First off, CBD comes from the cannabis (marijuana) plant. The Marijuana plant has been used for thousands of years and contains hundreds of different chemicals. Some of these chemicals are found in other species of plants and is the reason that some strains of Marijuana can smell like fruits or even trees. Although some chemicals
First off, CBD comes from the cannabis (marijuana) plant. The Marijuana plant has been used for thousands of years and contains hundreds of different chemicals. Some of these chemicals are found in other species of plants and is the reason that some strains of Marijuana can smell like fruits or even trees. Although some chemicals aren’t unique, the cannabis plant has over 66 different compounds that are specific to the Cannabis genus, named “cannabinoids.”
If you’re in a hurry and cant read the whole article, here is a brief video explaining almost everything you need to know.
What is Inside the Marijuana Plant?
Now that you know what CBD is, lets take a look at whats inside its mother plant. The Institute of Medicine published a study in Mar. 1999 report titled “Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base”: goes into more detail.
I have summarized their key findings in a chart below.
Different Types of Cannabinoids found in the Marijuana Plant
|Cannabinoid Types||Abbreviation||Detected Variants|
The two most popular cannabinoids in the Marijuana plant, by far, are THC and CBD. THC is the chemical that induces psychoactive effects and produces the feeling of “getting high.” CBD distinguishes itself because it possesses an enormous amount of medicinal and therapeutic properties, while not having any psychoactive effects.
As the knowledge around what is CBD grows, we are realizing its potential to revolutionize medicine and provide relief unlike any other medicine out on the market today.
Below, I will tell you more about why CBD is so revolutionary and why it matters to you.
CBD Does Not Get You High
This is one of the main questions surrounding Cannabidiol, Marijuana, the plant where CBD can be sourced from, has been around for a very long time, but most have only heard of its counterpart, THC. Unlike THC, Cannabidiol possesses no psychoactive effects, meaning it doesn’t get you high. Even so, as THC is also sourced from cannabis, the plant could contain amounts of THC. These amounts are big enough to produce mind altering affects, and if not grown to specific exclude the THC, it will definitely get you high. Answering the question, what is cbd, starts off with understanding that CBD doesn’t product and psychoactive effects.
If you want to know more about how exactly THC and CBD can be ingested, and which ways are most / less effective, I go more into detail of how cannabinoids can be ingested here.
What Does CBD Feel Like?
Now that you know that CBD doesn’t get you high, you’re probably wondering how exactly makes you feel. To further understand what is CBD, one must learn about the Endocannabinoid system. In an earlier post I dive into the science of CBD and the endocannabinoid system, but I will be keeping the information in this post a little more general.
Your body naturally produces chemicals called endocannbinoids. The human brain has cannabinoid receptors, which are associated with emotion and stress. CBD indirectly increases your body’s own production of endocannabinoids and unlike THC, which binds to these receptors, Cannabidiol solely influences them indirectly.
After ingesting the CBD, one will begin to feel a sense of relaxation throughout your entire body. My first time smoking CBD, my feet fell asleep. My grandma also experienced this same effect, and it alleviated the arthritis in her feet. Here are a few of the most common effects people experience when ingesting Cannabidiol.
Common sensations of CBD are
It’s very common for people to ingest CBD and not notice anything for quite a while. The effects are extremely subtle, and one must be very aware of their own body to sense them. Even so, one thing that most people feel right away, is the relief of pain.
Will CBD Cause You to Fail A Drug Test?
No! CBD alone will not cause a positive result on a drug test. It is not tested for and isn’t a worry if your using completely pure CBD products.
CBD from Hemp Vs. CBD from Cannabis
There are two plants in which CBD can be sourced from, Hemp and Marijuana. Marijuana is regulated as a schedule 1 drug, so CBD derived from cannabis has tighter regulations. CBD sourced from Hemp in completely legal in all 50 states. Depending on what the laws are in your state, your CBD products could be coming from either one.
Being said, CBD from both sources are virtually identical.
The main difference, besides the legality of its mother plant, is the yield that one can get from either source. When CBD is extracted from Marijuana, the yields can be up to 400% times greater.
On top of the CBD yields being greater when extracted from Marijuana, the potency is also significantly higher. For years growers have been cultivating and mating plants to produce higher and higher yields of CBD. This has been done for a longer period of time with THC, but CBD yields can get in the 20% range.
