It seems like CBD is being touted as the “cure-all” substance of the twenty-first century all over the web. These days companies are putting CBD into almost anything. You can find CBD in various forms of edibles, creams, lotions and even products to improve your sex life. Benefits of CBD seem to be plentiful.
Most of the research has been undertaken on animals though and trials on humans are catching up albeit on a slow level. Even though CBD has known side effects it is relatively safe to take according to a report from the World Health Organisation.
Below are various benefits of CBD people are experiencing. Don’t expect any overnight miracles though and give your body time to absorb and get used to CBD. As each body is different it might take a bit longer until you notice any benefits. Or you might not notice anything at all for various reasons.
Will it calm you down and take away that anxiety?
A study published in February 2011 used 24 volunteers diagnosed with social anxiety disorder (SAD) to look at the effects of CBD. SAD is fear of social interactions of various kinds with other people.
Some volunteers received 600mg of CBD dissolved in corn oil packed in gelatin capsules. Other volunteers received a placebo. Afterwards, they had to prepare a 4 min speech.
For people diagnosed with SAD this what seems minor task is nerve-wracking. At various stages of the trial, researchers took measurements and concluded that anxiety was reduced with the use of CBD.
The results of the aforementioned study are very promising. There is little doubt that CBD wouldn’t help with anxiety or stress symptoms. There’s been another study with 57 volunteers in a similar public speaking set up.
This study found that 300mg of CBD was the ideal amount of CBD to reduce the feeling of anxiety before a stressful event. Comparing both studies flags a few question marks about dosage though.
It has to be mentioned that the first study reports lower than 600mg dosages were successful in other studies.
Above studies suggest that taking low potency CBD products in low dosage has little to no benefits. Putting a few drops of CBD oil into your coffee or munching on those CBD gummies might not bring the desired effect you wish for.
It also needs to be highlighted that the above studies are one-time tests of the effect of CBD on anxiety. There is a need for further research on chronic anxiety or stress disorders to establish long term effects of CBD on lower dosage.
Based on the above studies I can see use cases for CBD and anxiety or stress. Let’s say you have to hold an important presentation at work or you have an important exam coming up. You can feel the tension and nervousness creeping up on you the closer you get to that important date.
You could try and take some CBD before the presentation or exam to reduce stress and nervousness. No results are guaranteed though and you need to find the right amount that might help you specifically.
Will it get you some much-needed sleep?
The average grown-up needs between 7 and 8 hours of sleep per day. Mixed research and evidence exist that CBD may help with poor sleep and lying awake at night. Researchers need to carry out more clinical studies to understand CBD’s effect on sleep better.
You might benefit from CBD as a sleep booster as it makes you feel drowsy. A few articles and user reports have reported that due to the drowsiness CBD users fell asleep faster and overall felt a better sleep quality. Changes in behaviour before going to bed were not mentioned though.
A study published in 2019 used 72 adults complaining about anxiety (47 adults) and poor sleep (25 adults). Most of them received 25mg of CBD per day in capsule form.
Notice the low dosage in this study as consumption of CBD lasted a prolonged period. Patients with anxiety issues took the CBD capsule in the morning. Patients with sleep issues took it in the evening.
Results of the study were tracked with monthly visits and showed a decrease in anxiety and mild sleep improvement. Besides, the study mentions CBD was well tolerated and overdoses do not appear to be harmful.
What I find very interesting is the reference to dosage. Of course higher amounts of CBD will be more expensive especially when taken over a longer time. Key takeaway for me from reading the study was to consume CBD in the evening when taken with the aim to improve sleep.
Another study , although older, shows insomniacs sleeping more after using CBD. In cases where anxiety or chronic pain causes sleep disorder, CBD may also help due to its possible mitigating effects on those symptoms.
What about Chronic pain?
Research on the CBD impact on chronic pain, like Arthritis, and other various forms of pain has only been carried out on animal models. Those studies tend to show that CBD can have an anti-inflammatory effect. Researchers are hopeful this would also translate to humans.
A recent survey from the Arthritis Foundation in the USA quizzed 2,600 arthritis patients about CBD use. 29% of respondents currently use CBD to manage their arthritis. Of those “roughly 3 out of 4 do report it was either effective or very effective in relieving several symptoms”. An interesting result is also 71% of current CBD users report sleep improvements.
What if you’ve overdone it in the gym?
CBD has shown anti-inflammatory effects but there are no studies on CBD and its effect on muscle soreness yet. Various people have tried CBD for muscle recovery and reported some benefits.
Applications include running and general fitness. If you are plagued by severe soreness a CBD patch might be for you. It lets you target the sore muscle and lasts for an extended period bringing you back into the gym in no time.
The conclusion amongst researchers is clear: CBD has demonstrated a wide area of benefits both in animal and human trials. More clinical trials including humans are necessary to reinforce results shown in animal studies.
Bear in mind that CBD might not work in combination with medication or other products. Always make sure you buy quality products from trusted sources to get the best possible results. How do you buy quality products? Sign up to my blog to find out as this will be a topic for a future blog post.
Are you taking CBD? What are the benefits you are experiencing? Share your personal experience in the comment section below.