Cannabidiol (CBD) is truly one of the most remarkable compounds in the natural world.
What is Cannabidiol (CBD) and more importantly, what does it do?
Those questions and more are at the heart of this comprehensive guide to one of the most fascinating and important compounds of the cannabis plant. Cannabis plants are chemical powerhouses that produce more than 400 different compounds. Not all of those compounds are unique to marijuana, of course, and appear in many other species of plants. That’s why marijuana can smell like pine trees or taste like fresh lemons. But of those 400 compounds, more than 60 of them are totally specific to the plant genus Cannabis. Scientists call these special compounds “cannabinoids.” However, not all cannabinoids are created equal. One of them, cannabidiol, or CBD, holds the key to the wide variety of medicinal and therapeutic effects marijuana offers. The more we learn about CBD, the more it seems poised to revolutionize medicine as we know it. Find out why cannabidiol is so important and why you should care about it, especially if you consume cannabis.
CBD 101: The Fundamentals of Cannabidiol Perhaps the only thing more complex than the biochemistry of cannabis is its pharmacology. The ways weed interacts with the human body are exceedingly intricate. And the truth is we don’t know as much as we should about those interactions—at least not yet.
Nevertheless, we do know some of the basics. So here’s your fundamental fact sheet about Cannabidiol. Cannabidiol is Not Psychoactive. One of the most crucially important qualities of CBD is its lack of psycho-activity. In layperson’s terms, this means that cannabidiol won’t get you high. Unlike THC, the cannabinoid with the legendary power of producing euphoric sensations, Cannabidiol is inert. So when taken on its own, users experience none of the sensations of being stoned. And this is the single most important property of the cannabinoid from the medical—and legal—perspective.
Cannabidiol is Legal Almost Everywhere because CBD doesn’t get you high, products that contain only this cannabinoid can skirt the legal ban on marijuana.
Technically speaking, its THC—the cannabinoid that gets you high—which is illicit. When you take a drug test, the aim is to detect THC in your body, not “cannabis.” If you possessed weed without any THC in it, technically you wouldn’t be in violation of the law. Because “weed” without THC has a different name: hemp. And the rules governing hemp are quite different from the restrictions placed on cannabis.
In fact, every state that has yet to legalize marijuana for medical use has some kind of law allowing people to obtain and use CBD-only (or low-THC) products for medical or therapeutic purposes. And in most cases, that means obtaining Cannabidiol from hemp, rather than cannabis flowers.
In places with legal medical marijuana programs, CBD products are widely available and easy to find.
Cannabidiol Can Come From Hemp or Marijuana Plants.
There are two main sources of CBD: hemp plants and marijuana. Where a given product comes from depends on the legal status of marijuana in a particular state.
If medical marijuana is illegal in a given state, THC levels determine whether a CBD product is illicit or not. In most places, the limit is extremely low. We’re talking under 1 percent THC, with some states opting for a cap as low as 0.3 percent. In this case, the only source that would work is hemp, and CBD products will, therefore, be hemp-derived.
What Does Cannabidiol Actually Do?
We’ve covered the details of what cannabidiol is, its basic properties, and where it comes from. Now, it’s time to turn our attention to what this powerful little compound can do.
For good reason, cannabidiol dominates the conversation about the medical applications of cannabis. But that doesn’t mean CBD isn’t valuable to recreational users. In fact, CBD has some special qualities that can make it an important part of any recreational experience.
First, we’ll dive into the medical side of things. Then we’ll take a look at the importance of cannabidiol for recreational users.
How Does Cannabidiol Interact With The Body?All of the 60-plus cannabinoids unique to the plant genus Cannabis interact with our bodies thanks to a network of neurons called the endocannabinoid system.
The endocannabinoid system runs throughout your body. And it’s loaded with receptors that bind to the cannabinoids you introduce to your bloodstream when you consume weed.
And it’s the chemical interactions of those bonds that create a wide and largely unknown series of responses in your body.
Without distorting the science too much, you could say that human beings are “hard-wired” for weed. The endocannabinoid system runs deep and touches all of the major systems of the body. And that’s why weed can do so many things for us, from altering and regulating moods to stimulating appetites and reducing pain.
And even though cannabidiol has no toxicity for humans—meaning, it doesn’t make you intoxicated (i.e. high)—it is highly reactive with the endocannabinoid system.
To put things as simply as possible, CBD makes things happen. When it binds to the endocannabinoid system’s receptors, it stimulates all kinds of changes in the body
Most of those changes are incredibly beneficial, and researchers keep uncovering real and potential medical uses for them.
We won’t bog you down with the technical minutiae of each of those changes. Instead, here’s a quick overview of the major studies and most promising findings about the medical importance of CBD.
