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How does CBD work?

Ever since the legalization of CBD, its market is reaching new highs every day (pun intended). From oils to capsules to lotions, CBD is everywhere. Experts have labeled it as the cure-all miracle and for very genuine reasons. They say it can effectively treat and relieve various health complexities. These complexities include mental health issues (majorly), epidermal problems, pain, inflammation, spasms, nausea, cancer-related symptoms, fatigue, and many more.

Slowly and gradually, more and more research is setting in to determine the potential benefits of consuming CBD. Let’s evaluate how CBD actually works, and if the claims regarding its miraculous abilities hold any truth to them. 

What Parts of the Body Does CBD Affect?

CBD is suitable for medicinal use due to its non-psychoactive properties. CBD is useful for panic, tension, insomnia, and physiological illnesses in accordance with combating various types of epilepsy. There is also plenty of evidence to back up these statements.

One research, for example, linked CBD to a smaller risk of heart problems like heart attacks and strokes. A dose of the substance was found to suppress patients' hunger in another brief research. Numerous studies have also found a correlation between CBD and the therapy of PTSD complications such as traumatic memories, paranoia, and hallucinations.

When it comes to pain relief, CBD has a major part to perform. When CBD interacts with TRPV1, pain impulses are effectively blocked from accessing the rest of the body. The implication relieves cramps, swelling, and pain. 

The Endocannabinoid System

The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is responsible for a wide range of bodily processes including sleeping, temperament, hunger, digestive motions, and much more.

When researchers were studying plant-like compounds, cannabinoids, developed by the human body in the 1990s, they found the ECS. The ECS's primary function is to preserve bodily homeostasis, or biological equilibrium, in relation to changes in the environment, such as high levels of stress. Since then, scientists have discovered that the ECS is present in all vertebrates, including humans, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish. 

Previously, it was assumed that endocannabinoid receptors have only been found throughout the brain and nervous system, but they have now been discovered across the body, even in our skin. We therefore, realize that the endocannabinoid system is active in a variety of mechanisms such as discomfort, consciousness, temperament, hunger, anxiety, fatigue, nutrition, immune response, and hormonal function.

The Endocannabinoid System is a magnificent, complicated structure that, when in equilibrium, provides comfort and wellbeing. 

CBD and the Endocannabinoid System

Our bodies generate their own endocannabinoids to help sustain this mechanism, but just the same as any other resource; we may develop a deficit and require additional help. And that is where cannabis enters the picture. The phytocannabinoids produced by the cannabis plant communicate with your endocannabinoid system.

CBD is a phytocannabinoid found in hemp and cannabis plants. CBD derived from hemp is officially the only cannabinoid that is widely available. CBD, unlike many other cannabinoids, doesn't really adhere to endocannabinoid receptors. CBD interacts with our bodies in perhaps the simplest manner by preventing the degradation of our own endocannabinoids, enabling our systems to do more with what they already produce spontaneously. 

CB1 and CB2 are the two most common endocannabinoids among the many existing. These two in particular aid the ECS in its role of controlling anatomic behavior. An individual can remain well and strong by doing so.  

The ECS and the Brain

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) in the brain mainly regulates neuronal synaptic connectivity, but it also has an impact on biological processes such as hunger, anxiety, cognition and recollection, fertility, appetite, development, and evolution through a variety of behavior in the nervous system. It is primarily the reason why CBD is known for alleviating mental health complexities. 

The ECS and the Skin

The ECS's function in skin immunity is to maintain steady regulation over the immunity and inflammation systems of the skin. This can happen in two different ways: a) Anti-inflammatory properties of endocannabinoids. b) When the immune system isn't required, the ECS in the skin prevents it from activating. Taking CBD regularly has proved to render flawless and anti-aging skin. Besides that, it has also been helpful in healing acne and removing scars. 

The ECS and the Body

The endocannabinoid system is a molecular system that regulates and balances a variety of bodily processes, namely immune reaction, cell coordination, hunger and nutrition, consciousness, and more. Since CBD interacts directly with the ECS, it’s majorly a reason why CBD is a cure-all miracle. 

What Research Says

The interaction of CBD with other cannabinoids, especially THC, was the initial focus of CBD researchers in the 1970s and 1980s. A limited clinical trial2 in 1980 provided the first evidence that CBD could prevent epileptic symptoms. Raphael Mechoulam, a scientist at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, led the study, which began in the 1970s with work on the synthesis and biochemical classification of cannabinoids and led to the discovery of CBD's therapeutic potential. 

Philip McGuire, a psychiatrist at King’s College London says: “Whereas THC can induce psychotic symptoms, impair cognition and make people anxious, CBD appears to do the opposite.” 

Substantial random clinical studies have conclusively shown that this distilled cannabinoid can significantly aid youngsters with several epileptic conditions, forty years after Mechoulam's preliminary research

Preclinical evidence from animal and cell-culture experiments has suggested that CBD may be useful in treating conditions ranging from Parkinson's disease to persistent discomfort. Medical evidence to support the therapeutic effects of CBD is more limited outside of epilepsy, owing to the minimal scope and ambiguous nature of experiments. However, significant advancement is being made in the treatment of a number of diseases. 

The Great Potential of CBD

The legalization of CBD led researchers to incorporate CBD with nearly every illness and it worked. This is where it picked up the cure-all title. Consequently, researchers believe that the compound may have attributes to devise a cure for something as ruthless as cancer. Although such a claim would require years and years of trials and testing, it’s still safe to say that CBD will combat this one too (hopefully). However, some minor researches proved that CBD is effective in treating some cancer-related symptoms like chronic pain, nausea, lifeless skin, etc. evidently, it has made the lives of cancer patients easier by a very minimal extent. 

Another breakthrough in CBD exploration is that it might be able to treat COVID-19 patients. Trials are still ongoing to support the claim. COVID-19 patients develop lung fibrosis, a severe and debilitating disease that causes scarring of lung tissue and makes breathing troublesome. It would be possible to reduce inflammation, avoid lung fibrosis, and bring COVID-19 victims in relief if a medication could halt the cytokine storm. CBD, an active cannabinoid component contained in cannabis, was found to suppress pro-inflammatory cytokines and enhance clinical signs in mice with COVID-19-like manifestations in a mouse model study published in 2020. 

The Bottom Line

CBD can help to treat COVID-19 by diminishing the cytokine storm and shielding lung tissue from inflammation, according to the report.

CBD is being studied in a wide variety of situations, but it is a substance with far-reaching, if loosely known, positive health consequences.