CBD has become a familiar acronym in the news and wellness circles, but what is it exactly?
CBD (cannabidiol) is one of 85 unique cannabinoids, chemical compounds in the hemp plant. Which leads to the question, “What is hemp?” Hemp includes all varieties of the cannabis plant that contain extremely low amounts of THC, the mind-altering cannabinoid found in marijuana. The most abundant cannabinoid in hemp, CBD has no intoxicating effects. It is an example of a phytocannabinoid, a plant-produced cannabinoid that can be consumed.
The human body also produces a type of cannabinoid, known as endocannabinoids, on its own. The endocannabinoids our bodies produce help support the endocannabinoid system, our central regulatory system, which helps maintain balanced conditions within many of our interdependent biological processes.
The endocannabinoid system is recognized for its role in regulating immune system functions, inflammatory response, blood sugar, body temperature, hormones, stress response, sleep, mood and emotions, metabolism and more. When our endocannabinoid system is deficient or compromised in some way, we can experience a variety of unpleasant physical and emotional symptoms that might prevent us from doing the things we love to do and enjoying life to its fullest.
CBD from hemp can help support our endocannabinoid system by imitating endocannabinoids to keep cannabinoid receptors working optimally.
How Is CBD Different from THC?
Because CBD and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are the cannabinoids found most abundantly in cannabis plants, people get confused about the difference. Unlike THC, which causes psychoactive effects (a “high”), CBD does not because it doesn’t act on the same neurological pathways as THC. You cannot get high from CBD oil that has been extracted from industrial hemp because it has insignificant traces of THC (less than 0.3 percent).
How Does CBD Work?
Cannabinoids attach to CB1 receptors in the brain and CB2 receptors, sending signals to tell cells what to do. The effects that cannabinoids have depend on which receptors they bind to.
The feeling of euphoria from marijuana is caused by the cannabinoid THC binding with CB1 receptors, which are concentrated in the brain and the central nervous system.
CBD, on the other hand, does not bind well with CB1 and CB2 receptors. However, it has an impact indirectly by activating or interacting with other receptor systems including:
- Serotonin – Regulates hormones responsible for metabolism, reactions to stress, mood, cognition, and appetite
- TRPV1 (Vanilloid) Receptors – Contributes to body temperature regulation, inflammation, and pain perception
- GPR55 (Orphan) Receptors – Involved in modulating blood pressure, bone density, and bone density
- PPAR (Nuclear) Receptors – Linked to anticancer effects
CBD is also known to enhance the body’s levels of anandamide, a fatty acid neurotransmitter, known as the “bliss molecule,” that affects higher thought processes, mood, and motivation.
Researchers continue to explore CBD’s therapeutic properties and how it may help people that are dealing with physical and psychological issues such as stress, depression, anxiety, epilepsy, sleep problems, and more.
Is CBD Legal?
For decades, growing hemp was prohibited until the 2014 Farm Bill made state-based hemp research programs legal. The amount of hemp farm acreage has increased significantly since the bill was passed.
As a result, the CBD oil industry has exploded. CBD products manufactured from industrial hemp, provided they contain no more than 0.3 percent THC, are legal to sell, buy, and use—without a prescription—in all 50 states.
A Word to the Wise Before You Buy CBD Products
Although CBD is legal in the U.S., lack of industry regulation remains a challenge. Before buying CBD products, make sure you do your homework to ensure the manufacturer adheres to the highest standards of quality and purity.
Be an informed customer and think about more than just price when comparing CBD products:
- Concentration of the formulation
- Ease of use
- Taste (if an oral supplement)
- Scent (if a topical product)
- Immediacy and duration of the effects
Considering all of these things will help you decide which products will be right for you. And if you have questions about a product, the manufacturer or seller should be happy to answer them.
At Hempfield Botanicals, we’re confident that you’ll love our THC-free, 99 percent pure hemp CBD products that are cruelty-free, third-party tested, and 100 percent vegan.
Visit our online store today to learn more about their quality and effectiveness!