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The Low Down on CBD: What You Need to Know

The Low Down on CBD: What You Need to Know

With the legalization of both recreational and medicinal marijuana spreading like weeds, CBD has become the latest health craze for its various benefits.  Before using CBD, however it is important to know where it comes from, what ailments it can treat and what its legality is.

Marijuana has been used by human beings for at least 10,000 years, and not just for recreational purposes.  The first mention of cannabis as a medical aid in Chinese literature comes from the Divine Farmer’s Materia Medica, written over 2,000 years ago.  According to this text, cannabis benefits the “five viscera” also known as the heart, liver, lungs, kidney and spleen.  A sixth century A.D. version of the Divine Farmer’s Materia Medica uncovered cannabis’s ability to relieve what the Chinese called “Bi Syndrome” or conditions that feature stiffness of the body’s joints, such as arthritis.  This dovetails nicely with modern research, which has confirmed cannabis’s usefulness in fighting inflammation.

With the arrival of modern science, researchers are now able to isolate the various cannabinoids in the marijuana plant and determine what their exact medicinal benefits are. CBD’s effects in a strain are influenced not only by the THC content, but also by the plant’s specific terpene profile.  Terpenes are chemicals that can give marijuana a range of tastes, including everything from citrus to pine.

There are cannabinoids other than THC and CBD in marijuana, and they interact in complex ways.  CBG is a catalyst for CBD, meaning that the CBD wouldn’t be active without it.  CBD is more effective in a plant that also produces THC.  This is known as the “entourage effect”.   Marijuana plants that are harvested six weeks or earlier in their growth cycle produce more CBD at the expense of THC.

The human body has what’s known as an endocannabinoid system, where the body produces endocannabinoids, neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptor sites in the nervous system.  This is the reason why CBD can provide so many medicinal benefits.

CBD for Pain Management

Studies with rats have indicated CBD’s painkilling properties.  One study with lab rats found CBD effective in reducing pain resulting from surgery; in another study, CBD reduced sciatic nerve pain.

Reducing Anxiety and Depression with CBD

In a Brazilian study, test subjects administered a 300-milligram dose of CBD performed significantly better on measures of anxiety performing a simulated public speaking test.  CBD has also been used successfully to treat insomnia in children with PTSD.

CBD Fights Cancer

CBD can help reduce nausea and vomiting resulting from chemotherapy.  In these studies, a combination of THC and CBD was more effective for this effect than conventional treatments. Other studies have discovered that CBD can also relieve pain related to cancer. Another study found anticancer properties from CBD.  In one study, breast cancer cells died when exposed to a CBD concentrate.

CBD is Good for the Brain

Scientists are discovering that CBD may have neuroprotective (brain protecting) properties.   Several studies have found the CBD improved sleep and quality of life for those suffering from Parkinson’s Disease.  It is useful for epilepsy as well. In one study, researchers administered between .9 and 2.3 grams of CBD oil to 217 test subjects.  Their seizures were reduced by almost 37 percent on average.  CBD shows promise for Alzheimer’s patients.  Mice predisposed to Alzheimer’s were given CBD and as a result their cognitive decline slowed.

CBD is Good for Heart Health

CBD oil has been found to reduce resting blood pressure.  In one study, adult males were given stress tests that boost blood pressure.  The subjects who took CBD beforehand encountered a smaller increase in blood pressure during the stress tests. Additionally, several animal studies have found CBD alleviates the inflammation and cell death associated with heart disease due to its anti-inflammatory properties.

Is it Legal?

On the federal level, CBD is legal in all 50 states so long as it contains below .3 percent THC.  However, on the state level, it depends on that state’s laws.  In some states it is entirely illegal, whereas other states have legalized both CBD and THC.

CBD at Ohana Kava Bar

Come to Ohana Kava Bar, where the owner Matthew Clark has stocked his bar with various CBD containing products.  Ask their knowledgeable staff about how CBD can help you.