While marijuana may be illegal in many countries, including Kenya where people are fighting towards legalization, certain indicators point towards the fact that it has some unique benefits. Cannabidiol is one of the many cannabinoids, or chemical compounds, found in marijuana and hemp. You are probably familiar with the psychoactive compound Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which is what gets you high. But unlike this, CBD oil does not contain psychoactive components at all.
Here are some of the benefits of CBD oil.
- Relieves pain
CBD oil is used for chronic pain management. Studies have shown that CBD oil may help reduce chronic pain by impacting endocannabinoid receptor activity, reducing inflammation, and interacting with neurotransmitters. The oil has been used to treat chronic back pain, arthritis, and multiple sclerosis. In a small study, participants with peripheral non-cancer neuropathic pain received either 250 milligrams of CBD oil or a placebo. After 4 weeks, the researchers noted a statistically significant reduction in intense pain, sharp pain, cold and itchy sensations in those using CBD oil. The participants did not report any side effects.
- Reduces anxiety and depression
Mental-related illnesses are not uncommon in our world today. Anxiety and depression have led to emotional and physical dysfunction in so many people, and it’s sad. Recent studies have pointed towards the fact that CBD oil could, in fact, help to alleviate the symptoms of depression and anxiety. But remember that this compound does not have psychoactive effects. How does it work? Research from 2014 indicated that CBD appears to have a positive interaction with serotonin receptors in the brain. By balancing the serotonin levels, it increases a person’s feelings of well-being and happiness.
- Promotes sleep
If you haven’t experienced sleep-related issues at any point in your life, then you are definitely one of the lucky ones. Oversleeping is a common problem in our world today. If your insomnia is caused by external factors or related conditions, CBD may help by treating the causes of sleeplessness. CBD may hold promise for Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep behaviour disorder and excessive daytime sleepiness.
- Heart health
Cardiovascular diseases such as high blood pressure are not to be taken lightly because they can easily lead to a heart attack, stroke, or even death. Studies indicate that CBD oil may be able to help with high blood pressure. In one particular research, nine healthy men were treated with one dose of 600 mg of CBD oil and they found that it reduced resting blood pressure, compared to a placebo. CBD oil doesn’t directly interact with the cardiovascular system, but the way that it interacts with the endocannabinoid system can be beneficial to the health of your heart. It reduces inflammation, lowering your blood pressure and therefore treating irregular heartbeat.
Epilepsy is a neurological disorder in which brain activity becomes abnormal, causing seizures or periods of unusual behaviour, sensations, and sometimes loss of awareness. The prevalence of epilepsy is about 20 cases in every 1,000 people in Kenya, which is pretty high. Studies show that pharmaceutical CBD is best for reducing seizures. While it is not completely clear why CBD oil can reduce some types of seizures, it is known to have a range of biochemical effects on nerve cells in the brain, some of which may have an impact on seizures. In a particular study, 43% of patients treated with CBD oil and in 27% of patients in the placebo group occurred a reduction in seizure frequency by 50% or more.
- Cancer treatment
Almost everyone has had experience with cancer, either directly or indirectly. We all know someone who has suffered from cancer, and it’s one of the most difficult things one can ever experience. There’s indisputable evidence supporting the idea that cannabinoids can reduce tumour growth in animal models of cancer.
The authors of a 2015 study found a promising relationship between cannabis and bladder cancer. After adjusting for several factors, they found that cannabis users had a 45% lower risk of developing bladder cancer. A separate study noted that the use of cannabinoids shows promise in the fight against cancer. The researchers found that cannabinoids seem to inhibit the growth of many different types of tumour cells in both test tubes and animal models.
- Brain health
In recent studies, CBD oil has been shown to reduce or remove the impact of inflammation, oxygen buildup, and brain cell decline. Inflammation has been shown to increase the negative impact of Alzheimer’s disease. It prevents free radical damage and protects the cells in the brain to help generate new ones. Not only does it do this, but several studies have found a link between CBD oil and neuroprotection. In other words, it can protect against neurogenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and multiple sclerosis (MS). These neuroprotective effects occur from the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of CBD oil.
- Addiction Recovery
For those struggling to recover from addiction to a certain drug, then CBD may just be the answer for you. CBD oil is effective in targeting risk states of drug use relapse by reducing anxiety and stress related to drug cues and mediating anti-depressant activity. In addition to that, CBD oil has an impact on the brain circuitry that is responsible for drug craving and seeking behaviours triggered by drug-related context and stress.