I get asked quite often, "What's the big deal with CBD and what's the best way to start using it?"
Well, what is the big deal with CBD?
It does seem to be a big buzz word (is it really a word) these days with CBD popping up in everything from bath and body products to makeup to people growing high-CBD or CBD-only strains of cannabis for smoking (yep, just like it's THC sister). CBD is everywhere right now, and while that is great news for the industry and for users, it does bring about quite a bit of confusion on where to start.
Old school stoners will probably want to try smoking the CBD flower while others would rather use bath salts and topicals (lotions and creams). It really depends on your personal wellness situation and why you're wanting to use CBD to begin with.
So while I have my own personal regimens with CBD, I wanted to give the best advice I could find and having been and advocate for cannabis for 2 decades now, there is one source that I have found to always be ahead of the game - High Times Magazine.
After scouring the web for the best possible beginner's guide (and in turn looking over and reviewing about 2 dozen of them), I have found this amazing beginner's guide to CBD from the leading info source in the cannabis industry.
A Beginner’s Guide to CBD
CBD seems to be omnipresent these days, but how does it work? What’s it used for? Our handy explainer breaks down everything you need to know about the ultra-popular cannabinoid.
CBD is the it cannabinoid right now—it’s simply everywhere. You’ll find it as an ingredient in things like lip gloss, bath soaks and bombs, soaps, moisturizers, pet treats, chocolate, olive oil, personal lubricant, muscle rubs and cookies. Of course it’s also available in tinctures and pills meant to do everything from reducing PMS symptoms to alleviating anxiety.
CBD has a fiercely devoted fan base, and new promising products seem to be popping up every day. This popularity is likely tied to the fact that many of the items containing CBD claim a wide array of seductive benefits, from treating insomnia and working as an anti-inflammatory all the way to potentially reducing PTSD and seizures.
We’ve all got problems; some of them literally keep us awake at night. With all the fanfare around CBD, you might be wondering if it can cure what ails you. This beginner’s guide to CBD will help you better understand the cannabinoid, what it does and how it can help.
What Is CBD?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant. It is one of the many (more than 100) cannabinoids identified in cannabis and is similar to THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is responsible for the high associated with consuming marijuana. Unlike THC, though, CBD is nonpsychoactive, meaning it doesn’t produce a high, because the two components act differently on brain and body receptors.
While there’s still a great deal of research to be done, CBD is being studied intensely right now due to its potential as a safe, nonaddictive substance that appears to offer users some relief from symptoms related to a slew of illnesses and conditions.
If you’d like to explore the reported health benefits of cannabis without the sensation of feeling stoned, CBD might be right for you.
How Do You Use CBD?
CBD can be used in a wide variety of ways. It’s available in tinctures and pills, and it can be mixed into food or drink. If vaping or smoking is more your style, you can find high-CBD strains or CBD-only extracts. You can also get your CBD through a variety of products like lotions or scrubs (there are even personal lubricants containing CBD).
Each method has a varying degree of usefulness, depending on what conditions it is intended to treat and who is using it. For example, consuming tinctures might be more useful for fighting inflammation than smoking or vaping, but smoking or vaping CBD could be extremely useful to someone trying to quit cigarettes or reduce or eliminate their nicotine intake. But then there are some who experience little to no benefit from using it.
Why Use CBD At All?
Some evidence suggests that CBD has therapeutic and healing properties, such as the capacity to lessen the regularity of seizures, help treat insomnia, minimize panic attacks, treat certain types of depression and anxiety, and reduce pain, arthritis and inflammation and more. While much of this evidence is anecdotal, it points to the idea that CBD may offer help to those who need relief but have not been able to find it using traditional medicine. In addition, hearsay or not, the mountains of positive feedback leave little doubt that there is, in fact, something to THC’s sister component. At the very least, some people have found remarkable relief through the use of CBD.
How Do I Get Started With CBD?
Trista Okel, the creator of Empower, a line of CBD and cannabis health and beauty products that includes personal lubricants, lotions, rubs and tinctures, suggests starting with a topical, or a product that is used by being applied to the skin. “Topical products aren’t psychoactive,” she said. “Soaking in a bath with the salts and then applying an oil [such as Empower’s Topical Relief Oil] is a powerful combo for relief and relaxation.”
