How CBD helps with anxiety
Coronavirus has changed the world as we know it. According to the Office of National Statistics, nearly half of the UK population is experiencing high levels of anxiety due to the pandemic. Our mental wellbeing is under attack, just as much as our bodies are. But it’s not solely corona that is responsible for the high rates of anxiety, prior to the outbreak, one in four adults experienced anxiety. This has led many people to seek a solution, now more so than ever. Our recommendation? CBD. Let’s explain why.
What is anxiety and how can you manage it?
Before we offer a solution, it’s important to define anxiety. Anxiety, according to Mayo Clinic, is a medical condition that includes persistent and excessive anxiety and worry about activities or events – even ordinary, routine issues. This can manifest as intense or generalized anxiety. We all suffer from anxiety at some points in our lives, but some are more prone to it than others, and some life experiences or turn of events exacerbate anxiety. For example, coronavirus.
More people than ever are worrying about their health, their family’s health, their employment, wellbeing, the future and the economy. What’s worse is we’re socially distanced – and anxiety thrives in times of isolation. sed anxiety to spread like wildfire.
So what’s the solution? If you are one of the millions of people struggling, we’ve got your back, with a little helping hand from mother nature.
What is CBD?
CBD, also known as cannabidiol, comes from the hemp plant. Before you exit this article and say ‘no to drugs’ – don’t worry, it won’t get you high. The cannabis plant is so much more than just weed, it’s made up of powerful multipurpose chemical compounds, with extensive therapeutic benefits. These compounds are known as cannabinoids, and have a variety of properties and functions. For example, one cannabinoid is tetrahydrocannabinol, also known as THC. If you consume that cannabinoid, you’re going to get high. Another cannabinoid, the most abundant, is called cannabidiol, CBD, which is not going to get you high, and is the reason you’re here today.
CBD can be derived from cannabis or hemp plants, as is the non-psychoactive, therapeutic component that some claim helps them with a range of physical and neurological conditions, from Stress to insomnia, CBD’s got you covered. It’s why CBD has become the talk of the town, causing researchers and pop culture patrons to claim it’s the healthcare trend of 2020; and that was before corona. People are discovering ways to use CBD in every avenue – from facials to coffees, and most commonly – for anxiety.
Before you make the assumption that CBD is just a hippy wellness trend, we’re going to prove to you it’s so much more than that, and how it can have a profound effect on anxiety, which has become an increasing global concern in the wake of the pandemic. More people than ever are worried about their health, and looking for relief. Some have found this in CBD. In a 2007 study published in the Dialogues in Clinical Neurosciences medical journal, researchers stated that the therapeutic benefit of CBD is ‘too high to be put aside’. This was the beginning of the extensive research undertaken to explore the benefits of CBD.
A clinical trial published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology found that in a group of participants with generalized social anxiety disorder (SAD), an oral dose of CBD significantly reduced subjective anxiety and altered brain activity associated with anxiety and stress. A study published in 2015 concluded that CBD should be used as a treatment for anxiety and related conditions like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), social anxiety disorder (SAD), and obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD).
So how does CBD actually help anxiety?
There are a number of mechanisms that explain how CBD improves anxiety. Firstly, CBD is considered an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and neuroprotective chemical. This means that when consumed, it acts as an antioxidant in the brain, reducing inflammation, fighting free radicals and oxidative stress, to boost cognitive function – one function being the management of ruminating anxious thoughts.
Anxiety is considered by many, an inflammatory condition, with research finding that experimentally induced stress produced an inflammatory reaction, and that those with chronically high levels of anxiety, have equally high levels of inflammation. So, by decreasing the inflammation, you’re supporting your brain in getting back to normal. This is why a 2019 study found that CBD use was able to reverse anxiety behaviors in an animal trial – likely to have a similar effect in humans.
Studies show that CBD plays a key role in the endocannabinoid system (ECS), the system in your body responsible for regulating multiple neurotransmitters in the central nervous system, to keep you feeling happy, healthy and balanced, as much as possible. When you consume CBD, it is able to target various receptors, proteins and other chemicals in the brain. This causes the release of hormones and neurotransmitters that alter mood, decrease the perception of pain and relax muscular tension.
One of the chemicals targeted after CBD is absorbed into the bloodstream is anandamide. Anandamide is referred to as the body’s natural antidepressant, because it acts in the same way as an antidepressant would; helping you to feel calmer, restful and at peace. A study published in Translational Psychiatry found that CBD increases anandamide levels, by inhibiting fatty acid amide hydrolase. So essentially, when you use CBD, it binds and activates receptors in the ECS and acts like an antidepressant, calming, mood enhancing drug. A legal drug that doesn’t have the negative side effects, like addiction. Pretty cool right?
If you’re struggling with anxiety, due to COVID-19 or for another reason, you don’t need to be. Anxiety can be debilitating, but it’s time to rely a little on mother nature. CBD is an all-natural, clinically studied, scientifically supported, effective treatment for anxiety. If you’re new to CBD, we hope this article helped. If you still have questions, reach out to us – we want to help you.