Let CBDfx answer one of the biggest questions pertaining to the CBD industry at large: just what is CBD, and how does it work?
By: Chloe Persichetti
As you see products being sold with CBD, one of the first questions you may have is, “What does CBD do?” CBD works in many ways alongside your body’s endocannabinoid system; and with hemp’s legalization, CBD can be found in every corner of the retail market — from large companies to small convenience stores. With this new massive expansion, it’s important to understand just what CBD is.
What Is CBD?
CBD is short for “Cannabidiol” — we call it CBD because it’s much easier to say. CBD is a naturally occurring compound that is found in abundance in hemp plants. While its neighboring cannabinoid, THC, is known for its intoxicating effects, CBD has not been shown to possess any characteristics that would cause its consumption to make you feel “high.” It’s one of over 100 cannabinoids that can be found in cannabis plants!
CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, a biological system of neurotransmitters and receptors that are spread throughout our bodies. This system is helpful in regulating major bodily functions and promoting homeostasis. It works by sending and accepting endocannabinoids that may affect the way that our bodies react to certain situations. Yes, you read that right — your body naturally is built to interface with cannabinoids, meaning that they aren’t the foreign compounds that you may have assumed them to be.
On occasion, your system will struggle to produce the necessary amount of endocannabinoids, resulting in a loss of homeostasis and an array of effects that you can feel yourself. When you consume CBD, your system accepts it as if it’s an endocannabinoid, integrating it and potentially filling the gaps left by the system’s inefficient cannabinoid production. Since CBD chooses to interact with the endocannabinoid system and not some other receptors, it avoids leaving you with feelings of intoxication or impairment, instead opting for a more subtle presence.
This lack of an intoxicating effect is especially good news for you, since it means that the compound can be found in a diverse collection of products for you to safely enjoy. You’ll find everything from CBD-infused face masks and massage oils to CBD gummies, which come in a variety of colors and flavors and boast their own delicious lists of ingredients!
How Do CBD Products Work?
You might be wondering how CBD products actually work; what goes into them, how they break down once you consume them, etc. Thankfully, we have all that information for you as well! We’ll focus on gummies in our explanation, as they’re one of the most prominent and varying products you’ll find on the CBD market. While most CBD gummies contain the same core ingredients, they also include special ingredients that serve their own particular purposes. For example, our green gummies contain turmeric and spirulina, which are two superfoods known for being densely filled with a host of nutrients and minerals. Other types of CBD gummies contain melatonin, a natural sleep aid that assists in regulating your sleep schedule and making it something more manageable.
Along with CBD hemp extract, these additional ingredients are mixed together to create some of the most delicious products on the market. Once they’re consumed, they begin to break down and the CBD begins its grand journey through your system. Since it’s ingested, it has to pass through a series of systems that are designed to dispel things that your body considers toxic. It can mistake the CBD for this, and a bit of the compound will be discarded. However, gradually the CBD will be absorbed into your bloodstream. This form of CBD product takes a bit longer to experience because of the extra steps, as opposed to consuming CBD as a vapor that is very easily absorbed. That being said, it offers a longer lasting effect than a vapor, making it better if you’re looking for a prolonged experience.
Why Is CBD Everywhere?
Why are we hearing about and finding CBD everywhere these days? The passage of the Farm Bill is probably the #1 factor as to why we are seeing CBD all around us now! The Farm Bill legalized industrial hemp at a Federal level, subject to state laws in December of 2018, and has opened a whole new option for revenue. This means individual states can decide whether they want to explore this new territory or not. Listen carefully to the news, because upcoming ballots around America are being filled with proposed CBD legislation. The CBD conversation is still unfolding, leaving citizens wondering whether their states should take on these new hemp farms and associated potential revenue. The Farm Bill removed hemp as a Schedule 1 drug, downgrading it to an agricultural commodity that can be sold freely if your state allows it. Even though CBD does not get you high, it was long clumped together with marijuana because of their close biological relation.
The passing of this bill is still quite recent; therefore, there haven’t been many opportunities yet to complete long-term studies exploring what potential benefits CBD may possess. So far, the FDA has approved one medication containing CBD called Epidiolex, which treats two rare cases of seizures. Other than this, the FDA has not given permission for other companies to market CBD as a drug or medicinal compound. With so little regulation currently in place, it’s extremely critical to only purchase from companies who commit to product transparency and third-party lab testing.
With recent de-scheduling of the hemp plant, new roads for revenue are rapidly opening up — which is why it seems like everything is currently being infused with CBD, and you can’t stop hearing about it. According to cannabis industry researchers, the CBD market in America will surpass 20 billion dollars by 2024.
As the market grows, so will the array of CBD-infused options that you can choose from. One of the areas in which the greatest growth could occur is CBD gummies, which are easy to use, can be taken with you anywhere and provide various flavor profiles that are both delicious and effective in masking the natural, hemp taste of the CBD extract. Once you enter into the world of CBD, you’re highly likely to find a CBD gummy that suits your fancy and never fails to deliver!
How Much CBD Should I Use?
When consumers are trying CBD for the first time, they are understandably confused about how much to use. Everyone is different, and therefore, CBD has no ‘correct serving’ and the perfect dosage is entirely individual and determined by your body’s ability to utilize the cannabinoids. When beginning your CBD journey, start small, see how you feel, and increase when you think you should. We recommend starting with one serving and waiting up to two or three hours to see how you feel before you try it again. Luckily, most CBD companies understand that everyone has a different level of tolerance when it comes to cannabidiol, so you’ll find products that possess varying concentrations of this terrific compound that you can pick and choose from.
CBD can be added to a wide array of products. One of the newly popular additions to the CBD scene is its infusion in topicals. This natural compound can be seen in various products across the market that are meant for your skin. These include items such as face masks, lip balms, bath bombs lotions, creams, and facial serums. Many ask why CBD can be added to topicals, but the secret is something called transdermal absorption. When a product with CBD is applied to the top of the skin, the CBD travels down, into the layers and finds the nearest cannabinoid receptors to be reacted with. With the public’s continued interest in the compound, it’s no wonder that CBD’s prevalence in different products across market areas is on the rise as well!