Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of many cannabinoid molecules produced by cannabis, second only to THC in abundance. These plant-derived cannabinoids, or phytocannabinoids (phyto = plant in Greek), are characterized by their ability to act on the cannabinoid receptors that are part of our endocannabinoid system. While THC is the principal psychoactive component of cannabis and has certain medical uses, CBD stands out because it is both non-intoxicating and displays a broad range of potential medical applications including helping with anxiety, inflammation, pain, and seizures. These makes CBD an attractive therapeutic compound.
CBD oils may contain some THC. Cannabis may impair your ability to drive safely or operate equipment and may have short- and long-term effects on your memory, attention, mood, heart rate, and mental health. It is also easy to overconsume CBD oil, so it's important to start with a low dose, as it may take several hours or longer to begin to feel the effects after consumption.
In a small study published in the journal JCI Insight in 2017, researchers observed that CBD may help prevent stress-related changes in blood pressure. For the study, nine healthy male volunteers took a single dose of either CBD or placebo. Compared to those given the placebo, those treated with CBD had lower blood pressure both before and after experiencing a stressful event.
CBD stands for cannabidiol, one of the major constituents of cannabis. CBD products are made from industrial hemp and come in various forms. Although hemp and cannabis are in the same plant species, CBD products now on the market contain less than 0.3 percent THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the cannabis compound that gets you high. CBD oil can be mixed into food, either straight or diluted with cooking oil, or it can be heated and its vapors inhaled. You can buy CBD in capsules, liquids, gummies, and sublingual sprays, and it is added to tea, coffee, and smoothies. Business experts estimate that the market for CBD products will reach more than $2 billion in consumer sales in the U.S. within the next four years.