CBD is one of the most widely researched cannabinoids because of how it affects the body without causing serious side effects or intoxication. More CBD research is needed, but recent studies and research indicate amazing preliminary results and potential.  

CBD for Pain

Chronic pain is basically ongoing long-term pain.  While chronic pain cannot be cured, there are many treatments that can help manage and reduce pain symptoms.  People have used the natural power of CBD to combat pain for thousands of years.  CBD works with the body’s CB2 receptors to activate additional signaling pathways and produce results for those in need of pain management.  There are several studies that support CBD as a potential solution for pain patients.

CBD for Inflammation

Inflammation is your body’s way of protecting itself from infection, injury or illness.  It is part of the body’s immune response.  Chronic inflammation can lead to several diseases and conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis and some cancers. 

Thankfully, one of CBD’s biggest qualities is its ability to combat inflammation. That probably doesn’t come as a surprise for those who are already taking CBD oil.  The plant compound’s pain-relieving qualities are just that strong.

Yet even this quality is adaptable. In other words, there’s some evidence that CBD reduces inflammation only in the areas where it’s most needed — the areas that are already inflamed. An area impacted by chronic inflammation will probably have increased CB2 activity, and it’s these CB2 receptors that draw CBD molecules into themselves like internal magnets. CBD doesn’t simply lower inflammation…instead, it homeostatically regulates it. After all, a little bit of inflammation isn’t a bad thing.

One way CBD does this is by limiting the re-uptake of adenosine.  The adenosine receptors, specifically the A2A receptor, play a significant role in reducing inflammation throughout the body.   Many studies have examined and confirmed that CBD has powerful anti-inflammatory abilities.

CBD for Anxiety

Experiencing anxiety is a normal and often healthy part of life.  However, people with Anxiety disorders frequently have intense, excessive and persistent worry and fear about everyday situations. Examples of anxiety disorders include generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder (social phobia), specific phobias and separation anxiety disorder.  

Anxiety is one of the most researched and studied conditions that CBD has shown the potential to provide relief for.  Many studies demonstrate CBD’s ability to help with anxiety by calming overactive neurotransmitters in the brain.  Perhaps best of all, many people with anxiety don’t need to take much CBD to experience relief.

Cannabidiol also helps serotonin stay present at its own receptor sites for longer periods of time.   In some cases, CBD’s even been shown to help CB1 and CB2 join forces with serotonin receptors, in the process lifting mood and strengthening the nervous system. Serotonin is a chemical in the human body responsible for wellbeing and happiness, often referred to as the “happy chemical”.   

CBD for Public Speaking

Fear of public speaking is a common form of anxiety sometimes called Glossophobia, or speech anxiety.  Researchers became interested in using CBD for anxiety when they discovered it was reducing THC-induced unease and paranoia.  An interesting study confirmed that CBD can indeed be effective in reducing the anxiety associated with public speaking.

CBD for Panic Attacks

Panic disorder (PD) is a disabling psychiatric condition that impacts about 5% of the worldwide population.  Anxiety disorders like panic attacks usually involve repeated episodes of intense anxiety, fear or terror that reach a peak within minutes. A 2017 review discussed the effect CBD has on reducing panic attacks.  The studies assessed clearly show that CBD has the potential to reduce anxiety.

CBD for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

PTSD is characterized by poor adaptation to a traumatic experience and affects about 10% of people at some point in life.  A 2018 review highlighted the potential of CBD as a treatment for PTSD symptoms.  While impressive, these findings point to a much larger concept: CBD seems to make the brain more plastic. Researchers would say that it promotes neuroplasticity, which is really the same thing.

In other words, CBD may help the brain better renew and redevelop itself by pruning back ineffective dendrites and strengthening useful neural loops. Rodent studies imply that it only takes a few doses of CBD to initiate lasting favorable changes in brain chemistry. Amazing, right?

CBD for Stem Cells (Regenerative Medicine)

Stem cells are cells with the remarkable potential to develop into many different types of cells in the body.  They’re new, undifferentiated, and full of potential! Stem cells serve as a repair system for the body and offer great promise for new medical treatments. 

Stem cells and CBD are two of the most popular topics in healthcare today.  Research shows that CBD may promote the migration of mesenchymal stem cells, which could make it an extremely valuable tool in regenerative medicine therapies.

CBD for Depression

Depression (major depressive disorder or clinical depression) is a common and serious mood disorder.  It causes severe symptoms that affect how you think, feel and handle daily activities such as eating, sleeping and working.  There are several early signs that CBD has the potential to be an effective treatment for depression. 

