A Brief Introduction to CBD
CBD, or cannabidiol, is derived from the hemp plant that possesses tons of health benefits and alleviates stress. It is a major component of the plant but does not have any of the psychoactive effects that people associate with cannabis. In recent years, CBD is finally beginning to receive the credit it deserves in regards to its advantages. One way CBD is being recognized is by classifying as an adaptogen. Simply put, an adaptogenic substance is one that allows the body to adapt to stress. We will get into more details below.
What are adaptogens?
Adaptogens are defined as the “substances used in herbal medicine for the claimed stabilization of physiological processes and promotion of homeostasis.” The stabilization of physiological processes means that a person is able to create levels of normal functioning within their bodies when exposed to disruptive events. Homeostasis is the ability to maintain that internal functioning even if there are adverse environmental stimuli.
Examples of adaptogens include maca, ginseng and holy basil. Some of the properties that adaptogens bring are anti-anxiety, immune boosters, anti-microbial, organ protection and prevent muscle spasms. CBD provides many of these same benefits (and more!) on its own, but is often boosted and enhanced by certain terpenes through the “entourage effect.” This allows the user to receive double the effects verses using any single product alone.
How does CBD Act as an Adaptogen?
CBD is being hailed for its capability of balancing the endocannabinoid system (ECS). It is through this process that allows the body to handle stress and have adaptogenic properties. CBD works through two receptors in the ECS, CB-1 and CB-2, which allows the cannabinoid to benefit multiple systems. The endocannabinoid system works to regulate sleep, mood, reducing anxiety and depression, lowering stress levels and the immune system.
There are benefits to a balanced ECS beyond biological factors. Socially, the endocannabinoid system can help alter human behavior. By reducing things like anxiety and stress, people are finding themselves able to interact with others in a more positive, productive manner. Using CBD provides the system with cannabinoids needs in order to function properly.
Increasing the Adaptogenic Properties of CBD
Other compounds can help boost and enhance CBD’s benefits through the “entourage effect.” This was coined by Dr. Ethan Russo and is used to describe the synergistic relationship between a cannabinoid and a terpene. A terpene is an aromatic compound that comes from the essential oils of a plant. While terpenes occur naturally in countless plants, they are responsible for giving a cannabis or hemp plant its distinct flavor and aroma. Terpenes bring their own hosts of benefits that work directly with those of the hemp plant. CBD works as an anti-microbial; which will only be heightened when combined with a terpene like Limonene or Myrcene. As far as anxiety reduction, CBD and Linalool are a dream team. To increase focus and awareness, Alpha-Pinene and CBD are a great combination. Another strong duo is CBD and Beta-Caryophyllene, which boost antioxidants in the body.