Cannabidiol is a versatile supplement and a great anti-inflammatory agent that can help to manage lifelong conditions to improve quality of life. Dozens of case studies show that it’s perfectly safe – even the World Health Organization published a report supporting long term use. With all the dangers of pharmaceuticals, a lot of people are turning to alternative medicines to treat an ever-increasing range of ailments. This article looks at 6 ways CBD can help treat conditions that cause pain and stress.
Hemp oil for pain – Relieves pain
The body contains its own network of cannabinoids that make up the endocannabinoid system (or ECS). CBD works through the ECS by targeting receptors in the brain, spine, and nerves – these are called CB1 receptors. The other group of receptors that engage with CBD is called CB2, and by joining with both CB1 and CB2 receptors, cannabidiol blocks out pain and causes the body to release hormones that increase the threshold of pain.
In moderate doses, cannabidiol significantly reduces neuropathic pain, arthritis, fibromyalgia, and other forms of chronic pain. CBD also shows great promise with postoperative pain cancer pain – and researchers are exploring different combinations to see how well it works with other compounds to minimize pain [R][R][R].
Helps control epileptic seizures
There is a reason to believe that CBD can reduce or control epileptic seizures, especially in patients who don’t respond well to other forms of treatment [R]. Based on results from this study, participants who took 25mg pure CBD extract every day for 3 months showed a 39% reduction in the frequency of seizures. A different study in which children and adults took 50mg CBD extract every day, the results were even more impressive.
Dozens of studies have been published on important health journals and websites, and they show significant improvement after just weeks of daily use. Patients who don’t respond to epilepsy drugs are also seen to reduce the frequency of seizures, although this shouldn’t lead you to stop taking medication. Always speak to a health expert before stopping medication or taking new ones.
Slows Alzheimer’s disease
Diseases like Alzheimer’s are caused by the degeneration of brain cells – which in turn is caused by all sorts of things including stress, poor health, oxidative stress, toxic substances, stroke, etc. CBD may help to slow down the effects of Alzheimer’s, and some researchers believe it can reduce the chances of acquiring the disease in the first place, but only if used earlier on in life, for a prolonged period. CBD can prevent or at least slow down the onset of amyloid plaques that kill brain cells and lead to Alzheimer’s disease. It works by blocking the enzyme that produces them in the brain.
Treats Inflammatory Bowel Diseases
Conditions such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are challenging to manage and painful to live with, partly because they cause significant swelling of the bowels. In addition to treating pain, CBD is excellent at reducing or preventing inflammation of the intestines for people with inflammatory bowel disease. Cannabidiol interacts with the ECS to alter immune system response to irritation in the gut, and this reduces inflammation; but also the permeability of body made cannabinoids can sometimes leave the intestinal walls more porous and susceptible to bacterial infection. By blocking some of these cannabinoids, CBD ensures that the intestinal walls remain tight and prevents excessive permeability that would allow bacteria in.
In low doses, CBD lowers stress levels and makes it easier to handle PTSD. It reduces blood flow to some parts of the limbic system that are often times the cause of paranoia and anxiety: Instead, blood flow to the posterior cingulate cortex is increased. This part is involved with motivation, cognition, and is linked to normal stress levels.
Studies have shown that taking CBD an hour before giving a public speech leads to a reduction in anxiety, for people with general anxiety, social anxiety, or PTSD. Low-moderate doses are ideal for managing anxiety and stress. When taken in higher doses, the calming effect may lead to drowsiness.