Within the last couple of years, the three-letter word C-B-D has been around in news headlines, promoted all over social media, and is now being sold as consumer goods in various parts of the world. Current medical studies performed by leaders in cannabis research have started to unravel the understanding of what CBD is.
According to a recent study led by BDS Analytics and Arcview Market Research, the CBD industry could reach $20 billion in market sales within the United States alone by 2024. The explosive growth of the CBD industry stems from its highly effective psychological and physiological healing properties. This understanding has then increased the demand for CBD products for medical and wellness purposes. In the not so distant future, CBD looks as if it will split off into its own distinct segment and will be become a very common consumer product for many retailers. But before we dive too far into the future of this multi-billion dollar industry, let’s talk about what CBD is, how it is consumed, and why it may be beneficial for you.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the various chemical compounds found within the Cannabis Sativa plant. This type of cannabis can be categorized into two primary species: Hemp and Marijuana. Hemp plants are a type of cannabis plant that contains 20% or more CBD and less than 0.3% THC concentrations, while marijuana plants are a type of cannabis plant that contains a higher potency of THC concentrations. Both of these naturally occurring substances are used in products such as oils, edibles, topicals, balms, sprays, dry flower, capsules, and more.
Because CBD and THC compounds are actively found in both hemp and marijuana species of cannabis, it is a common misconception as to what effect each molecule has on the psychological and physiological functions of the body.
The Differences Between CBD and THC
- CBD is the non-psychoactive part of the plant which means that after consuming a CBD product, you will not feel heavily sedated, impaired, or euphoric.
- CBD is a hemp extract with all the cannabinoids expect THC which means it has all the beneficial properties of cannabis without the high.
- The higher the CBD content, the less the THC can have a psychoactive effect. These strains of cannabis will target your pain signals and help consumers feel good without the psychotropic factor. CBD helps to slow the absorption of THC.
- THC is the main psychoactive compound found in marijuana that binds with the cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptors in the brain to produce a high sensation.
- The effects of THC are mostly neurological and nervous system-related which is why consumers will receive the pain relief and a feeling of sedation and euphoria.
Simply put, THC makes you high and CBD doesn’t. CBD is the anti-cannabis in a way. It’s the other side of the equation that stimulates the body’s natural production of endocannabinoids.
How CBD/ THC Work in the Body
Our bodies have endocannabinoids which are neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors targeting either the central nervous system (CNS) or the immune system. CBD and THC compounds interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) like a lock and key into existing receptors. These receptors within the ECS impact physiological processes affecting pain modulation, appetite, anti-inflammatory effects, and other immune system responses. CB1 and CB2 are the two receptors within the ECS that affect different psychological and physiological bodily functions.
CB1 receptors directly affect the brain and central nervous system and can be found within:
- the Brain
- Vascular System
- Gastrointestinal Tract
- Reproductive Organs
- Bone Marrow
CB2 receptors directly affect the immune system and inflammation and can be found in the:
- Bone Marrow
CBD oil, however, doesn’t directly interact with CB1/CB2 receptors but rather stimulates the ECS to produce its own cannabinoids while also slowing their breakdown so endocannabinoids stay longer in the body.
THC has a direct effect on the CB1 receptor as it binds with it perfectly to enhance the psychotropic response but has little to no effect on the CB2 receptors. CBD changes the structure of the CB1 receptor to make it more receptive to endocannabinoids, resulting in an improved endocannabinoid response.
How is CBD Consumed?
Consumption of CBD concentrates comes in a variety of different products. Each consumption method of a product resonates differently from person to person. That is why it’s critical that you experiment and find out the most efficient and enjoyable methods to consume your product to maximize potential benefits. CBD comes in the form of capsules, liquids, vaporizers, topicals, edibles, oil, sublingual spray/ drops, balms, dry flower, and more.
If smoking/ vaporizing your product is most beneficial for you then smoking instruments such as bongs, pipes, joints, or a vaporizer pen may be your best bet. Vaping and smoking your product will allow CBD to directly enter the bloodstream so the effects will be felt much faster than other methods like eating or drinking. In less than 10 minutes, your body will consume 34-56% of the CBD.
Oral applicators like edibles, capsules, oils, tinctures, and sublingual spray/drops are an effective method to receive the potential healing properties of CBD. Ingesting an edible or pill tends to take much longer than oils or sprays because it has to go through your digestive tract before entering the bloodstream. This process usually takes anywhere from 30 min to 2 hours to kick in. Inversely, holding oil from a CBD tincture under your tongue for 60 seconds before being swallowed is a fast track way to feel the effects of CBD. It typically takes 15-30 minutes to feel the effects and the effects are known to last 4-6 hours.