This makes Marijuana the prime option when trying to get higher yield and potency. If you’re interested in how CBD oil is extracted from the plants, check out my earlier post.
Is CBD Dangerous?
CBD behaves as a non-toxic compound and studies have shown that doses of 700 milligrams per day, for 6 weeks did not show any overt toxicity in humans, suggesting that it can be used for prolonged treatment.
As CBD doesn’t get you high, or produce any harmful effects on your body, it is safe to to ingest in even the most extreme amounts. There is no overdosing, and the worst the could happen is you’d fall asleep in your chair.
9 CBD Medicinal Benefits
CBD has been scientifically shown to have the potential for a variety of medications. This study by the British Journal of Pharmacology outlines its potential as a drug for a variety of illnesses
“CBD acts in some experimental models as an anti-inflammatory, anticonvulsant, anti-oxidant, anti-emetic, anxiolytic and antipsychotic agent, and is therefore a potential medicine for the treatment of neuroinflammation, epilepsy, oxidative injury, vomiting and nausea, anxiety and schizophrenia, respectively.”
1) Pain Relief / Inflammation
This aspect of CBDs medicinal properties really hits home for me. About 3 years ago my 85-year-old grandma’s rheumatoid arthritis started getting really bad. She had been to the doctor multiple times and they eventually prescribed her a really strong opioid. Immediately after she started taking these, the happy, life filled woman I knew and loved disappeared. The medication had turned her into a zombie and was eating away at every piece of her lively personality. Troubled by this, my dad and I took the medications away, and she eventually returned back to normal.
It was at this point that I knew I needed to try something else. I had heard of CBD before and decided to give it a try. I traveled out of the city and found a dispensary where I could get some crème for her pain during the day, and oil to help at night.
Within 1 use of CBD, her pain and inflammation got exponentially better. The pain didn’t go away entirely, but it made her arthritis manageable. A few years later, and she still uses the same ointments and oils I got for her before.
My dad recently started using CBD crème as well. He has rheumatoid arthritis in his knees and recently it has been starting to really bother him. I got him the same crème, and he now uses it as well. Just as with my grandma, it doesn’t make the pain go away completely, but it takes down the inflammation and makes everything manageable.
Here are a few facts and studies that support what my family has experienced first-hand.
In 2012, the Journal of Experiment Medicine published a study that tested CBD and its anti-inflammatory effects on rodents. The results of the study claimed that said CBD significantly helped decreased their inflammation and that the non-psychoactive components of the cannabis plant have strong potential to become a new class of treatments for chronic pain.
Here is a direct quote from their study, which is linked in the above paragraph.
“We report that systemic and intrathecal administration of cannabidiol (CBD), a major nonpsychoactive component of marijuana, and its modified derivatives significantly suppress chronic inflammatory and neuropathic pain without causing apparent analgesic tolerance in rodents.”
I wrote an extended section on CBD for pain relief / inflammation which goes into greater detail that you can check out here.
2) Helps treats Epilepsy
Having more than 2 unprovoked seizures is cause for an Epileptic diagnosis. People who have Epilepsy endure a struggle that most could never imagine. Most seizures can last between 1-3 minutes, while those more than 5 minutes require medical attention. Epileptic seizures can even result in death, and this is the cause of more than 1200 deaths in the UK each year.
According to a survey done by Stanford University in 2013, CBD is an effective medication for Epileptic seizures. Stanford went to a Facebook group where by parents conglomerate to express how Cannabidiol has been helping their children fight off Epileptic seizures.
After careful evaluation, 19 of the parents met the criteria for the study and were interviewed about their experience. Out of the 19 surveyed, 16/19, or 84% of parents reported a reduction in their child’s seizures after ingesting CBD.
- 2/19, 11%, of the parents reported that their child’s seizures stopped entirely
- 8/19, 42%, reported a reduction in seizures by more than 80%
- 6/19, 32%, reported a reduction by 25-60% in seizures
The study also noted that on average, parents had tried 12 other anti-epileptic drugs before turning to CBD.
After years of research, in March, 2018 the FDA approved the first CBD based drug for Epilepsy.
