Wellness Deep Dive: CBD

Disclaimer: I’m not a medical professional and this is just my own research. And no, I’m not talking about weed. I also did not receive any payment/sponsorship/gifts to mention Disciple and their products, I bought the oil with my own money. Cool? Cool.

I briefly mentioned that I’ve been testing out CBD in my last New In Beauty post, I thought I’d do a deep dive into the what, why and how of CBD. Everyone is obsessed with it, and with a range of uses and benefits that span everything from reducing anxiety to helping with chronic pain, it’s not hard to understand why. It’s available to buy at a range of retailers, including Cult Beauty, FeelUnique, Holland and Barrett and I’m sure many health shops around the UK.

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People often confuse CBD with cannabis/marijuana, but it isn’t either of those things, and it definitely won’t get you high. Here’s a quick guide to the terminology surrounding CBD to make things simple (inspired by Lee From America, whose CBD guide is excellent):

Cannabis: The plant that marijuana comes from

CBD: Cannabidiol (CBD), the nonpsychoactive component of Cannabis sativa (marijuana plant).

Canniboid: any group of compounds and substances which include cannabinoland the active constituents of cannabis.

THC: tetrahydrocannabinol, the primary psychoactive constituent of cannabis that gets you high. No CBD contains this.

Benefits of CBD

One of the main draws of CBD is the wealth of benefits that people have found to stem from the use of the oil during the thousands of years it has been in use. Yeah, this isn’t a new craze at all. While the list of benefits and uses seems to be never-ending, there are several main ones that people are drawn to:

  • pain relief
  • reduction of anxiety and depression
  • reduction of acne
  • neuroprotective properties
  • beneficial to heart health
  • limiting epileptic seizures
  • reduction of inflammation
  • lessening inflammatory bowel disease symptoms
  • helping with insomnia
  • reduction of psoriasis
  • reduction of the risk of diabetes

Obviously it caters to a wide range of people, and I was drawn to a couple of benefits, including reducing acne, reducing inflammation and reducing anxiety.

Our bodies have a endocannabinoid system that affects many everyday experiences, including mood, energy levels, our immune system, blood pressure and how we experience pain, stress and hunger (Source). If it starts to function differently it can cause many problems, including some serious diseases, but there is research to suggest CBD can slow or stop disease progression.

Types of CBD

It seems as though there are two types of CBD – hemp-derived and cannabis-derived. Hemp CBD is made from industrial hemp, used in clothing, food and paper, and cannabis CBD, which comes from the medical marijuana plant. As far as I can tell, both types have the same benefits and can be used in the same way.

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How I’ve Been Using CBD

I’ve been using the DISCIPLE Skincare Miracle Drops 1% (£22), the weakest CBD oil they offer. It is a hemp seed oil-derived CBD. I wanted to start off small and potentially work my way up to a stronger oil if I liked it, and so far, I do. The product description on Cult Beauty states “Reportedly miraculous for treating everything from inflammation to chronic pain, anxiety and insomnia, CBD oil has taken the beauty world by storm. Our skin has native receptors for cannabis extracts, which means they’re quickly recognised by the body and utilised accordingly.”

These oils can be swallowed (I sometimes place a drop or two under my tongue), added into drinks, or applied topically and through face oils and moisturisers. There’s so many ways to use it it can be hard to keep track. I currently either put half a dropper straight under my tongue, or in a bottle of water mixed with freshly-squeezed lemon juice. It seems to be working so far. Super simple. I want to try it in other drinks and maybe even in cooking – I’ll do some research and get back to you with how I get on.

I think that it is really helping with my mental health – I feel clearer, not as anxious, and find I’m having less trouble with my thoughts. While it may be a combination of the CBD and my focus on looking inward and trying to just do the things I really enjoy, I don’t think it’s a coincidence that I started using CBD and my mental health began to improve.

Overall, I think CBD is great. It’s a super simple way to combat so many problems, and is pretty easily accessible now thanks to so many people advocating for its amazing uses.

Do you take CBD oil, or have any tips as to how else to use it? Let me know!