A natural plant extract, CBD (or cannabidiol) has made a huge stir in the health scene over the last decade. It’s not hard to find plentiful anecdotal evidence of its benefits — people are using CBD for pain relief, mood regulation, cancer prevention, even seizure reduction. But if you’re in pain, you’re probably looking for more than anecdotal evidence. We get it — and we’re here to help.
CBD may be best known for its relaxing, calming effects. CBD reduces autonomic arousal, having the inverse effect of THC on the body. CBD’s anti-anxiety effect is why many in the cannabis community talk about how CBD relieves paranoia, although that is not scientifically proven yet. CBD is also known for its anti-nausea and pain relieving effects. It really depends on why your body’s specific needs and the quantity in which you take CBD.
But CBD has recently become a major player in the world of athletics for two reasons. First, it has proven anti-inflammatory properties. This has been pretty firmly established through a number of studies. For example, in a 2009 lab study, researchers found that CBD significantly suppressed chronic inflammatory pain by activating glycine receptors at the spinal level. CBD is also a known analgesic, meaning it has pain-relieving properties. Many athletes use CBD after intense workouts to help manage pain from aching muscles and joints. And recently, the World Anti-Doping Agency removed CBD from its list of banned substances, opening the door for professional athletes to make use of the extract for pain relief.
Honestly, I began to wonder if I was just experiencing the placebo effect. But on the one day, I didn’t take my CBD oil, I ended up picking a fight with my boyfriend (totally my fault) and let a few off-color remarks by a family member mess with my mood. Truly, I feel like it was a bit less anxious, both of those incidents could have been diverted.
I woke up seriously looking forward to my morning CBD oil fix … I mean, tonic. Truth be told, I’m an anxious person. Although I do a lot to try and calm my nerves, sometimes anxiety gets the best of me. But regardless of emotional or physical stress (I’m training for a marathon and running quite a bit!), I experienced this week, I felt a lot more in control after drinking my CBD oil tonics. After work, I met up with a friend and felt like I could fully focus on our conversation without distractions. Could it be the CBD?
Researchers at the Department of Pharmacognosy, The School of Pharmacy, University of London, UK, basis the study conducted on mice found that CBD oil has analgesic properties and may relieve chronic pain of all kinds . It can disrupt the activity of pain receptors in the body and instead cause a release of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine – “feel good” compounds that can ease discomfort and pain, even if the pharmaceutical painkillers have no effect.
There’s still a lot of unknown territory, but early evidence for CBD’s efficacy is more than enough to justify further large-scale clinical studies — some of which are already in the works. These studies also point to the variety of effective ways to take CBD. This is an important point to keep in mind if you find yourself shopping for CBD products and wondering if the best CBD for pain is a topical, a tincture, or a vape product.
After consulting with Amanda Chantal Bacon of Moon Juice, I decided to invest in a bottle of Gone Green Hemp CBD Oil in the 500mg tincture. Gone Green is a really incredible company that only sources the best herbs, adaptogens, and superfoods, so I knew I would be getting a very high-quality product when I grabbed their bottle off of Moon Juice’s shelf. You can buy Gone Green’s Hemp CBD Oil online—it’s 100% legal in all 50 states. They have the best customer service ever, and they carry tons of other fantastic products that any health-conscious person would love!
Research on CBD and anxiety has generally looked at cannabis as a whole product, not as CBD as a standalone compound. Some studies suggest that it can help with anxiety: like this 2011 study that suggests CBDcan reduce social anxiety or this 2015 review that says CBD could be promising for many forms of anxiety. It’s also important to consider whether the CBD comes from the cannabis plant and therefore may include THC, a cannabinoid that for some, induces anxiety. Read our comprehensive article on CBD and anxiety, here.
Is CBD Legal? Marijuana-derived CBD products are illegal on the federal level, but are legal under some state laws. Hemp-derived CBD products (with less than 0.3 percent THC) are legal on the federal level, but are still illegal under some state laws. Check your state's laws and those of anywhere you travel. Keep in mind that nonprescription CBD products are not FDA-approved, and may be inaccurately labeled.