CBD is a current trend in homeopathy and has become rapidly more popular in the UK since Holland and Barrett started stocking it last year. Though there is very little research into the effects it may have, some people have provided anecdotal evidence that it may help to reduce some symptoms suffered by people with joint pain, undergoing chemotherapy or with muscular spasms.
The limited research there has been in this area has been promising and the UK government have accepted that there may be some medicinal properties in marijuana that are worth exploring. Similarly, Canada is doing some research into cannabis derivatives to see whether they can develop a successful treatment for some forms of epilepsy.
Epilepsy is one area where CBD studies are promising. Some studies have shown some improvement in some patients though the study is too small to draw more general conclusions. Trials are ongoing and will hopefully yield some positive results in the near future in regards to a suitable treatment and evidence that CBD works.
Given the sudden uptake in CBD, it is likely that clinical trials to assess the viability of CBD as a complementary treatment for other symptoms will be conducted. For now, the WHO has released a report stating that the substance is well tolerated by humans and poses no threat of addiction.
WHAT IS CBD?
CBD is not the same as cannabis oil. This distinction is important because cannabis oil is illegal to possess, buy and sell in the UK, whereas CBD is legal. Cannabis oil is derived from the leaves of the plant and contains the phytocannabinoids that make the oils addictive and psychoactive. CBD is made up of just one phytocannabinoid, cannabidiol, which is neither addictive nor psychoactive. CBD is sold as an oil which can be used as a food additive or dripped under the tongue using the attached pipette. You can also buy it as a CBD e liquid and vape it as you would any other flavour.
WHAT DOES CBD DO?
Tetrahydrocannabinol is the main substance in the cannabis leaf that produces the psychoactive response in humans. CBD does not produce a high as it does not contain tetrahydrocannabinol in any concentration above 0.2%.
However, anecdotally CBD has been suggested as a treatment for anxiety and stress as it may cause you to feel more relaxed and even sleepy. CBD may also lower blood pressure.
The effects of CBD have yet to be medically established which is why it remains a complementary oil, but there is some indication from the limited clinical trials that have been conducted so far that it could be a good way to relax muscles in spasm. Though the trials are still in the early stages, the research is looking promising.
WHAT IS CBD OFTEN USED FOR?
As CBD is not yet undergone full clinical trials, it is not prescribed by doctors. However, there is some anecdotal evidence from patients that it may be used to reduce swelling, combat pain and may help prevent muscular spasms. CBD has also been used to alleviate tobacco and cannabis addiction in a similar way to vaping.
Given that the WHO has found CBD to be safe, it may be used to complement your usual medicines. However, due caution should be taken and you should never stop taking your medication in favour of CBD, or any other substance that has not been prescribed by your doctor.
TALK TO YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE TRYING CBD
If you are considering trying CBD, you should certainly speak to your doctor first. Though the blanket statement from the WHO suggests that CBD is safe to use, you should make your doctor aware so that if you do experience any side effects, they will be able to make a recommendation with all the information.
As CBD may lower blood pressure, you should certainly inform your doctor if you plan to try it and you are already on blood pressure medication. Getting the balance right for your blood pressure is incredibly important for your health and shouldn’t be taken lightly.
CBD IS NOT A REPLACEMENT FOR OTHER MEDICATION
CBD is not a medicine and should not be treated as such. Instead, it should be thought of as a complementary treatment to be taken with other medicines if you so choose. You should never deviate from the prescription your doctor has given you, or assume that another treatment will be more effective.
HOW DO YOU TAKE CBD?
CBD can be purchased as sublingual oil which can be placed in food or under the tongue or vaping oil for those who want to vape the liquid. CBD can be consumed and used in many different ways. It is also available to buy at health food stores and vape shops in the UK, usually in the form of a capsule or as a liquid to drop under the tongue.
You should start by taking only small doses of CBD at a time and make sure you read the label carefully to ensure you don’t go over the recommended daily allowance. Pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers are advised not to use CBD. It should also be kept away from children and stored in a dry, dark place.
If you are using the oil, you should drop a tiny amount of the oil underneath the tongue, wait a minute and then drink some water. This will take away the distinctive taste of the CBD that some products have.
The surge in the popularity of CBD and the agreement amongst various governments that research into the medicinal properties of cannabis all suggests that there is a future for people who have already experienced beneficial effects to continue doing so legally. Medicinal cannabis has been a taboo for too long and with proper research, it could change the lives of millions of people around the globe.
Please note this information should not be construed in any way to mean that anyone is making a claim that CBD cures any of these conditions. Neither does this article intend to infer or suggest that the ingestion of or inhalation of CBD is guaranteed to alleviate or eradicate any of the conditions or symptoms associated with any of the named conditions. This information is included here merely to inform the would-be user of the scope of medical trials and research being conducted on the marijuana plant.