Annually the marketing firm Edelman Trust releases their report that quantifies consumer trust in several different institutions. According to their 2018 and 2019 reports, the pharmaceutical industry is one of the least trusted of all 15 industries that the Edelman firm studies.
Reports like this are hardly surprising. What with numerous drug companies currently being implicated in the prescription opioid epidemic, drug prices rising at startling rates in recent decades, and the side effects associated with numerous prescription drugs so worrying that many wonder if they are doing more harm than good. Is it any wonder then that many are turning to alternative methods for treating their ailments. One of these alternative treatments that are taking the world by storm, with incredible results and future promise, is CBD (cannabidiol). But what is CBD exactly?
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a chemical element of cannabis that doesn’t contain any of the plant’s psychoactive properties. CBD is believed to help alleviate a variety of health issues including, epilepsy, chronic pain, cancer, and anxiety. CBD oil can also improve sleep, reduce pain and inflammation, prevent oxidative stress, support and improve heart health and weight loss, and protects against some forms of cancer (more benefits of CBD listed below).
While CBD may be a new term to you and has only recently been added to American vocabulary, it may surprise you to know that it is not new to medicine and has been used for centuries.
Like many other natural remedies, the use of medical marijuana (which contains CBD) is documented to have been used medically (and of course recreationally) for centuries. One of the first recorded cases of it being used medically was around 2727 B.C in China when the Emperor Sheng Neng used cannabis tea to help with an assortment of health issues that included malaria, poor memory, insomnia and inflammatory arthritis (or gout).
Revered in many ancient cultures as a sacred plant, cannabis is mentioned in many ancient texts and was used medicinally and ritually. In 200-800 B.C, cannabis is specifically mentioned in the Hindu sacred text Atharvaveda (Science of Charms) as “Sacred Grass,” one of the five sacred plants of India.
In the 1500’s B.C, it was being used in Egypt for inflammation. At this time also, Chinese physicians were using the roots, leaves, and oil of cannabis to treat blood-clots, parasites, constipation, and even hair-loss.
In 1940, a research team from Illinois University were the first to isolate CBD, revealing that there were active elements in the cannabis plant that did not consist of the psychoactive qualities commonly associated with the plant.
In 1998, a pharmaceutical group from Britain, GW Pharmaceuticals, commenced official medical trials to fully understand the capabilities of CBD. This initial research led to international studies being implemented by numerous medical societies around the world.
As GW Pharmaceuticals advanced in this area of study, an Israeli researcher, Raphael Mechoulam, discovered the chemistry behind multiple cannabinoids, precisely, how to isolate individual cannabinoids like THC and CBD from the plant in its entirety. This enabled additional research. Mechoulam earned numerous international awards for his research that allowed the medical benefits of CBD to come to the forefront both overseas and here in the United States.
MODERN-DAY USES OF CBD
Today, science is confirming many of the ancient claims, and many more uses are being continually uncovered. CBD is believed to help alleviate a variety of health issues including, epilepsy, chronic pain, cancer, and anxiety. CBD oil can also improve sleep, reduce pain and inflammation, prevent oxidative stress, support and improve heart health and weight loss, and protects against some forms of cancer.
CBD gives you the perfect 1:3 proportion of omega-3s, as well as omega-6 fatty acids. Omegas are great for your heart-health, stabilizing blood pressure, and for promoting your immune system. Additionally, CBD works within the endocrine system to support and balance the release of crucial hormones and to sustain homeostasis.
CBD is a source of protein. Hemp plants have all 20 amino-acids; which means it is a complete protein chain. Several of the amino-acids you receive through diet are also found in CBD. CBD contains B-complex vitamins including Vitamin B6, B12, riboflavin, niacin, and thiamine. If you are a vegan, you most likely don’t have adequate sources of these complex vitamins, which is why CBD should play such a vital role in your life, including workouts.
CBD is high in iron. Many people, including of course vegetarians and vegans are looking for animal-free sources of iron, and if you’re not fond of taking iron supplements, then consuming CBD oil or other CBD products can help maintain your hemoglobin levels, and help with transporting oxygen.
CBD is an impressive antioxidant and helps your body by supplying Vitamin C, Vitamin E, flavonoids, and other essential elements that help in eliminating toxins. It also helps flush out free radicals, which can slow down daily performance and leave you susceptible to disease and infection as cells become damaged.