CBD is everywhere right now. Every single supplement manufacturer seems to be moving into CBD, whether it’s standalone CBD products or through CBD-enriched supplements designed for other purposes first and foremost.
It’s rare for us to be so blown away by the hype surrounding a new kind of supplement.
We didn’t see anywhere near this level of enthusiasm for any of the major supplement categories when they first came onto the market.
Why is CBD so exciting right now?
Is it because CBD actually delivers on all of the amazing promises that manufacturers are promising?
Or is the CBD wave just another (albeit more extreme case) of supplement industry hype driving sales before everybody realizes it’s all a big scam?
There’s really only one way to find out.
Let’s look at the science behind CBD supplements and find out if they are really deserving of their new-found popularity, or whether they’re a total rip-off!
What is CBD?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a phytocannabinoid found naturally in the cannabis plant.
There are lots of different cannabinoids in cannabis – over 100 of them – but cannabidiol is the one that most interests researchers and end users.
CBD is one of the two primary psychoactive compounds in cannabis. The other, THC, is largely responsible for the “high” associated with smoking or eating cannabis. The CBD is primarily responsible for the feelings of relaxation, sleepiness, and hunger that go along with smoking the herb.
Recently, people have been claiming that CBD has more effects than simply making you feel relaxed and hungry.
According to some, consuming CBD can have profoundly beneficial effects on your health and well-being.
The proponents of CBD use claim that it can do a wide range of wonderful things, including:
- Improve sleep quality
- Reduce anxiety
- Improve mood
- Alleviate the symptoms of arthritis
- Reduce muscle soreness
- Improve cardiovascular health
- Invigorate the immune system
The list actually goes on. As you might have guessed, what the list lacks for in details it makes up for in length!
This all sounds pretty incredible at any rate.
Is CBD really capable of doing all these things?
No! Of course not!
CBD – The Science Doesn’t Say Much
The science behind the use of CBD for therapeutic and medicinal purposes is very interesting, but ultimately not conclusive at this stage.
Preliminary studies have found that CBD may be effective for the treatment of chronic pain. It seems that CBD reduces inflammation, and by extension, pain resulting from chronic inflammation (e.g. rheumatoid arthritis).
That said, all of the studies showing a relationship between CBD consumption and reduced inflammation have been carried out on animals. Large-scale human trials need to be done before we conclude that CBD does reduce inflammation and associated pain.
The same goes for all of the studies linking CBD and reduced anxiety. So far, they have been small in scale or exclusively done on animals. While the results of these studies have been very encouraging so far, they need to be replicated across lots of humans for us to buy into these results wholeheartedly.
The bottom line is, if you want to use CBD to help alleviate pain or to get better sleep, go right ahead. But so far we have no reason to believe that CBD is safe for long term use or that it even really works.
We suggest getting advice from your doctor before using anything as untested or unproven as CBD supplements!