One of the most common questions we hear involves CBD and THC. Many people assume that because CBD is derived from cannabis, using it is the same as using as marijuana.
But that’s a common misconception. While both CBD and THC are cannabinoids, one key difference separates the two: CBD does not produce psychoactive effects.
Because CBD won’t get you high, many people want to incorporate non-psychoactive cannabis products such as CBD oil or hemp oil into their daily routines as a natural supplement or alternative to medical treatments.
As with any product, it’s important to understand how the plant’s chemicals interact with your body and the potential effects it brings.
How CBD Oil Affects the Body
We’ve previously discussed how the chemical compounds in cannabis plants interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) to produce its effects, but here’s a quick recap.
Cannabinoids are the compounds found in cannabis plants; however, they naturally exist in the human body as well to interact with the endocannabinoid system. The ECS acts as a network of receptors located in the brain and throughout the body. These receptors are active in managing several of the body’s natural functions like mood, sleep and appetite. ECS receptors are commonly referred to as either CB1 receptors or CB2 receptors.
CB1 receptors are located in the central nervous system, in the brain and spinal cord. These receptors work with nerve cells in the brain to manage the body’s biochemistry.
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the cannabinoid found in cannabis plants that interacts with the CB1 receptors in the brain. This is where the cerebral high effect comes from when smoking or consuming marijuana.
CB2 receptors are located in the peripheral nervous system, in white blood cells. These receptors work with white blood cells throughout the body to help regulate the immune system.
CBD is the non-psychoactive cannabinoid in cannabis and hemp plants that binds to the CB2 receptors and results in the commonly cited health benefits.
Reported Side Effects of CBD Oil
First off, it’s important to note that CBD oil will not give you the same cerebral high as using marijuana products with high concentrations of THC. Because CBD is not binding with those cannabinoids receptors in the brain, it doesn’t produce that same effect.
So, you can enjoy the therapeutic benefits of CBD — without worrying about an altered state of mind or negative effects on your behavior, sensory awareness, or reaction time.
Many users report experiencing dry mouth, low blood pressure, lightheadedness, and drowsiness after consuming CBD products. Other common side effects include tiredness, diarrhea, and changes in appetite or weight, according to a 2017 study on the safety and side effects of cannabidiol.
That said, when compared with other drugs that are used to treat the same medical conditions as CBD oil, the study found that CBD has fewer and less significant side effects. This could potentially bring improvements to a patient’s reaction to treatments.
CBD Study Conclusions
CBD use is growing in popularity as cannabis is legalized across the country. As we learn more about the benefits of the cannabis plant, it’s easy to get excited. Many proponents are pointing to the numerous medical benefits and encouraging others to try using CBD products.
As with any lifestyle changes, anyone considering CBD oil should consult with a qualified healthcare practitioner prior to use. As of now, the Food and Drug Administration has not approved CBD as a medical treatment for any condition.
However, if you want to try cannabis oil products, it’s critical to know what you’re putting in your body and how it will affect you. Once you understand the reason cannabis and CBD oil have an impact on the body, it’s easy to see the potential health benefits and grasp the side effects and why they occur.
As more research is conducted on the chemical nature of cannabis plants, we’ll have more information to report on possible side effects. But for now, if you use CBD oil or hemp oil, expect to experience an increase in tiredness and sleepiness.