Cannabidiol (CBD), the all-natural non-psychoactive cannabinoid derived from plants like hemp, continues to grow in popularity as patients and physicians become increasingly aware of its exciting therapeutic properties. While more research is needed, researchers are discovering that CBD may be a well-tolerated and beneficial treatment option for various conditions and symptoms.
Based on research, here are five of the most beneficial uses of CBD:
1. Reduce Anxiety
Anxiety and stress are common conditions, affecting more than an estimated 58 million people in the United States. Studies indicate that incorporating CBD into your regimen could be a well-tolerated natural alternative for managing anxiety. Through multifaceted mechanisms, including affecting the limbic and paralimbic areas of the brain, CBD has shown to potentially reduce anxiety. One study found that 300 mg CBD significantly reduced anxiety levels in humans placed in a stressful situation. These anti-anxiety effects have also shown to be beneficial for veterans and others struggling to manage post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
We’ve previously detailed what research has discovered about CBD’s anti-anxiety effects and you can learn more about that, here.
2. Manage Seizures
While more clinical research is still needed, the studies that have been done on CBD’s antiepileptic properties are highly promising. Preliminary studies show that those with epilepsy may have defects in their endocannabinoid system, suggesting the regulatory system is unable to properly regulate the central nervous system or prevent the over excitement of brain cells. Studies show that CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system to prevent excited brain cells from firing abnormally.
A recent human study found CBD reduced the frequency of seizures in more than 80 percent of children and young teens diagnosed with epilepsy. Some of the participants in the study even obtained complete seizure freedom with CBD treatments.
You can learn more about how CBD elicits its antiepileptic effects, here.
3. Combat Depression
More than 15 million American adults in a given year are diagnosed with depression, a mood disorder that causes emotional problems and a persistent feeling of disinterest and sadness. Several animal trials have found CBD to be effective at restoring normal endocannabinoid function so that it’s able to effectively balance mood and ease depression. Evidence also indicates that it’s CBD’s interaction with 5-HT1A neuro-receptors that stimulates antidepressant effects that are comparable to the traditional antidepressant drug imipramine.
Clinical studies on CBD and depression are lacking, but preclinical and anecdotal evidence are encouraging.
CBD may protect against further nerve damage and slow down any degeneration of the central nervous system. CBD’s neuroprotective properties are recognized by the National Institutes of Health in Patent #6,630,507.
As a neuroprotector, CBD may help protect the brain and nervous system from damage due to head trauma like concussions or following strokes. Studies have shown CBD beneficial for protecting the health and viability of neurons in those with conditions like Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis.
5. Help Inhibit Cancer
Evidence suggests that CBD can potentially inhibit the growth of, and in some cases even kill, cancer cells. Earlier this year, a study found CBD to effectively inhibit the growth of cervical cancer cells. A preclinical study found CBD to induce apoptosis and inhibit breast cancer cells. Other animal studies have shown CBD to possess efficacy for gliobastoma, as well as lung, prostate and colon cancers.
CBD has also been shown to be beneficial for preventing or treating anticipatory nausea in patients undergoing chemotherapy.