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CBD for Beginners

Body and Mind
Body and Mind October 17, 2022

CBD is everywhere. You may have seen it in your local grocery store, or maybe you’ve heard about it from a friend. But what is CBD? And more importantly, what can it do for you? In this CBD for beginners guide, we will introduce the reader to the world of CBD and outline everything they need to know about this cannabinoid. We’ll discuss what CBD is, how it works in the body, its health benefits and more. By the end of this article, you’ll be an expert on CBD.

What Is CBD?

CBD stands for cannabidiol. Cannabidiol is a naturally occurring cannabinoid found in the cannabis and hemp plant. While both cannabis and hemp have a history of medicinal use thousands of years old, recent changes in the law have enabled science to start to test many of the therapeutic properties of CBD (more on this later). 

CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning it does not produce the “high” associated with THC. CBD oil can be made from either cannabis or hemp plants. However, most CBD products on the market today are made from hemp as this plant contains high levels of CBD and low levels of THC. This means that CBD products will not make you high.

Regarding safety, the World Health Organization reports: “In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health-related problems associated with using pure CBD.” 

So CBD is safe, non-addictive, and non-psychoactive. But not all CBD is created equal. For example, there’s a big difference between cannabis-derived CBD and hemp-derived CBD.

How Is Cannabis Derived CBD Different From Hemp-Derived CBD?

The main difference between the two is that cannabis-derived CBD is extracted from marijuana plants while hemp-derived CBD is extracted from hemp plants.

Marijuana plants contain high levels of THC (the psychoactive compound that gets you “high”). Hemp plants, on the other hand, have very low levels of THC (<0.03%). This means that hemp-derived CBD products will not get you high.

Cannabis-derived CBD is also subject to stricter regulations than hemp-derived CBD. This is because cannabis plants are classified as Schedule I drug by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). As such, there are more restrictions on cannabis cultivation and research. Hemp plants, on the other hand, were recently declassified as a Schedule I drug by the 2018 Farm Bill. This means that hemp cultivation and research are now federally legal in the United States.

So while both cannabis-derived and hemp-derived CBD are safe and non-psychoactive, hemp-derived CBD is more widely available and regulated.

CBD and the Endocannabinoid System

They probably didn’t tell you this in health class, but every human has an Endocannabinoid System (ECS). According to Peter Grinspoon, MD in Harvard Health Publishing, this system is directly influenced by CBD and other cannabinoids:

The ECS is a network of chemical signals and cellular receptors that are densely packed throughout our brains and bodies. The “cannabinoid” receptors in the brain — the CB1 receptors — outnumber many of the other receptor types on the brain. They act like traffic cops to control the levels and activity of most of the other neurotransmitters. This is how they regulate things: by immediate feedback, turning up or down the activity of whichever system needs to be adjusted, whether that is hunger, temperature, or alertness.

To stimulate these receptors, our bodies produce molecules called endocannabinoids, which have a structural similarity to molecules in the cannabis plant. The first endocannabinoid that was discovered was named anandamide after the Sanskrit word ananda for bliss. All of us have tiny cannabis-like molecules floating around in our brains. The cannabis plant, which humans have been using for about 5,000 years, essentially works its effect by hijacking this ancient cellular machinery.”

But why do we need to hijack this ancient machinery? Because sometimes, the human endocannabinoid system becomes dysregulated. In nearly all pathological conditions, the endocannabinoid system is dysregulated. Pal Pacher and George Kunos, scientists with the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), suggested in a 2013 publication: 

“Modulating endocannabinoid system activity may have therapeutic potential in almost all diseases affecting humans.” 

Fascinating. CBD is more than simply beneficial to the human body. It just might be able to save your life in the instance of an improperly functioning endocannabinoid system.

CBD Research & Development

In the 1970s, The Controlled Substances Act placed cannabis on Schedule I as a drug with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. This severely stifled research on CBD oil and other CBD products.  

In 2018, The Farm Bill removed CBD from the Controlled Substances Act, which legalized hemp-derived CBD and opened the doors to research. Today, there are too many CBD studies to count, and CBD is presently being used and studied for a broad spectrum of health issues. 

However, at present, the only FDA-approved CBD medicines are cannabis-derived drug products are:

Marinol

Marinol is an FDA-approved medication used to treat nausea and vomiting from chemotherapy and weight loss in HIV patients. Syndros is the liquid version of Marinol. Marinol and Syndros include the active ingredient dronabinol, a synthetic delta-9- tetrahydrocannabinol.

Cesamet

Cesamet treats severe nausea and vomiting caused by cancer drug treatment. It is a synthetic drug similar to the cannabinoid THC. It works by decreasing the signals in the brain that lead to nausea and vomiting.

Epidiolex

Epidiolex is a pharmaceutical CBD formulation. It is prescribed for treating severe pediatric seizure disorders, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome. 

