It's estimated that retail sales of medical marijuana in the US were over $3.5 billion in 2018.
The rise in medical marijuana use may be partly attributed to the growing scientific evidence regarding the benefits of CBD oil for pain. But what are the other benefits of CBD oil?
The wide-ranging benefits of CBD oil are inclusive of both physiological and psychological benefits. It's touted as a treatment for everything from mood disorders to acne. It may even have extremely positive benefits for treating cancer.
But each of these benefits deserves an explanation of how it works in your body. Keep reading to learn more about these 12 benefits of CBD oil that are sure to blow your mind.
What is CBD?
Cannabinoids are the active chemical compounds found in the cannabis plant, Cannabis sativa. There are at least 104 cannabinoids that we know of, and Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of the more well-known and studied. It's potential as a medicinal and therapeutic compound is an increasingly popular subject of debate and research in the medical community.
But how does it work?
Scientists believe that cannabidiol functions through our endocannabinoid system (ECS). This specialized system runs throughout the brain, organs, glands, and immune cells of all humans and animals. It consists of neurotransmitting chemicals called endocannabinoids and as well as their receptors.
The purpose of this system is to create internal balance. Also known as homeostasis, this involves everything from pain and immune system response to sleep and appetite.
CBD acts in the same way as the endocannabinoids your body produces naturally. CBD binds to the endocannabinoid receptors and solicits a positive response in different parts of the body.
12 Benefits of CBD Oil
You may have heard about the benefits of CBD oil for pain, but there's far more to the therapeutic and medicinal uses of CBD oil than its analgesic properties.
We've collected the top 12 benefits of CBD oil that will blow your mind.
As the most common skin condition in the US, acne affects more than 50 million Americans every year. Although acne appears as pimples and blemishes on the surface of the skin, at its root, acne is an inflammatory skin condition. And it's CBD's anti-inflammatory properties that make it a potential treatment for acne-prone skin.
Research shows that CBD has soothing properties that reduce the chance of breakouts and also reduce redness. In other studies, CBD shows the potential for decreasing the amount of oil your skin produces, which can also have a positive impact on acne.
But CBD actually has even more benefits for the skin. It's a potential treatment for both eczema and psoriasis. And it also contains nutrients like vitamin E and antioxidants that help protect your skin and even fight the visible signs of aging such as fine lines and wrinkles.
2. Substance Abuse
Very preliminary research studies in rats show promise for CBD in the treatment of drug addiction and substance abuse. In the study, CBD reduces the rate of stress and drug cue-induced relapse in drug-experienced rats. It also reduced anxiety and impulsivity in the subjects.
Researchers believe that replicated in humans, CBD could prevent relapse in individuals recovering from drug and alcohol addiction. What's more, CBD is non-addictive and comes with little side effects. This means CBD offers an alternative to pharmaceutical treatments that can be habit-forming and produce undesirable side effects.
3. Cancer Treatment Side Effects
Both CBD and THC are well-known treatments for the side-effects of cancer treatments such as chemotherapy. CBD and THC can help alleviate side effects including nausea, pain, anxiety, insomnia, vomiting, and lack of appetite.
4. Cancer Treatment
But beyond alleviating the side effects of cancer treatment, researchers now believe that CBD might actually fight the growth of cancer cells and tumors themselves. Studies show that cannabinoids like CBD have the ability to kill cancer cells without any negative effects on the normal cells.
5. Healthy Weight
The US is home to 13% of the world's overweight and obese people. Obesity is a public health crisis in the US. In fact, the medical cost of obesity was over $147 billion in 2008 alone because it leads to conditions such as stroke, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer.
CBD isn't a treatment for obesity, but there's evidence that it can help promote a healthy weight. It does this by maintaining healthy blood sugar and increasing mitochondria that burn calories.
CBD also helps to break down fat. It's believed that CBD encourages the conversion of white fat to brown fat. And brown fat has a positive impact on your ability to create heat and regulate blood sugar.