Here’s What CBD Can Really Do—And The Research Backing It Up.
There’s no better way to gain an appreciation of just what cannabidiol can do than taking a look at the exciting research behind it. This overview lists the major medical benefits of CBD, then explains the key studies backing them up.
CBD Can Stop Epileptic Seizures. One of the most important CBD studies ever published was a path-breaking study into the efficacy of using CBD as a treatment for epilepsy.
In 2012, researchers with the British Epilepsy Association published a paper called “Cannabidiol exerts anticonvulsant effects in animal models of the temporal lobe and partial seizures.” Their conclusion? “The evidence strongly supports CBD as a therapeutic candidate for a diverse range of human epilepsies.”
CBD Can Treat Serious Neurological Diseases Like Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis, and Parkinson’s. Researchers are still trying to figure out the exact mechanisms behind neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. We know it has to do with a protein pathway, and that’s exactly the pathway this 2006 study investigates.
Taking a look down to the molecular level, researchers discovered that CBD can actually protect nerve cells from degenerative diseases. Scientists call this CBD’s “neuroprotective effect,” and it’s one of the most promising aspects of the cannabinoid.
CBD Can Relieve Pain. Medical cannabis is quickly becoming the go-to alternative to dangerous and addictive prescription painkillers, like the opioids that are causing an epidemic of overdose deaths in the United States.
A lot of weed’s pain-killing power stems from its psychoactive cannabinoid, THC. But cannabidiol is also a potent pain reliever. 2015 saw the most important study to uncover the pain-relieving effects of CBD. In that study, researchers compared cannabidiol to morphine.
To their surprise, CBD worked well in combination with morphine and counteracted the latter’s risky side effects. This means cannabidiol can help treat acute pain conditions, along with more long-term benefits.
CBD Can Fight Cancer. It sounds too good to be true. But indeed, pre-clinical trials have shown that cannabidiol has a powerful anti-tumor effect.
The most important study to reveal these powerful tumor-inhibiting effects came out in 2015. In fact, this study looked at a range of non-psychoactive cannabinoids, including, of course, cannabidiol.
In a landmark for medical cannabis research, this study concluded that “CBD slows the progression of many types of cancer, including breast, lung, prostate and colon cancer.”
How that works is pretty incredible. Cannabidiol actually makes it harder for cancer cells to grow. In some cases, this causes an increase in cancer cell death. No wonder stories abound about “miracle” CBD cures that shrink tumors.
CBD Can Reduce Inflammation. Cannabis is widely-valued as a treatment for inflammation. Credit goes to both THC and CBD in that regard, but cannabidiol has some special anti-inflammatory properties of its own.
Specifically, cannabidiol binds with the endocannabinoid system to produce a response that reduces nerve inflammation. This is another of its “neuroprotective” qualities and a major reason why CBD is such an effective treatment for neurological diseases.
CBD Can Treat Mood Disorders. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) affects nearly 8 percent of all American’s during their lifetime. Women are twice as likely as men to suffer from it. Finding an affordable, safe, and reliable treatment for PTSD would profoundly impact the lives of millions of Americans every year.
To that end, a pathbreaking 2013 study found that cannabidiol improved people’s abilities to forget their traumatic memories. These findings are incredibly important and could be relevant for figuring out how cannabidiol can treat other anxiety and stress disorders.
What Can CBD Do For Recreational Users?
The topic of treating stress and anxiety sets us up perfectly to pivot to the importance of cannabidiol for recreational marijuana users.
One of the most awesome things about CBD for the recreational crowd is its ability to act as a kind of counterweight to THC. The passive, sustaining Yin to the active, creative Yang of THC if you will.
CBD Can Produce A Smoother, More Balanced High. When recreational users report a negative experience with weed, the issue almost always has to do with feelings of paranoia and anxiety. No doubt, any serious recreational user has been there. Today’s weed can be incredibly potent in terms of THC. And that’s not even mentioning concentrates.
High doses of THC can and do trigger negative mood alterations. And some people are just more sensitive to THC than others. For both people who accidentally got “too high,” and those hyper-sensitive to THC, cannabidiol can help pump the breaks by inhibiting some of the toxicity of THC.
This is a really unique and little-understood mechanism covered under the entourage effect. But if you take a close look at dispensary products, you’ll see plenty of strains, edibles, and concentrates that include a healthy dose of CBD in addition to high quantities of THC.
The reason for this is that cannabidiol works like an antidote to THC. It counters some of the stronger, stress-inducing effects of THC, leading to a smoother, more balanced high.
Hence, 1:1 strains or other products with a balanced blend of THC and CBD are super-popular among recreational cannabis consumers.
The Future of Cannabidiol: The Future of Healing?
