What is CBD and How Does it Work?

Posted by Poppy Jones Robillard on Jul 27th 2021

What is CBD and How Does it Work?

CBD and Mental Health

With an increase in anxiety related mental health issues as well as an ongoing opioid crisis people are turning to more natural and homeopathic ways to treat their symptoms. CBD oil has become known for its many health advantages without causing the side effects that other medications can cause.

What is CBD oil?

Cannabidiol (CBD) oil is derived from the hemp plant and is a natural plant-based oil that contains plant chemicals called cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are molecules that the body makes naturally and are found in the cannabinoid system. The cannabinoid system helps regulate the body’s homeostasis and is key in maintaining balance, connecting all of the body’s organs and systems. Cannabinoids are released when we are feeling happy or doing something that benefits our body, like getting a good night’s sleep or exercising. Cannabinoids bind to our cannabinoid receptors to help stimulate good feelings. Anandamide is one of the main Phyto cannabinoids molecules derived from hemp plants and the Sanskrit translation is “bliss molecule.” The cannabinoid system is key in maintaining our mood as well as many other regulatory functions. Research suggests that the cannabinoids found in CBD can stop the break down of anandamide, therefore maintaining the body’s sense of bliss and balance. CBD has been found to help the endocannabinoid system in many diseased states such as chronic inflammation and regulation of the immune system in the gut, as well as anxiety and migraine management.

Will CDB oil make me high, like marijuana?

Simply put, no, because cannabidiol (CBD) comes from hemp. Hemp is a cannabis plant and a close relative to marijuana. However, it is the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in marijuana that has psychoactive effects that make you a high. There are over 80 Phyto cannabinoid molecules found in the marijuana plant alone, and THC is just one of them. Many of the Phyto cannabinoids found in hemp and marijuana are found in other plants and foods such as carrots, cloves and black pepper. CBD oil has low levels of THC to the point that the THC chemical is practically non-detectible. In fact, several studies have shown that CBD itself can counter some of the negative effects of THC – including paranoia and weight gain. Cannabidiol and hemp oils have become increasingly popular because of their medical benefits that are achieved without the “high” experienced with marijuana due to marijuana’s higher THC levels. Scientists have found that the THC molecule is a CB1 receptor antagonist, which accounts for its intoxicating effects. The CBD molecule on the other hand has more complex actions, from inhibition of endocannabinoid reuptake to increasing the reception of serotonin receptors. CBD’s lower agonism on the CB receptors in the endocannabinoid system is likely the reason for its negative psychoactivity compared to THC.

Is CBD oil legal?

CBD and hemp are legal in all 50 states. Since CBD has none of the psychoactive effects that marijuana does because it contains little to no THC, there are none of the legal concerns about CBD as there is with marijuana.

Is CBD effective for mental health challenges?

The World Health Organization’s expert committee on drug dependence has suggested that there is a lengthy list of mental health and health conditions that CBD could treat. Research studies on CBD have found that the molecule supports healthy brain function especially in the area of the brain that relates to memory and emotion. Studies have also found that CBD is similar to valium in calming anxiety and can be comparable to antipsychotic medications in its effectiveness without suffering from any of the common side effects that patients usually report while on antipsychotic medications.

Is CBD safe?

The fact that the FDA approved use of CBD oil for children suffering from epilepsy suggests that CBD is extremely safe. CBD can be used for pain management without the potential for overdose or dependency like you find in regular pain-killing drugs. Some evidence has shown that the use of CBD oil and other cannabis products have attributed to the decrease of opioid use and abuse. Research on the safety of the CBD has been collected since the 1960s and the director of the National Institute of Drug Abuse has said that cannabidiol is safe.