Should you Take CBD?

CBD – or to give it its full name, Cannabidiol – is the next big thing in natural health and wellness. Pharmacies, health food shops, and online brands are all proudly and loudly advertising their CBD oil, CBD edibles, and even CBD e-liquid for vapes. 

This all begs the question ‘should I be taking CBD?’. If you don’t know, you could be missing out on a big boost to your wellbeing, or a new way to manage chronic health problems that have dogged you for years. Today we’re taking a look at the benefits of CBD, how it operates and how to take it to help you answer this question and make an informed decision about what’s best for you.
 What is CBD?
Cannabidiol is one compound among many that can be found in the cannabis plant – collectively these are known as cannabinoids. 
It’s a lipid – a fat based molecule – that acts on your endocannabinoid system. This is a group of receptors in your brain and body, not unlike your endocrine system and nervous system, that cannabinoids can bind to and activate the receptors to stimulate different responses in your body.
Cannabis is of course a controlled drug (class B in the UK, with possession carrying a possible prison sentence and fine) but CBD is legal for sale, use and possession as long as the products meet EU guidelines. 
A report from the World Health Organisation recently found that the compound doesn’t form addictive pathways in the brain (unlike, for example, coffee) and therefore has little potential for abuse. 
It’s also not psychoactive: it doesn’t impair your judgement, alter your perceptions or act as an intoxicant. As such, it’s legal and has been enthusiastically adopted!
How Can it Help?
It’s important to note that clinical studies on the effectiveness of CBD are still in their early stages: the NHS prescribes cannabinoid medications only in very specific and rare circumstances.
 Research continues, however, and it’s likely that as the years pass, CBD will become a useful tool in the hands of the medical establishment.
Meanwhile, early stage studies and anecdotal evidence are our guide.
Some research indicates that CBD could be a useful treatment for arthritis. It appears to act as an anti-inflammatory, and as a well-tolerated (i.e. with few side effects) natural remedy, CBD oil or tea looks like a good option for this condition which is driven by inflammation around the joints..
Many people are also finding CBD helpful to manage mental health issues like depression and anxiety, with its relaxation boosting properties also making a potential treatment for insomnia. 
While studies are of ongoing – and the results are of interest to those within and without the medical community – feedback from individual users seem to show very promising effects in the short time these products have been available, and both their legalisation and lack of intoxicant elements make them more practically useful on a day to day to basis.

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