Updated: Jan 6, 2021
If you have logged into social media, taken a drive around town or watched any TV lately, you have likely heard of “CBD”. It’s a popular product and has gained popularity at a rapid rate over the last two years. It’s available in all types of forms - tinctures, bath salts, topicals, isolates, and gummies. Some products have essential oils added while others include ginger, turmeric and more. Some are organic, chemical and pesticide-free and some are laden with mold and metals.
But many still have questions and we are getting calls every day from people asking questions like what is it exactly? Is it safe to take? Does it help with pain? I have PTSD, will CBD calm my nerves? Does it cure arthritis? Will it help me sleep? Can kids take it?
What is CBD and how does it work? CBD, short for cannabidiol, is a chemical compound from the Cannabis sativa plant. It's a naturally occurring substance that's used in products like oils and edibles to impart a feeling of relaxation and calm. Unlike its cousin, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the major active ingredient in marijuana, CBD is not psychoactive.
We all have receptors called cannabinoid receptors in every single system of our body which play a role in many physiological functions - from heart and lungs to digestive, endocrine, immune, and reproductive physiology, to your mind and emotions. Although the mechanisms are not yet fully understood, we know cannabinoid receptors also play a role in things like metabolism, mood, cravings, pain, immunity and more.
So, from systemic to cellular these receptors help our system maintain homeostasis in the body. Homeostasis means that everything is in balance, operating at the right level and firing at the right time. You can think of homeostasis as like the conductor for the symphony of your body - its job is to make sure that your body is running at optimal levels.
Eight years ago, armed with this information, I decided to try CBD oil and it changed my life personally and professionally. As an FDN-Practitioner, it changed my ability to help my clients improve sleep, decrease anxiety, and manage pain and inflammation. We’ve also seen the benefits of CBD in our thermography clients with a reduction of inflammation in the body after they use CBD consistently for 3-6 months.
It has helped my long-time-insomniac husband sleep well again. He has a mechanical heart valve with a pacemaker so CBD has been a godsend for restful sleep. It also allowed me to get to sleep easier, something I had not done well since my husband had his heart surgery. Over time, I also found it improved my ability to react less to stressful situations and it also decreased my hot flashes.
So, is CBD right for you? I can tell you that what I’ve found with my clients is that they want safer options for weight loss, anxiety, insomnia and pain control and CBD has proven itself to be both safe and effective. You must be mindful of your source as products can be laced with any number of dangerous agents such as heavy metals, molds, and pesticides. Do your research before you buy and you can find a CBD product that’s just right for you!
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