Part 2 ~ CBD
What does it do?
The range of known therapeutic effects of CBD is nothing short of astonishing. A partial list of the medical conditions and symptoms that CBD is useful in relieving includes:
- Nausea & vomiting
- Muscle spasms
- Bacterial infection (some)
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar)
- THC effects not named above (including sleepiness, confusion, hunger, time distortion, euphoria, and memory impairment)
- Cancer/tumor formation
CBD is also a powerful antioxidant, stimulant of bone growth, and neuroprotectant (preventing neurons’ support cells, or glia, from destroying and consuming damaged neurons, giving them time to heal; thought to be the mechanism behind seizure suppression).
With even our limited understanding of all that CBD can do, it should be among the most widely used remedies on earth, given that its source plant grows abundantly worldwide despite perpetual, pervasive, and perverse eradication efforts. The FDA did recently approve a request to trial a synthesized CBD drug for pediatric epilepsy, called Epidiolex, from GW Pharmaceuticals, which the American Epilepsy Society found effectively reduces seizures in children by about ⅓ overall. It is 98% pure CBD, 0% THC—not ideal, because purified, single-molecule CBD is dramatically less effective than whole-plant cannabis extract at achieving therapeutic benefits.
CBD Project reports on an Israeli study published in February 2015, wherein single-molecule CBD preparations showed a sharp drop-off in effectiveness against pain and inflammation outside a certain narrow range of dosage amounts. Too much or too little purified CBD is ineffective. Whole-plant extract rich in CBD, on the other hand, showed a direct, dose-dependent reduction in pain and inflammation: the larger the dose, the greater the relief. “In stark contrast to purified CBD,” the Israeli team reported, “the clone extract…provided a clear correlation between the anti-inflammatory and anti-nociceptive [pain-killing] responses and the dose, with increasing responses upon increasing doses, which makes this plant medicine ideal for clinical uses.”
CBD is non-toxic even in very high doses and is readily tolerated without side effects. Even so, only a small amount of whole-plant CBD product is needed for significant symptom reduction, as compared to a much larger amount of purified CBD.
The beneficial effects of CBD are notably enhanced by the presence of THC and other phytocannabinoids (and probably hundreds of other non-cannabinoid compounds) present in whole-plant cannabis flower extract. It is this synergy with other compounds—a whole greater than the sum of its parts—that allows for the lower dose of CBD needed to achieve positive results. In turn, CBD amplifies THC’s anti-inflammatory properties; so the two work together to enhance the overall therapeutic benefit, even as CBD counteracts THC’s other effects. Clearly there is a need for an enormous amount of further research before scientists will have more than a superficial understanding of all the biochemical mechanisms and mysteries of CBD and the humble cannabis plant.
CBDA, or CBD acid, is the precursor to CBD that is found in plentiful abundance (up to 40% by weight) in raw cannabis. When consumed in raw cannabis juice, CBDA is a powerful, non-toxic anti-inflammatory agent that also, inhibits cancer cell growth. Cancer kills one in three Americans, and according to the Natural News nearly all disease including cancer is caused by chronic low-grade inflammation, so these two properties of CBDA make it vitally important for everyone to include in their daily diet.
THCA, or THC acid, is also abundant in raw cannabis juice, and like CBDA it inhibits cancer cell growth. Additionally, it is known to relieve insomnia and muscle spasms.
CBD is automatically created from CBDA by heat when cannabis is smoked, although burning destroys the great majority of the CBD, as well as other desirable cannabinoids. Ingesting cures that problem as well as many others caused by smoking. To decarboxylate fresh cannabis for CBD creation prior to ingestion, heat the plant material for 45 minutes at 275°F/135°C (for example, in the new DecarBox from MagicalButter.com, designed specifically for the purpose).
Has someone you know benefited from CBD-rich cannabis therapy? Tell us about it!