CBD is a powerful substance. Despite being one of the most studied and well-understood compounds, we still don’t understand its full effects on humans. However, from what we have seen so far, it has the potential to bring us closer to optimal living.
In this article, we focus on what we know about CBD today, how it affects our brains, and how it manifests in our lives. Read on to find out more.
What Do We Know So Far?
There are various ways CBD can help maintain a healthy lifestyle. Currently, it is most commonly used to relieve exercise-induced muscle discomfort, support restful sleep, and manage occasional anxiety. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg — the list of benefits is long. So, let’s explore how and why CBD is so powerful.
Where Does CBD Come From?
CBD stands for cannabidiol (pronounced “can-uh-bih-dee-ol”). It is one of two main cannabinoids found in cannabis (the other being tetrahydrocannabinol or THC). The cannabis plant has a long history of use that traces back to the ancient world, and CBD has been extracted from hemp plants.
There is evidence of hemp being grown as a cultivated crop and used by early hunter-gatherers in China. The earliest evidence of its use for medicinal purposes dates back to 1300 AD, as listed in the Yellow Emperor’s Book. From the Silk Road to the Industrial Revolution and now in the Digital Age, it has remained a ubiquitous part of human history, and for good reason. Naturally, hemp’s rich history encouraged scientists to learn more about the how and why of medicinal cannabidiol.
How Does It Affect Our Brain?
To understand how CBD works, let’s start by looking at what cannabinoids are and why they’re important.
There are at least 113 different cannabinoids found naturally in the cannabis plant (cannabis sativa). These compounds are called cannabinoids because they can bind to cannabinoid receptors throughout your body — including in your brain and nervous system.
So what happens when cannabinoids bind to the natural receptors we have in our body?
Activates Our Endocannabinoid System
CBD interacts with our brain and body receptors and changes how our natural cannabinoids act. There are three types of known receptors: CB1, CB2, and TRPV1. There are more receptors that appear to be endocannabinoid receptors that we are discovering, such as CB3, and likely more.
CB1 receptors are primarily located in the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and organs such as the liver, kidneys, and heart. These receptors are responsible for many functions, such as sleep and appetite.
CB2 receptors are also located throughout our body but mainly exist in immune cells known as macrophages.
TRPV1 receptors are found primarily in sensory neurons (such as those that transmit pain signals from your skin).
There are many misconceptions about CBD — including the belief that it gets you high. This is simply not true! Contrary to popular belief, CBD is different from tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana that produces a high.
The truth is that CBD is produced in cannabis plants, both in hemp and high-THC varieties. Hemp-type plants produce more CBD than THC and, by definition, have no more than .3% THC total. High-THC plants, on the other hand, contain anywhere from 5% to 30% THC content by volume, depending on how it’s grown, processed, and tested.
In fact, having trace amounts of THC helps contribute to the efficacy of CBD products. Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, the man who discovered the endocannabinoid system, tested CBD isolate against a CBD-rich full-spectrum complex and found that the full spectrum had vastly more effective implications in the body. This is because CBD needs to be used in conjunction with other cannabinoids, terpenes, and phytonutrients as they work together to optimize the health of the whole endocannabinoid system. He dubbed the term the “entourage effect,” and it’s a key advantage that full-spectrum CBD holds over CBD isolates.
Could Help Bring Us To A Flow State
CBD’s interaction with our endocannabinoid system produces a calming effect, easing our mental and physical tension. These effects allow us to enter our flow state more easily.
When we enter a flow state, we become more open and receptive to new ideas. The mind becomes more precise and focused. We can understand complex concepts quickly and make decisions with greater ease.
This is why many people take CBD—to help them unlock their flow state more often. It’s also why it’s so popular among athletes like pro surfer Kassia Meador, who takes CBD whenever she hits the waves. Many athletes find that CBD helps them perform at their peak when they need to stay focused and locked in.
