What is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD) • Naturally occurring • Non-psychotrophic
CBD is naturally occurring, bioactive compound found on Cannabis plants that has several possible therapeutic benefits (1).
CBD can originate from two different sources, the hemp plant, as well as the cannabis plant. Hemp is classified as any plant that contains less than 0.03% THC by weight. CBD is one of more than 100 natural plant compounds produced by hemp & cannabis that are classified as cannabinoids. CBD and other cannabinoids have huge potential for many diverse therapeutic uses.
CBD is non-psychotropic (not-intoxicating), users report tranquil effects, but is not considered sedative or intoxicating.
To learn more about CBD you can check out our blog post here: What Is CBD?
The Endocannabinoid System:
Found in almost every major system of the human body •
Key player in regulating & maintaining physiological systems •
The Endocannabinoid System is a complex communication system, occurring naturally (endogenous) within the body and any animal that has a vertebrae.
This system is responsible for many daily tasks, such as the regulation of physiology, mood and blood sugar. The discovery of this system has aided in the understanding of many human diseases and mechanisms.
Components of the endocannabinoid system can be found within almost every major system of the human body and maintaining homeostasis within these systems is vital to the overall health of the individual.
Another important role of this system is the communication of painful signals or stimuli to the brain. This process is called analgesia (7).
CBD compounds work by triggering specific receptors that are part of the endocannabinoid system.
How CBD interacts with the body:
CBD's effects are caused by its interaction with certain receptors on cells in the brain and body (4).
CBD closely mimics compounds found naturally in our bodies called endocannabinoids, allowing these plant compounds (phytocannabinoids) to be incorporated into our own body chemistry with ease.
CB1 and CB2 receptors: Two naturally occurring cell receptors found throughout the body that are responsible for a majority of interactions with CBD, and THC (found in hemp and medical cannabis). CB1 receptors are found mainly on glial cells, and neurons in the brain.
When the CB1 receptors are activated by interaction with molecular substances, a euphoria or intoxication is experienced. THC found in medical cannabis has a high affinity for these CB1 receptors, causing a "high" when consumed. However, CBD has a very low affinity for these receptors (about 10-fold lower than THC). Because of CBD's low affinity for the CB1 receptors, CBD rarely binds to the CB1 receptors, and if binding does occur, no intoxication is experienced.
CBD has a much higher affinity for CB2 receptors, which are found throughout the body, including the immune system. CBD readily binds to the CB2 receptors to aid in immune & therapeutic responses (4, 19).
CBD also interacts with with dopamine and serotonin receptors in the brain, which may be responsible for the anti-psychotic/anti-anxiety effects of CBD (10).
To learn more about the differences between CBD and THC you can check out our blog post here: What’s The Difference Between CBD and THC?
Why is CBD so great for topical use?
the skin readily absorbs CBD • soothes aches, pains, and inflammations
The highest concentration of the naturally occurring cannabinoid receptors found in the body are located on the skin (3). This makes skin applications and topical products are great way to administer CBD to any aches, pains and inflammations (7). Topical products such as our salves are absorbed by the skin, but stay within the subcutaneous fat layer, and do not enter the blood stream, like transdermal products. Since CBD remains in the fat layer, it creates a powerful localized treatment in the area to which it is applied.
Other Possible Therapeutic Benefits:
CBD activates many different receptors and biological pathways
One of the main neurotransmitters effected by CBD is serotonin. Serotonin is responsible for the regulation of anxiety, appetite, addiction, sleep, pain perception, nausea, and vomiting (11,12).
CBD may also benefit substance abuse disorders (16), body temperature regulation, blood sugar regulation, modulates bone density, and cardiovascular improvement (3).
CBD may also provide anti-inflammatory effects (17) throughout the body, may exhibit anti-seizure properties (6), and can even lower THC’s psychoactivity (14).
Watch Our Educational Videos:
1.Clarke et al. Botany of natural Cannabis medicines. In: Cannabis and cannabinoids. New York. (2002). Pg 3-13 (2002)
2.Mechoulam et al. Chemical basis of hasish activity. Science. 1970; 169(945):6-11
3.Zuardi et al. Charaterisitics of the stimulus produced by the mixture of cannabidiol with delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol. 1981.
4.Fusar-Poli et al. Distinct Effects of Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol and Cannabidiol on Neural Activation During Emotional Processing. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2009;66(1):95-105.
5.Jones et al. Cannabidiol exerts anti-convulsant effects in animal models of temporal lobe and partial seizures. Seizure. 2012 Jun;21(5):344-52.
6.Orrin Devinsky, M.D et al. Trial of Cannabidiol for Drug-Resistant Seizures in the Dravet Syndrome. 2017. N Engl J Med 2017; 376:2011-2020
7. Russo EB. Cannabinoids in the management of difficult to treat pain. Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management. 4(1):245-259.(2008).
8.Di Marzo and Centonze . Placebo effects in a multiple sclerosis spasticity enriched clinical trial with the oromucosal cannabinoid spray (THC/CBD): dimension and possible causes. CNS Neurosci Ther. 21(3):215-21. (2015).
9.Chagas et al. Effects of cannabidiol in the treatment of patients with Parkinson's disease: an exploratory double-blind trial. J Psychopharmacol. 28(11):1088-98. (2014).
10.Murillo-Rodriguez et al. Cannabidiol, a consituent of cannabis sativa modulates sleep in rats. 2006.
11.Bergamaschi et al. Cannabidiol reduces the anxiety induced by simulated public speaking in treatment-naive social phobia patients. Neuropsychopharmacology 2011;36:1219–1226.
12.Guimaraes et al. Antianxiety effect of cannabidiol in the elevated plus-maze. Psychopharmacology (Berl) 100:558–559 (1990).
13.Das et al. Cannabidiol enhances consolidation of explicit fear extinction in humans. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2013 Apr;226(4):781-92.
14.Zuardi et al. Effects of cannabidiol in animal models antipsychotic activity (1991)
15.Hampson et al. CBD Neuroprotective antioxidants (1998)
16.Ren et al. Cannabidiol, a nonpsychotropic component of cannabis, inhibits cue-induced heroin seeking and normalizes discrete mesolimbic neuronal disturbances. J Neurosci. 2009;29(47):14764–9.
17.Bergamaschi et al. Safety and side effects of cannabidiol, a Cannabis sativa constituent. Curr Drug Saf. 2011 Sep 1;6(4):237-49.