What Does CBD Stand For and Is It Good for me?
Posted on April 12th, 2022
What does CBD stand for and is it good for me? Well, CBD has appeared in hundreds of articles and discussions as an approach to relieving symptoms caused by a myriad of health conditions. People who want to relieve pain, calm anxiety, and improve their overall quality of life are turning to CBD to see if it’s the answer they’ve been looking for. If you have similar questions, you are probably asking yourself if CBD is good for you, not just based on what people claim, but it has real benefits based on research. In order to get an answer to your question, you need to know what CBD is, where it comes from, and what current studies say about its potential benefits.
What Does CBD Stand For?
CBD is an abbreviation for cannabidiol. This is an active chemical compound called a cannabinoid, that occurs in the Cannabis plant. Cannabis has over a hundred cannabinoids, and CBD is the second most prominent after THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), another cannabinoid that is the most prominent. THC is the chemical in Cannabis that can make you feel “high.”
Is CBD Legal?
Both hemp and marijuana are varieties of the Cannabis plant. However, in the United States, hemp is legal, and marijuana is not (with exceptions in certain states). The federal 2018 Farm Bill made that distinction and separated hemp from marijuana. It reclassified hemp as a commodity in agriculture while still classifying marijuana as a controlled substance under the government’s Schedule I.
The difference lies in the amount of THC in the plant. THC is a psychoactive chemical. Hemp contains almost no amount (less than 0.3 percent) of THC while marijuana contains high levels of it. Because CBD from hemp does not have properties that can alter your mind, it does not qualify as a controlled substance under the government’s Schedule I. The new farm legislation protects hemp, but it also regulates the growing of hemp. Only licensed growers can grow and cultivate hemp. The regulation ensures that the crop continues to contain less than 0.3 percent of THC. So, in the United States, CBD is legal if it comes from hemp.
Different Types Of Cannabinoids
Cannabinoids interact with the body’s cannabinoid receptors. These receptors exist on the cell membranes in various areas of the central nervous system. The two major categories of cannabinoid receptors are CB1 and CB2. The CB1 receptors occur on the brain cells. The CB2 receptors occur on the cells in the peripheral nervous system and in the immune system.
The cannabinoids from plants are called phytocannabinoids. However, the body also naturally produces cannabinoids in the brain that are called endocannabinoids. These bind to the CB1 and CB2 receptors. Together, they form the body’s endocannabinoid system, or ECS. The ECS is a complex network of cells and signals that affect the functions and reactions in the body including neural activity, mood, pain perception, cognitive function, fertility, voluntary and involuntary functions of the body, and more. Phytocannabinoids mimic endocannabinoids in their effects.
The most common phytocannabinoids are THC and CBD. However, there are over a hundred other phytocannabinoids occurring in the plant. Here is a basic description of a few types of cannabinoids that you may come across when reading about CBD:
– THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol):
This is the most prominent among the other cannabinoids. THC is the psychoactive chemical in marijuana. It binds to the CB1 and CB2 receptors. In high levels, it can affect how your brain reacts and influence how you behave.
– CBD (Cannabidiol):
This is the second most common cannabinoid in the cannabis plant. It interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, but not in the way that THC binds to the CB1 and CB2 receptors. It has no psychoactive effects.
– CBC (Cannabichromenes):
It’s a minor cannabinoid that is gaining more public exposure. It does not bind well to CB1, but it binds with other types of receptors (TPRV1 and TRPA1) in the endocannabinoid system which are connected to how the body perceives pain. It also does not have psychoactive effects.
– CBN (Cannabinol):
This cannabinoid is a product of THC. When THC is exposed to air and light over a long period of time, it starts to break down and oxidize. The result is CBN. It has some psychoactive properties, but it is not as potent as THC. This is one reason why marijuana loses its effect over time. When THC breaks down, it becomes the less potent CBN.
What Does CBD Stand for, and is it Good for Me? Potential Benefits
The science community has conducted many studies on CBD’s potential benefits. There is evidence that it is effective in managing some forms of childhood epilepsy. In fact, the FDA approved a prescription medicine called Epidolex to treat two rare types of epilepsy and to treat certain types of seizures. Other research suggests that CBD may offer benefits for the following conditions:
CBD may affect the signals from serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter. Serotonin is important in helping you feel calm and relaxed. An insufficient amount in the brain can cause anxiety. Many people from studies reported a reduction in anxiety after using CBD.
– chronic pain:
One of the things that your endocannabinoid system affects in pain perception. Studies have shown that CBD might interact with the pain signals that the endocannabinoid receptors receive, resulting in the person feeling less pain.
– sleep problems:
Studies reported that CBD may help those who suffer from insomnia. Because of CBD’s potential ability to reduce anxiety and pain, which contribute to a person’s inability to sleep, using CBD has the potential to improve sleep.
Studies suggest that CBD can help in reducing inflammation when you apply a CBD topical to the skin on the affected area. Clinical studies showed that CBD can reduce levels of cytokines, a protein that contributes to the body’s inflammation responses.
– skin conditions:
Because of CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties, people have reported benefits in certain skin conditions:
– Acne: It can help with acne control. CBD also has anti-microbial properties and may be able to keep the skin’s oil production under control.
– Itchy, dry skin: a CBD oil can soothe dry skin and reduce inflammation and irritation which are often triggers of psoriasis, eczema, and dermatitis.
– Skin infections: The Cannabis plant might have antibacterial properties. This has potential benefits in fighting infections.
– Wrinkles and signs of aging: CBD has antioxidants that can help reduce signs of aging in the skin. Skin experts agree that cell oxidation contributes to the skin losing its youthful appearance as we age. Antioxidants can slow down this aging process.
These are just some of the benefits reported from various studies. Research and studies on CBD continue as researchers strive to find out more on how CBD interacts with our bodies in order to uncover more benefits.
What Does CBD Stand for and Is it Good for Me? Putting It All Together
CBD has many potential benefits in improving one’s physical and mental health. You can use CBD in many forms such as tinctures, gummies and other edibles, beverages, creams and other topicals, inhalants, and more. It can supplement treatments of various health condition to provide relief from negative symptoms.
If you are looking for CBD products, always get them from a reputable source. A trusted source will ensure you that you are getting a high-quality CBD product which will have no psychoactive properties. Products from less reputable sources may be impure, so you will not get that guarantee. If taking CBD as a supplement, discuss it with your doctor first to see if the supplement is appropriate for you.
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