Yes, it comes from the cannabis plant; no, it will not make you high.
You can sprinkle a few drops in a smoothie, put it under your tongue, or even vape it. We’re talking about CBD oil. It’s from a cannabis plant, but you can tell your mom not to worry: It won’t get you high.
To say there is hype surrounding CBD right now is no exaggeration:
“CBD is showing promise as a pain reliever, epilepsy treatment, and for wasting disease associated with cancer,” says Taz Bhatia, M.D., an integrative health expert. “It’s being promised to cure everything from anxiety to acne.”
But does the stuff really work?
WHAT IS CBD?
“Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of over 80 phytocannabinoids, or chemical compounds, produced by the cannabis plant,”says Sarah Cohen, secretary, R.N., of the American Cannabis Nurses Association.
CBD oil is what you get when you take cannabinoids from cannabis and mix them with a carrier oil, like MCT (a form of coconut oil), explains Devin O’Dea, the chief marketing officer at MINERAL Health. Until recently, THC (or tetrahydrocannabinol), the compound in cannabis that gets you high, was the most well-known element of the plant—but now CBD is giving THC a run for its money.
CBD is legal in all the states where medical marijuana is legal (30 states plus the District of Columbia have laws allowing it to some extent, mostly for medicinal purposes), as well as an additional 16 states.
WHY DO PEOPLE USE CBD OIL?
What don’t they use it for? People say CBD help reduce pain, anxiety, depression and stress, improve the immune system, reduce inflammation, and more.
Forty-two percent of CBD users said they stopped using traditional medications like Tylenol or prescription drugs like Vicodin in favor of CBD, in a survey conducted by Brightfield Group and HelloMD, an online community bringing doctors and cannabis patients together. Eighty percent of those people said they found the products to be “very or extremely effective.”
THE BENEFITS OF CBD OIL
There’s pretty legit science to back up some of the claims about CBD oil.
“Several studies show that CBD reduces chronic pain with muscle spasms, arthritis, and nerve pain,” says Bhatia. “
A study published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine found that CBD use led to reduced levels of chronic pain and that patients didn’t develop the dangerous tolerance noted with opiate medications. Another study that looked at using a topical CBD oil found reduced arthritis pain.”
Additional studies also show that CBD reduces many different types of inflammation, which can be caused by physical or emotional trauma, diet, food intolerances, diseases, and viral and bacterial infections, says Bhatia.
And since autoimmune diseases are almost always linked to inflammation, it makes sense that research shows CBD can help with disorders like multiple sclerosis, Hashimoto’s disease, asthma, lupus, celiac disease and more.
Researchers have also found that giving CBD to schizophrenic patients reduced psychotic symptoms such as hallucinations and disordered thinking.
“That’s the curious thing about CBD: It can treat nearly everything,” says O’Dea. “Not in a miracle cure, ‘it’s gone!’ kind of way, but in a calibration type of way, slowly tilting you back to center.”
Excerpt originally published: Ashley Mateo Womens Health