Methods of Consumption

Cannabidiol or CBD has recently gained popularity. With over 100 cannabinoids in cannabis, CBD and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are the main and best researched ones. CBD can be derived in two ways: from the cannabis plant or from hemp. The main difference between cannabis and hemp is that cannabis is harvested for its buds. Hemp, on the other hand, is sought out for its stalks and seed. Another difference is the shape. Side by side, one could see that hemp has narrow leaves with most of the bulk at the top; with cannabis, the leaves are wider and stockier. Usage of the two differs substantially as well. Cannabis is grown for one reason: its psychoactive effects. Hemp is grown for a plethora or uses like clothing materials, writing materials, and infrastructure and construction materials. Most CBD users are not aware that there are two products on the market called “CBD”. Users argue that one is better than the other, but science calls for additional research in order to make a claim either way.  

Unlike THC, CBD has no “high” associated with it and is legal in all 50 states. It has been making waves in the health industry for its therapeutic effects and use as a holistic alternative to over the counter pain killers like Ibuprofen, Aspirin, and Tylenol.

OTC medications are a staple to many North American households. Seemingly harmless, these pills can have serious consequences. Overuse of Aspirin, for instance, can cause stomach bleeding and ulcers. Acetaminophen can cause liver damage. Ibuprofen, another common OTC, can affect the kidney negatively and reduce blood flow. This is something to be taken seriously as the kidneys are responsible for ridding the body of dangerous toxins.

Studies and testimonials in the last few years claim CBD to have positive impacts on a wide range of symptoms, and other mood problems. Beyond that, it’s currently being tested for its symptom relieving and disease fighting capabilities. 

Some adults who don’t suffer from disorders  choose to use CBD for preventative measures. As we get older, neurons change and also die. This can be a result of diet, alcohol use, or time. Certain regions like the prefrontal cortex shrink, leaving the brain weighing less. Besides the difference is mass, people experience difficulty remembering things, difficulty multitasking, worsening of overall cognitive abilities and diminished learning of new skills. To combat this, some people consume more seafood or take supplements, antioxidants being the most popular. Others choose to adopt a ketogenic diet, get plenty of sunlight, or sleep more.

Within the last century, there have been reports that cannabinoids increase neurogenesis or positive neuron growth and maturation. Studies in mice showed that continued use of CBD acted similar to antidepressants in its positive effects on neurogenesis, specifically in the hippocampus. Antidepressants regulate the glucocorticoid receptor of GR function. CBD increases cell growth in the hippocampus and subventricular zone or SVZ. Furthermore, because of CBD’s anxiolytic properties, it reduces fear about the future, also known as anxiety. As anxiety and recollection are improved, the hippocampus grows in size. 

Bone Growth is another area where CBD has been known to aid. Over time, people can develop Osteoporosis or Arthritis. Osteoporosis alone affects one in four women over the age of 50. For reference, Osteoporosis means porous and fragile bones. When bones because more porous, the risk of fracture goes up exponentially. In clinical trials, CBD blocked enzymes that work against bone growth. CBD helps cartilage cell growth. It also helps broken bones recover faster and lowers the odds of re-breaking the same bone. 

Others, still, decide to try CBD to see if all of the hype is worth it. They seek to find out if ingesting the newest super supplement will actually show a noticeable difference in their everyday lives. There are accounts of people without significant depression or diagnosable anxiety issues who found greater ease, peace of mind, and a general sense of well-being. Others claim it helps them feel optimistic about their day when taken in the morning, helps them release tension when taken at break times during the work day, and helps them quiet their brain and get to bed quicker at night.  

Whether for preventative purposes, brain growth, or just on a whim, the general public has flocked to CBD. Buying CBD from the right place is just as important as taking it. The best way to ensure purchase of high-quality CBD is to buy from companies who share potency levels with customers. Another practice by high-quality sellers is information on pesticide levels and other contaminants that could remain in their products in trace amounts. 

An extra precaution when taking CBD is to avoid consumption of other drugs that may interact with it. Since most drugs that you take undergo some metabolization in the liver, specifically in the CYP450, or Cytochrome P-450 system, there is a list of offenders to avoid. Some of these are steroids, common antibiotics, and beta-blockers. Others include sedative medications and supplements like Melatonin, St. John’s Wort, and L-Tryptophan. 

Depending on individual preference, there are several ways to administer CBD. The ultimate destination of the CBD is to your cannabinoid receptors where it will interact with the endocannabinoid system. But it must first make its way from the point of entry into the bloodstream. There are several ways for this to happen.

Smoking CBD

For adults who prefer traditional consumption, they can smoke high CBD cannabis. The strain, Charlotte’s Web, is popular for having no psychoactive effects, testing at .3 percent (.003) THC. On the other hand, it comes in at 13 percent CBD. This is 300 times the average recreation strain of cannabis contains.  

Inhaling CBD is a sound option for anyone seeking immediate relief. Inhaled CBD enters the blood stream in up to 30 seconds, beating out any other forms of consumption in absorption time. 

Vaping CBD

The second way to inhale CBD is by vaping. Similar to smoking, vaporization allows the effects of the medication to be recognized quickly. A con, however is that you’ll have to re-vape additional times for a continued effect. 

An added benefit to vaping is that there is less irritation to the throat and lungs. Heating technology in vaporizers is different than the combustion that occurs while smoking. Toxins that are created from smoking are not created from vaping because nothing is being burned. 

Topical Application of CBD

Topical products like lotions and creams are difficult to absorb because they never reach your bloodstream. To increase your odds off absorbing cannabidiol, apply generously and use products with high levels of CBD.

Topical products are best for helping reduce inflammation and for relieving pain in specific areas. If you have neck pain from sleeping, joint pain from being on foot all day, or cramps from sports, topical CBD is favorable. This could be most helpful with people who have Arthritis, muscle pain, or pain caused by autoimmune disorders. The effects for this type of application take an hour to be felt and last up to five. 

CBD Patches

Trans-Dermal patches are a better bet in terms of crossing the skin’s dermal barrier. The patch must be placed in an area rich with blood vessels. Wrists and feet are good. Here, the medicine will go thru the capillaries into the bloodstream. Next, the patch slowly releases the chemical in over about six hours. This is a slow and steady method great for people who want to ease into CBD consumption. It’s also convenient because the sticky patch is already infused with CBD and ready to go. 

Ingestion of CBD

CBD oil can easily be added into drinks or baked into edibles. Beyond that, CBD gummies, specialty smoothies, shakes, and candy are readily available. The allure to this method is being able to be discreet and enjoy a delicious snack that contains a secret weapon. The downside is this method can be slow, taking two hours maximum to produce effects. The CBD must go through an entire process beginning in the digestive system. Then it travels to the liver. At this point a “first pass” occurs, where the cannabidiol is significantly broken down and reduced. What remains goes into the bloodstream. Unfortunately, you lose a lot of the product this way.

Tinctures are taken sublinguCBD Oil Tinctureally, or under the tongue, in the form of a dropper of a spray. A tincture is an extract based in vegetable glycerin. These are customizable based on preference as you can choose the CBD: THC ration for you, listed on the back of the products. To take CBD this way, you must hold it under your tongue for a minute and then swallow. The benefit of sublingual administration is that the CBD oil skips the digestive system and liver. It is absorbed by the mucus membranes first and then the sublingual artery. From there, it hits the carotid artery, finally going to the brain. Effects can be noticed in as little as fifteen minutes. 

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