CBD Oil Usage, Benefits and CBD vs. THC
Let's talk CBD oil (the stuff I keep posting on my Instagram stories when you're wondering why I'm adding marijuana into my morning matchas...while I'm at work). First and most importantly, it's not the same as "weed." While it does smell the same, I'm not over here high AF all the time, or ever. I'll get into that more.
What is it?
CBD (oil) = cannabidiol (oil). There are over 100 different cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, one of which is THC and another of which is CBD. The difference between the two (and between "weed" and CBD oil) is that THC, also known as marijuana or weed, has psychoactive properties while CBD is stripped of these compounds and therefore does not have mind altering effects (or get you highhhhh!). And what about hemp? How does that word play into all of these cannabisms/marijuana etc.? Hemp = a variety of the cannabis sativa plant (there are 3 species of the plant...sativa, indica and ruderalis) that can be used for a variety of products such as food, clothing and paper. For the food products that you see in stores such as hemp seeds, oil or milk, it is similar to CBD oil - is legal in all 50 states because it has been stripped of THC (is non psychoactive ) and additionally has many nutritional benefits but it does not contain CBD (who ever thought one damn plant could be so complex/confusing?!).
What got me into it?
CBD has popped up a LOT recently in my wellness (ad)ventures. They had CBD teas and gummies at Bodylocal's summer wellness event I went to a few weeks ago, it was everywhere when I was in LA last week (Cafe Gratitude & Renew Juicery...and we all know LA is a bit ahead of us in this game), and one of my fave health gurus, Dr. Josh Axe (whose Nutritional Leadership course I took last year) has had some recent posts on the benefits...
So what are they? And why spend even more money on the latest wellness supplement that says it can do everything from buzzword "inflammation" fighting to curing cancer (this literally comes up as a benefit)?...
This is still a new category of wellness and although controversial, the popularity is rising quickly. While I do think that I need to continue to do my own personal research and experimentation with the product, here are the benefits that I've come across so far:
- Reduces stress & anxiety (this is the main reason that I started using the product. Wedding planning + a full-time job + running a blog = STRESSful times. I'm on board with any stress relief product - such as my other obsession with adaptogens which help you adapt to stress. I'll have to write another post on those next)
- Inflammation fighting (I feel like every supplement out there today is inflammation fighting but if it does happen to help with this, it certainly can't hurt)
- Relieves nausea and pain and has women's health benefits for childbirth pain and menstrual cramps (this I can attest to. I've was recommended to use it for menstrual cramps and IT WORKED for me. My cramps were MUCH more tolerable and less extreme than the months prior). This makes sense. The plant itself is female with active compounds that molecularly resemble the hormone estrogen and the seeds contain gamma linoleic acid which is found in breast milk (read about the importance of this in WomanCode)
- Protects skin/high in antioxidants - applying it topically to the skin can help increase lipid production (for dry skin + acne) and consuming it can help anti-aging because of the high antioxidants (one effect of aging is dark spots and I recently had these on my inner thighs. I started applying vitamin E to them at the same time that I started taking CBD oil but they disappeared! SO one of those two tactics worked...)
- Cancer fighting (this I can't say I truly believe BUT if there is a chance that it could help and it already has other proven benefits, why not take the chance)
How I'm Using It
Right now I'm using Bluebird Botanicals which I came across through some research and have the Hemp Classic Original Extract and the Hemp Classic 6x Concentrated Extract. With both, I either take them as drops under my tongue or mix them into a beverage. My morning beverage is a sacred part of my day. I literally go to sleep the night before excited to wake up for my morning drink which is either a bulletproof matcha or low caffeine coffee + adaptogens. I've been adding my CBD oil into the mix for a few days of the week, specifically on the days that I'm more stressed or anticipating stress. For the first product, I'll usually take this under the tongue because you need more of it (about 15 drops up to twice a day) and for the second product I'll add 3 drops to my morning drink because it's more highly concentrated (stronger).
I'm one month out from the wedding where I expected my stress to hit an all time high and while definitely stressed, I'm more relaxed than I thought I would be and have a sense of calm, especially on the days I take my CBD oil. I'm excited to explore the industry more and test different kinds of products for different usages. If you're interested, you can use code lex20 at checkout here for 20% off your first order!