Dr. Jenelle Kim, who has spent the last 15 years developing natural products for high-end spas and outlets such as the Ritz-Carlton and Whole Foods, said that makeup is a safe and easy way to dip one’s toe in.
“Beauty products containing CBD are a wonderful way to be introduced into the world of benefits that CBD provides,” Kim said. “When incorporating balanced CBD formulations into your daily regimen, which is the main goal coming from an Eastern medical, herbology perspective, you will experience great results.”
Will It Work For Me?
Like any product or medicine on the market, individual results may vary. While many users champion this so-called miracle drug, there are some who were disappointed with their experiences.
John Garrett, a Tacoma-based writer and film producer, tried using CBD to help manage his debilitating anxiety. “I’d only heard amazing things about CBD oil,” he said, “but after trying four different products, nothing.”
Still, many other users have experienced the exact opposite. Monika T. from Northern California claimed to have a condition cured by cannabis. “FECO [full extract cannabis oils] cured my cutaneous follicle lymphoma,” she said. Monika found relief with cannabinoids, but they are not a panacea, and it is extremely important to discuss serious medical conditions with your physician, and to find out if CBD use is advisable when receiving other treatments.
Clint Alan McCown and Yvonne Ybarra are an Austin-based couple who both use CBD for their ailments—Clint for sleep issues and Yvonne for pain from a dance-related injury. “I’ve been using it for three years,” Clint explained. “My girlfriend [Yvonne] cried tears of joy after three days of use.”
Bryan Neustein, a wine broker in the Los Angeles area, is another customer singing CBD’s high praises. “I love it and use it daily,” he raved. “It really helps my sciatica and insomnia. Plus, my friend’s 3-year-old who suffers from micro-seizures says it has completely stopped the seizures once he started taking it.”
With encouraging examples such as these, it’s no wonder CBD has enjoyed such widespread enthusiasm and popularity. But it’s up to each person to examine the facts and information carefully and decide if CBD is worth trying. Concerns might include an (albeit rare) allergy to cannabis, the fact that many CBD products can be cost-prohibitive and the challenge of where to find it—though, with its ever-increasing popularity, finding CBD is becoming less and less of a problem.
A conversation with a medical professional won’t hurt and is, in fact, encouraged. Though there are few issues on record with negative drug interactions or ill effects of CBD on children, people who are pregnant, lactating or taking certain prescription drugs should proceed with caution and careful consideration.
But Will It Get Me High?
No. Empower’s Trista Okel shares the details behind why, for example, a topical lotion containing CBD can’t get a user high, yet can offer pain relief.
“The cannabinoid molecules, such as CBD, are large and don’t reach the bloodstream when applied to the skin,” she said. “CBD does go deep enough to activate the TRPV-1 and PPAR-gamma receptors in the skin and suppress the TNF-alpha enzyme; all of these actions result in reducing pain and inflammation.”
Taking CBD internally is nonintoxicating too. However, some users report feeling some physical sensations or a calmness when they consume CBD. Others compare CBD to drinking a half a glass of wine or a Valium, and report anxiety and stress reduction when used via tincture drops in a beverage, for example.
Benefits of CBD
As mentioned, CBD use has been associated via anecdotal evidence and some research with the reduction of insomnia, rheumatoid arthritis, PTSD, certain types of seizures, anxiety, muscle pain and inflammation, stress and anxiety, eczema and a host of other illnesses and conditions. Many of these health concerns allow for patients to legally obtain a medical-marijuana card from their doctor.
CBD isn’t a miracle drug and shouldn’t be treated as such. But it serves a whole slew of purposes with varying degrees of success, and many people find the upside of giving it a try to greatly outweigh the potential hazards.
What About Pets?
Pets are included in the bevy of anecdotal evidence supporting the benefits of CBD.
Holly DeRito, an NYC-based animal activist and entrepreneur behind cannabuddykitchen.com, created her own line of CBD products for pets that are safe enough for human use as well. “It tremendously helped my fibromyalgia and the anxiety in my dog,” she said. “My own veterinarian started buying my topical salve for his bulldog’s arthritis after his pharmaceutical resources stopped helping. He found it the only thing that gave her relief.”
