CBD directly interacts with a number of proteins in the body and central nervous system, a few of which are components of the endogenous cannabinoid system. For instance, CBD binds to both the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors, but it binds in a way that sets off a reaction that is essentially the opposite of what THC does. CBD is an inverse agonist, while THC is an agonist at CB1. Simply put, CBD is not intoxicating; at the molecular level, it does the opposite of what THC does. Our bodies have several other receptor proteins that participate in the endogenous cannabinoid system (GPR3, GPR6, TRPV1 and TRPV2, for example). CBD binds to all of these, and many of its anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects may occur through these pathways.
The truth is, we still don’t have nearly the amount of research needed to fully understand the effects of each and every cannabinoid on our system. With that said, if you have symptoms or conditions that CBD can help with, go with pure CBD oil. If you are suffering from something more general like chronic pain, a full-spectrum hemp oil could bring some additional benefits from the extra cannabinoids. Try hemp-based products as well as pure CBD products, and let us know what you experience!
In addition to acting on the brain, CBD influences many body processes. That’s due to the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which was discovered in the 1990s, after scientists started investigating why pot produces a high. Although much less well-known than the cardiovascular, reproductive, and respiratory systems, the ECS is critical. “The ECS helps us eat, sleep, relax, forget what we don’t need to remember, and protect our bodies from harm,” Marcu says. There are more ECS receptors in the brain than there are for opioids or serotonin, plus others in the intestines, liver, pancreas, ovaries, bone cells, and elsewhere.
Our pick for Best Customer Experience is Populum, an Arizona-based CBD brand that offers complete product transparency and great deals for shoppers. Populum offers a full spectrum CBD oil in 250mg, 500mg, and 1000mg concentrations. The product is made with cold-pressed orange oil for a light citrus taste, as well as grapeseed and coconut oils for added flavors. Populum also offers a cooling topical salve that relaxes aching joints and muscles, as well as a pet oil for dogs and cats. Additionally, the CBD oil, topical salve, and pet oil are packaged in an inexpensive ‘Starter Kit’ designed for first-time users.
Cannabidiol is currently a class B1 controlled drug in New Zealand under the Misuse of Drugs Act. It is also a prescription medicine under the Medicines Act. In 2017 the rules were changed so that anyone wanting to use it could go to the Health Ministry for approval. Prior to this, the only way to obtain a prescription was to seek the personal approval of the Minister of Health.
But the CBD oil use that might be most intriguing—and could perhaps be the biggest game-changer—is for pain relief. As the United States grapples with the opioid epidemic and struggles to treat the 50 million plus Americans who struggle with chronic pain, CBD oil has emerged as a nonaddictive alternative that people are applying as a topical oil, ingesting as a pill, or smoking through a vape pen.
The human body has an endocannabinoid system that plays a regulatory role, impacting our brain, endocrine, and immune systems. The body naturally produces endocannabinoids that bind to receptors in the endocannabinoid system, regulating the body synergistically. However, cannabinoids from the cannabis plant (phytocannabinoids) can also bind to these receptors creating the effects that medical marijuana patients seek.
But, uh, what is it that CBD is supposed to do? I visited a cannabis dispensary in Boulder to find out what the hype was all about. After passing an ID check, I was introduced to a “budtender” who pointed me to an impressive array of CBD products — tinctures, skin patches, drink powders, candies, salves, massage oil, lotions, “sexy time personal intimacy oil” and even vaginal suppositories to treat menstrual cramps.