Top 20 Facts You Need to Know About Cannabis CBD
Since opening our store, we’ve put together a list of the top 20 most interesting facts about CBD to give you the rundown on one of the most promising compounds in modern history. You may have heard about CBD on the news, but what is CBD? Where does it originally come from and what does it do? And, why is everybody talking about CBD? Read on to find out more.
Cannabidiol (CBD) refers to one of the major non-psychoactive components of cannabis.
Since CBD is considered non-psychoactive, by itself, CBD doesn’t get you high or impair your cognitive ability.
Research has shown that taking a high-quality CBD supplement on a regular basis can provide a range of health benefits, both mental and physical.
The historical origins of the cannabis plant trace back tens of thousands of years to Ancient China; according to legend, Emperor Shen Nung, also known as the father of Chinese medicine, used medical cannabis to treat a range of ailments.
Named in 1785 after the country of India by French botanist Jean-Baptist Lamarck, the indica strain of the cannabis plant actually originates from Hindu Kush, first grown on what is now the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Indica plants have a bushy shape, with broader leaves, and were more often grown for their psychedelic effect.
Cannabis sativa, on the other hand, is usually a much taller plant with thinner leaves. The sativa strain of cannabis can likely trace its genetic roots back to Europe and South America, where it was traditionally grown for more industrial purposes, such as paper and ropemaking.
The terms hemp and marijuana both refer to different breeds of the same plant species: cannabis. The word cannabis comes from the Ancient Greek word κάνναβις (kánnabis), likely derived from the Ancient Persian word kanab, whereas the term hemp was coined much later by the Latin.
The modern discovery of CBD can be credited to the research of Dr. Roger Adams and his team at the University of Illinois based on wild hemp grown in Minnesota, first published by the Journal of the American Chemical Society in 1940 (Adams et al. 1940).
Nearly two and a half decades later, a group of scientists at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem became the first to determine the chemical structure and stereochemistry of CBD, published in the organic chemistry journal Tetrahedron back in 1963 (Mechoulam & Shvo 1963).
The specific amount of CBD found in hemp or marijuana varies widely depending on the individual strain and genetic makeup of the individual plant. Hemp often contains high levels of CBD, but by law, in order for it to be classified as hemp, a plant cannot contain more than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Sativa strains tend to be higher in THC, whereas indica strains are usually more balanced in their THC to CBD ratio and generally contain more CBD overall.
There are actually more than 80 different cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant, including THC and CBD, as well as cannabinol (CBN), cannabigerol (CBG), cannabichromene (CBC), and a long list of others that are much less well known. Each of the cannabinoids has unique properties and full-spectrum CBD oil may provide additional health benefits that are not necessarily seen with the use of isolated CBD alone.
With the passage of the Farm Bill back in 2018, hemp, and therefore, CBD, was officially legalized across the United States. The Hemp Farming Act removed hemp from its previous status as a Schedule I narcotic, regulated by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), and instead placed it under the purview of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Cannabinoids act on the endocannabinoid system; endocannabinoid receptors are found throughout the human body, including the central nervous system, connective tissue, liver, lungs, kidney, and others, and endocannabinoids play a central role in regulating the immune system (Zou & Kumar 2018).
Research has shown that use of CBD helps to decrease inflammation. A review published in the journal Future Medicinal Chemistry summarized the role of cannabinoids, including CBD, as novel anti-inflammatory drugs for the treatment of inflammatory conditions such as multiple sclerosis, ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, and viral hepatitis (Nagarkatti et al. 2009).
Several studies have also found that CBD is an effective pain reliever. More recently, research published in the highly cited open-access journal Frontiers in Pharmacology concluded that significant potential existed for the use of CBD and other cannabinoids for the treatment of chronic pain conditions and recommended that larger studies were warranted to determine the long-term safety of cannabinoid treatment (Vučković et al. 2018).
In addition, researchers have found that CBD may play a role as an anti-emetic, effectively decreasing nausea and even preventing vomiting. Two major studies demonstrated anti-nausea effects of CBD (Parker et al. 2011, Sharkey et al. 2014). These findings could be especially significant, as some of the anti-nausea drugs currently in use can have significant long term side effects, and new studies have even shown birth defects in pregnant women that were routinely recommended anti-nausea drugs, with lawsuits currently underway.
Scientists have also found that CBD reduces anxiety without many of the negative side effects caused by common pharmaceutical anxiety medications. In 2015, researchers at the New York University School of Medicine published research in the journal Neurotherapeutics that highlighted the use of CBD as a potential treatment for anxiety disorders (Blessing et al. 2015).
A wide range of options are available to anyone interested in trying CBD for themselves. The CBD itself can come in many different forms, including oils, tinctures, capsules, edibles, and even low-THC smokable flower. Different methods of consumption may appeal to you more than others; you may also find that some methods are more effective for you personally.
Dosing CBD can be a trial and error process. Unlike THC, which has a relatively short-lasting effect, it can take up to several days or even weeks to initially see the benefits of CBD treatment.
See related: How Much Is 3.5 Grams Of Weed?
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