DeRito explained that CBD has also helped dogs that her animal-rescue organization, waggytailrescue.org, has helped foster, helping them to adjust to scary new environments and to travel calmly.
When choosing CBD products for a pet (or human), be sure to read the ingredients in order to ensure that it’s coming from a safe source.
Not All CBD IS Created Equal?
Unfortunately, no. Just like any food item, lotion, beauty product or consumable, CBD is subject to being produced improperly or cheaply. Some manufacturers may add fillers or subpar ingredients to cut their own expenses and make more of a profit.
When selecting a CBD product, it’s best to look for those companies that have their testing information available on the packaging or via a QR code. With this, a consumer can then analyze the product’s certificate of analysis on the company’s website.
So, as with any health-related product, make sure to read, research, get recommendations and ask for advice in order to find the best-quality items when trying to use CBD to soothe whatever ails you.
-Originally published in the July, 2019 issue of High Times magazine.
Everything You Need To Know About CBD Oil For Pets
Go High Spirit CBD Broad Spectrum CBD Oil Hemp Extract Pet Tinctures are designed as a quick and on-the-go solution for your pet. The Pet Tinctures can be found in strengths varying from 150 mg and 500 mg and deliver approximately 5mg, 16.7mg of full-spectrum Phyto Complex per serving.
CBD oil for pets works in the same fashion as it does for its two-legged friends. Pets also have the ECS (endocannabinoid system) therefore giving them CBD will not harm them, it will promote calmness and wellness in your furry friend as well. Why not take a wellness journey with them too!
Go High Spirit CBD’s Full Spectrum CBD Oil Hemp Extract Pet Tinctures contains a proprietary blend of high-quality Omega-3 Fatty acid oils, Non GMO Hemp Seed oil, Salmon oil, MCT Oil, and our proprietary blend of terpenes and flavonoids along with extracts from domestically grown, farm bill compliant, and laboratory tested hemp, to ensure quality.
Our laboratory-designed formula is developed so that all the ingredients work synergistically, each ingredient boosts and enhances the others, in order to enhance and support overall health.
It is recommended that you to mix the Hemp Oil Tincture with wet or dry food, or simply put a dropper full on a treat. Apply one full dropper of tincture under your pet’s tongue or next to cheeks and let the oil absorb into soft tissue. It allows for faster access to the benefits of hemp extract. For best results, give it to your pet twice daily and increase dosage incrementally until desired results will achieve.
It is available in the flavor of Salmon. It comes in two strengths of 150 mg and 500 mg.
Our consultant/support team is ready to serve you better around the clock. If you are a regular consumer of our products, then kindly post your review either positive or negative in the comment section so that other people can also get awareness.
Cannabidiol is a popular natural remedy used for many common ailments.
Better known as CBD, it is one of over 100 chemical compounds known as cannabinoids found in the cannabis or marijuana plant, Cannabis sativa (1Trusted Source).
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the main psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis, and causes the sensation of getting “high” that’s often associated with marijuana. However, unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive.
This quality makes CBD an appealing option for those who are looking for relief from pain and other symptoms without the mind-altering effects of marijuana or certain pharmaceutical drugs.
CBD oil is made by extracting CBD from the cannabis plant, then diluting it with a carrier oil like coconut or hemp seed oil.
It’s gaining momentum in the health and wellness world, with some scientific studies confirming it may ease symptoms of ailments like chronic pain and anxiety.
Here are seven health benefits of CBD oil that are backed by scientific evidence.
1. Can Relieve Pain
Marijuana has been used to treat pain as far back as 2900 B.C. (2Trusted Source).
More recently, scientists have discovered that certain components of marijuana, including CBD, are responsible for its pain-relieving effects.
The human body contains a specialized system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is involved in regulating a variety of functions including sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response (3Trusted Source).
The body produces endocannabinoids, which are neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors in your nervous system.
Studies have shown that CBD may help reduce chronic pain by impacting endocannabinoid receptor activity, reducing inflammation and interacting with neurotransmitters (4Trusted Source).