As CBD continues to gain traction at an explosive rate, many companies and industries are creating and promoting more CBD-based products. CBD gummies, chocolates, brownies, honey, butter, wine, beer, soda, water, and lemonade are becoming all the more common within certain retailers, and this is just the tip of the iceberg.
CBD topicals like skin soothing salves, hemp oil shampoo/conditioner, body wash, deep moisturizers, cream, lotion, balm, soap, and other anti-aging skincare ointments have been developed to help consumers relieve chronic pain and soreness, reduce inflammation and soothe inflammatory skin conditions such as psoriasis, dermatitis, and eczema. When CBD topicals are applied to the skin it never fully reaches the bloodstream but can be absorbed through the surface of the skin to lock with cannabinoid receptors.
How is CBD Beneficial?
The benefits of CBD impact both the psychological and physiological functions of the body. High doses of CBD produce clear-headed, functional effects without the euphoric high that THC strains bring on. If you are extremely sensitive to the side effects of THC (ie anxiety, paranoia, dizziness, etc) then CBD might be for you. However, it is important to note that, most beneficial factors of CBD are based on personal experience so it is common that an individual might not receive the same benefits as felt by others.
CBD became most famous for treating a rare, debilitating form of pediatric epilepsy. From then on, scientists and doctors have conducted various studies in hopes of learning more about the potential healing properties of CBD. The most common benefits of CBD consumption are focused on pain management, anxiety/depression management, and reducing inflammation.
Healing Properties of CBD (Psychologically)
Popularly used to manage:
- Epilepsy/ Seizure Disorder
- Brain Inflammation
- PTSD/ Anxiety
- Opioid Withdrawl
- Panic Disorder
Healing Properties of CBD (Physiologically)
Popularly used to manage:
- Relieve Nausea
- Promote Cardiovascular Health
- Lower Risk of Diabetes
- Provides Antioxidants, Anti-Inflammatory, Neuroprotective Health Support
- Muscle Relaxant
- Crohn’s Disease
CBD and Skin
The benefits of certain CBD topicals on your skin promotes:
- Anti-aging effects
- Acne Prevention
- Anti-Inflammatory effects
- Dry Skin Nourishment
- Helps with Eczema
- Rich in Omegas 6 and 9
- Helps manage Arthritis
As you know by now, CBD also blocks the intoxicating effects of THC by binding to cannabinoid receptors to prevent THC from becoming activated. This translates to a lesser or non-existent psychoactive effect and reduces certain side effects of THC like short term memory impairment.
Who is CBD For?
CBD is a wide range product that utilizes various healing properties for all walks of life whether human or animal. Yes, you heard that right, CBD products can also be used to manage any anxieties or pain your pet may have. Most CBD retailers have soft chew gummies, oils, sprays, and other exclusive products developed for specific pets.
CBD is also starting to become popular in the world of sports, as many athletes are using it for post-recovery in between games or after strenuous practices or workouts. Athletes are also using it to reduce any inflamed joints, soreness, and performance anxiety that comes with their particular sport.
CBD is becoming increasingly popular with consumers who battle with chronic pain and advanced age. The perfect Christmas gift for your 84-year-old grandmother with arthritis from head to toe might, in fact, might be a bottle of topical CBD lotion. While there still is a stigma going on around CBD due to it being derived from cannabis plants, more and more consumers are beginning to realize the medicinal effects of CBD.
The Future of CBD
CBD is in the early stages of development in the marketplace. Due to CBD being derived from cannabis plants, it has sparked a stigma among certain audiences. A huge contribution to the negative perception of the CBD industry is due to the “CBD gold rush” opportunity. A variety of companies are cutting corners in order to make some quick cash. Many people who have ordered “CBD” products from these companies have received synthetics, untested CBD products, or a mislabeled product that fails to deliver the correct dosage of CBD concentrates as advertised. Few, if not many of these phony CBD companies fail to publish their lab test results online so there is no way of confirming the contents of their product.
While the future of the CBD industry may pose some scandalous hazards, the CBD industry also provides a beneficial product that can manage and even improve the psychological and physiological health and well being of you and your pets and has been proven to be useful in some medical practices.
While the explosive growth rate of the CBD industry continues to climb, I have created SmartFit CBD as a platform intended to promote the highest-quality CBD companies on the market so that consumers have access to the most legitimate and effective CBD products.