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CBD Basics

CBD seems to be popping up everywhere these days – food, cosmetics, pet treats –consumers can even purchase therapeutic CBD massages to dissolve stored pain and tension in the body and rejuvenate the skin. But what exactly is CBD and is it really as therapeutic as everyone thinks? Before you book your next CBD massage, we want to make sure you know just how special the treatment really is.

What is CBD

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a chemical compound that comes from the cannabis plant. It comes from both “marijuana” and “hemp,” which are basically just terms used to differentiate between cannabis that either has a substantial percentage of THC (more than .3 percent in most states) and cannabis that doesn’t.

CBD is one of more than 100 different cannabinoids found in cannabis but exerts some of the most profound physiological effects. Though it produces no psychoactive qualities (i.e., it won’t get you “high”), it does interact with the body in some very interesting ways.

How does CBD Interact with the Body?

CBD, like other cannabinoids, interacts with the body via the Endocannabinoid System. Present in all mammals, the EC system is a series of receptors located throughout the brain and body that work together to promote homeostasis via inter- and intracellular communication.

Most cannabinoids activate cannabinoid receptors by attaching to them much like a lock and key. When cannabinoids bind to these receptors, they help control which information gets passed between different parts of the brain and body. High concentrations o THC, for example, could cause forgetfulness or distractions from pain by slowing how much of this information gets transferred from one neuron to another.
CBD, however, does not directly bind to cannabinoid receptors. Rather, it binds to nearby receptors located on cell walls throughout the body. In doing, it helps regulate the information that gets passed between cannabinoid receptors. As such, CBD can help regulate the production and absorption of endocannabinoids (cannabinoids produced within the body), and mediate the effects of phytocannabinoids (plant-based cannabinoids) and terpenes (plant-based aromatic oils). It can also control the ill effects of THC overconsumption.
The activation and regulation of cannabinoid receptors can help lessen anxiety, mediate pain perception, reduce inflammation, stimulate hair and bone growth, and improve skin abnormalities depending on the location of the CB receptors, the cannabinoid(s) that are administered, and whether or not terpenes are present (and which ones) which contribute to their “entourage effect”.
Because they interact with the same endocannabinoid receptors, terpenes can help determine the outcome of cannabinoid therapy. Uplifting terpenes like limonene (citrus) help stimulate blood flow and increase creativity whereas calming terpenes like linalool (lavender) can help reduce pain and promote relaxation. By perfecting a delicate blend of terpenes and cannabinoids (including CBD to ensure they all work well together), scientists and product manufacturers have developed cannabis-based tinctures, balms, and oils to fit every need – and then some!

What are the Therapeutic Benefits of CBD

We’ve only been studying the qualities of CBD for a short time. Though first noted in the 1940’s, it wasn’t until the early 2000’s that cannabidiol really began piquing the interest of researchers. Since then, we’ve learned that CBD can control pain, reduce inflammation, mitigate seizures, decrease stress and anxiety, improve skin disorders, and protect the brain from damage caused by both trauma and age.

Of course, to have the most therapeutic value, the mode of ingestion matters. For example, those looking to reduce stress and anxiety very quickly may have better luck inhaling CBD isolate via vaporization (such as through a dab rig or vaporizer pen), so the cannabinoid can enter into the bloodstream within minutes. For prolonged, discrete relief, edible CBD products and tinctures can be effective for many hours after ingestion.
Then there are CBD topicals. By administering CBD through the skin, cannabinoids can absorb directly into problem areas thanks to an abundance of cannabinoid receptors in pores and hair follicles of the skin. When CBD is massaged directly into the skin, it immediately begins reducing pain and inflammation and helps improve superficial conditions like psoriasis, allergic dermatitis, and acne.

CBD is more than just a trend; it is the new go-to for optimum health and wellness. There are many ways to consume CBD – tinctures, isolates, edibles, lotions, and so on – and each mode of ingestion stands to benefit you in some unique way. Whether you want to reduce localized pain, melt away daily stressors, or improve your overall health and well-being, CBD products (including our unique CBD massages) are a sure way to get you there.
Have you tried any of our CBD products? Tell us about your favorite in the comments below.