Bloodshot eyes, a dry throat, and an almost paranormal hunger, are all side-effects of recreationally using marijuana – the most popular drug in the world. But just as cannabis can take users on a trip, it also has proven to have medical benefits including: a calmer mind, better sleep, and reduced anxiety.
With the recent surge in medical marijuana legalization and advocacy within the United States, cannabidiol oil (CBD) has become a popular and promising way to reap some of the plant’s health benefits from cannabis without its psychoactive effects.
CBD oil is extracted from the flowers and buds of the hemp plant. It contains all of the natural properties of marijuana without tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the agent that grants users its well-known “high.”
It is available for consumption in all 30 states where medicinal and/or recreational use of marijuana is legal, and can be purchased in person at specialty retail stores or online via sites such as Amazon or eBay. It comes in many forms, including capsules and bottles with eye droppers.
Although it has only been reported to be successful in treating epilepsy, many use the oil to treat pain, insomnia, and anxiety – for it has been found to be potentially antipsychotic and anti-inflammatory. A 2011 study found that when tested against a placebo in patients with social anxiety disorder, those who took the CBD oil instead of the placebo felt less nervous speaking in front an audience.
As with any supplement or medicine, CBD oil has its downsides and side-effects: sleepiness, decreased energy, and the lingering stigma of using anything related to marijuana.
One of the biggest risks when consuming CBD oil is that the products vary in their quality. Since the FDA does not regulate the product as medicine, but rather as a supplement, every product varies in its content and purity. A 2017 study found 43 percent of CBD products did not contain as much marijuana extract as they advertised, while 26 percent packed too much. Due to this, it is important to do research if you intend to obtain CBD oil, whether it be online or in-store.
Before purchasing, it is widely recommended to consult a doctor or individual specialized in cannabidiol to learn how it can specifically help you. But, if you’re looking for a new way to treat stress, anxiety, and insomnia, CBD oil is an accessible and affordable alternative that has proven to be successful to many.
by Patricia Cárdenas