Cannabis has been used as a natural remedy for thousands of years and now it’s making a massive resurgence in CBD and CBD oil. What are the awesome benefits? And how can you take it? Let’s have a look!
Have you been hearing about the marvels of “CBD” or “CBD oil” everywhere these days?
Did you happen to hear about it from a nephew who enjoys his “edibles”? Or perhaps from Joe Rogen on his podcast?
Marijuana may immediately come to mind . . . or hemp . . . or cannabis. They’re all pretty much the same, right? Or not?
So, what exactly is CBD? And how’d it become all the rage overnight?
Mother Nature’s Remedy
CBD stands for cannabidiol—a chemical compound found in the Cannabis Sativa plant and a natural remedy!
In fact, it was first used as a painkiller in the Netherlands over 4,000 years ago.
It was also used in ancient Egypt to treat hemorrhoids and sore eyes (what range!).
Ancient Greeks applied cannabis to wounds, nosebleeds, tapeworms, and inflammation (again, what range!)
Lastly, from the 8th to 18th centuries, Arabic physicians used cannabis to treat pain, inflammation, epileptic seizures, nausea, and fevers (you know the drill).
Getting to the Root of CBD
Cannabis comes in two forms: the marijuana plant and the hemp plant.
They are close relatives, but their properties differ.
Marijuana contains a high concentration of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)—a psychoactive compound, which gives users that euphoric high and relaxed feeling.
Meanwhile, hemp contains only trace amounts of THC (0.3%) and is loaded with CBD—a non-psychoactive compound (i.e. no euphoria, no high, no sedation) that supports health and wellness.
Fun fact: Hemp is also hyper-versatile and can be used to make literally anything, from clothing to skin care products!
Just be aware that because hemp contains a small amount of THC, those who experience side effects from Tylenol or Advil may react to CBD.
Extracting that Magical Ingredient
So, we have hemp oil and hemp extract.
One might assume they mean the same thing, but hemp oil is derived from hemp seeds and doesn’t include important plant compounds, like CBD (although hemp seed oil is a great moisturizer!).
Meanwhile, we find our friend, CBD, in the leaves, stalk, and flowers of the hemp plant that is then combined with a carrier oil, like coconut or hemp.
How the Benefits Flow-eth!
We’ve already enjoyed a sampling of what THC and CBD treated in the good ol’ days.
It’s now gaining popularity in mainstream circles for its health and wellness benefits!
CBD alleviates chronic pain, imparts relaxation and calm, and is used to treat:
- Cancer treatment side effects
- Seizure disorders
- Parkinson disease
- Multiple sclerosis muscle tightness (when CBD is combined with THC)
- Substance abuse
- Schizophrenic symptoms
Although CBD is natural, it can interact with medications so best talk with your healthcare provider before using. Some folks have encountered side effects, including:
- Appetite changes
So, you’re now wondering how you can get a hold of this sweet stuff?
Thankfully, CBD is sold in countless varieties!
The key is to find third-party tested products to ensure the quality and amount of CBD since there’s little FDA oversight. Turns out there are several sketchy sellers whose products contain lead, pesticides, and/or THC.
Now, introducing the kaijillion different ways that CBD can be consumed!
Sounds cute. What the heck are they, you ask?
According to Merriam-Webster, a tincture is “a solution of a medicinal substance in an alcoholic solvent.”
In this case, CBD extract is our “medicinal substance,” combined with high proof alcohol for easy ingestion.
An alcohol base is what differentiates a CBD tincture from CBD oil, which obviously has an oil base.
However, the taste of pure tinctures is sorely lacking. So, we can spice up the flavor with enhancers, like peach, orange, and vanilla!
Using a dropper, you can place the tincture under the tongue for lightning fast absorption. But the bigger bonus is that they contain highly concentrated CBD, so it goes straight to work!
But wait, there’s more!
Tinctures come with a fabulously long shelf-life thanks to the alcohol, which preserves it well into the future.
Given the liquid nature of tinctures, you can also add it to foods and beverages, leading us to the next act of our show!
Infused Foods (they really are all the rage)
Move over, Julia Childs!
CBD oil has an oily after taste, but not tinctures. Add it to dressings, salads, soups, and pasta!
There are also countless CBD edibles on the market, like cookies, brownies, granola, trail mix, protein bars, dark chocolates, gummies, taffy, syrup, popcorn, vitamins, and much more!
You can also cook with CBD (oil that is). Be sure to pick up the organically grown kind.
CBD-infused olive oil is the easiest way to go, however it’s important to not overcook it, weakening its effects. Just stay below 320 degrees Fahrenheit.
Ultimately, ingested CBD takes longer to feel the effects, but possesses excellent staying power (four to five hours that is).
There are other products you can buy, like smoothies, sparkling water, flavored seltzers, sodas, teas, cold brew coffees, lattes, coffee creamers, and alcoholic concoctions.
You can even add your own CBD to whatever drink you please!
Forget measuring out your daily dose in the morning. Grab your CBD oil capsule, a glass of water, and down the hatch she goes!
Just be sure to take it on a full stomach to increase the absorption rate and to avoid potential nausea and vomiting.
Rather than ingesting CBD, you can apply an ointment or lotion on your skin for localized absorption. This targets pain relief where it’s needed most: muscles, joints, or ligaments.
Not only do you have lotions at your disposal, but also body products like shampoos, conditioners, and moisturizers!
You could also breathe in heated CBD oil. It enters the lungs and then the bloodstream, getting into your body’s circulation in a mere 10 minutes.
You can choose from portable pens to plug-in tabletop units. The world is your oyster!
A Supplement for the Ages
As a natural supplement, CBD contains numerous benefits—from increased calm and focus, stress and pain relief, to sound sleep.
These benefits also apply to pets, including dogs, cats, and horses. But do talk with your vet first about quantities and possible side effects.
Although CBD does it all, there are some things it won’t do:
- Require a medical card to purchase it
- Create an addiction
- Cause an over-dose (it’s very safe, even in high doses, for people and animals!)
- Show up on a drug test
- Cure all ailments
- Do your dishes for you (yes, it is a bummer)
Of course, the foundation of health and wellness is a balanced diet, regular exercise, and good sleep.
Adding CBD to your daily lineup is the ultimate wellness booster, as our ancestors have known for, give or take, a few millennia!
How is CBD working magic in your life?
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