Over the last couple of years there have been more and more CBD products emerging in our world; including tinctures, topical rubs, patches, vaporizing oils, chewable tablets, and even animal products. So, what is all the hype about?

What medical conditions would CBD be helpful for?

CBD (cannabidiol) first started gaining recognition for potential health benefits when it was given to children with rare types of epilepsy as an anti-seizure supplement. Strong scientific evidence has supported CBD’s efficacy in reducing seizures in these cases.

Now, CBD products are being used for a wide range of conditions including pain, anxiety, depression, inflammation, insomnia, stress relief, and cancer treatment. There is still so much research to be done on the efficacy of CBD and specific conditions as listed above, but people have been praising its results. And the beautiful caveat is that there are no known negative side effects due to using CBD. However, with the influx of so many new products, it is imperative you do your research to make sure you are using quality and reliable products free of other chemicals and fillers.

How should you go about shopping for CBD products?

We recommend starting your search for CBD products on the Consumer Reports website, which is filled with all kinds of articles, videos, and other resources. Here are a couple of articles that might be helpful for you:

One brand we love and recommend for its high quality is Remedy Plant Lab. This is a local woman-owned company using local farm-grown hemp from Portland OR, which is third party tested, chemical-free, and uses a self-sustaining system to reduce waste. Visit Remedy Plant Lab for more product information. We carry a supply in the clinic to have on hand for patient purchases.

What is the difference between THC and CBD?

The cannabis plant produces compounds called cannabinoids, one of the most abundant types being cannabidiol (known as CBD). THC is the other common compound people are often referring to when they talk about marijuana, which is responsible for producing the sensation of being “high”. CBD does not produce the same psychoactive effects as THC, due to the difference in the molecular arrangement.

What is the difference between Hemp and marijuana?

Hemp and marijuana are varieties of the same plant species, known as Cannabis. Both plant varieties can produce large amounts of Cannabidiol (CBD), however, the amount of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content in the plant deciphers between hemp and marijuana.

There is a distinct difference between hemp and marijuana. Currently, “hemp” is legally classified into groups of cannabis that contain 0.3% or less THC content. While in contrast, cannabis in the “marijuana” category can contain more than 0.3% THC.

Therefore, when you purchase a CBD product it is regulated to contain no more than 0.3% THC and will not create any intoxicating effects.

So how does CBD work?

To understand how CBD works within the body, it helps to know a little bit about the endocannabinoid system.

All humans and animals have within us an endocannabinoid system and produce our own cannabinoids in our bodies. The endocannabinoid system is of great importance, as it is responsible for regulating and balancing many processes in the body, including communication between cells, immune response, memory, mood, metabolism, and appetite. In fact, endocannabinoids, as well as their receptors, are found throughout the body – in our brain, organs, connective tissues, glands, and immune cells.

Our natural endocannabinoid levels will rise in response to stress, pain, anxiety, and inflammation. However, if we are constantly stressing this system, at some point our system can no longer keep up with replenishment and we will become depleted of our own endocannabinoids. In response, our bodies will start to fall out of balance, creating a multitude of negative effects.

What happens within the body when you take CBD?

When you take CBD products produced from plants, your cannabinoid receptors that are open and available (depleted from endocannabinoids) will attract the cannabidiol molecules. Because these cannabinoid receptors are throughout the body and tissues, CBD can support many different systems and give relief to many different ailments.

This is why CBD products can support a wide array of conditions in each individual, it’s powerful stuff!

Much of this information has been sourced from the book The Rebel’s Apothecary, which is a fantastic resource.