Why Use CBD Products
This is an important question to ask, especially today, since CBD stores are popping up everywhere along with numerous articles about CBD oil benefits. Since the passage of the Federal 2018 Farm Bill, more and more people have become interested in CBD and its potential uses. If you are like us at NaturalCare4U, you probably have numerous questions. We hope to answer some of your questions and concerns in this article.
IS CBD Marijuana?
CBD is short for cannabidiol; a compound extracted from the hemp plant. CBD is a cannabinoid and there are over 100 different cannabinoids. It is a cousin of the marijuana plant, with a major difference, CBD is not psychoactive and therefore, it does not get you “high”.
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is found in cannabis, it is psychoactive and is associated with marijuana. In states where marijuana is legal, it is grown to have high concentrations of THC; however, it is still illegal federally.
Since CBD does not provide a “high” it becomes attractive for other reasons. One such reason is a cell-signaling system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
What is the Endocannabinoid System (ECS)?
In the 1990’s scientists discovered endocannabinoids within the human body. Beginning with a National Institute of Health (NIH) laboratory, the cloning of a rat receptor led to the discovery that mammals have their own cannabinoid receptors. Once these receptors were discovered, the research continued. In 1992, at the Hebrew University, scientists found additional discoveries involving endocannabinoids.
Studies show endocannabinoids are natural and function to keep our bodies in harmony with the environment, a conditional known as homeostasis. Homeostasis is how we self-regulate our body or keep it in balance by adjusting it as needed to survive. It is present in all mammals which is why you will see CBD oil for dogs, cats and other pets.
Research has shown that receptors exists within our body which interact with a wide range of processes, such as: pain, memory, mood, appetite, sleep, stress and more. When something begins to operate outside the norm, our bodies use the ECS to help correct the issue. Even more interesting, is once the endocannabinoids are used by the cells, they breakdown.
How does CBD interact with the ECS?
Research is on-going to discover how CBD interacts with the ECS. What is known, is our bodies produce cannabinoids which act as neurotransmitters, similar to serotonin, and dopamine. Some scientists believe, external cannabinoids such as cannabidiol (CBD) should also interact with your ECS. Some research suggests, CBD may encourage the body to produce more of its own cannabinoids.
Over time, we will have a better understanding of how our ECS works and how CBD interacts with that system to keep our bodies in balance. CBD’s interaction with our endocannabinoid system (ECS) might prove useful in treating those conditions when the ECS is involved.
What does all this mean?
To understand how CBD interacts with your body, is the first step in understanding why it might be beneficial to use CBD products. Since CBD works with our ECS, it has the potential to help us in several areas.
The good news is there is great potential in this area which is evidenced by the June 2018 Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of Epidiolex, which contains CBD. Due to sound research development programs, the FDA concluded CBD reduces the number of seizures associated with two rare and severe forms of childhood epilepsy syndromes.
Additionally, in 2018, the United States Congress passed a Farm Bill which allows hemp and hemp-derived products. One restriction is the hemp cannot contain more than 0.3% THC. Another restriction is the need for additional state and federal regulations to govern the production of hemp. Meaning, the growing of hemp would be regulated, but generally considered as any other agricultural product since hemp was no longer classified as illegal. The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp-derived products from the category of Schedule I substances under federal law.
The reality is there are many unfounded claims currently being circulated. As a result, the FDA is committed to additional scientific research and drug development. Studies regarding safe and effective, high quality products are a must. Marketing products with unproven medical claims is not allowable per the FDA.
So, the question now becomes, how do I know if CBD is beneficial?
Is CBD beneficial?
If someone suggests that CBD will cure everything, you know they are not reputable. At this time, we need more research to prove the benefits of CBD. It will take some time to demonstrate what those of us that have used CBD have discovered.
I can say, based on my personal experience, CBD products do work. When I was unable to walk, I was given numerous pain medications to help with nerve pain. These opioids only caused me to be drowsy and confused; they did not help me with any pain. Additionally, most pain medications have potential long-term effects including addiction. There is no doubt that the risk of using opioid medications are real and therefore, an alternative to pain medication is a must.
I stopped taking the pain medication and began to use CBD. It was CBD that lessened my pain over time. I am not the only one that has experienced this benefit. If you ask people whom have used CBD products, you are likely to hear the same results – it works.
How can you determine if CBD is right for you?
Currently, the FDA does not have regulations on CBD products, but does support continued research on the potential uses of CBD products. The FDA has issued statements concerning CBD products and recognizes the public wants additional information.
That makes you, the consumer, the one best suited to decide what is a quality product and what product will work best for you. So, until the time that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) provides more answers, here are some items for you to consider before trying a CBD product:
- Buy from a reputable company, whether a brick and mortar or an on-line store.
- Buy products grown and manufactured in the United States.
- Buy products which have third-party independent laboratory testing and share the results with the public; usually via a QR code on the packaging.
- Buy organic or naturally grown products which can demonstrate safe levels of pesticides or heavy metals.
- Buy from a company which will answer your questions and be here for the long term.
- Avoid products and companies that pressure you to purchase their products.
- Avoid claims that CBD will cure a particular disease, condition or everything under the sun.
- Educate yourself.
CBD has the potential to provide health benefits in many different areas. Early studies suggest CBD health benefits are possible in dealing with pain, stress, anxiety, some neurological disorders, sleep issues, and some skin conditions. Further studies are needed to provide specific answers.
What we do know is CBD products are easy to use. They are available in many different formats; such as: oils, capsules, gummy bears, lotions, creams, and bath bombs. Making it easy for you to decide which delivery method is best suited for you.
It is important to do your own research and evaluate the information. Since the FDA has not provided specific guidance, speak with your physician before trying CBD; especially if you are already taking other medications. While CBD is legal on the federal level, in 2020, it is still illegal in Idaho, Iowa, and South Dakota.