6. Anxiety and Depression
Caused by a complex set of factors that include brain chemistry, personality, genetics, and life events, anxiety and depression are some of the most common mental health conditions in the US. More than 40 million American adults suffer from anxiety disorders and more than 16 million suffer from depression in any given year.
These mental health conditions are treatable. However, the course of treatment typically involves pharmaceutical drugs. Beyond the long list of potential side effects, these drugs can also be highly addictive.
But CBD is showing promise as a treatment for anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders. It has a positive effect on the serotonin receptors in the brain. And serotonin is a 'happy chemical' that has a big impact on both mood and behavior.
Research is now being conducted around CBD and conditions like social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder. It may even help individuals who have trouble public speaking.
Check out our article about the 8 Reasons You Should Be Using CBD Oil to Treat Anxiety
7. Blood Pressure
In one study of 10 healthy men, CBD oil reduced resting blood pressure with only one 600 mg dose. In the same study, men who'd been given CBD had smaller increases in blood pressure than normal in response to a stress test.
While more research must be conducted before any conclusions are made, this research shows that CBD oil has benefits for blood pressure. Its effect on the heart and circulatory system - most likely through the links to the endocannabinoid system - enables the body to lower high blood pressure levels.
8. Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria
Antibiotic-resistant bacteria are a serious public health concern. Infections caused by these bacteria can't be killed by antibiotics and can even grow and spread while antibiotics are in the body. The potential for causing serious disease means we must look elsewhere for bacteria-killing treatments.
It's possible that CBD has bacteria-fighting properties, especially in regard to drug-resistant strains of bacteria. Some studies have shown that CBD can kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria and offer an alternative to traditional antibiotics.
Caused by a dramatic fluctuation of electrical activity in the brain, seizures resulting from epileptic conditions can reduce a person lifespan. They can cause bodily, neuropsychological, as well as social impairments. But CBD is now being used to treat seizures with great success.
CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system in a way that impacts brain signaling. Researchers don't completely understand the mechanisms behind this benefit, but they do know that CBD can reduce the number and severity of seizures. They also think it might be useful for treating other neurological disorders, such as multiple sclerosis.
Because of its effect on body weight and blood pressure, CBD promotes a healthier body. But it also has a direct impact on the symptoms of diabetes. This includes:
- stabilizing blood sugar levels
- reducing gastrointestinal cramping and pain
- reduce muscle cramping
- reduce arterial inflammation
CBD may also provide neuroprotection and reduce neuropathic pain, which is a type of pain specifically related to diabetes.
In recent studies, CBD has been shown to reduce psychotic episodes. Combined with its ability to treat cognitive symptoms like learning, memory, and attention, research suggests that CBD can be used to treat mental health conditions such as schizophrenia.
It's true that THC may actually increase psychosis in susceptible individuals. But CBD, a non-psychoactive cannabinoid, is safe and well-tolerated by most test subjects.
12. Treat Fibromyalgia
Humanity has been using cannabis to treat pain for 1000's of years. Pain relief is one of the most commonly known benefits of CBD oil.
Researchers believe the analgesic effect of CBD is a result of an interaction between the endocannabinoid receptors in the brain and the immune system. The receptor activity reduces inflammation and ultimately alleviates feelings of physical pain.
This property gives CBD potential for treating chronic pain associated with fibromyalgia and other conditions that cause nervous system degeneration. And because these are usually treated with highly-addictive pain relievers, the chance of addiction is reduced.
Are You a Potential Patient?
The benefits of CBD oil are being discovered all the time. As more states legalize the cannabis plant for both medicinal and recreational use, more research can be conducted. For now, we know that CBD oil has potential benefits for everything from anxiety and depression to treating mental health conditions as severe as schizophrenia.
If you're considering CBD oil for its therapeutic benefits, we can help. Browse our product selection for more information.