If you’d like to learn more about exactly how CBD can be used to treat for Epilepsy, check out my post here.
3) Antipsychotic Effects
Some people say that smoking Marijuana makes you paranoid. Well, CBD actually does the opposite. Research from the past several years has shown CBDs potential to be used to make anti-psychotic medications. One study published by the National Institute of Health found that CBD has demonstrated anti-psychotic effects in animals and healthy volunteers.
CBD has a similar profile as other anti-psychotic medications on the market and seen when being tested on animals.
“These results support the idea that CBD may be a future therapeutic option in psychosis, in general and in schizophrenia, in particular.”
4) Reduces Anxiety
A number of studies have shown that Cannabidiol induces anxiolytic effects in both animals and humans.
One published in Neuropsychopharmacology performed a double-blind study of 24 patients predisposed with social anxiety disorder. These patients had no idea what is CBD and had never used it before. For the experiment, they were put into a situation where they needed to simulate a public speaking event. As public speaking is the number 1 fear amongst people today, I can only imagine how bad it would be with social anxiety disorder.
The test group was given 600mg of CBD 1.5 hours before the event. While the control was given a placebo. Each participant had their blood pressure, heart rate, and skin conductance 6 times during the speaking event.
The study concluded that “Pretreatment with CBD significantly reduced anxiety, cognitive impairment and discomfort in their speech performance, and significantly decreased alert in their anticipatory speech. The placebo group presented higher anxiety, cognitive impairment, discomfort, and alert levels when compared with the control group”
I wrote a more in-depth article about CBD and anxiety here.
5) Helps to Fight Cancer
This next one might be hard to believe, but trust me, it’s true.
Several studies have found that Cannabinoids have anti-proliferative and pro-apoptotic effects, and are known to interfere with the nerovascularization of tumours, migration of cancer cells, adhesion, invasion and metastasization.
One study in published in 2011 by Molecular Cancer Therapy found that Cannabidiol induced apoptosis, or cell death amongst breast cancer cells, while leaving other cells unharmed. CBD actually was providing oxygen to the healthy cells and making them work more efficiently, while at the same time killing cancer.
Another study published by the Journal of Pharmacology Experimental Therapy grew human cancer-like tumors inside of mice and rats. They were then injected them with 5 different chemicals, one of them being cannabinoids. As a result of these tests, they found that the rodents treated with cannabinoids were seeing an inhibition of tumor growth.
The study concluded that “Our data support the further testing of cannabidiol and cannabidiol-rich extracts for the potential treatment of cancer.”
The potential for Cannabidiol to become the world’s first cancer killing drug is real. It has shown great promise, and the era of cannabinoid research is just beginning.
I wrote a more in-depth article about CBD and cancer here.
6) Relieves Nausea
Nausea is something that has puzzled humanity for thousands of years. On the market, you can find an array of different medications that claim to eliminate it. Unfortunately there isn’t one single drug that can completely eliminate it, and this is still a problem people all around the world still face today.
According to the British Journal of Pharmacology, CBD possesses anti-nausea properties and has potential to be used as a medication for such symptoms. When given in small doses Cannabidiol suppressed nausea, but in large doses it made it worse. So, when trying to combat vomiting or an upset stomach, be sure only to use a little.
One other study that tested Cannabidiol on animals stated that“Preclinical research indicates that cannabinioids, including CBD, may be effective clinically for treating both nausea and vomiting produced by chemotherapy or other therapeutic treatments.”
As chemotherapy produces a variety of negative side effects, Cannabidiol would be a great inhibitor of the vomiting and nausea associated with it.
A new potential medicine will soon be developed using Cannabidiol.
If youd like to learn more about how what is CBD and how it affects nausea, check out my post here.
7) Lowers Incidence of Diabetes
A study published by Autoimmunity in 2006, found that when given CBD, it significantly reduced the incidence in non-obese mice from 86% to 30%. Their results showed that Cannabidiol can greatly reduce insulitis and inhibit its delay, along with the inflammation associated with cytokine production. In turn making the mice have a lower rate of diabetes. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16698671
The American Journal of Medicine published a study that tested the relationship between marijuana use and fasting insulin, glucose, and insulin resistance. It consisted of a group of 4657 adult men and women who were studied from the years 2005 to 2010. Participants ranged from current, to past, or non-marijuana users. For 5 years the participants were subject to blood samples after a 9 hour fast in order to evaluate their insulin resistance.
