This is a topic I am asked about all the time, and have been for years: how does cannabis help sleep and health? I’ve heard that the number-two reason why people smoke or use cannabis is for sleep. Considering the recent passing of the recreational use of cannabis in California and other several states I think it is high time (pun intended!) to look at understanding CBD, one of the most active ingredients in medical cannabis.
For example, cytokines are the signaling proteins synthesized and secreted by immune cells upon stimulation. They are the modulating factors that balance initiation and resolution of inflammation. One of the mechanisms of immune control by CBD during inflammation is stopping cytokine production by immune cells and lowering cytokine production by the T-helper cells Th1 and Th2 (which are interestingly the same cells in which overactivity can contribute to autoimmune issues and food intolerances). The inflammatory compound interleukin-6 (IL-6) can also be decreased in the presence of CBD.
Studies in humans, including many of those cited below, have demonstrated that CBD dosage reduces anxiety (once again, compared to the increased levels of anxiety that THC produces), and that when you combine CBD with THC, it takes the anxiety edge off THC. This is due to the action of CBD on 5HT1A and TRPV1 receptors, both of which are involved in mitigating the anxiolytic, panic and fear responses to stress.
Cooper recently got funding from the National Institutes of Health for a study looking at cannabinoids — including CBD in isolation — as a substitute for opioids, and numerous other clinical trials of CBD are underway. It will be several years before results are available, but these studies should help clarify both what benefits the substance may provide and any side effects it may come with. Most of the adverse effects so far associated with cannabis, such as impairments in short-term memory, coordination and judgment,2 come from products that contain THC as well as CBD, Cooper said, but we need to do more studies to find out for sure whether CBD has fewer risks. Studies are also needed to identify the best way to administer and dose CBD. “I get emails from people asking me what dose of CBD to use, and the truth is, we really don’t know,” Cooper said.
In many CBD oil products, you'll see the word "extract" on the bottle. This means that the compound CBD had been scientifically extracted from the hemp plant - taken out of its natural environment - and placed into oil (usually coconut or olive oil). Maximum strength CBD oil products seen on the UK market are 5%, meaning you're getting 5% CBD extract and 95% oil.

When it comes to using CBD, questions keep coming up, especially from people who try CBD for the first time. Since there are different CBD products and because CBD can be used in different ways, the question of how to use CBD oil is quite legitimate.  What CBD products are available, how they can be used, and the bioavailability of each product is covered in this article.
For people who suffer from insomnia, constant anxiety during the night or simply struggle to get a sound, restful night of undisturbed sleep, cannabis sativa essential oil may work like a charm. However, according to a research report published by Dr. Ethan Russo, Director of Research for the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute, terpenoids produce an “entourage effect”.
Another field in which CBD is creating a buzz is in the area of mood disorders like anxiety and depression. Both conditions have been treated with a variety of medications, courtesy of Big Pharma, that have had varying levels of success. Again, the long list of side effects can be off-putting to someone who just wants to get through the day without the sweaty tension of anxiety or the gray haze of depression.
How does CBD compare to hemp oil or hemp extract? The latter comes from the seeds of the hemp plant, but does not contain the same amount of cannabinoids found in cannabis oil, as these cannabinoids are extracted from the whole plant. When cannabis has low levels of THC (under 0.3 percent) and high levels of CBD, it’s often called CBD hemp or industrial hemp.
Cannabidiol (CBD), the second most abundant component of cannabis, is thought to modulate various neuronal circuits involved in drug addiction. A limited number of preclinical studies suggest that CBD may have therapeutic properties on opioid, cocaine, and psychostimulant addiction, and some preliminary data suggest that it may be beneficial in cannabis and tobacco addiction in humans. (Source)
Cohen has found that chronic conditions including autoimmune diseases and pain syndromes can be helped with a 6-mg under-the-tongue tincture (the fastest delivery system) or a 25-mg capsule taken twice a day. Dosages for topical products like lotions are especially hard to determine—there’s no clarity on how much CBD gets into the system through the skin.
The founder of Elixinol got his start in the hemp industry back in 1991, when he launched a “9bar,” a healthy snack bar packed with heart-healthy hemp which remains one of the world’s most popular hemp products. Elixinol sells an array of CBD products, including Tinctures, Capsules, Liposomes, Vape Liquids, and Topical Balms, all of which contain the purest-possibly hemp. The company sources hits hemp from farms in Europe, Australia, and America, uses a chemical- and heat-free, broad-spectrum CO2 extraction process, and employs a team of medical professionals to research and develop their product formulations. Most impressive, however, is the company’s standards of testing, which is conducted both in house and third-party, and which covers potency, microbiological contamination, heavy metals, pesticides, and terpene profile. The European-based labs employ equipment and personnel from the pharmaceutical industry, and all test results are posted online alongside product listings. There are a few contenders for best CBD oil for anxiety in their product selection. Their original and cinnamint-flavored CBD tinctures are most popular, and come in strengths of in dosages of 300 or 600 mg per 15 ml bottle, or 3,600 mg per 120 ml (or, available for order from Brazil only, a heavy-duty 5,000 mg). The blend contains CBD suspended in hemp oil, plus Amino acids, Natural Sugars, Aldehydes, Alcohols, Ketones, Flavanoids, Glycosides, and Vitamins. Those In search of a portable CBD for anxiety can try their 15 mg CBD capsules, 300 mg or 600 mg oral spray, or Elixinol’s proprietary “X-Pen”, which is pre-loaded with 1,000 mg CBD and delivers precise dosages on-the-go.
Okay, you're about to hear a lot of science GCSE-type words like 'compound' here, but stick with me. CBD stands for cannabidiol, which is a compound (essentially, a natural ingredient) found in the hemp plant. Hemp is part of the same family of plants as cannabis, known as the cannabis sativa family, meaning hemp and cannabis contain many of the same compounds. CBD also exists in cannabis (otherwise known as marijuana), hence the link between the health product and the recreational drug, but you'll find out below why hemp is the plant used to make CBD oil, and not cannabis.

