10 CBD Health Benefits That Can Improve Your Quality of Life
In the next three years, CBD sales are expected to reach a whopping $1 billion!
People all over the United States are loving CBD. But, at the same time, there are lots of people who are still on the fence or are unsure of how CBD-infused products can benefit them.
If you’re in the latter group, keep reading. We’re breaking down everything you need to know the various ways that CBD benefits your mental and physical health.
What is CBD?
Before we get into the various CBD benefits, let’s clarify what CBD actually is.
First things first, CBD stands for cannabidiol. It is one of many cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant.
CBD has been getting a lot of attention in the health and wellness world lately. This attention is thanks to revelations that, unlike some other cannabinoids, CBD does not have psychoactive properties. In other words, it will not get you high.
Up until a few years ago, the only cannabinoid people were talking about was THC, which stands for tetrahydrocannabinol. THC does have psychoactive properties, and it is responsible for “high” feeling people get when they consume cannabis.
CBD offers many of the same health benefits as THC. But, it’s a better alternative for people who want relief without any mind-altering effects.
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Top 10 CBD Benefits
There are almost too many CBD benefits to count. But, we’re going to try anyway.
Listed below are ten of the most thoroughly studied CBD benefits for physical and mental health.
1. Reduced Pain and Inflammation
One of the most well-researched CBD benefits is its ability to treat pain and inflammation.
Studies show that CBD helps suppress chronic inflammation and minimize nerve pain. It also does these things without causing the user to develop a tolerance.
This is great news for people who have previously had to use dangerous and habit-forming painkillers to treat their symptoms.
CBD is also highly effective in treating nerve pain, which affects the majority of people with multiple sclerosis, a serious autoimmune disease that damages the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.
2. Antipsychotic Properties
THC has been shown to trigger psychotic episodes. But, studies show that CBD has the opposite effect.
It actually also acts similarly to popular antipsychotic drugs in people who suffer from conditions like schizophrenia.
In addition to working as well as these drugs, CBD also does not cause as many side effects. This makes it a more desirable alternative.
Common side effects of popular antipsychotic drugs include a lack of motivation and extreme fatigue.
CBD appears to bypass the pathways that typical antipsychotic drugs use when they enter the body. As a result, patients can experience relief without the usual, unpleasant after effects.
3. Reduced Anxiety
Many people who suffer from anxiety disorders are praising CBD for its ability to calm their nerves and improve their confidence.
Some of the specific anxiety disorders that CBD can treat include:
Social anxiety disorder
Generalized anxiety disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder
Of all these disorders, social anxiety disorder has been the most thoroughly studied.
One study found that patients who received CBD prior to delivering a speech experienced significant improvements in both their feelings of anxiety and discomfort and their overall performance.
4. Cancer-Fighting Properties
CBD also seems to be an effective tool for fighting cancer itself.
Research shows that CBD is especially effective at inhibiting tumor growth in patients with breast cancer. It also appears to work well for people suffering from colon cancer, lung cancer, and leukemia.
5. Anti-Nausea Benefits
CBD can also treat nausea and vomiting. This makes it a great option for people who are suffering from nausea after receiving chemotherapy treatment or as a side effect from other medications.
CBD seems to be effective in treating nausea because it activates a neurotransmitter called 5-hydroxytryptamine-1A (also known as 5-HT1A). It is this neurotransmitter that reduces sensations of nausea and the vomiting that often accompanies it.
6. Improved Cardiovascular Health
CBD benefits also extend to the cardiovascular system.
Perhaps because of its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, CBD appears to do a great job of protecting the cardiovascular system from damage caused by environmental factors and other illnesses like diabetes.
In addition to its protective abilities, CBD improves blood flow and reduces the cardiovascular system’s response to stress.
It also affects the blood by influencing platelet aggregation, the death and survival of white blood cells, and white blood cell migration.
7. Treats and Prevents Seizures
One of the main CBD benefits that have gotten a ton of media attention is the drug’s ability to treat people with severe seizure disorders like epilepsy.
CBD has been especially beneficial for children who suffer from epilepsy and can’t find relief from other treatment options. Because CBD doesn’t have any psychoactive effects, it’s safe for patients of all ages to consume.
The results of a survey of parents with epileptic children found that those who gave their children CBD saw a major decrease in the number of seizure episodes their kids experienced. A smaller — but still significant — group saw complete seizure freedom.
In addition to a reduction or elimination of seizures, parents also noted that their children slept better and were more alert during the day after consuming CBD.
8. Fewer Incidences of Diabetes
People suffering from diabetes can also benefit from taking CBD on a regular basis.
Regular cannabis use has specifically been linked to a decrease in fasting insulin levels, as well as a smaller waist circumference, which is a major contributing factor to the onset of diabetes symptoms.
9. Helps Heal and Prevent Acne
In addition to serious internal conditions, CBD can also treat cosmetic issues like acne.
