Cannabinoids are naturally occurring compounds found within the cannabis plant. There are more than 100 distinct cannabinoids identified in cannabis. One of the most well-known cannabinoids is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which is the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is another well-known cannabinoid. Unlike THC, however, CBD does not have psychoactive properties.
CBD oil is created by extracting CBD from the cannabis plant and mixing it with a carrier oil like olive or coconut oil. Proponents of CBD oil and CBD products claim that they can be helpful for stress and anxiety management, plus a wide range of medical conditions.
Hemp CBD vs. Cannabis Flower CBD
CBD can be extracted from both cannabis and hemp. The main difference between hemp and cannabis is the amount of THC in each. In the eyes of the U.S. Federal Government:
- Hemp is defined as cannabis that contains less than 0.03% of THC
- Marijuana is defined as cannabis that contains more than 0.03% THC
As a rule of thumb, Hemp-derived CBD will have more CBD and less THC, while cannabis-derived CBD will tend to contain more THC and less CBD.
Hemp-derived CBD with less than 0.3% THC is considered legal by the federal government and can be sold anywhere like a grocery store or gas station. It’s important to note that the hemp market is unregulated and is not required to test for, or disclose, any foreign substances in products.
The good news is that the benefits of CBD do not change whether they are cannabis-derived or hemp-derived.
Different Types of CBD Available:
- CBD Isolate: pure CBD that does not contain any THC or other cannabis compounds
- Broad-spectrum CBD: contains most cannabis compounds, except THC
- Full-spectrum CBD: contain all cannabis compounds, including THC
Health Benefits of CBD
Clinical research on CBD suggests it can be helpful in the treatment of:
- Anxiety disorders
- Cancer related symptoms
- Post traumatic stress disorder
- Seizures, particularly in children
- Chronic pain, including nerve and back pain
- Neurological disorders like epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease
In addition, studies have also shown that CBD can help to reduce high blood pressure and can be beneficial for overall heart and circulatory system health.1
Although more research is needed, CBD is also thought to be beneficial in:
- Reducing the symptoms of psychosis
- Improving sleep for those with sleep disorders
- Relieving anxiety and depression in those with a drug dependency
- Extending life for those with glioblastoma, an aggressive form of cancer
CBD and Anxiety
As we mentioned, there are over 100 cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant — with THC and CBD being just a couple. Besides the cannabinoids found within the cannabis plant, we all have cannabinoids within our bodies. They are called endocannabinoids.
We also have an internal communications system — known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS) — which helps to regulate important functions like sleep, mood, appetite, memory, reproduction, and fertility. The Endocannabinoid System is made up of:
- Endocannabinoids that occur naturally within our bodies
- A network of cellular receptors
- Enzymes that break down cannabinoids and endocannabinoids
Anandamide is the first endocannabinoid to be isolated and named. It was named after the Sanskrit word for bliss or joy, due to it being a mood enhancer that provides a calming effect.
Usually, AAH enzymes break down the anandamide in our system. CBD, however, can inhibit the FAAH enzymes from breaking down anandamide. This allows the Anandamide to attach to the receptors in our brains; which can result in a calming effect. This is just one example of how CBD can be helpful in alleviating stress and anxiety.2
Click here to learn more about how your Endocannabinoid System can be the key to unlocking your body’s healing power.
CBD Oil and Epilepsy
Ongoing research seems to indicate that CBD oil can be helpful in the treatment of seizures. In fact, the Food and Drug Administration has approved a CBD prescription drug called Epidiolex® for the treatment of:
- Lennox-Gastaut syndrome — which makes up 2-5% of childhood epilepsy cases
- Dravet syndrome — rare form of epilepsy that causes seizures that do not respond well to traditional medication
- Tuberous sclerosis complex — a genetic disorder that causes noncancerous tumors that can lead to seizures
In recent studies, the CBD-based drug Epidiolex was proven effective in significantly reducing the frequency of seizures.3 More research is needed to know if CBD can be effective in treating other types of seizures, but so far things look promising.
It’s important to work with your doctor when using CBD to treat seizures so they can determine if CBD will interact with any of your current medications. Some people have actually reported experiencing more seizures after taking CBD. Your doctor can help you monitor your seizure frequency and determine if CBD is right for you.
CBD Oils Available at Bloom
1:1 THC: CBD Ratio
Many believe that the optimal method for experiencing the benefits of medical cannabis is through an even (1:1) ratio of THC and CBD.
Using them together in a 1:1 combo has a synergistic effect that enhances the benefits of both better than using either alone. This is known as the entourage effect. Many believe that when used together, THC and CBD can provide improved anti-inflammatory benefits.
We have a wide variety of 1:1 CBD to THC products available. In a small 1:1 dose, you probably will not feel a high feeling, just the relaxing effects and other benefits from CBD.
There are certain strains of cannabis flower that are bred to be high in CBD and low in THC. Because of their low THC content, CBD flower buds are non-intoxicating. CBD flower can be smoked, vaped, and also used to make CBD edibles.
An example of CBD flower is Charlotte’s Web – a sativa cannabis strain high in CBD and low in THC that has been used to help treat children with severe epilepsy.
A popular misconception is that CBD oils and CBD tinctures are the same thing. They are not. CBD oil is created by extracting CBD from cannabis and mixing it with a carrier oil like olive or coconut oil. CBD tinctures, on the other hand, are alcohol-based extracts that use alcohol to extract CBD and other cannabinoids. One benefit of CBD tinctures is a longer shelf life.
When most people think about vaping, they usually think about vaping THC. But, vaping can also be an effective way to ingest your CBD. One benefit of vaping your CBD is that it can release the effects of CBD into your body almost instantaneously. Another benefit is that CBD cartridges come in a wide variety of flavors. Plus, vaping is healthier for your lungs and airways than smoking – although some of the artificial ingredients found in some vape cartridges can be a health concern.
CBD edibles offer a convenient and tasty way to ingest your daily dose of CBD. Not only can edibles allow you to enjoy CBD’s therapeutic benefits for longer, but they also provide a healthier option than smoking or vaping. Plus, they come in many different forms including:
- Baked Goods
- Hard Candy
- Chocolates & Caramels
- CBD-infused drinks
CBD Edible Dosage
It can take longer to feel the effects of edibles than smoking or vaping your CBD. First, the edible must be broken down in your stomach. Then the CBD has to make its way through your digestive tract and into your liver before it hits your bloodstream. This process can take some time. So it is best to start slowly with small doses.
The best way to determine the right dose for you is to consult with your physician prior to medicating with CBD –especially if you are taking any medications that contain CBD like Epidiolex.
If your doctor is unable to provide a specific dosage recommendation, healthline.com suggests starting at around 20-40 mg a day. Then after a week, you can add 5 mg until you reach the point where your dosage is treating your symptoms effectively.4
Finding the Right CBD Products for You
Long gone are the days where smoking your cannabis was the only way to medicate with CBD and THC. With Bloom Medicinals’ complete line of CBD products, there are options available for every lifestyle.
Through our one-on-one patient consultations, we’ll take the time to get to know you, your qualifying conditions, symptoms, medications you’re taking, dietary restrictions, activity level, and any specific effects you are looking to experience or avoid.
Once we know that, our patient care specialists will dial in the unique blend of cannabinoids that are right for you and your endocannabinoid system. Then, we’ll find the consumption methods and products that are the best match for your needs.
From our CBD flower and edibles to our tinctures and oils — the options are virtually endless in how you can enjoy the therapeutic benefits of medical cannabis.
Click here to find a Bloom Medicinals Dispensary near you.