What is Cannabidiol (CBD)

FAQS: Things To Know About Cannabidiol and Why It is Good For You​

What Is Cannabidiol (CBD), and Why Is It Good for You?

CBD is short for cannabidiol, a natural oil extracted from the flowers and leaves of the cannabis plant. CBD has only recently started to be used as a therapeutic substance, and research on its benefits is still in its infancy, but its popularity keeps growing due to the potential it’s shown in many clinical trials.

Research suggests that Cannabidiol (CBD) helps reduce pain and inflammation and promotes relaxation, improving your quality of sleep. All of this can have a great impact on our general wellbeing. Scientists believe that CBD could help with many other conditions because it supports the endocannabinoid system, which is involved in many of our brain and body functions.

CBD Oil with hemp leaf

What Is The Endocannabinoid System?

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a cell-signaling system in the human body. It was first identified in the 1990s. Although experts are still learning about it, we know it’s involved in many of our brain and body functions, among them, sleep, mood, mobility, joint and muscle health, and our ability to handle stress and pain. The endocannabinoid system is part of the mechanism utilized by our bodies to maintain homeostasis, a stable internal environment that allows it to function properly.

Our bodies naturally produce endocannabinoids. These neurotransmitters, also called endogenous cannabinoids, behave like messengers: they interact with endocannabinoid receptors, which are found on the surface of cells. This interaction can change how the cells in our bodies behave.

Phytocannabinoids (cannabinoids naturally found in plants, like CBD) can mimic many of the biological actions of endocannabinoids.

Is CBD Marijuana?

No, CBD is not marijuana. Both CBD and marijuana come from cannabis plants. However, by law, CBD must contain less than 0.3% THC, the psychoactive cannabinoid responsible for the “high” associated with marijuana. This is why CBD is most commonly extracted from hemp plants, a strain of the cannabis species whose regular CBD:THC ratio is about 30:1. In contrast, marijuana contains 0.3% or more THC.

Will CBD Get Me High?

No, CBD won’t get you high. By law, CBD must contain less than 0.3% THC, or tetrahydrocannabidol, the psychoactive cannabinoid responsible for the “high” associated with marijuana. This is one of the true differences between marijuana and CBD, as marijuana will contain 0.3% or more THC. What’s more, CBD may mediate the negative psychotropic effects of THC.

What Is The “Entourage Effect” Of CBD?

There are many different chemical compounds in cannabis that can be beneficial to us. These components can be isolated, but research suggests that when individual components work together, supporting one another, their therapeutic benefits are magnified. This is what is known as the “entourage effect”.

Beneficial compounds in cannabis include other cannabinoids and terpenes.

Cannabinoids such as cannabichromene (CBC) and cannabigerol (CBG) are believed to have similar properties to those of CBD, and support mood, as well as joint and muscle function.

Terpenes appear in high concentrations in cannabis: in fact, cannabis is the most terpene-dense plant known to us. Whereas in nature they serve both to attract pollinators and repel pests, they’ve been used in natural medicine and aromatherapy for millennia, notably, as mood enhancers and for overall wellness.

What’s The Best Way To Start Taking CBD?

There are many studies on the benefits of Cannabidiol (CBD), but it is important to learn which product could be right for you. Are you interested in taking CBD for a particular condition, to give up smoking, or simply for general well-being? Our online assistant can provide a quick and easy assessment.

Older man ingesting GreenRoads CBD gummy in bed for better sleep

How Many Types of CBD Products Are There?

Not all CBD products are the same. Here’s a simple guide to know what some of these labels mean:

CBD isolate is the purest form of naturally-occurring CBD, made from filtered hemp plant extract. It forms crystals or diamonds that are carefully ground into powder. It contains up to 99.9% of CBD, and only trace amounts of other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.
CBD raw is CBD oil extracted without using heat to preserve enzymes and vitamins sensitive to high temperatures. It is a full-spectrum product, which means it contains other valuable cannabinoids, but the CBD in it is less pure.
Broad-spectrum CBD is oil rich in CBD that also contains terpenes and cannabinoids, but only trace amounts of THC, the psychoactive cannabinoid responsible for the “high” associated with marijuana.
Full-spectrum CBD products utilize the entire hemp plant, therefore, they will contain terpenes, flavonoids, omegas, proteins, vitamins, minerals, and other cannabinoids. Full-spectrum products have a higher content of THC than broad-spectrum products, but it still will be less than 0.3%.

Does CBD Interact With Other Drugs?

CBD can interact with medication such as corticosteroids, antidepressants, or medication for fibromyalgia. It’s important to understand how CBD may interact with medications you are already taking. Check out the table below for more details.
Enzyme Medication Examples Effect/Recommendation
CYP3A4 substrates Immunosuppressants, chemotherapeutics, antidepressants, antipsychotics, opioids, benzodiazepines, z-hypnotics, statins, calcium channel blockers, others Increased risk of side effects related to substrate.
Avoid co-administration, reduce substrate dose, monitor for adverse effects and toxicity.
Avoid prescribing cascade with new treatment for side effects.
CYP3A4 inhibitors Strong: Protease inhibitors, ketoconazole, loperamide, nefazodone
Moderate: Amiodarone, verapamil, cimetidine, aprepitant, imatinib
Increased CBD bioavailability, possible increase in risk of adverse effects. Reduce CBD dose.
CYP3A4 inducers Strong: Enzalutamide, phenytoin
Moderate: Carbamazepine, topiramate, phenobarbital, rifampicin, efavirenz, pioglitazone
Decreased CBD bioavailability, possible decrease in CBD effectiveness. Increase CBD dose.
CYP2C19 substrates Antidepressants, antiepileptics, proton pump inhibitors, clopidogrel, propranolol, carisoprodol, cyclophosphamide, warfarin Increased risk of side effects related to substrate.
Avoid co-administration, reduce substrate dose, monitor for adverse effects and toxicity.
Avoid prescribing cascade with new treatment for side effects.
CYP2C19 inhibitors Strong: Fluvoxamine, fluoxetine
Other: Proton pump inhibitors, cimetidine, ketoconazole, clopidogrel, fluconazole, efavirenz
Increased CBD bioavailability, possible increase in risk of adverse effects. Reduce CBD dose.
CYP2C19 inducers Rifampin, carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, St. John’s Wort Decreased CBD bioavailability, possible decrease in CBD effectiveness. Increase CBD dose.
CYP2C8/9 substrates Rosiglitazone, burprenorphine, montelukast, celecoxib, sulfonylureas, losartan, naproxen, phenobarbital, phenytoin, rosuvastatin, valsartan, warfarin Increased risk of side effects related to substrate.
Avoid co-administration, reduce substrate dose, monitor for adverse effects and toxicity.
Avoid prescribing cascade with new treatment for side effects.

What Are The Side Effects of CBD?

CBD can cause drowsiness, so keep it in mind if you’re driving, operating heavy machinery, or performing activities that require you to be alert. Other mild side effects can include nausea, fatigue, diarrhea, appetite changes, and irritability.

Will CBD Show Up On A Drug Test?

Isolated CBD or cannabidiol is unlikely to show up in a drug test, though there is a small possibility that it will. If you’re taking a full-spectrum product that includes other cannabinoids you could show positive on a drug test. There are several factors to consider: how much and how often you consume it, whether you’re taking other medication, and how your metabolism works. If you work for a company that routinely requires drug screens, it is recommended that you disclose you’re taking CBD. You may be able to request a more specific drug screen.

Is CBD Addictive?

CBD is not addictive. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, CBD “appears to be a safe drug with no addictive effects.” 

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