Several complexities of the eCB system may impact upon the potential of CBD and other CB1R-activating agents to serve as anxiolytic drugs. First, CB1R agonists, including THC and AEA, have a biphasic effect: low doses are anxiolytic, but higher doses are ineffective or anxiogenic, in both preclinical models in and humans (reviewed in [33, 45]). This biphasic profile may stem from the capacity of CB1R agonists to also activate TRPV1 receptors when administered at a high, but not low dose, as demonstrated for AEA . Activation of TRPV1 receptors is predominantly anxiogenic, and thus a critical balance of eCB levels, determining CB1 versus TRPV1 activation, is proposed to govern emotional behavior [27, 47]. CBD acts as a TRPV1 agonist at high concentrations, potentially by interfering with AEA inactivation . In addition to dose-dependent activation of TRPV1 channels, the anxiogenic versus anxiolytic balance of CB1R agonists also depends on dynamic factors, including environmental stressors [33, 49].
Cannabidiol oil is extracted from the varieties of cannabis plants that have CBD occurring naturally in large amounts and THC in low amounts. To ensure a high concentration of CBD in the oil, a specialized process is used to extract the compound. The oil contains other compounds like terpenes, omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, chlorophyll, vitamins, and phytocannabinoids like cannabigerol, cannabichromene, cannabidivarin, and cannabinol.
CBD oil is a relatively new product to the high street health market, meaning the burning questions are coming in thick and fast. And what better way to find out all the answers than to take a trip to Celtic Wind Crops' cannabis farm in County Louth, Ireland, where they grow hemp and manufacture the 5% strength CBD oil (and powder, and capsules) that has become the first CBD product to be sold in a UK Pharmacy (LloydsPharmacy). Here's everything I learned:
There are new CBD companies coming online every week – these span the range from truly awful to really great. So how to choose the best? The quality of the CBD oil itself is obviously the most important factor – and many companies do take the quality of their products seriously. To reward those companies, we gave more weight to the quality of the product than any other category.
After months of visiting doctors and sitting through tests like a human lab rat, it was determined that there was a slight anomaly in the anatomy of my temporal lobe—the part of the brain that controls hearing, speech, and auditory comprehension—which explains why every time I have a seizure, I suddenly don’t understand the English language. Epilepsy can’t be cured, so the only course of action available for me was to take a medication every day for the rest of my life. My neurologist prescribed a few different anti-convulsant medications, but they all made me feel tired, depressed, slow, and unlike myself—until finally, I found one that was slightly better than the rest.
Considering the complete non-addictiveness and safety of cannabis, Dr. James Hudson, PhD, Professor Emeritus, University of British Columbia Department of Pathology and Lab Medicine, has said that pharmaceutical companies have an enormous incentive to chemically recreate the natural compounds in marijuana and somehow sell a drug from it. You probably already know this, but pharmaceutical companies can’t patent a natural compound, but if they can make a synthetic compound that mimics ingredient from cannabis, they can formulate that as a drug and potentially make a lot more money off of it.
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Later in the 1990’s, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) funded research that had the goal of proving that cannabis is addictive. But instead of identifying any biochemical pathway that could cause addiction, any research defined addiction by the presence or absence of some degree of withdrawal, with no specific parameters for withdrawal actually defined. In other words, if you’re thirsty, this NIDA-funded research could argue that this means you are addicted to water.
To meet legal standards in the United States, CBD oil and other products may contain up to 0.3% THC; low enough to avoid all psychoactive effects, but enough to potentially appear on a sensitive drug test. Kat’s Naturals, however, sells CBE products of the utmost purity, containing 0% THC, and free from pesticides, chemicals, and contaminants. The company works with organic hemp cultivated in the Netherlands, and extracts its CBD using a broad-spectrum critical CO2 process, retaining a high amount of omega 3’s and 6’s (heart-healthy fats), vitamins, and phytochemicals. Kat’s Naturals is also big on using synergistic essential oils- also organic- to enhance their CBD’s therapeutic effects. The best CBD for anxiety in their lineup is Relax, a tincture that combines 300 mg CBD, Organic Hempseed oil, and wild orange essential oil, along with Hops oil, a potent calming botanical which has been used to promote sleep since ancient times. Kat’s Naturals recommends this product explicitly as a great CBD for anxiety, as well as for promoting sound sleep, making this an excellent choice for anxiety-induced insomnia.