What is CBD oil?
Cannabidiol, better known simply as CBD oil, is a naturally occurring compound found primarily in the resinous flowers of the cannabis plant. CBD is one of more than a hundred “phytocannabinoids,” unique to cannabis, and endowing this plant with its well-known therapeutic profile.
People have been using cannabis as a medicine for thousands of years, with CBD itself also having a similar and rich history of scientific research and therapeutic use. Continuing this legacy, today many of the therapeutic properties of CBD have been confirmed, and new ones are discovered every day. From this, it well established that CBD is a remarkably safe, non-addictive, versatile and effective therapeutic compound.
What is full spectrum CBD oil?
Full-spectrum CBD refers to products that contain all the cannabinoids (including small amounts of THC), terpenes and flavonoids that occur naturally in the plant. These products are also most often favored for their therapeutic value because of the entourage effect where all the compounds work together synergistically (more on this later).
Other types of CBD extracts
Broad-spectrum CBD is very similar to full-spectrum because it contains all the whole-plant compounds, but with all THC removed. This makes it an excellent choice for people who still want all the benefits of full-spectrum, but without the risk of testing positive for THC.
As the name suggests, isolate contains only CBD. During the extraction process all other cannabinoids, terpenes and plant compounds are removed to leave behind a white powder or crystals that is 99+% pure CBD. This is a good choice for people who are sensitive to other cannabinoids, or need precision dosages of CBD.
Water-soluble / Nano-CBD
Nano-CBD is the new kid on the block representing the newest in CBD extracts. During the manufacturing process, it reduces CBD molecules into nano-sized particles, making them water soluble and easier for them to pass through the cellular gaps through which “normal” CBD molecules can’t. This allows for a much higher bioavailability.
Hemp Seed Oil
Technically not a CBD extract, hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant and contains no cannabinoids. It is however rich in many vitamins, minerals and essential fatty-acids, making it a great carrier medium in many CBD products.
Besides CBD, there are seven more major cannabinoids found in cannabis, including:
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC): THC is unique in how it activates the CB1 receptors in the brain, and is what gives cannabis its psychoactive, euphoric, and intoxicating effects.
- Cannabichromene (CBC): CBC is a non-intoxicating cannabinoid and is thought to work synergistically with the other cannabinoids, helping them to do their job better.
- Cannabigerol (CBG): CBG is actually the precursor of THC, CBD and CBC.
- Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV): THCV is structurally it is very similar to THC, but with very different effects.
- Cannabidivarin (CBDV): CBDV is structurally very similar to CBD and although not researched as much.
- Cannabinol (CBN): Mildly psychoactive, CBN comes from degraded THC. Because of this, there is usually very little CBN found in the fresh plant.
What is the entourage effect
As we mentioned earlier, many people believe that full-spectrum or broad-spectrum CBD oils, extracts and products are better than products made from isolates. And there is a real scientific reason for that. It’s called the entourage effect – the hypothesis that whole plant compounds work better than single compounds do. And in the case of the cannabis and hemp plant, this means using the full range of cannabinoids, terpenes, natural oils, waxes and flavonoids in a CBD oil to maximise their benefits in the body.
In fact, lab and patient-based studies show that, while cannabinoids such as CBD, THC, CBC, CBG and CBN do work alone for certain symptoms, they often create better outcomes when used in combination. Scientist also discovered that, especially with naturally occurring terpenes, there is the potential to cause even more profound effects.
How Does CBD Oil Work?
The reason CBD works for such a wide range of symptoms and condition, is because of the way it interacts with the body. One such way is by imitating and expand the effects of endocannabinoids, so named because of their similarity to plant cannabinoids.
Endocannabinoids form part of a larger biological network called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), that also consists of cannabinoids receptors located throughout the body, as well as metabolic enzymes. Since the discovery of the ECS, researchers found it has major implications for nearly every area of medical science and helps to explain how and why cannabinoids like CBD are such versatile compounds.
For instance, the ECS plays a crucial role in regulating a broad range of physiological processes, from mood and mental health, to intestinal health, immune activity, blood pressure, bone density, metabolism and even fertility.
Please note that the information on this website does not offer health or medical advice. It is intended for your general knowledge only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment for specific medical conditions. Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.
What is CBD Oil Good For (Benefits)?
Because more and more people are turning away from pharmaceuticals, favouring more natural and safer options, CBD has become a popular alternative medicine that is more in synch with the body’s natural processes.
In fact, because CBD taps into how the body functions on a deeper, biological level as we discussed earlier, it can provide relief for a wide range of symptoms and diseases in a way that many other therapeutic compounds cannot. This property of CBD also explains why the health properties of CBD are researched so extensively.
Here are a few of the most well-known evidence-based benefits of CBD.
Immune System Support
CBD can help with immune support in various ways. CBD is well known for its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties – both of which are related to immune system health. But CBD also stops the breakdown of the endocannabinoids linked to maintaining homeostasis and healthy immune function.
Better Sleep + Brain Function
CBD helps improve REM sleep, which is vital for optimal cognitive functioning because it helps in forming new memories, stimulating the central nervous system, and restoring brain chemistry. Similarly, because CBD prevents the breakdown of anandamide, it helps reduce feelings of stress, anxiety and depression, setting the scene for better sleep.
Healing Acne and Other Skin Issues
CBD is great for a treating and healing a variety of skin conditions like wrinkles, eczema, and psoriasis because of its anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. CBD is also great for treating various types of acne thanks to its ability to adjust how the body creates sebum.
Reducing Anxiety + Depression
One of the most popular uses of CBD is for combating anxiety and depression. CBD’s anti-anxiety and anti-depressant properties stem from moderating the activation of the receptors involved in brain development and mood. But scientists also found that CBD restores endocannabinoid signalling similar to that of conventional antidepressant treatments.
Many scientists believe that CBD can help manage appetite. This is because CBD can help decrease levels of resistin, a hormone associated with obesity. Similarly, CBD can also increase glucose-dependent insulinotropic peptide, the hormone responsible for insulin secretion.
Types of CBD Products + How to Use Them
CBD products come in lots of different types, each of which is used differently and for different reasons.
CBD Oil / Tincture
Usually comes in a dropper bottle and can either be made from a full- or broad-spectrum CBD extract or from a CBD isolate or nano-amplified CBD which is mixed in with a carrier oil such as hemp seed oil or MCT oil.
Administered sublingually, by placing a few drops are placed under the tongue and held there for 1-2 minutes before swallowing the rest.
Nothing more than a CBD oil in a gel cap, CBD capsules come in a wide variety of different strengths and sizes.
Administered orally by simply swallow a capsule with water.
Edibles are created by adding a CBD isolates or extracts to a wide variety of different food products. Popular edibles include things like gummies, lollipops, and other types of candies and baked goods.
Administered orally by enjoying in the same way as any other candy or baked product.
Topicals / Beauty Products
CBD topicals come in a variety of forms, ranging from creams and balms, to transdermal patches. Because endocannabinoid receptors are present in the skin, this is an effective method of delivering CBD to specific areas, providing localized relief without having to pass through the rest of the body.
Applied topically by putting a small amount of CBD salve or cream directly to the problem area and massage into the skin.
Vaporizers come in a variety of styles, colours, sizes and flavours, providing effective, efficient and almost instant relief for a variety of conditions and symptoms.
Administered through inhalation with an onset time of 20-60 seconds. Effective for acute conditions.