Helps With Occasional Anxiety
CBD is currently being studied as a helpful tool for people who suffer from occasional anxiety. On a physiological level, occasional anxiety is a nervous system response that is triggered by situations or events that cause us to feel fearful, worried, or panicked. It can also manifest in physical symptoms such as sweating or trembling.
For instance, it’s normal to get nervous or anxious when speaking in public or doing something out of our comfort zone. But this fear can keep us from performing our best in crucial moments.
One of the ways CBD can help manage this type of occasional, non-chronic anxiety is by increasing our body’s production of anandamide. This important neurotransmitter can help us transition into a flow state. In fact, feeling anxious or frustrated is a precursor to entering a flow state. Data indicates that CBD could help us transition to a flow state, where these feelings are eventually overridden.
Inflammation is the body’s natural response to stress or irritation. It’s an immune response that involves swelling, redness, and pain. When you constantly work out, exercise-induced inflammation can prevent you from getting back into the gym quickly.
CBD has anti-inflammatory properties that may help ease exercise-induced muscle soreness. This makes it an ideal solution for athletes who need to maintain their fitness level while recovering from training or competitions.
It is advisable to take CBD both before and after exercise for optimal results. CBD is also beneficial for those already in their recovery process. Whether it be temporary or exercise-induced pain or fatigue, adding CBD to your routine can help accelerate progress towards your rehabilitation goals.
Speeds Up Recovery From Muscle Pain
In line with the previous section, CBD can help muscle soreness after exercise or physical activity. This makes it a natural choice for athletes seeking relief from minor aches and pains while exercising or training for a competition.
As mentioned earlier, CBD works by interacting with our ECS. This bodily system works with receptors throughout the body and plays a vital role in regulating moods and pain perception. Once in contact with these receptors, CBD sends signals that reduce exercise-induced inflammation, promote relaxation, and boost mood — all of which encourage faster recovery, help muscle inflammation, and give you the mental boost you need to continue your health journey.
Supports Restful Sleep
Many factors can influence how well you sleep, including diet and exercise. A busy mind is another common reason many people have difficulty going to sleep. CBD is a great natural sleep aid because it promotes relaxation making it easier to wind down for the night.
Sleep aids are often beneficial to those who want to achieve deep sleep. While CBD is not an aid that will put you directly to sleep, it prepares and relaxes your mind and body to achieve the deep sleep you need. When we become better at priming our minds and body for sleep (e.g., putting our phones away, journaling, or reading a book), achieving the much-needed REM sleep that our body craves is easier.
An interesting hack for sleep and relaxation is to take full-spectrum CBD (like this Full-Spectrum Hemp Elixir), then take a deep inhalation of lemongrass or oregano essential oil. These essential oils contain myrcene, a terpene that works to guide the cannabinoids toward sedation. There are a lot of benefits to using terpenes alongside CBD, and better sleep preparation is just one of them. You can learn more on how to custom-curate your mood with the CBD-and-terpene combination here.
How to Enhance Your Experience With CBD
There are different ways to get the most out of CBD. Here at Ojai Energetics, we found it is best to incorporate the following principles:
Choose Quality CBD
Not all CBD products are created equal. Some contain very little of the actual ingredient, while others may have more than 80% of what’s listed on the label.
The best way to tell if your product contains enough CBD is to ensure the product is 3rd-party batch-tested by an ISO-accredited laboratory
Also, it’s important to ensure that the product is made with no added synthetic chemicals, artificial flavors, or colors.
Choose Full-Spectrum CBD
Full spectrum means that it contains more than just CBD isolate and has THC and other cannabinoids and terpenes found in the cannabis plant (less than .3%)
You can learn more about the difference between broad spectrum vs. full spectrum CBD in this article.
Not all CBD is created equal. Some are more effective and faster-acting than others, and it all boils down to bioavailability. This pertains to how well the body absorbs the substance. So, the higher the bioavailability, the better.
