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The successful use of cannabis in medicine has been one of the most compelling arguments in favor of recognizing cannabis as a substance with medical use. Cannabidiol is one of the most studied substances to date. Judging by the statements of physicians, the CDB has almost miraculous properties. Almost every week we see a new message in the media about the successful use of cannabidiol in the treatment of diseases such as epilepsy, Dravet Syndrome, schizophrenia and others. What is cannabidiol?
Since July 2018, CBD has been actively included in many products (watch for labels), plus it is sold in the form of pure oil (the highest concentration), aerosols and ointments (medical/cosmetic products) and pills. The latter should appear in the pharmacy departments of vitamins and nutritional supplements.
Experts say that, in addition to all the listed benefits, Cannabidiol will help lovers of weight loss and healthy eating. On the one hand, CBD can increase appetite. On the other hand, the substance accelerates the process of digestion. The food does not linger in the stomach and quickly splits. Vitamins and minerals get into the blood, muscles, and bones faster.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol or CBD is a substance found in large quantities in hemp. That so-called cannabinoid is one of a group of 85 currently known complex unique substances contained in plants of the Cannabis genus. CBD does not possess psychoactive properties – that is, it does not cause changes in consciousness and does not affect perception or attention.
On the other hand, this substance has properties that have significant medical potential. Thus, clinical studies show that cannabidiol is able to resist spasms, convulsions, restrain seizures (for example, in cases of epilepsy), and has an anti-inflammatory effect.
The basis for the production of CBD is tiny trichomes that cover cannabis plant flowers. They protect the plant from excessive ultraviolet radiation, insects, bacteria, and fungi. Sticky layer retains insects. This oily resin contains many beneficial components that are the basis of CBD.
There are different varieties of cannabis. They differ in the concentration of resinous trichomes. Therefore, high-resin cannabis is used to produce high-quality CBD.
We should also note that on the stem of the plant there are also tiny sessile trichomes. But they practically do not contain useful pitches. Therefore, if some companies claim that they make CBD from cannabis stalks, in fact, they lie to their customers selling a low-quality product.
Methods of production of CBD
There are several methods for producing CBD oil. All of them are significantly different and allow to create a product of different quality and content.
Some ways are safer and more efficient than others. The main purpose of the extraction is to make a highly concentrated product that can be used for the production of other products. Therefore, the purity and texture of the oil are largely dependent on the method used for the extraction.
CO2 extraction of CBD oil
This method is the most common in the commercial sphere, characterized by a high level of safety in separating CBD from cannabis biomass. At high pressure, the carbonyl gas turns into a liquid, acting as a solvent. It washes out all the necessary ingredients from the plant. With the help of CO2, you can fine-tune the equipment to those elements that are needed by changing the pressure and temperature.
When the pressure drops, golden substance forms, which undergoes several degrees of purification. The final product is a high-quality CBD oil without the content of harmful impurities and chlorophyll. CO2 extraction requires the use of expensive equipment, but it completely eliminates the risk of fire or explosion.
If you want the oil to be as pure as possible, you should make sure that it is produced by extraction of CO2. This method is soft to plants, and important substances, such as terpenes, remain intact. Besides, carbon dioxide is cost-effective, environmentally friendly, found in nature and leaves no traces.
Ethanol extraction of CBD oil
The use of ethanol is a popular way of getting various medical drugs. To get such a CBD oil, you need to soak cannabis flower in ethanol. The mixture is filtered and mixed. The resulting oil is heated until a viscous and sticky liquid is obtained. It is worth noting that this extraction method includes a small amount of THC in the CBD, as well as a full range of cannabinoids. Therefore, you need to be careful with the dosage when using CBD oil by the method of Ethanol extraction.
Hydrocarbon Extraction of CBD Oil
This method includes the use of carbon solvents – propane, hexane, butane, and mixtures thereof. The use of these substances has both disadvantages and advantages compared with other methods. With the right process, using Hydrocarbon Extraction, cannabinoids and terpenes can be easily separated from the harmful components of cannabis without losing their therapeutic properties.