Medical and Adult Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act

In California and most other states that have legalized weed, cannabis is the most highly regulated consumable. In Cali, the Medicinal and Adult Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA) lays a framework of rigorous testing for all cannabis products that ensures no harmful pesticides, pathogens, or other contaminants reach the consumer. Cannabis products are also tested for strength, must include clear dosing instructions, have proper warning labels, and come in resealable child-proof packaging.

CBD products go through the same MAUCRSA testing as regular cannabis flower. But CBD products are not subject to the same level of public scrutiny as other consumables. For example, a recent study by Johns Hopkins found:

  • Only 85% of the 105 products they tested listed the CBD content on the label.
  • Of those, 16% had less CBD than advertised, 58% had more CBD than advertised, and 24% were accurate.
  • On average, in-store products contained 21% more CBD than advertised, while online products contained 10% more CBD than advertised.

This is a problem for CBD users. If a product contains more or less than what’s on the label, it can be tough to gauge how much you’re actually taking. This is especially true for beginners who are new to CBD and don’t know how it will affect them.

What Are The Health Benefits Of CBD?

It’s been said that CBD is the Multipurpose Molecule. What’s that mean? It means that CBD is like a swiss army knife for the human being – the ultimate multi-purpose tool for wellness.

Emerging research, anecdotal evidence from users, and physicians’ direct experience all highlight CBD’s potential as a treatment for a wide range of conditions:

With so many potential uses, it’s no wonder that CBD is becoming more popular every day.

CBD Dosage & How to Use

As with any cannabis product that’s new to you, the song remains the same on dosage. Read product labels closely to ensure you know how much CBD is in a dose. Start slow, go low, and be patient with increasing your dose.  

Be aware that different CBD products or brands may have different strengths of CBD and different dosing instructions. For example, a CBD oil may have 1000mg of CBD in the bottle but only list the CBD content per serving as 50mg. In this case, one dropper-full would be considered a dose.

CBD Products

If variety is the spice of life, the various ways that you can consume CBD may make your life extra spicy: 

  • CBD Tinctures: CBD tincture or CBD oil is taken sublingually with an eye dropper that comes with the bottle. This dropper is clearly marked for precise dosage. 
  • CBD Topicals: CBD-infused creams, lotions, and balms are great for muscle aches, pain and inflammation. They are applied topically to the skin and work their magic locally. 
  • CBD Edibles: CBD-infused gummies, candies, chocolate, and other food items are a great way to get your CBD fix. These products usually come in pre-measured doses, so it’s easy to know how much CBD you’re consuming. They’re also portable, discrete, and tasty.
  • CBD Pills/Capsules: CBD pills are cost-effective, odorless, portable, and convenient with precise dosage. 
  • CBD Drinks: CBD waters, seltzers, and teas are a refreshing way to consume CBD. They’re also easy to take with you on the go.
  • CBD Isolate: CBD isolate is a fine, white powder that contains 99%+ pure CBD. It can be used in various ways: smoked, dabbed, vaped, or added to food and drinks. 
  • CBD Bath Bombs: CBD-infused bath bombs are a great way to relax after a long day. They’re also perfect for treating skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis.
  • CBD Vapes: CBD vape oil is inhaled using a vape pen or e-cigarette. This method of consumption is fast-acting and discreet.

With such wide availability, it’s easy to find a CBD product that fits your needs.

CBD For Beginners FAQ

Can you get ‘high’ from CBD?

No. CBD is non-psychoactive. But it may assist in anxiety relief and sleep, making you feel more relaxed after taking CBD.

Is CBD addictive? 

The WHO has concluded that CBD is non-addictive.

Can you overdose on CBD? 

CBD oils cannot cause a lethal overdose because there are no cannabinoid receptors responsible for respiratory function.

What is full spectrum CBD oil?

Full spectrum CBD oil contains all the cannabinoids found in hemp, including THC. Broad spectrum CBD oil contains most cannabinoids but has had the THC removed.

How much CBD oil should I take? 

It depends on the product you’re using and your desired effects. Start with a low dose and increase gradually as needed.

How is hemp seed oil different from CBD oil? 

Hemp seed oil is pressed from the hemp plant’s seeds and doesn’t contain any cannabinoids. However, CBD oil is extracted from the stalks, leaves, and flowers of the hemp plant and does contain cannabinoids.

What is the entourage effect?

The entourage effect is the synergistic interaction of all the compounds in cannabis, including CBD, THC, terpenes, and other cannabinoids. These interactions amplify the therapeutic effects of each individual compound.

This beginner’s guide can seem like a lot to take in, but hopefully, this guide has given you a solid foundation for starting your CBD journey. Whether you’re looking for help with your overall wellness or relief from a specific ailment, CBD may be worth exploring.

CBD For Body And Mind Wellness

Body and Mind holds human wellness as a core value. It’s one of our reasons for being. CBD is a cannabinoid with fantastic potential for humanity, and we carry a full range of CBD products to meet that potential. Visit any of our stores, or visit us online and enjoy safe access to our full range of cannabis products. Start your CBD journey with Body and Mind.

Body and Mind
Body and Mind October 17, 2022

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