Cannabidiol (CBD) is an abundant, naturally occurring chemical produced by the hemp plant that is rapidly gaining worldwide acceptance for its health and wellness benefits.
Industrial Hemp has been used by people from all over the world for thousands of years now. In fact, the history of the hemp plant dates as far back as 12,000 B.C. It is a well known fact that the first written languages were transcribed on hemp paper, many of the first woven articles of clothing were made entirely of hemp fiber and many natural health products were produced from extractions of hemp flowers. Scientific and clinical research suggests industrial hemp derived CBD could be a potential treatment for many conditions including PTSD, chronic pain, antibiotic-resistant infections, arthritis, diabetes, alcoholism, MS, schizophrenia, depression, epilepsy, and other neurological disorders.
Over the past few decades, informed consumers have begun a major shift away from synthetic pharmaceutical drugs with their long lists of debilitating side effects, in favour of health-enhancing natural remedies. Cannabidiol, CBD, from hemp is providing that all-natural solution for many, and word of its success at providing an amazing variety of therapeutic benefits for a host of physical and mental disorders is being spread by the many grateful users who consider CBD from natural hemp oil to be a godsend.
What was once a rare gray market staple of head shops has now gone mainstream as CBD finds its place in beauty aisles, physical fitness regimens, and even doctors’ offices. Organizations such as Athletes For Care* and the MMA are endorsing CBD for professional sports training, concussion, and injury recovery, citing the need for alternatives to addictive opiates and opioids for long-term pain management.
Singer Olivia Newton-John has publicly endorsed CBD as part of her 3-decades-long battle against breast cancer. The singer uses CBD in conjunction with traditional treatments such as chemotherapy and targeted radiation and has founded the Olivia Newton-John Health and Wellness Center to promote CBD for the fight against cancer.
Research on cannabidiol, what was once mistakenly thought of as “the inactive cannabinoid” explains just how CBD can work so well for treating such a wide variety of ailments. The key to CBD’s success is the exciting discovery of the endocannabinoid system in humans and in fact, all mammals.
As it turns out, we already have natural, or “endogenous” CBD in our systems working to our benefit, hence the term “endocannabinoid”. This is why CBD from hemp is considered to be a supplement and not a drug. When we take CBD from hemp we are merely supplementing our body’s own natural supply of CBD, not introducing any foreign chemical substance. Scientists refer to this as “manipulating the endocannabinoid system by raising the CBD baseline”.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is centered in the limbic and paralimbic regions of the brain, vitally important areas which just happen to control critical functions such as sleep, mood, immune response, inflammation and injury response, memory, anxiety, and stress response. The ECS also includes an extensive network of CBD receptors throughout the body, which form a complex biocommunication feedback system for regulating biological processes and maintaining an optimized state of well-being which scientists call “homeostasis”.
We can begin to see now, how CBD can be so effective for such a wide variety of conditions and disorders.
The US National Library of Medicine at the National Institute of Health has published an enormous volume of research on CBD and the endocannabinoid system* as a compelling source of therapeutic benefits for treating disparate diseases and pathological conditions including:
Mood & anxiety disorders movement disorders such as:
CBD’s known beneficial properties have been proven in preclinical laboratory research with animals, which identified the cannabinoid’s exciting healing potential. Preclinical findings can help explain the enormous volume of testimonials about successful treatments which CBD consumers have endorsed publicly in numerous online reviews and forums around the world.
The well-known therapeutic characteristics of CBD include:
Antiemetic- CBD is known to reduce nausea and vomiting. This is just one of the characteristics which makes it so beneficial as a part of traditional cancer treatments such as strong chemo and radiation therapy where nausea is the most frequent unavoidable side-effect of treatment.
Antitumor- CBD has been shown to block the blood vessels which cancer cells need to survive. Research with mice shows that CBD’s antitumor action can kill tumors and cancer cells without harming the healthy cells around them.
Anticonvulsant- CBD has proven to be very successful at suppressing seizure activity. In 2018 the FDA approved a purified CBD* drug for treatment of seizures caused by epilepsy in children.
Anxyolitic/Antidepressant- CBD combats anxiety and depression disorders. Bear in mind that the ECS functions in the limbic and paralimbic regions of the brain which control these responses.
Anti-inflammatory- This CBD action can reduce inflammation (swelling) and pain from arthritis, muscle stress, spasms, dental pain, gout, backache, and other inflammatory conditions.
Antioxidant/Neuroprotective- CBD is an even more powerful antioxidant than vitamin supplements taken for that purpose, reducing the number of free radicals responsible for many of the negative effects of aging. Preclinical results indicate that CBD’s neuroprotective properties can be effective for treating debilitating neurodegenerative diseases including:
CBD as An Analgesic: A Natural Pain Management Alternative to Opiates and Opioids
Systematic research covering dozens of trials and studies on CBD for pain relief concluded that there is substantial evidence that CBD works as an effective treatment for chronic pain in adults, according to the 2018 report at Medical News Today*, “Does CBD Oil Work For Chronic Pain Management?”
That’s no surprise to the fortunate people who have tried CBD for themselves. Pain relief is among the most common reasons for trying CBD, along with insomnia, depression, and anxiety. Forbes reported on a combined survey by Brightfield Group and HelloMD which showed that nearly half of those who try CBD stop taking traditional OTC medicines such as Tylenol, and addictive prescription drugs such as Vicodin. 80% of those who tried cannabidiol as an alternative analgesic characterized CBD as either “very or extremely effective”.
After a quick look at the long list of serious side effects associated with opioids such as Vicodin and Percocet, it’s easy to see why those who have discovered the many health-enhancing benefits of cannabidiol choose to leave these risky Schedule 2 narcotics behind them permanently.
Along with increased anxiety, unpredictable mood changes, loss of coordination, constipation, seizures, rapid heartbeat, nausea and vomiting, opioids also carry a dangerous risk of dependence, addiction, and fatal overdose.
CBD on the other hand, is often sought out to alleviate the very conditions induced by opiate and opioid use. Working in natural harmony with the body’s own endocannabinoid system CBD promotes optimized homeostasis, a state which some scientists refer to as “the Goldilocks Zone”, where all physical and mental systems are “go” and everything is just right.
Many CBD users have been pleasantly surprised when they begin a CBD regimen to alleviate specific pain or inflammation symptoms, and then find also that anxiety is reduced, stress is more easily managed, sleep, blood pressure, and heart health improve, and they are enjoying an overall sense of well-being which they had never expected.
CBD is also one of the safest substances a consumer can keep in the medicine cabinet. With no risk of fatal overdose, it’s safer than aspirin and many other popular OTC medications, which is an important consideration for consumers with young children in the household.
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