In some products, 90% of CBD is destroyed by the liver and stomach before it reaches your bloodstream. This product loss is especially true in brands that still use CBD oil because our body does not absorb fat molecules. To compensate, it has to secrete bile and nano-encapsulate the oil into little bubbles of water inside the gut before they can be absorbed. By the time that process is complete, 90% CBD is lost, and you only get 10% of the product.
We recommend looking for products that use water-soluble CBD. In water-soluble CBD products, water is wrapped around cannabinoid-rich hemp oil. When this encapsulates organic CBD, it bypasses the entire process above and enters straight into the blood safely and effectively. This amazing CBD technology allows users to get the most out of their CBD products by not inevitably expelling 90% of the cannabinoids you pay for. The best part is you don’t have to wait for 30 minutes or more to feel the effects.
With water-soluble tech, the body no longer has to work harder to absorb as much of the product. So make sure to check the bioavailability of the CBD product that you are planning to buy.
Customize Your Dosing
There are no standard dosing guidelines because CBD is still an active research area. Because the FDA does not yet regulate it, you should always consult your healthcare provider before starting any new regimen.
We recommend using our Honey-Dosing Method to find the dose your body needs. This method relies on taste to get the right amount of CBD absorbed into your system. The first few drops might taste bitter if you take CBD straight from the dropper. Continue adding more CBD until it starts to taste sweet. This sweetness is an indication your body is getting an effective dose.
You can learn more about our dosing method here.
There Are Other Ways To Take It
There are many ways to take CBD. But we found vaporization and water nano-encapsulation (water-soluble) as the best delivery methods to get the most out of each dosage. Let’s break down some of the fundamentals of the two methods.
Vaporization is another form of oral ingestion that uses e-cigarettes to heat the plant-derived chemical until it vaporizes into a vapor mist that you can inhale through a mouthpiece.
One of the more popular ways to take CBD is by vaping. Vaping is an effective way of introducing the necessary cannabinoids into your system. However, there are some limitations when it comes to vaping CBD oils.
Vaping CBD is more bioavailable than eating fat-soluble CBD. In addition, you have a faster onset than fat-soluble CBD.
However, there are also downsides to vaping CBD oils. Vaping devices tend to be expensive and require special equipment to work correctly. Additionally, vapes can contain contaminants that are inhaled. This might not be ideal for first-time users looking for an affordable and simple way to start their CBD regimen.
In oil-based CBD, regular fat-soluble substances cannot effectively reach your bloodstream because of the water layer in your mucosa membrane. Your stomach will filter out as much of the product as possible as a means to protect the rest of the body from ingesting anything harmful. The body has to secrete bile and wrap the oil into tiny bubbles of water. The mucosa membrane then allows these bubbles to enter the circulation. After leaving the water bubble and entering the blood, the CBD oil will be free to circulate throughout the body, and only then can you feel the effects. It is an exhaustive and time-consuming process that forces your body to work hard, all for 10% or less of your initial dosage.
Water-soluble technology bypasses the above process. This delivery method is colloidal, where water wraps around our cannabinoid-rich hemp oil. Since the body doesn’t have to work as hard to absorb the substance, it takes less than a minute for users to feel the benefits of CBD. The colloidal method increases the body’s absorption with over 20x improvement in CBD bioavailability.
Always Talk To Your Doctor
CBD is legal in all 50 states, and it has no known fatal side effects. The substance has positively affected many people, but clinical studies with significant results are still minimal. So, always do your research before taking it.
Before adding CBD to your routine, make sure you consult with your doctor. Ask them about possible interactions with medications or other supplements you’re taking. If you have any medical conditions or take medications regularly, an interaction between those drugs and CBD may cause harmful side effects or limit its effectiveness.
If you’re ready, then start at Ojai Energetics.
Many people have heard about the health benefits of CBD and want to try it. And if you’re interested in experiencing the wonders of CBD, we’re here to help! Contact Ojai Energetics if you have any questions about our products or if you need clarifications about CBD in general.