For example, one study in rats found that CBD injections reduced pain response to surgical incision, while another rat study found that oral CBD treatment significantly reduced sciatic nerve pain and inflammation (5Trusted Source, 6Trusted Source).
Several human studies have found that a combination of CBD and THC is effective in treating pain related to multiple sclerosis and arthritis.
An oral spray called Sativex, which is a combination of THC and CBD, is approved in several countries to treat pain related to multiple sclerosis.
One study of 47 people with multiple sclerosis examined the effects of taking Sativex for one month. The participants experienced improvements in pain, walking, and muscle spasms. Still, the study didn’t include any control group and placebo effects cannot be ruled out (7Trusted Source).
Another study found that Sativex significantly improved pain during movement, pain at rest and sleep quality in 58 people with rheumatoid arthritis (8Trusted Source).
2. Could Reduce Anxiety and Depression
Anxiety and depression are common mental health disorders that can have devastating impacts on health and well-being.
According to the World Health Organization, depression is the single largest contributor to disability worldwide, while anxiety disorders are ranked sixth (9).
Anxiety and depression are usually treated with pharmaceutical drugs, which can cause a number of side effects including drowsiness, agitation, insomnia, sexual dysfunction and headache (10Trusted Source).
What’s more, medications like benzodiazepines can be addictive and may lead to substance abuse (11Trusted Source).
CBD oil has shown promise as a treatment for both depression and anxiety, leading many who live with these disorders to become interested in this natural approach.
In one Brazilian study, 57 men received either oral CBD or a placebo 90 minutes before they underwent a simulated public speaking test. The researchers found that a 300-mg dose of CBD was the most effective at significantly reducing anxiety during the test.
The placebo, a 150-mg dose of CBD, and a 600-mg dose of CBD had little to no effect on anxiety (12Trusted Source).
CBD oil has even been used to safely treat insomnia and anxiety in children with post-traumatic stress disorder (13Trusted Source).
CBD has also shown antidepressant-like effects in several animal studies (14Trusted Source, 15Trusted Source).
These qualities are linked to CBD’s ability to act on the brain’s receptors for serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and social behavior.
3. Can Alleviate Cancer-Related Symptoms
CBD may help reduce symptoms related to cancer and side effects related to cancer treatment, like nausea, vomiting and pain.
One study looked at the effects of CBD and THC in 177 people with cancer-related pain who did not experience relief from pain medication.
Those treated with an extract containing both compounds experienced a significant reduction in pain compared to those who received only THC extract (16Trusted Source).
CBD may also help reduce chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, which are among the most common chemotherapy-related side effects for those with cancer (17Trusted Source).
Though there are drugs that help with these distressing symptoms, they are sometimes ineffective, leading some people to seek alternatives.
A study of 16 people undergoing chemotherapy found that a one-to-one combination of CBD and THC administered via mouth spray reduced chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting better than standard treatment alone (18Trusted Source).
Some test-tube and animal studies have even shown that CBD may have anticancer properties. For example, one test-tube study found that concentrated CBD induced cell death in human breast cancer cells (19Trusted Source).
Another study showed that CBD inhibited the spread of aggressive breast cancer cells in mice (20Trusted Source).
However, these are test-tube and animal studies, so they can only suggest what might work in people. More studies in humans are needed before conclusions can be made.
4. May Reduce Acne
Acne is a common skin condition that affects more than 9% of the population (21Trusted Source).
It is thought to be caused by a number of factors, including genetics, bacteria, underlying inflammation and the overproduction of sebum, an oily secretion made by sebaceous glands in the skin (22Trusted Source, 23).
Based on recent scientific studies, CBD oil may help treat acne due to its anti-inflammatory properties and ability to reduce sebum production.
One test-tube study found that CBD oil prevented sebaceous gland cells from secreting excessive sebum, exerted anti-inflammatory actions and prevented the activation of “pro-acne” agents like inflammatory cytokines (24Trusted Source).
Another study had similar findings, concluding that CBD may be an efficient and safe way to treat acne, thanks in part to its remarkable anti-inflammatory qualities (25Trusted Source).