A 2010 study looked closely at the effects of CBD on depression.  The results concluded that CBD induces antidepressant-like effects comparable to those of the pharmaceutical drug imipramine. And, unlike pharmaceuticals, CBD doesn’t inhibit serotonin reuptake harshly enough to trigger any side effects.

CBD for Sleep

Approximately 60 million people suffer from insomnia and another 22 million suffer from sleep apnea. Sleep problems are often related to stress or anxiety, which is exactly where CBD comes in.  Several important studies have been published showing that CBD may be an effective treatment option to help with sleep trouble. 

Indeed, deeper sleep is one of the first things many people notice when they take CBD for the first time. Take the compound during the day, and it doesn’t generally make one drowsy. But take a slightly higher dose in the evening, and that CBD will very often help its user sleep better at night. In other words: unlike conventional sleep aids, CBD promotes CBD selectively. What explains this?

The endocannabinoid system, of course! That’s because the ECS is photoentrained —  it naturally ebbs and flows with the sun. It promotes wakefulness during the day, and sleepiness at night, by playing an important role in sleep hormone production. Also interesting is the idea that those with a healthy ECS might be able to avoid things like late night munchies, which are tied to a mismatched circadian rhythm.

CBD as an Antioxidant:

Antioxidants are natural substances that protect against cell damage, especially damage from free radicals.  Antioxidants are found in many foods and also available as dietary supplements.  Some examples of antioxidants include Beta-carotene, Lutein, Lycopene, Selenium, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C. 

Several lab studies support CBD’s role as an antioxidant —  a more powerful one than Vitamin C and E, as this 1998 study showed.  CBD actually boosts our body’s levels of glutathione, an internal antioxidant that directly reduces oxidative stress. The US government has known about this benefit for a long time and even created Patent 1999/008769, which is for the neuroprotectant and antioxidant properties of CBD and other cannabinoids.

CBD works as an antioxidant in less direct ways, too, though these are no less important. It helps the body shift towards a fat-based metabolism, which is cleaner burning and better for longevity than carb-burning. Once metabolism has been optimized, less free radicals are produced…and fewer antioxidants are needed. To put it another way, CBD helps the body process energy more safely and efficiently.

CBD for Autism Spectrum Disorder:

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder that affects communication and behavior.  A 2018 preliminary study supports the idea of CBD-based treatment in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).  The study found that high concentrations of CBD helped decrease problematic behavior in 80% of the children who participated in the study.

CBD for Arthritis:

Arthritis involves chronic pain and stiffness within the body and makes moving around difficult.  Most kinds of arthritis cause pain and swelling in your joints, especially the shoulder, elbow, knee, and finger joints.  Arthritis is widespread across several demographics; some of its most common types include Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Juvenile arthritis, Infectious arthritis, and Gout.  Recent animal studies suggest that CBD can help combat arthritis and relieve the associated inflammatory pain.

CBD for Alzheimer’s Disease:

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia among older people.  Dementia is a brain disorder that seriously affects a person’s ability to perform daily activities.  AD symptoms begin slowly, usually after the age of 60, and get worse over time.  There is no treatment to stop the disease, but CBD may improve the health outcomes of those with AD by reducing inflammation, improving oxygen flow, and working as a neuroprotectant.  Recent studies provide “proof of principle” that CBD is a valid candidate for novel Alzheimer’s disease therapies.

CBD for Parkinson’s Disease:

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a type of movement disorder that affects an estimated 10 million people worldwide… and over 1 million Americans.  Parkinson’s occurs when nerve cells in the brain don’t produce enough of the brain chemical dopamine.  Symptoms often begin gradually and often begin on one side of the body before spreading to both sides.  There are no lab tests for PD so it can be difficult to diagnose.  Because of its neuroprotective effects, CBD has implications for the treatment of Parkinson’s diseases.

CBD for Blood Pressure:

Blood pressure is the force of the blood’s volume pushing against the walls of your arteries.  More than half of all American adults suffer from high blood pressure, which is the leading cause of heart conditions.  Based on research from recent studies, CBD may be an effective and natural treatment for high blood pressure.  A 2017 study found that CBD reduced the resting blood pressure of the subjects.  This same study found that the subjects exhibited less of a blood pressure increase than normal during stress testing.

CBD can be so effective at reducing high blood pressure that conservative dosing is needed. If one is taking high blood pressure (HBP) medications, they should ease into CBD slowly. In some cases, pharmaceutical dosing plans should be modified so that enough CBD can be taken. As always, talk to your Dr. about CBD — especially if you have any pre-existing conditions.   