On the other hand, butane and propane are neurotoxins. If the oil is not completely cleared of their content, then such a product can be harmful, especially to a person with weak immunity. Also, the use of hydrocarbons in the production is unsafe.
Experts do not recommend extract CBD Oil from biomass at home. It may be hazardous to health. The finished product may contain harmful substances. Besides, you can make a mistake with the dosage, which is also dangerous for your health.
Pure CBD oil has several significant advantages. Cannabidiol has a positive effect on various health problems.
CBD dulls pain
Firstly, this substance helps to reduce pain. It does not act on the body as strong prescription drugs (opioids), which suppress pain and give euphoria. Therefore, it is very difficult to become dependent on CBD (like from the same marijuana, pills or heroin).
Cannabidiol is an excellent anti-inflammatory agent
Recent studies published in the scientific and medical journal Future Medicinal Chemistry have shown that CBD is in no way inferior to popular anti-inflammatory drugs. Its impact is especially effective when it comes to arthritis, as well as problems with muscles and skin. Researchers promise fantastic results after rubbing a sore back or, for example, knees. Even a microscopic dose of cannabidiol should help chronically ill people.
CBD reduces anxiety
Anxiety affects 40 million people in the United States every day.
Anxiety, nervousness, haste, and bustle – one of the main enemies of the Americans and Europeans. That unpleasant state is often transformed into depression and devil-may-care attitude to everything that happens. Anxiety often leads people to suicide.
In one study, doctors gave small doses of CBD to participants at an important conference. As studies have shown, it is those who used the CBD that behaved with maximum concentration, calmness, and restraint. Under the influence of cannabidiol, people joked a lot and made an excellent impression on everyone.
In other words, CBD is an excellent sedative that can be immediately recorded in the category of organic and natural.
CBD helps people with mental diseases
We are talking about schizophrenia, bipolar disorders, outbursts of anger and aggression, as well as an abrupt change of mood. Cannabidiol is smoothing the behavior of a mentally ill person and makes it more predictable for those around him.
CBD strengthens the heart
Cannabidiol use has become particularly relevant due to the sedentary lifestyle and high-calorie food, which is included in the diet of Americans. The likelihood of heart disease and seizures, as well as high blood pressure, is reduced if a person uses products with CBD from time to time. Cannabidiol perfectly relaxes blood vessels and increases blood circulation.
CBD and skin
Another use of CBD oil – it can help the body with general inflammation – and thus help improve the condition of the skin with acne, etc. Researchers believe that CBD oil prevents the excessive activity of the sebaceous glands that produce a natural oily substance that moisturizes the skin. Too much sebum can lead to acne.
More recently, researchers at the University of Colorado have stated that CBD can be a successful natural alternative to treating symptoms associated with skin diseases such as eczema and psoriasis.
CBD and brain
The potential and amazing health benefits of cannabidiol are that its antioxidant effect can protect our brains.
Since many neurodegenerative diseases are caused by toxicity and the accumulation of the neurotransmitter glutamate in our brain, studies on mice have shown that CBD reduces the level of toxicity and reduces nervous inflammation (in studies on mice).
CBD and diabetes
In one preclinical study, it was found that CBD reduces the incidence of diabetes from 86% to 30% in diabetic rodents. This is partly due to the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD, which can slow the beginning of diabetes.
Other beneficial properties
One study found that CBD helped people with social anxiety give a public speech, while other studies have shown that CBD can help to:
- Remove stress;
- Decrease physiological effects of anxiety, such as overcome the increase in heart rate;
- Improve sleep with insomnia.
Research into the use of CBD for medical purposes continues. Surely, we’ll see more than one example of the beneficial use of cannabidiol.
Are there any side effects?
Although the CBD is generally safe for human’s health, there are several side effects that can occur.
- Changes in appetite;
There is also evidence that CBD may interact with other medications. Therefore, before starting the course, we recommend consulting a doctor.
CBD oil: ingredients and their effects
CBD oil contains many important ingredients. The human body cannot produce them itself, so they are necessary. It contains not only vitamins and fiber but also minerals and proteins. CBD oil can provide the essential fatty acids needed by the body (for example, polyunsaturated omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids) in an optimal ratio of 3:1.
