In these days of isolation, illness, fear and the staggering uphill climb of COVID-19 cases and related deaths around the world, many of us are facing stress like we’ve never known. We are desperate for things that will help us feel better. Between online ads, promotional e-mails, and friends and family who rave about how it helped them, you may be wondering if CBD is something you should add to your arsenal of meditation, yoga and affirmations. But what is CBD, anyway?
According to the World Health Organization, CBD—short for cannabidiol—is “one of the naturally occurring cannabinoids found in cannabis plants.” But wait, isn’t marijuana from the cannabis plant? Yes. But CBD products are typically derived from hemp, a cannabis species that contains little to no THC, the compound in marijuana that makes you feel, er, loopy.
So while CBD, which can be ingested or applied topically, does not make you feel “high,” multiple studies have found that it can promote relaxation and reduce anxiety, has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties, and can reduce muscle tension, nausea, and pain. A study by the Laboratory of Neuropsychopharmacology in Brazil found that it can be helpful in relieving symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. It has not been found to be addictive, nor does it have pronounced side effects. With all of these benefits, it’s no surprise that CBD products are flooding the marketplace.
You might see CBD products designated as “full-spectrum,” “broad-spectrum,” or “isolate”. Full-spectrum CBD contains additional, potentially beneficial, elements, like other cannabinoids, while isolate is pure CBD. Broad spectrum is somewhere between the two. One is not necessarily better than the other. It’s more about how it’s formulated and what other ingredients it is combined with. Also, you will see the term “tincture” reference below. A tincture is a form of CBD that is ingested orally, typically held under the tongue for a few seconds and then swallowed.
The right CBD product could help you or a loved one face these high-stress times more calmly, and a CBD skincare product could help soothe stress-related skin issues. In the past two months, after testing almost 100 CBD products, we found more than 25 gift sets or bundles that we thought would be a timely treat for yourself or someone from whom you are social distancing.