CBD (Cannabidiol) is one of the cannabinoids extracted from the hemp (cannabis plant) leaves. It is regarded as a health supplement in countries. It is mostly available as capsules (or other edible forms), but more growingly popular as oils and tinctures. Oil or tinctures are preferred over other forms due to higher bioavailability. A tincture can be more effective than capsules, as a higher dose of CBD enters the body.
CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant or hemp. The cannabis plant contains several cannabinoids, and some of them are known to give high, they are addictive, psychoactive. A good example of such cannabinoid is THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). However, CBD tincture is prepared using a unique non psychoactive and beneficial for health.
CBD tincture is taken sublingually; it works almost immediately. It has no psychotic or addictive properties. It may have traces of THC, but low to no amounts (depending on the product chosen).
What is a CBD Tincture?
The tincture is one of the oldest techniques for preparing plant extracts for medicinal use. It uses ethanol (alcohol) as a solvent. To make the tincture, cannabis leaves are steeped in alcohol and then kept on a low heat for a long time to ensure that all the beneficial compounds are dissolved in it.
The tincture has some benefits over other forms of herbal extracts. Tinctures are frequently flavoured, thus they are pleasant to take. Another reason why tincture is the preferred way of preparing some medicinal extracts is that alcohol can denature or destroy some of the unnecessary compounds, thus improving the safety profile of the extract.
Cannabis tincture is not a new thing by any means; it was included in the United States Pharmacopoeia until 1942. Historical data shows that it first made its way into the US Pharmacopeia in 1851. Better put, for almost 100 years cannabis tincture was legally accepted as a medicine in the US.
However, it fell out of favor in the latter half of the 20th century with the advent of synthetic pain killers, hypnotic drugs. Now, modern science is rediscovering CBD and its benefits, as the latest research shows that CBD tincture is safer than many modern medicines, and has many more health benefits – now supported by the latest clinical research (like helping treat deprsession, anxiety, cancer, and much more).
Health Benefits of CBD Tinctures
Science has identified more than 400 chemical compounds in the cannabis plant leaves, and of them, 60 are cannabinoid compounds. It is a very complex plant with some chemicals having an opposing effect. That is why CBD tincture is regarded better (with many compounds like THC removed), as whole cannabis extract may have an unpredictable impact on the heasth.
One of the ways in which CBD tinctures works is through its effect on endocannabinoid receptor system. These receptors are in abundance in the brain, glands, and various organs. This receptor system has a regulatory role in the brain, blood vessels, metabolism, immunity, and reproductive system. CBD also acts on many other receptors like 5-HT serotonin receptors, adenosine receptors, GPR55, and so on.
Here are some of the well-researched health benefits of CBD tincture:
- Anti-inflammatory – can have a role in chronic painful conditions like joint pains/arthritis.
- Immunomodulatory – can benefit in autoimmune conditions like rheumatic disease, lupus, food intolerances, may even help change the course of some neurodegenerative disorders.
- Anticonvulsant – can help reduce episodes of seizures in epilepsy.
- Muscle relaxant – reduces overcome joint stiffness and related pain. May also act on the smooth muscles thus minimize pain related to internal organs like menstrual pain, intestinal colic.
- Anxiolytic – can keep you calm even in the most adverse conditions.
- Antipsychotic – thus may help prevent or even overcome some of the mental disorders, emotional distress.
- Neuroprotective antioxidant – can have a role in the prevention and treatment of Parkinson’s, various dementias including Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis.
- Calming effect on the heart – can slightly reduce heart rate and blood pressure. Thus, suitable for those living with hypertension. Since it reduces cardiac load, may have a role in preventing heart attack.
- Reduces GI motility – can help in food intolerances, chronic diarrhea.
- Anti-cancer – may help fight glioma, lung cancer.
- Reduces intraocular pressure – can help those living with glaucoma, may delay the onset of cataract.
The above list is by no means comprehensive, and there are many other health benefits like improving metabolism, helping reduce body weight, may help control diabetes.
CBD Tincture Safety
CBD tinctures are considered quite safe, with overdosing and toxicity are practically unknown it is important to only take the recommended dosage. Most side effects are mild and tolerable and may disappear with time.
Some of the possible side effects are; changes in liver enzymes in some instances (thus alter the metabolism of other medications), may cause lethargy, some complaints about gastrointestinal disturbances, and mild rashes are rarely reported.
There has been lots of research into the safety of CBD constituents, and the research shows that it is safe even in much higher doses than recommended. One of the most authoritative studies till date says that prolonged use of up to 1500 mg/day of CBD is well tolerated and safe.
How to take a CBD tincture?
Generally, you take a few drops of tincture sub-lingually (under the tongue). How many drops or how fast will it act will depend on many things. First and foremost, you need to know the strength or concentration of the tincture.
Secondly, there is a need to understand that no fixed dose of CBD exists, as there is massive variance in the individual sensitivities. It means that before taking you need to consult the information provided by the manufacturer and with your doctor. In most of the cases, one may need to individualize the doses, by slowly increasing the dosage until the expected results are achieved.
Where can I buy CBD Oil?
The Australian government introduced legislation to decriminalise the use and sale of medical cannabis in 2016, however the accessibility of CBD Oil products still remains a challenge in Australia.
There are currently 2 methods to access medical cannabis in Australia:
- Government approved legal pathways
- Buying from online retailers
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