Cannabis has been used as a medicinal herb for centuries. But recently, the therapeutic uses of CBD or Cannabidiol oil have become a hot topic around the globe. The medicinal benefits of CBD oil (in curing cancer and other medical diseases) could be the possible reason behind its popularization. But are these claims really true? Do they really have some authenticity or a mere bluff? Is CBD really a life saver or just a deceiver?
Well! This is the prime objective of this article i.e. to list the relevant information supporting the health claims of CBD oil.
Let’s begin with the introduction of CBD oil.
What is CBD?
CBD or Cannabidiol is a Cannabinoid found in the Cannabis plant. Unlike its sibling THC (another potent Cannabinoid), CBD is a non-psychoactive and non-intoxicating. It has a number of medicinal benefits, sometimes with little or no side effects. CBD oil is made by extracting CBD from the least processed form of the cannabis plant, known as hemp, then diluting it with a carrier oil like coconut or hemp seed oil.
Now let’s list the health benefits of CBD oil along with their Science-based evidence:
1) Natural Pain Reliever
It has been recently discovered by scientists that CBD in marijuana is responsible for its pain-relieving effects. How does CBD relief pain? The feeling of pain is regulated by a specialized system in the body, called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Endocannabinoids (neurotransmitters) produced by the body bind to cannabinoid receptors in the nervous system. Studies suggested that CBD influence this endocannabinoid receptor activity, reducing inflammation and chronic pain.
CBD along with THC has a significant effect in reducing pain, helpful in diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis.
Example of one such combination is Sativex, an oral spray, approved in many countries for relieving pain.
2) Reduces anxiety and depression
According to the World Health Organization, depression and anxiety are among the top ten disorders worldwide. In the list, depression ranked one while anxiety ranked sixth. Their treatment is usually done by pharmaceutical drugs which expose the person to a wide range of side effects including insomnia, headache, agitation etc.
CBD oil has shown positive results in treating depression and anxiety, giving patients with these problems a natural substitute for treatment. Studies suggest that brain receptors and serotonin (a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and social behavior) activity is influenced by CBD, affecting symptoms of anxiety and depression.
3) Alleviate Cancer-Related Symptoms
CBD oil can help in reducing symptoms associated with cancer and its treatment. As discussed above, the role of CBD and THC in reducing pain, they help with the same in cancer patients as well.
A study showed that CBD and THC may help reduce chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting effects, extensively seen in chemotherapy treatment of cancer patients.
Role of CBD in inhibiting the spread of breast cancer cells in mice has also seen in a study.
Though there are studies supporting the role of CBD oil in reducing cancer-related symptoms, more studies have to be done advocating its efficacy and safety.
4) May reduce Acne
Acne is a common problem caused because of a number of factors, including genetics, bacteria, dirt, and the overproduction of sebum (an oily secretion made by sebaceous glands in the skin).
Studies suggest CBD oil may reduce this sebum production hence treating acne. The anti-inflammatory properties of CBD oil also may help in reducing acne.
5) May benefit heart health
Researchers showed evidence of CBD’s ability in lowering high blood pressure along with other heart-related benefits.
Moreover, it is suggested as a natural and effective treatment of high blood pressure in several studies.
CBD also helps in maintaining heart health by reducing inflammation and cell death linked with heart disease. It is capable of performing this function because of its stress-reducing and antioxidant properties.
6) Other benefits
Some studies showed CBD role in reducing tumors and inhibiting the spread of breast, prostate, brain, colon and lung cancer.
CBD also plays role in regulating insulin in type-2 diabetes and also help in reducing associated weight gain.
Such studies have not been done on children to date but adult data suggest that CBD is well tolerated across a wide range of doses.
With such a long list of health benefits, side effects (tiredness, diarrhea, and change in appetite) associated with CBD oil consumption are few and are found only in some studies.
Well! It is clear now that CBD oil is indeed a boon to mankind and a lifesaver too.