It’s believed that, because of its anti-inflammatory properties, CBD helps lower the body’s production of sebum. Sebum is the body’s natural oil. When produced in excess, it leads to clogged pores and breakouts.
10. Can Prevent and Slow the Progression of Alzheimer’s Disease
Finally, recent studies have found that CBD has the potential to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and prevent patients from losing their facial recognition abilities.
Again, it appears to be CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties that make it so beneficial for Alzheimer’s patients. CBD seems to reduce and prevent the inflammation that is responsible for the damage that occurs in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s.
This makes it a powerful treatment option for people who are already suffering from Alzheimer’s and those who know they have a genetic predisposition for the disease.
CBD Side Effects
After reading about all those CBD benefits, you’re probably wondering if CBD has any negative side effects.
The short answer? Not really.
Because CBD products are relatively new, there is not a ton of research into its long-term effects. But, the few studies that have been conducted have shown that, in varying doses, most people can consume CBD without any issues.
The most commonly reported side effect of CBD is fatigue, which is understandable considering its anxiolytic properties. There have also been a few cases in which people have reported experiencing diarrhea and changes in their weight and appetite.
That said, people who want to treat their conditions (or their children’s conditions) with CBD should talk to a medical professional to make sure they understand the risks. This extra step will also ensure that there aren’t any negative interactions between CBD and other medications.
How to Consume CBD
Okay, you’re convinced that CBD is safe and you might even be interested in trying it yourself.
Where do you start, though? What’s the best way to consume CBD in order to experience maximum benefits?
Listed below are some of the most popular methods of CBD consumption.
1. CBD Oil
CBD oil is probably the most common option for consuming CBD. Oils in dropper bottles are simple to swallow and easy to dose.
Many CBD oils are flavored to make them more palatable, and they can be consumed on their own or mixed into food or beverages.
Keep in mind, though, that consuming CBD orally isn’t necessarily the most efficient way to experience CBD benefits. This is because CBD oil is not as bioavailable as other CBD products.
When you consume CBD orally, it has to pass through the digestive system and be metabolized by the liver. During this process, quite a bit of the actual CBD is lost in the body. This means, when it finally reaches your bloodstream, you won’t get as much as you would if you consumed it in another way.
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2. Sublingual Application
If you’re looking for a more efficient way to experience CBD benefits, sublingual application is a great alternative.
This approach requires you to take a CBD tincture (an alcohol-based product) and hold it under your tongue. When you do this, the CBD is absorbed through the mucous membranes and delivered to the bloodstream more quickly since it can bypass the digestive system and liver.
When you vape CBD, you get to experience its benefits even faster. Vaping allows the CBD to the absorbed directly into the lungs and diffused into the bloodstream.
Some people are hesitant to vape CBD because they’re worried that it will damage their lungs. There is no smoke, though, so vaping is a much safer alternative to smoking cannabis.
You can also apply CBD directly to your skin, which allows the drug to interact with cells near the surface without actually entering the bloodstream. This is a great option for people who suffer from chronic pain, acne, or other skin conditions.
In addition to using CBD topicals, many people also apply CBD oil to their skin for similar benefits. Most CBD oils are made with skin-friendly carriers like coconut oil, so they can safely be used to moisturize and heal the skin.
How to Find High-Quality CBD
If you’re ready to give CBD a try, it’s important to keep in mind that not all CBD products are created equal.
In order to experience the maximum amount of CBD benefits, you need to make sure you’re buying a high-quality CBD product.
How do you know if the oil, tincture, vape juice, or topical is the real deal?
Be on the lookout for the following pieces of information to help you make the right decision:
Make Sure It’s Organic
Where does the manufacturer of your CBD products grow their cannabis? Do they only extract the CBD from organic plants?
These are important clarifications to make.
First, different countries have different farming regulations, so it’s important to know where the plants are coming from. It’s also important to make sure there aren’t any chemicals or pesticides sprayed on the plants. These products could negatively affect you and cause you to miss out on important CBD benefits.
Find out How It’s Processed
You should also find out how the manufacturers extract the CBD from the plants.
Ideally, they will use a CO2 extraction method. Unlike petroleum extraction, CO2 extraction uses safer solvents and produces a more pure and potent extract, which means more CBD benefits for you.
This method is more expensive, so many manufacturers opt out of it. But, it’s also better for the environment and won’t leave any solvents behind in the CBD extract. Buying from a company that cares enough to invest in a CO2 extraction method helps you ensure you’re getting a high-quality product.
Ask About Third-Party Lab Tests
A trustworthy manufacturer will also be willing to pay to have their product tested at an independent, third-party lab. At these labs, products are tested for chemicals like pesticides, solvents, contaminants, and heavy metals.
The company should display the results of these tests on their website or at least be willing to send them to you if you ask for them. Any business that won’t produce their test results or refuses to answer your questions is not worth patronizing.