Better known as CBD, it is one of more than 100 chemical compounds known as cannabinoids found in the cannabis or marijuana plant, Cannabis sativa .
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the main psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis, causing the “high” sensation often associated with marijuana. However, unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive.
This quality makes CBD an attractive option for those seeking relief from pain and other symptoms without the mind-altering effects of marijuana or certain pharmaceutical medications.
CBD oil is made by extracting CBD from the cannabis plant and then diluting it with a carrier oil such as coconut oil or hemp seeds. This oil is gaining popularity in the world of health and wellness, and there are already some scientific studies confirming that it can alleviate the symptoms of ailments such as chronic pain and anxiety.
Here are seven health benefits of CBD oil that are backed by scientific evidence.
1. It can relieve pain
Marijuana has been used to treat pain since 2900 BC. C.
Recently, scientists have discovered that certain components of marijuana, including CBD, are responsible for its pain-relieving effects.
The human body contains a specialized system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is involved in the regulation of a variety of functions including sleep, appetite, pain, and the response of the immune system.
The body produces endocannabinoids, which are neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors in your nervous system.
Studies have shown that CBD can help reduce chronic pain by affecting endocannabinoid receptor activity, reducing inflammation, and interacting with neurotransmitters.
For example, one study in rats found that CBD injections reduced pain response to a surgical incision, while another study in rats found that oral CBD treatment significantly reduced sciatic nerve pain and inflammation.
Several human studies have found that a combination of CBD and THC is effective in treating pain related to multiple sclerosis and arthritis .
2. Could reduce anxiety and depression
Anxiety and depression are common mental health disorders that can have devastating effects on health and well-being.
According to the World Health Organization, depression is the largest contributor to disability worldwide, while anxiety disorders rank sixth.
Anxiety and depression are generally treated with pharmaceutical medications, which can cause a number of side effects including drowsiness, agitation, insomnia, sexual dysfunction, and headaches.
Also, medications like benzodiazepines can be addictive and can lead to substance abuse.
The oil CBD has shown promise as a treatment for both depression and anxiety , which leads many people living with these disorders interested in this natural approach.
In a Brazilian study, 57 men were given oral CBD or a placebo 90 minutes before undergoing a sham test in which they had to speak in public. The researchers found that a 300 mg dose of CBD was the most effective in significantly reducing anxiety during the test.
The placebo, a 150 mg dose of CBD, and a 600 mg dose of CBD had little to no effect on anxiety.
CBD oil has even been used to safely treat insomnia and anxiety in children with PTSD. CBD has also shown similar effects to antidepressants in various animal studies.
These qualities are related to CBD’s ability to act on the brain’s receptors for serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and social behavior.
3. May alleviate cancer-related symptoms
CBD can help reduce cancer-related symptoms and cancer treatment-related side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and pain.
One study looked at the effects of CBD and THC in 177 people with cancer-related pain who did not experience relief from pain medications.
Those who were treated with an extract containing both compounds experienced a significant reduction in pain compared to those who received only THC extract.
CBD can also help reduce chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting , which are among the most common chemotherapy-related side effects for people with cancer.
Although there are medications that help control these distressing symptoms, they are sometimes ineffective, leading some people to seek alternatives.
A study of 16 people who underwent chemotherapy found that a single combination of CBD and THC administered by aerosol reduced chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting better than standard treatment alone.
4. It can reduce acne
Acne is a common skin condition that affects more than 9% of the population. It is believed to be caused by a number of factors, including genetics, bacteria, underlying inflammation, and the overproduction of sebum, an oily secretion produced by the sebaceous glands in the skin.
According to recent scientific studies, CBD oil can help treat acne due to its anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to reduce sebum production.
An in vitro study found that CBD oil prevented sebaceous gland cells from secreting excessive sebum, exerted anti-inflammatory actions, and prevented the activation of “pro-acne” agents such as inflammatory cytokines.
Another study had similar findings, concluding that CBD may be an efficient and safe way to treat acne, thanks in part to its remarkable anti-inflammatory qualities.
Although these results are promising, human studies are still needed to explore the effects of CBD on acne.
5. Could have neuroprotective properties
Researchers believe that CBD’s ability to act on the endocannabinoid system and other brain signaling systems may provide benefits for people with neurological disorders.
In fact, one of the most studied uses for CBD is in the treatment of neurological disorders such as epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. Although research in this area is still relatively new, several studies have shown promising results.
Sativex, an oral spray consisting of CBD and THC, has been shown to be a safe and effective way to reduce muscle spasticity in people with multiple sclerosis.
One study found that Sativex reduced spasms in 75% of the 276 people with multiple sclerosis who experienced drug-resistant muscle spasticity.
In another study , 214 people with severe epilepsy were given 0.9–2.3 grams of CBD oil per pound (2–5 g / kg) of body weight. Their seizures were reduced by a median of 36.5%.
One more study found that CBD oil significantly reduced seizure activity in children with Dravet syndrome, a complex childhood epilepsy disorder, compared to a placebo.
However, it is important to note that some people in both studies experienced adverse reactions associated with CBD treatment, such as seizures, fever, and fatigue.
CBD has also been investigated for its potential effectiveness in treating various other neurological diseases.
6. Could benefit heart health
Recent research has linked CBD with several benefits for the heart and circulatory system, including the ability to lower high blood pressure. High blood pressure is linked to an increased risk of a number of health conditions, such as stroke, heart attack, and metabolic syndrome.
The studies indicate that CBD can help manage high blood pressure . A recent study treated nine healthy men with a 600 mg dose of CBD oil and found that it lowered resting blood pressure, compared to a placebo.
The same study also gave men stress tests that normally increase blood pressure. Interestingly, the single dose of CBD led the men to experience a smaller-than-normal rise in blood pressure in response to these tests.
Researchers have suggested that the stress and anxiety reducing properties of CBD are responsible for its ability to help lower blood pressure.
7. Various other potential benefits
CBD has been studied for its role in treating a number of health problems other than those described above.
Although more study is still required, CBD is believed to provide the following health benefits:
- Antipsychotic Effects: Studies suggest that CBD may help people with schizophrenia and other mental disorders by reducing psychotic symptoms.
- Substance abuse treatment: CBD has been shown to modify drug addiction-related brain circuits. In rats, CBD has been shown to reduce morphine dependence and heroin-seeking behavior.
- Antitumor Effects: In laboratory and animal studies, CBD has been shown to have antitumor effects. In animals, it has been shown to prevent the spread of breast, prostate, brain, colon and lung cancer.
- Diabetes prevention: In diabetic mice, CBD treatment reduced the incidence of diabetes by 56% and significantly reduced inflammation
What are the side effects of using CBD oil?
Although CBD is generally well tolerated and considered safe, it can cause adverse reactions in some people.
Side effects seen in studies include:
- Changes in appetite and weight
CBD is also known to interact with various medications. Before you start using CBD oil, talk to your doctor to ensure your safety and avoid potentially harmful interactions.