Got CBD? How Herbal Hemp Does a Body Good
CBD is like the TikTok of the cannabis and herbal communities. Everyone’s heard of it, nobody’s got a freakin’ clue what it actually does, and we’re not entirely sure it’s legal in Kansas.
(Just kidding: As of this writing, Kansas is cool with it — so long as it has less than 0.3% THC and comes from hemp. Any CBD derived from hemp is legal in all 50 states of the US.)
CBD comes in all shapes and sizes. You can get it in tinctures, chocolates, gummies — you can practically put it on your Frosted Flakes.
Bear Blend offers the Shaman Blend, an aromatic high terpene hemp CBD flower inspired by the tradition of medicine men and women, and Hemp Nugz, a fragrant terpene rich hemp flower with high CBD content.
Research the Internet long and deep enough, and the list of CBD souvenirs gets downright wacky: sex lube, potato chips, face masks — even sports bras.
But unlike frosted flakes, CBD is granola-nut-funk healthy and actually good for you.
What in the Freaking Cracker Jack is CBD, Actually?
It’s weed, silly, or hemp, technically — if you’re using the above the board legal stuff harvested from the same stalks that birthed the Declaration of Independence. CBD can be derived from either hemp or cannabis.
There are more than 85 ingredients in hemp and cannabis. CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the 2 most important, along with THC. If THC’s the reason Dead & Company smell like Pepé Le Pew, CBD’s why cancer wards still maintain a sick sense of humor, sporting Fugazi hairstyles like ‘88 Europe Tour.
So why does CBD make such beautiful magical medicine? Because of how it interacts with our cannabinoid receptor sites, which make up the endocannabinoid system (ECS) — a complex cell signalling system that wires the brain and central nervous system like C-3PO’s spinal cord mainframe. This natural cyber highway plays an essential role in sleep, mood, appetite, memory — even in late night hanky panky.
And because of the way CBD dances with ECS in a shining white tuxedo with gemstone ruby slippers, its list of therapeutic benefits is heavier than all that gold glittering between Mr. T’s nipple studs.
Here are our 6 of some of our favorites, but honestly, we’re still only skimming the surface of what CBD can do.
CBD for Pain in the…
Pain in the neck, the ass, the what-ever-may-have-you? Try CBD, a wonder drug for pain therapy.
Because of the way CBD interacts with endocannabinoid receptors in your brain and immune system, it induces anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects. CBD’s great for back pain, neck pain, arthritis, and fibromyalgia. If it hurts, CBD might help.
One 2018 review of CBD’s effect on chronic pain found that CBD was effective in overall pain management with no negative side effects. And a 2016 study examining CBD’s effect on arthritis in rats found its anti-inflammatory and pain relieving effects could prove helpful.
Addict Monkey on your back? Try CBD
It’s true: Monkeys love CBD bananas. CBD has been found to be highly effective at reducing addictive cravings from heroin, opioids, and other pain killers.
One 2019 study found that patients who received CBD had reduced cravings for up to a week after taking the medication, compared to those who took a placebo. Plus, CBD’s effectiveness on pain therapy provides a viable alternative to painkillers that could prevent addiction from beginning in the first place.
Anxiety & Depression: CBD the Key to Happiness?
There’s a reason CBD gummy bears exist: They’re the new mascots of mental health. If the Care Bears truly cared, they’d pass around CBD like free love jelly beans.
CBD has been found to be abundantly effective at treating a range of mental health issues — including anxiety, depression, compulsive disorder, psychosis, and more — because of how it interacts with the serotonin signaling system.
Low serotonin can cause anxiety and depression. CBD playfully interacts with the system closely related to mood regulation and subjective emotions of satisfaction and reward. Acting in conjunction with anandamide — an endocannabinoid — CBD produces new brain tissue in a way that helps prevent the formation of painful memories. CBD doesn’t necessarily boost your serotonin, but it does get it to jam like a blues harmonica — helps you remember what it means to feel alive.
A 2011 study on CBD’s effect on people with social anxiety disorder found those who received CBD had lower anxiety levels than those who got the placebo. A 2014 study on animals found that CBD was effective at reducing anxiety and depression. A 2018 study review concluded that CBD has anti-stress effects that may reduce depression related to stress.
CBD & PTSD: They Rhyme For Good Reason
If Eminem’s daugher Hailie ever listened to her dad’s murder ballad “Kim” about her mom, she should take CBD — she might feel better.
Studies in both humans and rodents have shown CBD to be highly effective at altering adverse traumatic memories. CBD has been found to be able to target memory processes — it can be transformative in treating both the emotional and cognitive aspects of PTSD.
In a 2019 study, researchers found a significant decrease in the co-occurrence of PTSD and depression/suicidal ideation in cannabis users. Those who suffered from PTSD had a 20 times greater chance of experiencing either major depression or suicide ideation. Cannabis users who suffered from PTSD had only a 7 times greater chance.
Could CBD Cure Cancer?
Scientists are learning CBD not only helps prevent the spread of cancer — it might even cure it.
A growing number of studies are revealing CBD’s power to reduce the spread of a number of cancers, including breast, colorectal, and lung cancers. Scientists hypothesize that CBD naturally inhibits ID-1 and prevents cancer from growing.
Research published in 2012 in the British Journal of Pharmacology has shown that CBD plays a role in tumor angiogenesis — the formation of new blood vessels from pre-existing ones. This is critical to the growth and metastasization of tumors. CBD can effectively prevent the creation of new blood vessels to slow or even stop tumor growth.
And yes, the closest cure to cancer — so far — is CBD. A 2019 review has found that CBD can be effective at slowing tumor growth, reduce tumor invasion, and even kill existing tumors. Another 2019 study found that CBD could kill cancer cells and make glioblastoma cells more sensitive to radiation without affecting healthy cells.
Got Weed? Cannabinoid Deficiency & CBD
A relatively new science theory doesn’t think you eat (or smoke) enough weed — especially if you’re American. (Munch a butt cheek, Harry Anslinger!)
CBD pills might be the new Flinstone chewables for cannabinoid deficiency.
First introduced in 2001 by EB Russo, the theory known as the clinical endocannabinoid deficiency syndrome (CECD) strives to explain why the endocannabinoid system has difficulty keeping the body in balance in some individuals.
The theory suggests a deficiency in cannabinoids leads to a dysfunction in the endocannabinoid system.
So cannabis and CBD might be good for you. Supplementing hemp and CBD into our diet may keep our bodies better in balance: CBD — practically V8 for your ECS.
CBD: To Infinity & Beyond!
Like we said, we’ve barely scraped the surface: CBD’s health potential is practically endless. Research suggests there are over 50 medical benefits to CBD — everything from mad cow disease to Parkinson’s to Huntington’s to Crohn’s disease, and more.
CBD’s even good for acne. We’re trying to picture the Clearasil commercials now. Are Cheech and Chong’s granddaughters still teenagers?
A freelance writer for hire, Matt Gallagher is the face and voice behind Web Copy Magician. He enjoys Bear Blend as a tea to spiritually reconnect with nature and the therapeutic wonders of chlorophyll.
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