Cannabidiol or CBD is one of the latest supplement aids rising in popularity over the last couple of years within many different communities and regions across the world. For legal reasons, CBD has lacked the research it deserves and needs to better understand its influence on the body. It’s popularisation is largely due to consistent, positive anecdotal feedback from people, ranging from epilepsy sufferers to athletes trying to improve their recovery time.
What is CBD?
When our body’s become stressed they get knocked out of homeostasis (your body’s natural and balanced state which keeps you healthy).
Your body endocannabinoid system – which is a complex network of receptors responsible for obtaining endocannabinoids across the body – serves to rectify this.
Endocannabinoids play a key role within the body including regulating appetite, pain and even sleep.
The interesting thing about the ECS is that it doesn’t just engage with cannabinoids produced from within the body (endocannabinoids), but also plant-based exogenous cannabinoids. Cannabidiol (CBD) is just one of over 100 cannabinoid compounds found within the cannabis sativa plant that the body’s ECS interacts with and responds to.
Unlike most cannabinoids, CBD has a low binding affinity to the primary ECS receptors within the body: CB1 and CB2. CBD instead influences the mind and body by interaction with other receptors within the body.
The difference between CBD and THC
Both CBD and THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) are compounds found within the cannabis sativa plant, but their effects within the body once consumed are quite varied.
THC was initially isolated by Dr. Raphael Mechoulam back in the 60s and similar to CBD can be effective as serving as a natural analgesic and alleviating depression.
The big difference between CBD and THC is that THC is psycho-active due to its binding affinity with the CB1 and CB2 receptors. The CB1 receptors are mostly found within the brain and CB2 receptors are found mostly across the body. This explains THC’s profound acute impact on the mind and body.
The side effects of THC can be as evident as the high and include anxiety/panic attacks, sedation among others.
CBD’s role within the body is a fairly complex one as it has over 65 different points of molecular interaction. Unlike other cannabinoids, CBD has a low binding affinity with either the CB1 or CB2 receptors meaning it’s not psycho-active. CBD has however still be shown to have some profound benefits for the body through its interaction with various other receptors.
CBD, Pain & Inflammation
A key benefits linked to CBD supplementation is its ability to reduce inflammation and pain associated with chronic injuries and ailments.
CBD binds with and activates the GPR55 receptor which is associated with pain and inflammation treatment. CBD is the preferred method of relief by many individuals who suffer with chronic pain who don’t want the common side effect associated with prescription pain and inflammation medication, such as NSAIDs.
Read more about CBD and Pain Relief.
CBD and Anxiety
Along with influencing the GPR55 receptor, CBD is shown to also shown to have agonistic effects on the HT1A-receptor. This may lead to alleviation of both anxiety and depression.
CBD and Epilepsy
One of the greatest success stories utilising CBD as treatment is for epilepsy sufferers.
A 2017 study proved epidiolex as an effective treatment for reducing convulsion rate for people who suffer with Dravet Syndrome: a complex childhood epilepsy condition.
Subjects who were given the epidiolex treatment reduced their median convulsion frequency from 12.4 to 5.9 per month versus subjects given a placebo who only saw a slight reduction in rate from 14.9 to 14.1.
The cannabis sativa plant has been demonised and – up until fairly recently – lacked research due to it’s THC content, which is another compound sought out by people to get high. This has played a key factor in serving as a legal and ethical barrier for study groups looking to pursue carrying out analysis on CBD, ethical sign off within study groups looking to push the plant under the microscope.
The research that has been done into CBD indicates that it may serves as an effective aid for epilepsy, anxiety, pain, IBS and inflammation.
CBD comes in many different forms to cater to the individuals preferred means of consumption. There are an array of products on the market now from CBD gummies to CBD powder, all providing powerful natural relief for several different symptoms, such as chronic pain and anxiety. One popular product within the domain of CBD products – particularly in the US – is CBD spray.
CBD spray – like many CBD products – comes in varying strengths. Having the product in spray form makes it a convenient way to consume the anti-inflammatory compound with minimal preparation time or device requirements, such as CBD juice and vape pens.
Having sampled several different types of CBD spray, I’ve come to understand the importance of CBD dosage and finding the right concentration to facilitate your needs.
For me – personally – I’ve found 400mg/10ml of CBD to be the tipping point, in terms of being able to function optimally day-to-day, this was when I first started supplementing with CBD. CBD sprays of this strength provide me with pain relief (for my lower back), which from time-to-time can become aggravated.
It’s important to remember that everyone’s biological make-up reacts to CBD differently and therefore it’s best to start with a low dose and build gradually, as CBD tends to have a cumulative effect.
This is one of the key considerations with supplementing CBD, whatever form it’s in, it can make you drowsy if you exceed your personal tipping point dose. If you take CBD before going to bed, then this is less of a concern, however if you live a busy lifestyle, I’d recommend building up the strength of your CBD spray progressively, starting at 100mg – 400mg per 10ml.
Beginner CBD Spray