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While CBD or cannabidiol is being touted as a natural remedy and cure all in many online health spaces, not enough is known about the risks and side effects of taking cannabidiol long term. Cannabidiol is one of over 100 chemical compounds which is extracted for cannabis plants (this includes hemp and marijuana plants). CBD is becoming well known as a remedy for a wide variety of ailments and as the research improves, it is showing more potential to improve the way we look at health and medications based on cannabinoids. CBD from the Cannabis Sativa plant may be purchased as an isolate or a full spectrum (while plant) product containing may cannabinoids including low level THC (under 0.3%), terpenes, flavonoids, fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. CBD oil extracted from marijuana and hemp plants is usually purified and then mixed with carrier oils such as hemp seed oil or coconut oil to create lower dose medications. CBD oil is on the increase in the health and medical communities for treating ailments from acne to cancer.
Cannabis has been used as an analgesic as well as to treat other health issues, going as far back as 2900 BC. Cannabis extracts as medicine is therefore not a new thing, it has just not been explored much in the past few decades due to strict laws governing this plant. The research done to date has shown that CBD can treat certain forms of epilepsy, vomiting and nausea associated with cancer treatment as well as pain and inflammation. CBD works with our own internal endocannabinoid system to bring our bodies back in to a state of balance, known as homeostasis. This system regulates functions such as appetite, pain, sleep and our immune system. Our bodies naturally produce endocannabinoids which are neurotransmitters that effect the cannabinoid receptors based in various areas of the body including the brain and nervous system. This stimulates the body to produce chemicals and hormones to naturally correct the problems being experienced in the body which has it out of balance. CBD used in conjunction with THC has shown remarkable results in treating intense chronic pain such as that experienced with multiple sclerosis. This blend has also shown a lot of promise in treating people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis.
Research has also shown that CBD has potential in treating depression and anxiety plus trauma and PTSD without the potential of addiction which is experienced with most opioids used for this treatment. Extensive research has been done on the effects of CBD on certain types of epilepsy as well as its ability to reduce the symptoms associated with the treatment of cancer with radiation or chemotherapy, including pain, vomiting and nausea. CBD may actually be able to reduce the progress of cancer in the body and even kill cancer cells. In a study, concentrated CBD was shown to inhibit the grown of breast cancer cells and even cause the death of the cells. This suggests that CBD may also be of use in treating cancer in the future but at this point there has been minimum research done. Some of the less serious ailments that CBD is being tested for is the treatment of acne. CBD acts as an anti-inflammatory as well as retarding the production of excess sebum which can result in break outs on the skin.
CBD also shows promise as a treatment for neurological disorders other than epilepsy, such as multiple sclerosis. CBD may be able to relieve pain and inflammation and reduce muscle spasms associated with this disease. CBD may also be able to reduce the effects of neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, slowing down or halting cognitive decline. CBD has also show positive results when it comes to reducing the risks associated with metabolic syndrome, diabetes, high blood pressure and even obesity. CBD may be a natural treatment to prevent circulatory and cardiovascular problems, improve metabolism and help control blood pressure and diabetes. Some of the other studies done include using CBD to reduce the effects of withdrawal from various substances as well as promote a faster recovery with less chance of a back slide. CBD may also work as an anti-psychotic to reduce the effects of mental illnesses such as schizophrenia.
While CBD is currently considered fairly safe, especially with strict adherence to the prescription dosages, there are a few potential side effects that may be experienced from using this cannabis extract. These include depression and anxiety, nausea, drowsiness, vomiting, dizziness, dry mouth and diarrhea. People may also experience changes in sleep patterns and appetite. While cannabidiol is considered fairly safe the full details of the risks and side effects of taking cannabidiol are not yet fully established. Lower doses of 300mg or less a day have been shown to be relatively safe and side effect free and even doses of 1500mg per day in some researches have not shown any ill effects for the users.
There is very little information currently of the effects of CBD on pregnant women and the fetus or on the effects on babies if CBD is taken while breastfeeding. This means that it is probably best not to use CBD when pregnant or breastfeeding to keep you and your baby safe. Once more research has been done there may be more information in this regard.
There has been some research done where in a few cases using CBD has resulted in increased tremors in Parkinson’s disease patients. CBD is also known to react with a number of medications, often creating a scenario where the medication is absorbed to a greater extent than intended, resulting in potentially harmful effects. CBD has not been tested exhaustively with drugs that are usually used to treat many of the ailments that CBD is being recommended for. This means that there may potentially be other drugs that create a negative effect on the human body when coupling with the use of cannabidiol.
We stand at a point right now where the scientific research on the uses and potential of CBD is still in the beginning stage even though the plant has been used in medicine for centuries. CBD will be more accepted as a treatment for a wide variety of ailments once the risks and side effects of taking cannabidiol have been fully assessed. Due to the lack of research, it is always important to discuss the use of CBD with your doctor before adding it to your daily medication schedule as there is potential for it to have unexpected effects which have not yet been studied or researched. The bottom line is that the full risks and side effects of taking cannabidiol are not yet known.
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