In addition to acting on the brain, CBD influences many body processes. That’s due to the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which was discovered in the 1990s, after scientists started investigating why pot produces a high. Although much less well-known than the cardiovascular, reproductive, and respiratory systems, the ECS is critical. “The ECS helps us eat, sleep, relax, forget what we don’t need to remember, and protect our bodies from harm,” Marcu says. There are more ECS receptors in the brain than there are for opioids or serotonin, plus others in the intestines, liver, pancreas, ovaries, bone cells, and elsewhere.
As is the case with any plant that constitutes a crop, cannabis plants have been selectively bred over the years to bolster one or another desired characteristic. This means that some plants provide a more potent psychotropic effect, others possess more prominent seeds (used in the production of cooking oil traditionally), while others may make for sturdier textile fibers.
This isn’t new but had to be mentioned. One of the major and well-known benefits of cannabis is its ability to treat pain and helping with pain management. It has the capabilities of assisting with chronic pain as well as inflammation. Furthermore, it has been found to help patients deal with severe rheumatism and arthritis as well as other chronic pains.
For example, both CBD and THC affect the body’s endocannabinoid system and thus provide relief for many of the same conditions. CBD is used for more “serious ailments.” Including but not limited to seizures, psychosis or mental disorders and inflammatory bowel disease. The reason for that is that CBD doesn’t get you “high.” In fact, it would be impossible for a person to get high while using CBD because as we said above, it interferes with the CB1 receptors.
Cannabis has always been a popular form of treatment for a variety of medical conditions, but in the 1930’s growing concerns about the dangers of marijuana abuse led to cannabinoids being banned. A century has past and despite all efforts from cannabis enthusiasts through social media channels and online media, cannabis is still classed as a schedule 1 drug.
CBD is one of over 60 compounds found in cannabis that belong to a class of ingredients called cannabinoids. Until recently, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) was getting most of the attention because it’s the ingredient in cannabis that produces intoxicating effects in users. But CBD is also present in high concentrations — and the world is awakening to its possible benefits.
Low Blood Pressure and Lightheadedness – an effect of CBD that may seem somewhat counterintuitive, an almost immediate (though small) decrease in blood pressure has been reported at the exposure to high doses, causing the associated lightheadedness, albeit not for long periods. Nevertheless, it could be significant for individuals taking blood pressure medication.
The cannabis plant contains a unique group of carbon compounds often referred to a phytocannabinoids. The most common ingredient is THC, which creates the euphoric high effect. Due to the THC element in the plant, marijuana is often associated with a stoner stigma of people only wanting to get high. But that is far from the truth. Cannabis also contains other medicinal compounds including cannabinol, cannabigerol, cannabidiol, and cannabichromene.
A survey of patients seen in a tertiary epilepsy center found that 21% of patients admitted to using marijuana in the last year, and 24% of patients believed marijuana to be effective for their seizures (10). While interesting, this anecdotal observation does not rise to the level of evidence needed to evaluate a potential new therapeutic modality.