Can CBD Help Reduce Anxiety, Stress, and More?
More and more people are now using CBD oil for anxiety because of its wide range of relaxing benefits. But did you know that CBD is also believed to reduce stress, fear, and combat plenty of other health imbalances?
Cannabidiol (CBD) belongs to the group of phytocannabinoids which is a subgroup of cannabinoids extracted from plants, usually hemp. Nowadays, hemp is used for various purposes; for making ropes, paper, fabrics, or as a substitute for protein supplements, as this plant is a great source of this molecule.
Hemp is also used in the manufacturing process of CBD extracts consumed by the public due to its ability to possibly alleviate stress, anxiety, and fear.
We know it may sound bodacious, but no, the world of medicine doesn’t end at pharmaceutical medications. In fact, there are many natural compounds surrounding us which may help people alleviate the above conditions.
Believe it or not, CBD is one of such compounds.
But how exactly can cannabidiol succeed in helping fight chronic stress, anxiety, fear, and a wide range of mental disorders? It all boils down to the interaction between CBD and the endocannabinoid system in our bodies.
Let’s dig deeper into the subject.
CBD and the endocannabinoid system
There is a reason why some doctors encourage their patients to use CBD oil for anxiety and associated neurological disorders.
Like we said, CBD belongs to the group of phytocannabinoids. In other words, it means that your body cannot produce this compound but you can obtain it from the cannabis plant for example.
When CBD enters your body, it triggers certain reactions in both the body and brain. This is because cannabidiol affects CB1 and CB2 receptors.
Now, the above receptors control the number of endocannabinoids in your body, and thus, they regulate a wide range of bodily and brain functions. CB1 receptors are majorly found in the brain, while CB2 receptors are spread throughout the entire body and immune system.
How does CBD affect CB1 and CB2 receptors?
Interestingly, the immune and nervous systems are interconnected. Does it ring a bell? If not, we can tell you that suffering from a neurological disorder may be closely related to issues with the immune system. Or the other way round, neurodegenerative processes may cause inflammation which affects your digestive tract.
As studies have shown, CBD stimulates CB2 receptors and acts as a natural anti-inflammatory, and can boost your immune system. This, in turn, is a good indicator that CBD may actually combat a wide range of health imbalances.
People use CBD oil to relieve many ailments and improve the quality of their lives in a natural way. You can read plenty of inspiring stories by CBD consumers who have managed to significantly decrease their affliction with a simple use of CBD oil.
And if you scroll down to the comment section when reading those stories online, you’ll see a true mass of the so-called anecdotal evidence supporting one another.
Does science have anything to say about this phenomenon?
Studies on the use of CBD oil for anxiety and fear
In a small 2018 study, researchers found that CBD could reduce symptoms of social anxiety associated with a social anxiety disorder (SAD). The researchers took brain scans of participants, and the results revealed significant changes in the regions of the brain associated with feelings of fear and anxiety.
A 2011 study showed that CBD can assist with social anxiety in people who experience this during public speeches, or even in social group scenarios.
Furthermore, according to a 2015 analysis of previous studies on the use of CBD oil for anxiety, the cannabidiol may be helpful in fighting against different forms of the disorder.
However, these studies included limited data and applied to the short-term use of CBD. Researchers are still not sure whether the chronic use of CBD oil may still have the same effects on patients. Nevertheless, the initial results are promising.
CBD and stress
Many people associate the use of cannabis with increased stress and anxiety levels. Actually, THC’s anxiety-inducing properties are a common fact, especially when taken in high doses.
This happens because THC mimics the structure of anandamide, the endocannabinoid responsible for our body’s ability to cope with stress and fear. What THC does is tap into CB1 receptors that regulate the levels of anandamide. The more THC consumed, the higher levels of anxiety are likely to occur.
CBD, on the other hand, doesn’t affect the endocannabinoid system in such a direct way.
You already know that cannabidiol can reduce inflammation by stimulating CB2 receptors. But does it have a binding affinity with the CB1 receptor?
Not exactly. CBD might not come into direct contact with the CB1 receptor. Nonetheless, it inhibits the production of the FAAH enzyme which breaks down anandamide. When the anandamide levers are lower, your endocannabinoid system can deal with stress much better.
More interestingly, CBD also blocks the exact area where THC wants to bind to the CB1 receptor. As a result, CBD can actually counteract the mind-altering properties of tetrahydrocannabinol.
CBD oil Studies and Chronic Stress
A 2009 study that investigated the relationship between the use of CBD oil for anxiety and stress found that cannabidiol can partially activate the serotonin 5HT1a receptors. Therefore, CBD may be capable of helping people cope with stress.
There is one more study we would like you to devote your attention to. In a recent research paper published last year by scientists at Harvard University, the researchers found a strong bond between an overactivated amygdala caused by chronic stress, inflammation, and a higher risk of cardiac diseases.
It turned out that our bone marrow produces excess white blood cells when under chronic stress, and therefore, it triggers the inflammation that blocks the arteries in the end.
CBD has gained its popularity for showing strong anti-inflammatory properties, and several studies indicate that it can also combat the side effects imposed on the body by oxidative stress.
According to the paper by Professor Saoirse O’Sullivan, a single dose of CBD can reduce blood pressure in human subjects. She believes that the CBD’s inhibitory effect on the part of the nervous system that is responsible for the fight or flight response can prevent an increase in blood pressure.
The Best Is Yet To Come!
So, to cut the long story short, we can say that CBD has huge potential to calm the choppy waters and help us live more peaceful and easy lives.
Although we still need more big-data research on the long-term use of CBD oil for anxiety and stress, what we know now helps us look in the future with a fair dose of optimism. If you want to get off your pharmaceutical treatment and try to find relief in CBD, consult your doctor first.
Once you establish a strategy and the optimal dose of CBD oil for your condition, feel free to explore the variety of CBD products we offer.
And remember the credo: educate, medicate, advocate.