Cannabis sativa is one of the world’s oldest cultivated plants. Both Hemp and Marijuana are cannabis plants but both are very different.
Marijuana contains both THC and CBD. THC creates a mind-altering “high” when a person use it in any form. CBD does not change a person’s state of mind when they use it. Hemp contains mostly CBD and does not give “high” like marijuana. CBD also known as Cannabidiol, is one of the 104 chemical compounds found in the cannabis plant, Cannabis sativa. Other compounds identified include terpenoids, flavonoids, nitrogenous compounds, and more common plant molecules. These compounds when used in various combinations has many health benefits.
CBD (Cannabidiol) was first isolated from hemp oil in 1940. William B. O’Shaughnessy, an Irish physician working at the Medical College and Hospital in Calcutta, first introduced cannabis (Indian hemp) to Western medicine as a treatment for tetanus and other convulsive diseases. (1)
According to the new federal law, hemp is legal as long as it contains no more than 0.3% THC. There are many animal and human studies now supporting use of CBD for health benefits:
1.It can help with anxiety and depression:
Observational studies in humans suggest that exposure to cannabis-derived drugs produces a wide range of subjective effects on mood tone and emotionality by activating CB1 receptors in brain through endocannabinoid system. (2)
These qualities are linked to CBD’s ability to act on the brain’s receptors for serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and social behavior.
CBD has important advantages in comparison with the currently available pharmacological agents for the treatment of Social anxiety disorder, such as an early
onset of action and lack of important side effects both with acute and chronic administration to healthy subjects (3)
2.It can relieve pain:
In one of the animal studies it was shown that Cannabidiol has substantial anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects.(4)
Several human studies have found that a combination of CBD and THC is effective in treating pain related to multiple sclerosis and arthritis.
Sativex is an oral spray which contains both THC and CBD and is approved in several countries to treat pain related to multiple sclerosis. (5)
One of the study which showed THC:CBD extract is efficacious for relief of pain in patients with advanced cancer pain not fully relieved by strong opioids.(6)
3.It can help with Acne:
CBD exert complex anti-acne effects by decreasing excessive sebaceous lipid production, reducing proliferation and alleviating inflammation in sebaceous glands.(7)
4.It can help in Epilepsy and other Neurological disorders:
It is becoming evident through various research that CBD act at a wide range of pharmacological targets, not solely limited to CB receptors in human body. Disorders that could be targeted include epilepsy, neurodegenerative diseases, affective disorders and the central modulation of feeding behavior. (8)
Epidiolex is the first cannabis-derived medication with approval from the US Food and Drug Administration. This CBD formulation significantly reduces seizures as an adjunct to standard antiepileptic therapies in patients ≥2 years old and is well tolerated. (9)
5.It can help reducing the blood pressure:
One of the recent study on 9 healthy male volunteers showed administration of CBD reduces resting BP and the BP increase to stress in humans. These hemodynamic changes should be considered for people taking CBD. (10)
These effects are likely linked to attenuation of oxidative stress, inflammation, cell death and fibrosis by CBD as shown in animal study. (11)
6.It can help with nausea and vomiting and other cancer related symptoms:
Chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting are major adverse effects of cancer chemotherapy (12) and CBD can help with nausea and vomiting in these cases.
In one of the study, it was shown that combination of THC and CBD when added to standard antiemetic therapy was well tolerated and provided better protection against delayed nausea and vomiting symptoms associated with chemotherapy. (13)
7.It can help with substance abuse treatment:
According to some studies, CBD was found to have an impact on the intoxication and relapse phase of opioid addiction. Data on its effect during the withdrawal phase remain conflicting and vary based on co-administration of other cannabinoids such as THC.(14)
8.It can help with diabetes:
Some of the animal studies have shown that CBD can inhibit and delay destructive insulitis and inflammatory cytokine production in mice resulting in a decreased incidence of diabetes.(15)
In some of the human studies it was shown that CBD significantly decreased fasting plasma glucose and improved pancreatic function. It could represent a new therapeutic agent in glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes. (16)
9.It can help in Autism:
In one of the study, cannabis oil containing 30% CBD and 1.5% THC was used for autistic children. After six months it was shown that 30.1% of patients had significant improvement and 53.7% had moderate improvement in their symptoms. Cannabis in ASD patients appears to be well tolerated, safe and effective option to relieve symptoms associated with Autism. (17)
Although there are many animal studies and human studies showing evidence of beneficial effects of CBD oil on health but more research and studies are needed in this area. You should consider detailed discussion on the risks and benefits of use of Hemp derived CBD oil with your primary care physician before consuming it.
Disclaimer : These statements have not been evaluated by Food and Drug administration. These statements are not intended to diagnose, cure or treat any disease.