When looking at the effects of these chemicals on the brain, it’s helpful to have an understanding of the endocannabinoid system . “Endo” means within, and “cannabinoid” refers to chemicals that influence receptors of the ECS.
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Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry, 89, 90-96. In short, CBD shows promise in helping to alleviate some symptoms of some mental disorders. Much of the human-based research is still in its infancy, however, but early signs are promising. If you’re taking CBD oil to help you study or for some other cognitive reason, chances are you’re experiencing a placebo effect. There are two human trials currently underway that are examining the impact of both THC and CBD on post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms.
The ECS is made up of a series of receptors found on numerous cell types throughout the body. So far, science has confirmed two of these receptors—CB1 and CB2. If you smoke weed, you’re probably familiar with how good it can make you feel. There are times when hitting a bong can elevate your mood and initiate giggle fits.
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Specifically, 40, 80, and 160 mg CBD capsules were administered to 15 individuals with insomnia. Results suggested that 160 mg CBD was associated with an overall improvement in self-reported sleep quality. CBD doesn’t bind to CB1 receptors, and therefore doesn’t affect dopaminergic neurons in the same way as THC.
Instead, CBD is known to be an indirect agonist of CB1 receptors. This ultimately means that CBD can increase anandamide levels by inhibiting an enzyme that breaks down the endocannabinoid. Increased levels of anandamide then bind to CB1 receptors and produce effects similar to THC. THC isn’t the only cannabinoid that might help with depression. The study found that strains high in CBD and low in THC were more associated with the largest changes in depression ratings.
- It is likely that the higher THC content allows people to ingest less tar.
- This helps avoid detection but reduces the CBD production of the plant.
- At the same time, CBD levels in seized samples have lowered, in part because of the desire to produce higher THC levels and because more illegal growers cultivate indoors using artificial lights.
- There is limited evidence suggesting cannabis can be used to reduce nausea and CBD oil vomiting during chemotherapy, to improve appetite in people with HIV/AIDS, or to treat chronic pain and muscle spasms.
In contrast, strains high in THC and low in CBD produced the largest perceived changes in stress. The ECS is also made up of specialised neurotransmitters that bind to these receptor sites and modulate the system. These molecules are known as endocannabinoids, namely anandamide and 2-AG. As it happens, molecules from the cannabis plant can influence the same receptors thanks to their similar shape. Cannabinoids from cannabis—and other plant species—are known as phytocannabinoids.
The first study is expected to be completed this month, while the second should be completed by year’s end. It can take up to a year after a study has been completed before its results are published in a journal.