Though these results are promising, human studies exploring the effects of CBD on acne are needed.
5. Might Have Neuroprotective Properties
Researchers believe that CBD’s ability to act on the endocannabinoid system and other brain signaling systems may provide benefits for those with neurological disorders.
In fact, one of the most studied uses for CBD is in treating neurological disorders like epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. Though research in this area is still relatively new, several studies have shown promising results.
Sativex, an oral spray consisting of CBD and THC, has been proven to be a safe and effective way to reduce muscle spasticity in people with multiple sclerosis.
One study found that Sativex reduced spasms in 75% of 276 people with multiple sclerosis who were experiencing muscle spasticity that was resistant to medications (26Trusted Source).
Another study gave 214 people with severe epilepsy 0.9–2.3 grams of CBD oil per pound (2–5 g/kg) of body weight. Their seizures reduced by a median of 36.5% (27Trusted Source).
One more study found that CBD oil significantly reduced seizure activity in children with Dravet syndrome, a complex childhood epilepsy disorder, compared to a placebo (28Trusted Source).
However, it’s important to note that some people in both these studies experienced adverse reactions associated with CBD treatment, such as convulsions, fever and fatigue.
CBD has also been researched for its potential effectiveness in treating several other neurological diseases.
For example, several studies have shown that treatment with CBD improved quality of life and sleep quality for people with Parkinson’s disease (29Trusted Source, 30Trusted Source).
Additionally, animal and test-tube studies have shown that CBD may decrease inflammation and help prevent the neurodegeneration associated with Alzheimer’s disease (31Trusted Source).
In one long-term study, researchers gave CBD to mice genetically predisposed to Alzheimer’s disease, finding that it helped prevent cognitive decline (32Trusted Source).
6. Could Benefit Heart Health
Recent research has linked CBD with several benefits for the heart and circulatory system, including the ability to lower high blood pressure.
High blood pressure is linked to higher risks of a number of health conditions, including stroke, heart attack and metabolic syndrome (33Trusted Source).
Studies indicate that CBD may be able to help with high blood pressure.
One recent study treated nine healthy men with one dose of 600 mg of CBD oil and found it reduced resting blood pressure, compared to a placebo.
The same study also gave the men stress tests that normally increase blood pressure. Interestingly, the single dose of CBD led the men to experience a smaller blood pressure increase than normal in response to these tests (34Trusted Source).
Researchers have suggested that the stress- and anxiety-reducing properties of CBD are responsible for its ability to help lower blood pressure.
Additionally, several animal studies have demonstrated that CBD may help reduce the inflammation and cell death associated with heart disease due to its powerful antioxidant and stress-reducing properties.
For example, one study found that treatment with CBD reduced oxidative stress and prevented heart damage in diabetic mice with heart disease (35Trusted Source).
7. Several Other Potential Benefits
CBD has been studied for its role in treating a number of health issues other than those outlined above.
Though more studies are needed, CBD is thought to provide the following health benefits:
Are There Any Side Effects?Though CBD is generally well tolerated and considered safe, it may cause adverse reactions in some people.
Side effects noted in studies include (40Trusted Source):
CBD is also known to interact with several medications. Before you start using CBD oil, discuss it with your doctor to ensure your safety and avoid potentially harmful interactions (41Trusted Source).
This is especially important if you take medications or supplements that come with a "grapefruit warning."
Both grapefruit and CBD interfere with cytochromes P450 (CYPs), a group of enzymes that are important to drug metabolism (42).
One study performed on mice showed that CBD-rich cannabis extracts have the potential to cause liver toxicity. However, some the mice in the study were injected with extremely large doses of the extract (43).
The Bottom Line
CBD oil has been studied for its potential role in easing symptoms of many common health issues, including anxiety, depression, acne and heart disease.
For those with cancer, it may even provide a natural alternative for pain and symptom relief.
Research on the potential health benefits of CBD oil is ongoing, so new therapeutic uses for this natural remedy are sure to be discovered.
Though there is much to be learned about the efficacy and safety of CBD, results from recent studies suggest that CBD may provide a safe, powerful natural treatment for many health issues.