The results from this study found that the current marijuana users had 16% lower fasting insulin levels and that they found significant correlation between marijuana use and smaller waist circumferences.
I wrote a more in-depth article about CBD and diabetes here.
8) Promotes Cardiovascular Health
Another finding by the study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology found that Cannabidiol also helps protect vascular damage that can be caused by an environment of high glucose.
Cannabidiol has also been shown to help reduce the vascular hyper permeability that is caused by high glucose environments, and which can in turn cause leaky gut. This is an illness which substances leak from the gut into the blood stream and could potentially be deadly.
Now that we’ve talked about all the benefits, let’s ask one of the most important questions……
9) Helps Alleviate Parkinson’s
Parkinsons affects the lives of over 10 million individuals around the world. Behind Alzheimers, it is the second largest neurological disease out there. It is a disease that mainly affects those over the age of 59, with more than 95% of Parkinson’s patients falling within that range. Someone diagnosed with Parkinson’s is literally trapped in their own body. They lose the ability to care for themselves, and live a normal life.
Over the past few years many Parkinson’s patients have turned to CBD and cannabis based products to help them regain control of their lives. There aren’t too many studies about why cannabis helps with Cannabidiol, but there are overwhelming amounts of videos and testimonials showing that it does.
If you want to learn more about Parkinson’s and how CBD works to combat it, check out my post here.
How Can CBD Be Ingested?
CBD can ingested in a variety of different ways. The most effective and concentrated way to take CBD is in oil form, but there are a variety of different ways one can use it. Below I have listed the different ways, and locations where you can find these specific CBD products.
Oils are one of the most common ways to take CBD, as they are easy to use, and typically have the highest concentration.
Edibles are the second most popular to ingest CBD. They aren’t are concentrated, but come in a variety of different types of treats.
One of the newer ways to ingest CBD are in drinks.
Vapes are another very popular way to ingest CBD. Typically you will buy a cartridge or pen and fill it with juice. Some come with juice included and are disposable.
Creams are by far the most effective when it comes to treating symptoms such as arthritis. My 85 year old grandma uses CBD cream every night and it has helped her pain tremendously.
The very first person who isolated Cannabidiol from the Marijuana plant was a man named Roger Adams. Roger Adams was an American organic chemist who graduated from Harvard University in 1909. After extracting the CBD oil, Rogers and others began trying to answer the question, what is CBD, and started studying its possible benefits.
In 1946 Dr Walter Loewe performed the first CBD experiments on primates. It was the first indication that CBD did not produce any mind altering effects like its counterpart THC. Research continued for over 15 years and eventually in the 1960s, the first CBD oil medicine was put on the market by the British Pharmacopeia. The United States holds over 6 million patents related to cannabinoids and their antioxidant properties.
As the years went on, and the research to understand what is CBD continued. In 1980 and Dr. Mechoulam showed that CBD could be used to Epilepsy.
Is CBD Legal?
Cannabidiol derived from Hemp is currently legal in all 50 states. The problem is, that Hemp derived CBD is significantly less potent and costs more money to extract.
So many companies and business would prefer to sell Cannabidiol sourced from Marijuana. Although, each state has a different stance on Cannabidiol. Some allow it completely and unconditionally, while others are a bit more stringent. My website educates on on this issue, as understand what is CBD and education upon the subject, is extremely important.
Even if you know what is CBD, and all its amazing effects, it is still necessary to understand its legality.
Check out my post here If you’d like to find out your states exact regulations on CBD, or THC.
I hope that now you feel confident answering the question, what is CBD. CBD is an amazing chemical that were only starting to learn so much about. It has potential to revolutionize medicine and the age of research has only begun. As of last year, University of California, Irvine opened the first marijuana research institute. More money is spent every year trying to understanding this complex an amazing substance. As time goes on, additional secrets will be revealed.
As of right now Cannabidiol is quite a controversial topic, but in a few years things will be a different story. Stay tuned to my website and check out my other articles if you’d like to learn more.
Please leave a comment and let me know your CBD story, or if you have any questions. Also if this helped you better understand what is CBD, please let me know. Id be happy to answer.