CBD for Brain Damage:

Brain damage is an injury that causes the destruction or deterioration of brain cells.  According to the Brain Injury Association of America, approximately 2.6 million Americans suffer some type of brain injury each year, whether as a result of trauma, a stroke, or other illnesses.   A 2017 study showed that CBD reduces brain damage and improves functional recovery. It appears to actually foster the growth and potentiation of new nerve pathways. That was considered impossible only a few decades ago…but not with CBD.

CBD for Cancer:

Cancer begins within individual cells, cells which comprise the building blocks for one’s entire body.  There are more than 100 different types of cancer, so symptoms and treatments are highly dependent on the cancer type and how advanced it is.  Most cancer treatments include surgery, radiation and/or chemotherapy.  The majority of evidence available suggests that CBD may complement conventional cancer treatment.

Also, keep in mind that CBD’s ability to promote fat burning is at the heart of these anti-cancer qualities. Most cancerous cells demonstrate a metabolic pattern that’s ‘stuck’ in sugar burning. Shut off this fuel source via activation of the AMPK enzyme (courtesy of CBD, of course!) and cancer will, at least in theory, be unable to develop further.

CBD for Angiogenesis:

Angiogenesis is the formation of new blood vessels.  This process involves the migration, growth, and differentiation of endothelial cells, which line the inside wall of blood vessels.  Angiogenesis plays a critical role in the growth of cancer because solid tumors need a blood supply if they are to grow beyond a few millimeters in size. 

Scientists have developed drugs called angiogenesis inhibitors, which block the blood supply to tumors.  CBD has been demonstrated an ability to inhibit the growth of different types of tumors, as a 2012 study concluded.

CBD for Epilepsy:

Epilepsy is a brain disorder that causes people to have recurring seizures.  Epilepsy has many possible causes including illness, brain injury, and abnormal brain development.  Over 50 million people worldwide suffer from epilepsy, and approximately one-third of those affected are unresponsive to medical treatments.  There is no known cure for epilepsy — but CBD has proven very promising so far. In fact, it was CBD’s impact on a young girl with intractable epilepsy, Charlotte Figi, that first catapulted the then-overlooked plant compound into the spotlight.

CBD’s anti-epileptic qualities are among its most accepted within the medical community, too. A 2015 review looked over research that suggests CBD can be used to reduce seizures effectively in patients with treatment-resistant epilepsy. And in 2018, history was made: the FDA approved the US’s first CBD-drug, Epidiolex, specifically for treating seizures. 

CBD for Graft-Versus-Host-Disease (GVHD)

Acute Graft-versus-host-disease (GVHD) is a major life-threatening complication following allogeneic stem cell transplantation (alloSCT), affecting 35-70% of recipients despite standard prophylaxis regimens.  A 2013 study concluded that the combination of CBD with standard GVHD prophylaxis is a safe and promising strategy to reduce the incidence of GVHD.

CBD for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common gastrointestinal disorder commonly associated with abdominal cramping and changes in bowel movement patterns.  Approximately 11% of the world’s population suffers from some type of IBS.  In animal models, endocannabinoids acting on CB1 receptors inhibit gastric and small intestinal transit and colonic propulsion.  CBD seems to mimic these endocannabinoids by helping ‘seal up’ the gut barrier, which could then reduce inflammation by keeping glycoproteins and other irritants out of the bloodstream. Overall, many cannabinoids have the potential to help relieve symptoms of relieve symptoms of IBS.

CBD for Neuropathic Pain

Neuropathic Pain is pain caused by damage or disease affecting the somatosensory nervous system.  Neuropathic pain may be associated with abnormal sensations called dysesthesia or pain from normally non-painful stimuli.  Neuropathic pain does not start abruptly or resolve quickly.  It is a chronic pain condition which leads to persistent pain symptoms. 

A 2007 study investigated CBD’s therapeutic potential for inflammatory and neuropathic pain in animal models.  The results? CBD may ve enormously therapeutic for those stuck in chronically painful states. CBD may also support healthy myelination (protection) of the myelin sheaths which surround and insulate nerves.

CBD for Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic disease that affects the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves.  It is unpredictable and often debilitating.  Scientists do not know exactly what causes MS, but they believe it is an autoimmune disorder that affects the central nervous system. In adults with multiple scleroses, short term use of oral cannabinoids improve patient-reported spasticity symptoms.

CBD for Addiction

One of the most overlooked benefits of CBD is its ability to combat drug and alcohol addiction.  In a recent case study, researchers ran a series of tests to determine the anti-relapse potential of CBD.  The results concluded that CBD not only prevented the development of previously displayed “addict-like” characteristics, it also deterred the subjects from relapsing.

These results reveal CBD as a promising method to help with addiction. By promoting neuroplasticity, CBD may give addicts the biochemical boost they need to break free of negative patterns once and for all — on a molecular level.   

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