CBD is the abbreviation for cannabidiol. CBD is one of over 80 cannabinoids that exist in hemp plants. Hemp is ideal for CBD production because it contains more CBD than other plant strains and has less than 0.3% THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). THC is the chemical responsible for the intoxicating feeling. CBD does not get you high.
CBD is increasingly used to help reduce inflammation, inflammatory diseases, and the pain that comes with those conditions. The medical community is taking it seriously and we’re seeing more research than ever. The evidence for the positive benefits CBD for occasional and chronic inflammation is promising.
What is CBD?
CBD is typically derived from hemp and has less than 0.3% THC. People often choose to consume CBD as oils, capsules, tinctures, creams, or edibles. CBD is not addictive and doesn’t get you high. There are no reported overdoses due to its low toxicity level.
The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved CBD for inflammation or specific inflammatory diseases yet. However, the FDA has approved CBD for other medical conditions, like epilepsy. At this point, there is not enough clinical research, but the early evidence is encouraging. Researchers have also noted that CBD shows fewer and less serious side effects than many anti-inflammatory drugs.
What Causes Inflammation?
Inflammation is part of your immune system’s natural response to injury. When your body detects damage, specialized cells send blood and other fluids to the area. This increased swelling helps the damaged area to heal.
While inflammation can be beneficial to repair damage, it can also cause pain in the surrounding areas. In some cases, the swelling of inflammation lasts longer than the healing process and creates a chronic pain problem. Chronic inflammation can also result from damaged tissues which the body tries to repair, only to have it damaged again, creating an on-going cycle.
CBD for Inflammation
An expanding body of research shows CBD may be effective for inflammation and the pain that can result from it. In a 2015 statement to Congress, the National Institute on Drug Abuse¹ stated the benefits of CBD included pain relieving and anti-inflammatory effects.
Thanks to early research² and anecdotal evidence, people are exploring CBD to manage inflammation from injury and chronic inflammatory conditions. Some of those health conditions include:
How It helps inflammation
The results of a 2009 study³ concluded that CBD suppresses the body’s inflammatory response and symptoms by acting on multiple anti-inflammatory pathways. In a study on cannabinoids⁴ (the natural chemicals from hemp plants), researchers found that cannabinoids lower inflammation by binding with certain receptors. This regulates the immune system’s production of numerous cell types that are involved in the inflammatory response. These cell types include T-helper cells, T-regulatory cells, and pro-inflammatory cytokines.
Cannabinoids, including CBD, are shown to alter the amounts of inflammation cells in several ways. The chemicals suppress the production of some, increase the production of others, and kill off the unnecessary cells via a process called apoptosis⁵.
CBD Side Effects & Comparison to other Inflammation Medications
CBD’s ability to reduce inflammation is different than the typical nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)⁶, such as ibuprofen or Tylenol. These over-the-counter drugs are often used to help alleviate inflammation and the pain it causes. Unfortunately, their side effects can be hard on the digestive system, liver, and kidneys. In comparison, the side effects of CBD³ are generally rare and mild.
In January 2018, CBD was removed from the list of banned substances for professional athletes by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)⁷. As a result, athletes have been able to switch to using CBD for reducing swelling and inflammation.
Could CBD Be Right for You?
If you’re living with inflammation and pain check out our online store to order our CBD products. Many customers suffering from inflammation will apply a topical cream directly to problem areas or take an oral CBD product to help reduce overall inflammation. We offer high-quality, third-party tested CBD oils, CBD edibles, and more.