What is CBD?

This is Part 1 of 2 posts of What is CBD and Hemp CBD?
CBD Oil stands for cannabidiol, and it is one of over 100 cannabinoids uniquely found in the cannabis plant. Unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning it does not
cause the “high” associated with marijuana.

How does Hemp CBD work?

CBD Oil interacts with the endocannabinoid (ECS) system. The ECS is made up of millions of cannabinoid receptor sites. There are CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors are mostly found in the brain, connective tissue, central nervous system, organs, gonads, and glands.

The CB2 receptors are mostly found in the immune system, and can also be present in the liver, heart, kidneys, spleen, bones, blood vessels, lymph cells, reproductive organs and the endocrine glands.

The CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the body bind with the molecules of CBD and produce positive biological responses, namely bringing about homeostasis (balance) in all the other body systems. Yay balance!

What is the Endocannabinoid System?

Generally we are taught about 11 systems of the human body such as the digestive, nervous, circulatory systems, and so forth. But there is also another one called the endocannabinoid system, which has cannabinoid receptors. The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is a complex cell-signaling system that scientists discovered in the early 1990’s while researching THC.

While there is still much research to be had, scientists do know that the endocannabinoid system plays a role in regulating a range of functions including mood, sleep, hormones, fertility, memory, energy, anxiety, immune response, appetite, pain and more. 

The ECS is able to regulate body functions because of its three core components:

1. Endocannabinoids – Cannabinoids produced by your body. Endocannabinoids are retrograde neurotransmitters that aid in keeping internal processes running smoothly.

Scientists have identified two main endocanniboids – anandamide (AEA) and 2-ara-chidonoylglyerol (2-AG)

2. Receptors – The ECS is made up of CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors are mostly found in the central nervous system. CB2 receptors are mostly in your peripheral nervous system. Endocannabinoids and phytocannabinoids (cannabinoids) produced by plants) both can bind to either CB1 or CB2 receptors.

3. Enzymes – Once endocannabinoids have done their job two different enzymes break them down. The enzyme fatty acid amide hydrolase breaks down anandamine (AEA) and monoacylglycerol acid lipase breaks down 2-Arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG).

What is the best way to take Hemp CBD?

Sublingual application allows for the CBD oil to be absorbed quickly and directly through the mucous membrane in the mouth, which contains capillaries that lead directly to the bloodstream. Absorption under the tongue allows Hemp CBD to bypass the digestive system. Hold the Hemp CBD under your tongue for 20-90 seconds. Many reports show that sublingual usage increases the bioavailability.

Ingestion is another popular method of taking Hemp CBD. This can be through capsules or in your coffee, juice and other edibles. This allows the CBD to pass through the digestive system and become metabolized by the liver. Chris Kilham, the founder of Medicine Hunter Inc., suggests consuming fats such as oils, nuts or yogurt to improve absorption and bioavailability.

Topical allows the CBD to be absorbed into the skin where it interacts with the CB1 and CB2 receptors near the surface of the skin.

Vaping CBD is a common method for quick absorption, however most vape juices contain propylene glycol and other chemicals. Some vaporizing models are compatible with Hemp CBD in fractionated coconut oil. Check the vaporizers manufacturer to determine if it is safe for use with fractionated coconut oil. The voltage must be 3.9V or lower.

How does CBD work when used topically?

It is believed that Hemp CBD works faster for localized issues when used topically because the CBD goes directly to the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptor sites in the specific area that it is applied without going through the digestive system. In a study done at the University of Kentucky transdermal CBD significantly reduced joint swelling, improved mobility and reduced pain for rats with arthritis. The scientific community is still catching up to research on the effectiveness of trans-dermal Hemp CBD. Antidotal results have been impressive.

Topicals are applied right to trouble areas so that the CBD oil can work directly where it’s needed most. Ingesting CBD products orally causes CBD and other compounds to enter the bloodstream, which elicits full-body effects and takes up to 2 hours or more before those effects are experienced. With CBD topicals, the healing compound and other hemp-derived nutrients are almost immediately absorbed directly through your skin, allowing them to target the affected area for quicker and more focused effects.


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Author Kayla Fioravanti

Chief Formulator at Ology Essentials

Kayla Fioravanti has been a leading expert in the natural cosmetics industry for over 20 years. In 1998, she co-founded Essential Wholesale – one of the first all natural cosmetics/ingredients companies – that started out with $50 in her kitchen and grew to a multimillion dollar company (all the while raising her 3 kids)! In fact, Kayla raised her own CEO, Keegan Fioravanti! Kayla is also an aromatherapist, business consultant, and an award winning author.