Essential fatty acids help balance the female hormones, helping to alleviate many of the unpleasant symptoms that many have at the time of PMS.
Both fatty acids are important for cell regeneration and renewal and play a crucial role in the development of cell membranes. They are also believed to help reduce inflammation and have a positive effect on blood pressure. Also included is a rare gamma-linolenic acid, which also has an anti-inflammatory effect.
Other ingredients in CBD oil:
- Vitamin B1 (also known as “mental vitamin”, which can affect serotonin levels and create a good mood);
- Vitamin B2 (a coenzyme in cell conversion processes);
- Vitamin E (a natural antioxidant that is thought to be a free radical scavenger);
- Iron (a trace element that should influence the transfer of oxygen from the blood to the cells);
- Potassium (play a role in water balance and impulse transmission to nerves);
- Calcium (play a role in bones and teeth and must come from food);
- Copper (considered important for the formation of red blood cells and can help strengthen the immune system, but should be ingested with food);
- Magnesium (found throughout the human skeleton and is believed to affect blood circulation, lung function, and other organs, as well as the immune system);
- Manganese (important for enzymatic processes and influence the formation of healthy connective tissue);
- Sodium (must be able to affect muscle activity and transmit nerve impulses);
- Phosphorus (in combination with calcium, it can improve the stability of bones and teeth and increase cells);
- Zinc (intended to influence the healthy regeneration of the skin and to participate in numerous metabolic functions).
Carotenoids also play a role in the coloring of CBD oil and give it a golden yellow gloss. They can also counteract premature aging. Other antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, can also affect cholesterol levels and, possibly, also affect cardiovascular diseases.
Is It Really Safe & Effective?
Despite the abundance of experiments, experts believe that the advantages of using CBD are not enough. The reason for this is that cannabidiol is produced without regulation. This leads to the fact that the market is filling with products that are very different in quality. Manufacturers can write anything on the label to sell their product. But for the consumers, it can be a dangerous adventure in the wild west.
Today, CBD oil has been legalized in 30 states where laws on recreational and medical marijuana are in force.
The most serious evidence of benefit to cannabidiol is related to the treatment of epilepsy. The FDA is going to endorse CBD for the treatment of several rare forms of epilepsy in children. This is the only scope of cannabidiol that has been approved at the state level.
What about the treatment of other diseases?
Many experts say there is insufficient evidence to endorse such a drug. CBD requires additional clinical trials to confirm the therapeutic effect.
Leading experts believe that the use of a CBD as an anti-inflammatory agent will be the next approved treatment. This is evidenced by the positive results of tests on animals.
All other methods of use as an antipsychotic, antidepressant or sleep remedy have already been studied in animals, but only a few studies have been conducted in humans, which is insufficient for official recommendations by physicians.
How are things going with regulation?
The Bonn-Miller study showed that due to the weak legal regulation of CBD production, today, on average, 7 out of 10 products contain less marijuana extract than indicated on the label. At the same time, about 43% of the preparations contain very little CBD, and 26% contain too much.
Accordingly, using such drugs, each time you risk getting the wrong dose. Bonn-Miller also cites the following facts: 1 out of 5 products contained the intoxicant chemical THC. This is a problem because THC can increase anxiety and even aggravate cramps. Therefore, experts recommend checking the drug in the laboratory before giving it to a child or taking it yourself.
Potential Interactions with Other Meds
CBD research also raises concerns about the combination with other medications. There is an increase in blood levels of antiepileptic drugs in patients who took CBD. Therefore, in such cases, it is necessary to adjust the dosage in order to avoid side effects.
There is also information that CBD can harm the liver. In 10% of patients, elevated levels of liver enzymes were found, which could damage liver cells. And in 2-3% of cases, the increase in the level of enzymes was so high that doctors recommended stopping using CBD at all.
The main conclusion is that people taking CBD should be under the constant supervision of a doctor. They should receive regular advice and advice before going to the store for CBD.
Cannabidiol is certainly an extremely interesting substance that requires more careful study. It is unique and universal at the same time, and the properties that doctors have found in it today, in just twenty years of closer scrutiny, can only be the tip of the iceberg of its healing properties.