CBD is one of more than 80 active cannabinoid chemicals in the marijuana plant. Cannabinoids are compounds that react with the endocannabinoid system found in the brain, with each one causing different effects on the mind and body when interacting with our cannabinoid receptors.
Until recently, the best-known compound in cannabis was delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This is the most active ingredient in marijuana, and it is the compound that produces a psychoactive euphoria or intoxication. The THC content in the cannabis plant is highly sought after, and that is why, over the years, marijuana farmers have selectively bred their plants to contain high levels of THC. However this is the exact reason many people stray away from the plant, finding that the effects of THC can be uncomfortable. Even if users enjoy THC, many people wouldn’t consider it for daily use.
Fortunately, there is still a way to enjoy the many benefits of the cannabis plant without feeling uncomfortable, anxious or intoxicated. The least processed form of the cannabis plant is hemp. Hemp contains most of the CBD that people use medicinally. Hemp and marijuana come from the same plant, Cannabis sativa, but the two are very different.
Unlike marijuana farmers, hemp farmers have rarely modified the plant. These hemp plants are used to create CBD oil. CBD does not change a person’s state of mind when they use it. However, CBD does appear to produce significant changes in the body, and some research suggests that it has medical benefits. Unlike THC, CBD interacts with the CB2 receptor in the endocannabinoid system, causing it to react very differently, most notably being non-psychoactive.
As a result, CBD mainly effects the body, although it does offer benefits to the mind too, but these aren’t experienced like the typical high you expect from cannabis. It can have many positive effects on the mind and body, much of which has only recently been studied. Because of these promising effects, you can experience general feelings of well-being but with absolutely no high to come with it.
Many users have expressed that CBD makes them less anxious, eleviates chronic pain, and aids with sleep issues. Those who exercise use it to reduce inflammation in the muscles before or after a workout, and some have even said that it helps them work out longer and harder.
This is an interesting time for the discovery of the many benefits of this misunderstood plant. It is also important to note that significant research has already been done on the safety of various cannabinoids, including CBD. Thus far, the safety/toxicity profile for CBD appears to be more in line with everyday foods and vitamins rather than being accompanied by the daunting side effects of many conventional drugs.
There are many ways to enjoy CBD that don’t involve smoking. While you can smoke and vape different CBD products, you can also take it orally as an ingredient in cooking, or as a capsule. There are topical options such as lotions, salves and bath bombs. There are many ways to incorporate CBD into your daily life, and if it sounds like it might be right for you, you can experiment with little to no risk to see which option is the best for you.