That’s the rundown of what cannabidiol is, what it can do for you and the most popular ways to get your hands on it. As you can see, the future holds in store some exciting things for CBD, thanks to its seemingly bottomless promise as an effective and safe medicine.
Capable of fighting back against the most serious diseases, while also gentle enough to be a part of a daily health regimen, cannabidiol is truly one of the most remarkable compounds in the natural world.
And for this reason, cannabidiol (CBD) is driving innovation in the cannabis industry. Who would have guessed that the part of the plant that doesn’t get you high become such a major player in today’s cannabis revolution?
By Adam Drury
How Many Milligrams of CBD Do You Need? “How much CBD should I take?” is by far the most often asked question our company receives. Unfortunately, practical and legal restrictions often make it hard for us to answer this question fully. That is why we have taken the time to show you how to accurately measure CBD and take a scientific approach to determine your perfect serving size of CBD. If you’re looking for quick answers you can skip ahead to these sections, but first, we would like to explain the complexities behind recommending specific amounts of CBD.
Why CBD Companies Don’t Tell You How Much to Take. If you ask a CBD manufacturer how much CBD you should be taking, you are unlikely to get a simple answer, because it is not a simple question. How much CBD you need can vary greatly depending on a variety of factors. It is not uncommon for us to hear reports of people taking 10 times as much CBD as another person in a similar situation. Similarly, we hear from people who use our products multiple times a day and others who use them only as needed. Given the sheer variance in CBD habits, it is impractical to suggest specific amounts of CBD to customers.
As a CBD manufacturer, our company is aligned with one purpose: creating safe, accessible CBD. The ability to diagnose and prescribe a specific regimen of CBD requires the time and expertise of a trained medical professional. This is an important distinction both practically and legally. CBD companies which overstep these bounds and prescribe their products for specific conditions run the risk of being shut down by the FDA. We want to continue providing quality CBD to those in need for many years to come. Rather than pretending to know what is best for your specific situation, we want to give you the tools to safely and accurately measure the right amount of CBD for you.
How to Measure CBD Content With A Tincture. Before you can find the perfect amount of CBD for your situation, you need to be able to confidently and consistently measure CBD. If you are taking CBD via a premeasured method such as capsules, measuring CBD is as simple as checking the product description. However, measuring out a serving of CBD via a tincture requires a bit of math and an understanding of the metric system.
Tinctures may seem hard to measure at first, but the reason companies sell CBD dissolved in carrier oils is to ensure accurate dosing. CBD on its own exists in powder form, which is extremely hard to measure without a very accurate scale. By dissolving CBD evenly within a tincture, you can guarantee a consistent amount of CBD per milliliter, which can be easily measured with an eye dropper. Once you know the potency (milligrams of CBD per milliliter of oil) of a tincture you can quickly calculate how many milliliters of oil you will need to get a desired number of milligrams of CBD.
Here are the three measurements to pay attention to:
Milligram (mg): Unit of mass used to measure pure CBD content
Milliliters (ml): Unit of volume used to measure CBD oil
Potency (mg/ml): A ratio of how much CBD (milligrams or mg) is in a certain volume of oil (milliliters or ml)
How to Find Your Perfect Serving Size. As stated previously, how much CBD an individual needs can vary greatly. If you are determining how much CBD you should take on your own, it is best to take a scientific approach. We recommend starting with a small serving (15-25mg of CBD) waiting an hour or two and seeing if you notice any changes. If you do not notice any effects, increase your serving size. Keep track of how much you are taking and what you saw as a result and repeat this process until you find the right serving size for you.
How Much CBD is Too Much CBD? So far, there have been little to no reported side effects of having too much CBD, but it doesn’t hurt to play it safe. We recommend staying below 300mg of CBD. Further, taking more CBD than you need will lose you money over time. If you feel you may be taking too much, try decreasing your serving size and see if it makes a difference.
Formula for Measuring CBD
Milliliters x Potency = Milligrams of CBD
0.5 milliliter x 50 milligrams of CBD per milliliter = 25 milligrams of CBD
How to Measure CBD: ExampleNow that you know what each unit means, let’s do a quick example. Say you want to take 25 milligrams of CBD. The first thing you need to do is check the potency of your tincture. This should be listed on the front of your bottle. For this example, say you are using our Tropical Breeze High Potency Tincture, which contains 50 milligrams of CBD per milliliter. If there are 50 milligrams of CBD in one milliliter of oil, but you only want 25 milligrams of CBD, then you would want to measure half a milliliter.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Lazarus Naturals nor the North Bowl Refinery shall not be held liable for any direct or indirect damages caused in any way through the use of information, services, or products provided or sold by Etz Hayim Holdings DBA Lazarus Naturals/The North Bowl Refinery.