To my understanding, neither CBD nor THC are effective for “severe” pain; rather, they work better for mild to moderate chronic pain. Often, with severe pain, the dosage of opiates can be decreased with concomitant use of medical cannabis or CBD and that decrease in dose makes their use safer. Concurrent use of THC does increase the analgesic effect of CBD, but it also adds the “high” which some people do not want as a side effect.
The immediate and powerful effects of THC are explained because of the special affinity it has with the CB1 type receptors, which mediate crucial processes in the brain. The less prominent (but no less important) action of CBD was explained, at least for a while, by hypothesizing that it binds to CB2 type receptors, hence its more diffuse manner of exercising changes in the body. Early on, the antipsychotic effects of cannabidiol were observed, an aspect which seemed to be in consonance with this initial hypothesis.
While overstimulation of the CB1 receptor may lead to symptoms such as high blood pressure and abnormally high cholesterol levels, CBD is a CB1 antagonist, so it is not likely to cause such issues. Furthermore, the World Health Organization has recently issued a global report on CBD, claiming that it has a good safety profile and minimal adverse public health effects.
This is likely why CBD is capable of stimulating appetite among people that are in dire need of nutrition (such as cancer patients on chemotherapy), while at the same time suppressing appetite in those who need to lose weight. The active compound helps keep the body in balance, so if you need weight gain it can help you eat, but if you are overweight, it may be able to help curb your desire to chow down.
On the plus side, there is an earnest desire for people to lose weight, which is why the weight loss industry is worth an astonishing $66 billion! But this, added to the fact that fewer people are dieting and more are gaining weight, tells us two things: One, weight loss supplements are fundamentally ineffective; and two, they are very, very expensive.
As previously mentioned, CBD and other cannabinoids affect the endocannabinoid system in the body. This system plays a significant role in regulating numerous physiological processes in the body. One of its most vital actions is helping the body to maintain balance. When someone is overweight, generally speaking, it’s not all about overeating or gluttony, but a combination of functions within the human body that are not functioning correctly. Many holistic doctors will agree that our Western diet and the way we treat disease both play a significant role in creating weight gain
I recently was a guest at a medical marijuana educational event that highlighted the work of researcher Michael Backes. During his presentation he made a statement about CBD that I have never heard anywhere else that CBD is “regulating” (my word) the effects of THC. I asked the Nurse Practitioner at the event, Ivy Lou Hibbitt of Certicann.com, what he meant by that and she said it was her understanding of Michael’s comment that he takes CBD to reduce the psychoactive effects of THC. Has this property of CBD, that it can lessen psychoactive effects, ever been researched elsewhere?
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To make matters more confusing, nine states (including California, Washington, and Colorado) let residents buy cannabis-based products with or without THC. Nearly two dozen other “medical marijuana states” allow the sale of cannabis, including capsules, tinctures, and other items containing CBD or THC, at licensed dispensaries to people whose doctors have certified that they have an approved condition (the list varies by state but includes chronic pain, PTSD, cancer, autism, Crohn’s disease, and multiple sclerosis). Sixteen more states legalized CBD for certain diseases.
Most human studies of CBD have been done on people who have seizures, and the FDA recently approved the first CBD-based drug, Epidiolex, for rare forms of epilepsy. Clinical trials for other conditions are promising, but tiny. In one Brazilian study published in 2011 of people with generalized social anxiety disorder, for example, taking a 600-mg dose of CBD (higher than a typical dose from a tincture) lessened discomfort more than a placebo, but only a dozen people were given the pill.
A study published by David Cheng, Postdoctoral Scientist, Neuroscience Research, University of New South Wales, NSW, Australia, says that CBD has a potential as a preventive measure against symptoms of Alzheimer’s. This presents yet another exciting development for medical researchers, given the persistent challenges to finding effective solutions for this condition.
Current studies, including one carried out by the UC San Diego School of Medicine, are looking into how the endocannabinoid system may be linked to reducing symptoms associated with autism. This is due to its role in social reward responsivity, neural development and circadian rhythm and anxiety regulation – all of which are often affected by autism. (52)