In a recent survey done by Quartz, some 86% of survey takers had heard of CBD. No doubt, if you’re reading this, you’ve probably heard of it too. CBD and hemp products can be found at almost every place we shop, from supermarkets to gas stations to our local farmers’ markets. But, if you’re anything like us, you might wonder what the heck does CBD actually do? And why is everyone talking so much about it?
We’re here to help you learn what we know from our combined experience of almost a decade in the industry. Here we’ll answer questions about what CBD actually stands for, where it comes from, how it differs from marijuana, how it works, what it’s used for, and how to use it.
What does CBD stand for?
Starting from the very basics, CBD stands for cannabidiol (pronounced ka-nah-bid-eye-ol). It is a compound found within the hemp plant. That’s why you might hear it called hemp oil, hemp-derived CBD, CBD hemp oil, etc. While many people refer to it by different names, they all refer to the same compound: cannabidiol.
Where does CBD come from?
CBD comes from the cannabis sativa plant, also known as hemp. CBD oil can be found naturally in the trichomes of the cannabis sativa plant, which is a fancy way of saying that it’s found in tiny crystalline droplets of resin on the buds and leaves of the plant. It’s kind of like dew on a leaf, except this dew contains powerful ingredients that help to regulate your body and heal it naturally.
What’s the difference between CBD and THC/Marijuana?
CBD and THC share many similarities: they both have similar molecular compounds and come from the same species of plants. However, because of the chemical structure of these two molecular compounds, they have different effects within the body.
THC: Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, is the psychoactive component of marijuana. It’s what produces the euphoric “high” that many people associate with marijuana and cannabis products.
THC and the other cannabinoid compounds within are believed to have medical benefits such as reducing stress, inflammation, pain, and even seizures. The properties within marijuana that create those benefits are called cannabinoids.
CBD: CBD is one of the main cannabinoids found within the hemp plant. Similar to THC, CBD is believed to be able to help reduce stress, pain, inflammation, and even help you to sleep better.
But the best part about CBD is that you get the same benefits as marijuana, without the high. It’s safer to use, with typically no side effects.
You can use it anytime, anywhere, without fear of what it might do to your mind or your body. It gives you the peace of mind knowing that your body is being taken care of naturally, without becoming addicted or dependent on the high that comes with THC.
How does CBD actually work?
Now that we’ve discussed what CBD is and where it comes from, it’s extremely helpful to know how it actually works. If you have heard of CBD before, you’ve probably heard that it can help with all kinds of things from pain and inflammation to anxiety and insomnia. How can one oil really help with so much?
The Endocannabinoid System
It all comes down to a system within our bodies called the endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system is a complex network of cells and neurotransmitters that work together to help regulate our bodies. Our bodies are constantly at work producing cells, pumping blood, distributing oxygen, digesting food, fighting off disease and doing a myriad of other complex processes.
The endocannabinoid system, or ECS, is the group of receptors that helps to regulate those processes and keep them in check. These receptors respond directly to cannabinoids. We naturally produce these cannabinoids so that our bodies remain in a state of homeostasis, or balance. Many people are cannabinoid deficient, leaving their bodies out of balance.
The biggest role of the ECS is to aid the immune and nervous systems. It helps to keep our immune systems healthy and our neurotransmitters firing properly. However, as more research comes out about the ECS, we learn more about the power it actually has.
In a study in the Journal of Young Investigators, they say,
|“The ECS may not only provide answers for diseases with no known cures, but it could change the way we approach medicine. This system would allow us to change our focus from invasive pharmacological interventions (i.e. SSRIs for depression, benzodiazepines for anxiety, chemotherapies for cancer) to uncovering the mystery of why the body is failing to maintain homeostasis.”|
That’s our goal. We want those who take our CBD to find a new way to approach their health; a way that works with your body naturally, and boosts not only the problems you’re facing, but your overall health as well.
CBD and the Endocannabinoid System:
The way that CBD works is it helps to build up your endocannabinoid system. Many of us are cannabinoid deficient, which causes our ECS to not function like it should. Issues with the ECS can manifest in a variety of ways, including through pain, decreased immune response, inflammation, sleeplessness, and anxiety.
Similar to how many of us take vitamin C or other multivitamins to help boost our immune systems, taking CBD is like a vitamin for your endocannabinoid system. CBD provides the cannabinoids and terpenes necessary to add an extra boost to your ECS, getting it back to regulating the body like it should.
What is CBD used for?
Because your endocannabinoid system regulates most major systems in your body, you can take CBD for a variety of struggles. Some of the most common uses include: pain, stress, sleeplessness, and weight loss.
Pain: CBD is believed to have pain-relieving benefits. A study from the Journal of Experimental Medicine suggests that cannabinoids can be effective in reducing inflammatory and neuropathic pain, with very low side effects and analgesic tolerance (meaning that you don’t build up a tolerance to it, so you don’t have to keep taking more of it to feel the same effect.)
Stress: Cannabidiol is also considered to have calming abilities, which can help to lower daily stress. While research is still being conducted on its effects, studies have suggested that CBD can help to reduce the physiological symptoms of stress, like increased heart rate and shortness of breath. Newer research is being done to test its abilities to help with the psychological components of stress as well.
Sleep: Similar to its effects on stress, CBD can help to calm the body, allowing you to fall asleep more easily without the grogginess in the morning. Because there is no analgesic tolerance, like there is with some medications, it can be a natural way to help your body sleep without unintended addiction to medication.
Weight Loss: Recent studies suggest that CBD oil can also help suppress appetite and the desire to overeat. It also has been seen to have metabolism-boosting effects, giving it the benefit of not only decreasing a desire to overeat but also boost your metabolism as well.
It should be said that CBD is by no means a “cure-all” for every major problem people experience. No drug or supplement is. However, recent research has suggested that cannabidiol has incredible potential to help alleviate some of the major symptoms that keep people from living the life they truly want to live.
For more information: We hope that you have been able to catch some of the same vision for CBD as we have. It has the potential to help many people to live a more full and abundant life, which is ultimately our goal for our customers.
If you have any further questions about CBD, our products, or our business, please contact us or check out our other blogs.