^ Nadulski T, Pragst F, Weinberg G, Roser P, Schnelle M, Fronk EM, Stadelmann AM (December 2005). "Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study about the effects of cannabidiol (CBD) on the pharmacokinetics of Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) after oral application of THC verses standardized cannabis extract". Ther Drug Monit. 27 (6): 799–810. PMID 16306858.


Accordingly, CB1R activation has been suggested as a target for anxiolytic drug development [15, 43, 44]. Proposed agents for enhancing CB1R activation include THC, which is a potent and direct agonist; synthetic CB1R agonists; FAAH inhibitors and other agents that increase eCB availability, as well as nonpsychoactive cannabis phytocannabinoids, including CBD. While CBD has low affinity for the CB1R, it functions as an indirect agonist, potentially via augmentation of CB1R constitutional activity, or via increasing AEA through FAAH inhibition (reviewed in [21]).
Medical research can and is being done with schedule 1 substances, including CBD and other active ingredients in marijuana, but there are strict regulations and administrative hurdles associated with this status. According to the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, the DEA is currently conducting a scientific review of CBD to elucidate its pharmacology and abuse liability and to identify gaps in the published literature. (22)

My father was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia three years ago. In the normal western medical manner he is currently on quite a lot of medication. But with side effects, mum and I who are caring for him at home are uncertain as to whether his behaviours are indeed symptoms of his dementia or the medication. Dad is unable to communicate, demonstrates intense anxiety and has sporadic sleep patterns.


A study performed at the Italian Piemonte University and published in 2008 implied that all cannabinoids help the immune system to fight bacteria. Especially potent are five cannabinoids (including CBD), with the study focusing on antibiotic-resistant strains of the Staphylococcus Aureus, a relevant example of the antibiotics abuse the last few decades have witnessed.

The list of cannabinoids currently comprises 113 entries, with more and more additions each year. Of these 113, by far the best documented are tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol (in this order), with the two also being the most abundant constituents of the cannabis plant. In a typical chemical isolation process, cannabidiol makes up a little under half of the entire extract.
For people who suffer from insomnia, constant anxiety during the night or simply struggle to get a sound, restful night of undisturbed sleep, cannabis sativa essential oil may work like a charm. However, according to a research report published by Dr. Ethan Russo, Director of Research for the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute, terpenoids produce an “entourage effect”.
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