Understanding Full Spectrum CBD
There are many Cannabidiol ( CBD ) oils available on the market today. CBD Oil in Ireland is not illegal under the Misuse of Drugs Act and may be legally purchased and used as long as it contains less than 0.2% Tetrahydrocannabinol or commonly known as THC. The increase of awareness of CBD oil as well as the public demand is increasing each day across the globe. In the following article, we will discuss the many claimed medical benefits and how exactly CBD works throughout our bodies. Firstly let start with what exactly is CBD?
CBD is one of the most abundant cannabinoids found in the cannabis sativa plant. CBD is mainly and legally extracted from the variety of cannabis sativa known as hemp. Hemp has been used by both ancient and modern civilisations since it was first documented by the Chinese around 3000BC. The Chinese listed Cannabis as one of their medications in their book of Pharmacopeia around this time and was the first recorded history of the use of cannabis for medical purposes. It was supposedly used to treat gout, stomach ailments and a host of other illnesses and conditions. Since these early years, the trade and spread of cannabis reached every corner of the world.
CBD was first identified in the 1940s and was at first thought to be a precursor cannabinoid to THC. Fast-forward two decades and a couple of research papers later, scientists realised that CBD was, in fact, a cannabinoid on its own. Since then over 100 cannabinoids and 500 compounds have since been identified in the cannabis sativa plant. Most of these cannabinoids have potential therapeutic benefits, however, more studies have to be conducted until evidence is conclusive. However, scientists are excited about the future of cannabis and its potential value to society.
Cannabis is made up of a variety of fairly unique compounds. As mentioned above there are already hundreds of known molecules and the majority are made up of cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids. The two major cannabinoids that make up the majority profile of cannabis are THC and CBD. THC is the psychoactive compound that is responsible for the “high” or psychotropic effects of using cannabis. On the other hand, CBD is not psychotropic and does not cause one to feel euphoric or spaced out. CBD is psychotropic as it does have an effect on our brain and essentially our natural well-being.
CBD – Cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that accounts for up to 40% of the cannabinoids extracted from hemp. The US Food and Drug Administration recently approved its first CBD based medicine. Epidiolex was approved in July 2018 and is used as a prescription drug used to treat children with rare forms of epilepsy. CBD is well-known to treat side-effects of epilepsy and it works very well for the reduction of seizures in these patients.
CBDa - Cannabidiolic acid is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that is the acidic precursor to CBD. It is found in abundance in live cannabis plants especially hemp. It is converted to CBD through a process known as decarboxylation and after heat is applied it transforms in CBD. CBDa may be used by juicing raw cannabis and also found in tinctures, topicals and oils.
THC - Tetrahydrocannabinol is the psychoactive compound found in abundance in most cannabis strain varieties grown for recreational purposes. There are limited amounts found in hemp and legally speaking cannabis sativa with lower amounts of 0.2% THC is known as hemp and is legal.
Our ECS was discovered by Raphael Mechoulam while investigating cannabinoids. The story begins in 1992 and has evolved over a few decades of research and trials. The first cannabis receptor was identified in the brain of a rat during trials in 1988 and since then scientists have concluded that we have thousands of these receptors located in our throughout our immune and central nervous system. Essentially these two systems make up our ECS and this biological system can be found in every living being with vertebrae. These discoveries led to us understanding how cannabinoids affect our bodies and brains, and we still never expected the impact and importance of cannabinoids in our physiology. There is still much-needed research required into cannabinoids as researchers still are not quite sure exactly how CBD and associated cannabinoids work, but we are getting there!
“By using a plant that has been around for thousands of years, we discovered a new physiological system of immense importance,” says Raphael Mechoulam, the dean of the transnational cannabinoid research community. “We wouldn’t have been able to get there if we had not looked at the plant.”
Our ECS is a large system comprised of both our immune and central nervous system and contains thousands of CB1 and CB2 receptors that interact with cannabinoids. These cannabinoids are also naturally produced by our bodies and known as endocannabinoids and one such cannabinoid is Anandamide. Discovered by Raphael Mechoulam in 1992 it was the first endocannabinoid isolated that is naturally produced by our bodies. Cannabinoids such as THC and CBD are also naturally made, but made predominantly by cannabis sativa and technically known as phytocannabinoids.
Our ECS interacts with both phyto- and endo-cananbinoids in exactly the same way. In layman's terms, if our bodies are not producing enough endocannabinoids it makes sense to supplement with phytocannabinoids from cannabis sativa.
All these cannabinoids interact with our ECS in different ways. For example, THC binds with the CB1 and CB2 receptors and CBD acts as a THC inhibitor and also regulates important bodily functions. The ECS is responsible for very important bodily functions such as movement, mood, appetite and memory to name a few and this is the reason why cannabinoids are so important for the regulation of these natural bodily processes.
More receptors increase a person’s sensitivity to cannabinoids; smaller doses have larger effects, and the individual has an enhanced baseline of endocannabinoid activity. I believe that small, regular doses of cannabis might act as a tonic to our most central physiologic healing system.” – Dustin Sulak
The entourage effect is a term used to describe the synergistic effect of the compounds found in cannabis sativa and the effect on the ECS. It was discovered in 1998 by S. Ben-Shabat and Raphael Mechoulam in Israel and was a term used to describe their findings of how predominantly non-psychoactive cannabis compounds modulate the psychoactive effects of the cannabis plant. In other words, isolated cannabinoids don't work as well as a combination of cannabinoids.
Full Spectrum CBD oil
This brings us to our last topic and we go into why full spectrum CBD oil is better due to the “entourage effect”. Even with the minute volumes of THC ( >0.02% THC ) the effect when combined with CBD and other terpenes, flavonoids and cannabinoids have a more significant effect on our ECS than isolated distillate cannabinoids by themselves. This effect is still under research as scientists are still not fully aware of all the functions full spectrum oil has on the body and mind. One thing is for certain is that cannabinoids are the bridge between the body and mind and help bring the body towards a better internal balance. This balance is known as homeostasis and is a place whereby your body is at a stable equilibrium, meaning health and wellness.
Although not conclusive, thousands of studies are proving the potential of cannabis as a nutritional supplement and also investigating the magical medical properties of cannabis. With cannabis legislation changing across the globe, many institutions and universities are now able to research a plant with thousands of uses, especially in the medical field.
CBD is not scheduled under any drug control treaties and the World Health Organisation recommends it remains unscheduled. Further more the World Anti-Doping Agency has recently removed CBD from its list of banned substances which now allows athletes to use CBD for not only pre- and post workout but also to enhance their performance on the playing field. It's an amazing time we are living in and it seems cannabis is set to be the new go-to alternative supplement of choice for your health and well-being.
CBDa - http://cannabisworld.biz/cannabinoids-cbda/
Epidiolex - https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/fda-approves-first-drug-comprised-active-ingredient-derived-marijuana-treat-rare-severe-forms