Hemp, marijuana, weed, grass, pot. These are just a few of the names given to the genus of plants known as Cannabis, which grows in many parts of the world.
For all the names they carry, they both are highly prized and heavily loathed for their psychoactive and medicinal properties. In the past decades, government through their drug enforcement agencies have treated marijuana as a substance with widely exaggerated harms comparable to substances such as morphine or cocaine, despite growing and longstanding evidence to the contrary. It’s a pretty controversial drug, but it’s something that won’t really get you high.
As science continues to find ways to improve our lives, they’ve stumbled back onto the humble plant that has such a divisive reputation. A growing amount of research has shown and confirmed that cannabis contains a wide variety of chemical compounds that have shown promising results in laboratory tests for a growing number of medical conditions such as chronic pain, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis (MS), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig’s disease, and Parkinson’s syndrome, among others.
And since scientists have discovered how to extract the oil from the plant itself that contains these prized compounds (cannabidiol oil or CBD oil) in a highly purified form, it gives users the option of being able to make the most of its positive effect in so many ways. These include ingesting the oil in capsule form, placing a few drops of oil in solution under your tongue, adding the oil to your food or cooking your food in it, spraying into your mouth using an aerosol dispenser (think of breath spray), adding a few drops into a vaporizer or water pipe, or for vapers, you can treat the oil as if it were your typical juice. CBD can even be added to your snacks and drinks!
Best of all, since you can’t overdose on CBD oil, the dosage is up to you! While your doctor can certainly prescribe this for you, you’re free to try any of the aforementioned methods and adjust it to get the desired effects.
And as with any substance, side effects may occur, such as mild hypertension (low blood pressure), dry mouth, lightheadedness, sedation, and decreased fertility.
And while CBD oil on its own is safe, there’s a risk of it interacting with certain types of drugs due to how they’re processed in the liver. Inform your doctor if you’re taking steroids, HMG CoA reductase inhibitors, calcium channel blockers, HIV-antivirals, immune modulators, benzodiazepines, antiarrhythmics, and other kinds of medication.
We’re still in the early days of knowing more about the possible benefits of CBD. WIthout a doubt, it’s showing a lot of potential in helping treat a wide range of conditions across the body. It’s clear that it’s not going away anytime soon. Hopefully, we’ll be seeing more scientific studies to support the health claims.