NEW ARTICLE! MICRODOSING FOR MENTAL HEALTH
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Be Well

CBD: Miracle Medicine?

CBD: Miracle Medicine?
@99hightide

Like most people (including those still waiting for Tupac to reveal himself), we love a good miracle. But … combine a miracle and a health hack together? Insert us dramatically falling to the ground in a prostrate position. We are not worthy. The thing is, the words “miracles” and “health” don’t generally go together (unless you count all the times our bodies did not shut down after eating Twinkies in grade school). And that’s because with most things that relate to our health, it all comes down to time, consistency, and making healthy choices. There is no magic pill …

But some would say that CBD is just that. In fact, the word on the street is that CBD  comes as close to the best of a miracle health hack as you can get. It’s reported to have a whole host of benefits that help all aspects of our bodies and health. From pain to anxiety to cramps to helping your dog chill out — CBD is said to do just about everything.

Now, if you’re a little skeptical (which would be fair, because it does sound too good to be true), just know that while in terms of concrete studies, there is still some back and forth. There haven’t been enough large clinical studies yet, but there have been some promising ones. And that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work (after all, one CBD product has been approved by the FDA so far) and it doesn’t mean we should rule it out — though we always make sure to do our own personal research to see if a remedy is right for us.

OK, but what is CBD, and how does it work? 

We could go full scientist on you, but here’s the TL;DR version: CBD, short for Cannabidiol, is a compound found in cannabis plants, hemp and THC. It’s not psychoactive, though it can contain some THC. Which is great if getting high is not your thing. But how exactly does it work? Well, now it’s time to go full scientist mode.

CBD works by using a system of receptors called cannabinoid receptors, which are all throughout your body. Once in the body, CBD is similar to endocannabinoids, which are the compounds your body already makes that bind to these receptors and help regulate parts of our immune system, appetite, mood, sleep, memory, and more. Because CBD is so similar to endocannabinoids, it’s able to activate or influence the receptors in your body in the same way — which is how we notice the benefits and impact of CBD throughout the body. (It’s basically like catfishing your system, and we’re here for it).

But is it actually a miracle health hack?

We can’t claim this for sure, as studies are still being conducted. But there are promising studies pointing to CBD as one of the more promising health hacks for helping with common ailments. It’s mostly used for alleviating pain, like chronic pain and joint pain. It can also be used to help with depression and anxiety (which is one of the largest uses), along with PTSD. And part of the largest benefit is that there are no psychoactive components (though, of course, it does affect your central nervous system) — which means you can reap the benefits without getting high and accidentally eating an entire pint of ice cream mixed with Doritos.

CBD can be used in almost anything, which is why you see it in everything from chocolate to oils to nasal sprays and lotions. And that’s another reason it’s so great: You can rub CBD on your skin for muscle relief, take a tincture for anxiety relief, or eat some chocolate and satisfy your sweet tooth while getting some calm. Truly, CBD can be and can do it all. Hence the reason it’s often been dubbed as the shining star of health hacks.

But that can also be a problem. Here’s why: Ever since the restrictions on hemp were lifted in 2018, CBD products in all shapes, sizes, and forms popped onto the scene — unregulated. And that means that you could have things in your CBD that convolute it, or that actually aren’t CBD at all. Scary, right? That’s a hard pass from us — we’re looking for the good stuff so we can actually get relief from our anxiety of wondering if the pandemic will ever end.

To make sure you’re actually getting CBD in your product, make sure to look for CBD that’s third party tested and made with US-grown hemp. We also are big fans of reading reviews (Yelp may or may not be our most used app). And if you want to be absolutely sure you’re not getting high, look for CBD that is free of THC.

And then, we recommend trying it for yourself! Whether you’re looking for insomnia relief, anxiety relief, help with pain, or zeroing out on those stressful days, CBD might be the best of the health hacks you’ve been looking for. Just make sure to look for a high-quality brand, and do your research.