep. Cannabidiol (CBD), a component of cannabis, reduces physiological non-REM sleep (NREM) and REM sleep.

Given that the progression of anxiety is generally caused by sustained stress over a certain period, researchers from Taiwan National University wanted to study the effects of cannabidiol in alleviating sleep disturbances caused by anxiety.

The research team subjected several mice to various standard procedures and administered CBD drops. The researchers immediately noticed a general reduction in anxiety (confirming the already numerous results in this direction). Furthermore, CBD blocked the state of anxiety that occurred during the REM phase of sleep, allowing the mice to relax and enjoy long, restful periods.

Cannabis proves to be a useful ally in improving the quality of our relaxation and well-being. As always, it's crucial to consume quality products that are certified and naturally produced.

CBD and epilepsy

"Cannabidiol proves effective in drug-resistant patients for some of the more severe forms of epilepsy, with a reduction in seizure frequency by almost half."

In the future, it could become a treatment alternative for tens of thousands of people in Italy," says Marilena Vecchi, a neuroepileptologist in the Department of Women's and Children's Health at the Padua Hospital, and head of the National Lice Reference Center for the diagnosis and treatment of childhood epilepsy.

CBD presents itself as a potential remedy in the category of antiepileptic drugs. As early as February 2016, a study conducted by a team of Israeli scientists showcased the potential of Cannabidiol. The investigation was carried out on 74 adolescents who suffered from a severe form of epilepsy for about three months.

The iconic case that brought the topic of Epilepsy - CBD to the forefront was that of Charlotte, a three-year-old girl with 600 seizures a day.

The effects of CBD on Charlotte were so immediate that the epileptic seizures were drastically reduced. This, of course, led to an extraordinary improvement in the quality of life for Charlotte and her family.

It is hoped that research and studies on the efficacy of CBD in treating this type of illness will consistently continue to help children with Dravet Syndrome.

Other therapeutic effects of CBD

CBD improves symptoms of Schizophrenia

Scientific research has indicated that CBD has antipsychotic effects and may have a similar profile of action as other antipsychotic drugs. However, the mechanism by which CBD exerts this effect is not fully researched yet.

CBD protects against neurodegenerative diseases

Various studies have demonstrated that CBD can inhibit the formation of the classic 'plaques' typical for Alzheimer's disease and decrease the death of brain cells.

CBD alleviates nausea

Cannabis has been used for centuries as an anti-nausea and anti-emetic agent. A rat study from 2012, published in the British Journal of Pharmacology, found that among CBD's benefits are anti-nausea and antiemetic effects.

CBD reduces the incidence of diabetes

Research in 2006 demonstrated that CBD treatment significantly reduced the incidence of diabetes in non-obese diabetic mice from an incidence of 86% in non-treated mice to an incidence of 30% in CBD-treated mice. Further confirmation is still being sought on this.

CBD promotes cardiovascular health

A study from 2013, published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, reported that CBD protects against vascular damage caused by high glucose levels, inflammation, or type 2 diabetes.

CBD in the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis

Several studies indicate that the CBD - THC combination is effective and well-tolerated in treating muscle contractions, pain, sleep disorders, and urinary incontinence in people with Multiple Sclerosis.

CBD for rheumatoid arthritis

Due to their anti-inflammatory properties, cannabinoids can alleviate joint pain and swelling, and diminish joint destruction and disease progression. It has been shown that taking CBD in just 5 weeks protects the joints from severe damage, reduces disease progression, improves mobility and sleep quality, as well as reducing inflammation.

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CBD-oil-30

CBD and cosmetics

In the cosmetics industry, CBD has gained popularity due to its myriad benefits for the skin. Owing to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, it can combat free radicals and prevent premature skin aging. CBD shows positive effects especially for skin issues like acne, as it regulates sebum production and alleviates inflammation.

Moreover, CBD offers deep hydration, making it a favored ingredient in skincare products. It is also used in anti-aging products to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. When selecting CBD cosmetic products, one should always pay attention to quality and purity. Before using new products, a consultation with a dermatologist is advisable.

FAQ on the topic "Therapeutic Properties of CBD"

Do you have questions about the effects of CBD on various ailments? In our FAQ section, you'll find answers to your questions. Learn more about the diverse applications of CBD.

The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is a cell-signaling system that contributes to maintaining the body's internal balance. It consists of:

Endocannabinoids: Natural cannabinoids in the body, e.g., Anandamide and 2-Arachidonoylglycerol.

Receptors: CB1 receptors (primarily in the brain) and CB2 receptors (in organs and immune cells).

Enzymes: These break down endocannabinoids, e.g., FAAH and MAGL.

In case of an imbalance, the body produces endocannabinoids that bind to receptors to restore balance. Phytocannabinoids like CBD can also interact with the ECS and produce various effects.

CBD has emerged as a potential remedy for alleviating anxiety. It interacts with the Endocannabinoid System and specifically influences the serotonin receptors in the brain, which play a role in mood regulation and overall well-being.

Studies have shown that CBD can modulate the activity of these receptors, leading to a reduction in anxiety and stress. For instance, research has found that CBD can aid in social anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorders, and generalized anxiety disorders.

However, it's essential to consult a doctor or therapist before using CBD to determine the suitable dosage and mode of application.

CBD and THC are both cannabinoids from the cannabis plant, but they have distinct properties:

  • Psychoactivity: THC causes a "high" sensation; CBD does not.
  • Medical use: THC is often used for pain and appetite, CBD for anxiety and inflammation.
  • Legal status: THC is often regulated or illegal, while CBD is legal in many areas.
  • Receptor binding: THC binds directly to CB1 receptors in the brain; CBD does not.

Both have therapeutic benefits, but their effects and applications are different.

Yes, CBD is increasingly being researched and used as a potential remedy for chronic pain relief. It interacts with the body's Endocannabinoid System, which plays a role in pain regulation.

Studies have shown that CBD can reduce inflammation and influence pain perception. Especially for neuropathic pain and inflammatory pain, such as in osteoarthritis, some patients have reported relief through CBD.

However, it's essential to consult a doctor before using CBD and determine the suitable dosage and mode of application individually.

Yes, as with many substances, taking CBD can also have side effects, although many people tolerate CBD well. Possible side effects include:

  • Fatigue or drowsiness
  • Diarrhea
  • Changes in appetite
  • Weight changes
  • Dry mouth
  • Low blood pressure
  • Mild headaches

It's also important to note that CBD can interact with some medications. Therefore, it's advisable to consult a doctor before taking CBD, especially if already on other medications. The right dosage and regular monitoring can help minimize the risk of side effects.

The optimal dosage of CBD can vary based on individual factors like body weight, metabolism, the specific health condition, and the quality of the CBD product.

General recommendations are:

Start low: Many experts suggest starting with a low dose, e.g., 5-10 mg per day.
Adjust: The dosage can be slowly increased every few days until the desired therapeutic effects are achieved.

Monitor: Pay attention to any potential side effects and adjust the dosage accordingly.

Consult: It's always advisable to consult a doctor or health expert before taking CBD, especially if on other medications.

It's important to emphasize that the optimal dose can differ for each individual, and there's no "one size fits all." It's best to be patient and monitor the body during the adjustment process.