A NATURAL BALANCING ACT: UNDERSTANDING HOW CBD WORKS

A NATURAL BALANCING ACT: UNDERSTANDING HOW CBD WORKS

February 14, 2019

Anything we take into the body- medicine, food, minerals- acts in some way on our systems. If we eat salt, our kidneys work to flush it out. It we have high blood pressure, that salt can raise our pressure even higher while the kidneys work to balance the levels. Most of these systems, called regulatory systems, work to keep things in balance for optimum health. The endocannabinoid system is one of these regulatory systems that work to keep us in balance.

This endocannabinoid system has receptors sensitive to naturally occurring cannabinoids in the brain, central and peripheral nervous systems, and some organ systems. This system, and the naturally occurring chemicals it works with, tries to keep balance when we have pain, anxiety, or inflammation. It works to provide the opportunity for natural sleep, good mood and memory, and normal appetite. In other words, it tries to bring us back into balance when the world, or normal life, pushes us too far.

METHODS OF ACTION

Some medicines do one job in the body, regardless of the environment. Medicines for lowering blood pressure, for instance, may lower blood pressure and keep lowering it, regardless of how the patient is responding. If a person with normal blood pressure takes this medicine, their blood pressure drops. The medicine does one thing, and it does not have the ability to monitor the system it is affecting. There is no fail safe.

Other medicines work to allow the regulatory systems, those that provide us with our natural balancing act, some support. Medicines and supplements that work this way take advantage of the fact that the natural regulatory systems, like the endocannabinoid system, are designed to not swing too far out of neutral. They work to keep us in balance. By supporting their function, we allow them to work better and more effectively.

CBD is a naturally-occurring cannabinoid made from pure hemp oil. This supplement supports the regulatory systems that rebalance us when we are out of our natural state of balance. Some pain medications work to suppress the pain, but never get to the root of the cause. This supplement works by supporting the system that reduces the cause of pain naturally.

RESULTING EFFECTS

Because of this different way of working, people who take CBD to help reestablish natural balance and allow their regulatory systems to provide support for good sleep, mood and memory, natural maintenance of pain and anxiety, may notice the supplement works differently than other treatments. Some medicines for anxiety, for instance, will take away the anxiety by changing mood for the length of time the medicine is in the system. They work quickly and they are gone quickly, leaving even worse anxiety in their place. This is called a rebound effect. With a supplement that helps support the system that naturally controls anxiety, the change in feeling is gradual, and over time a person begins to feel like themselves again. They may never be able to identify feeling differently when taking the medicine. It works "low and slow," and the change is over time.

That being said, the causes of our systems being out of balance are not always easy to identify and correct. Chronic stress from family and work doesn't go away when we take a supplement to bring our natural systems back into balance. We all have to go out into the world and interact with other people and the environment. As we get older, the impacts of these long-term stresses can begin to challenge our health. Just as we have had to deal with long-term stress, we may need to offer our balancing systems some long-term support.

DELIVERY METHODS

CBD oil from hemp provides a support for the natural cannabinoids that work with our endocannabinoid system to bring regulatory balance. When our bodies are not producing enough in-house, so to speak, we can support the work of the system by giving them more to work with. The products that are being produced allow us to take CBD supplements in a number of forms--and the forms matter, because the way the CBD oil gets into our blood stream matters for how much is available for use by our regulatory systems. CBD that is inhaled gets into the bloodstream quickly; people who take other inhaled medications, or have lung disease, may want to try an alternate path. A tinctureor solution put under the tongue allows the medicine to absorb directly into the blood stream from the blood vessels under the tongue. A cream or ointment can be absorbed through the skin, though the levels in the blood stream may not be as high as with other methods. If we take it by mouth, we need it to be in an oil-based carrier, so it can be absorbed properly. Research into the pharmacokinetics of CBD oil suggest that products held in an oil based carrier that is a medium-chain triglyceride, such as this tincture, have a very high rate of absorption.

If you choose to take regular CBD to support your natural balancing act, the supplements should be taken twice a day. Our very efficient liver and kidneys try to sweep our blood clean of anything extra they find. With many products on the market, research should include where the hemp is grown and how the CBD is processed. In addition, finding a product with a carrier oil of a medium-chain triglyceride will improve the effectiveness of the supplement.