Unless you’ve been living on a desert island with nothing but a volleyball to keep you company for the last few years, chances are that you’ll have heard of the new wonder-compound, CBD.
Although consumer-accessible research is still a little on the thin side, there’s a lot of promise indicating CBD may help alleviate a number of conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, epilepsy, and even some cancers.
There’s a huge push on the reduction in symptoms too, with increased mood, reduction in depression and improved sleep all coming from the supplementation of cannabidiol.
CBD may just prove to be one of the most important developments in modern medicine that we’ve seen in the last decade. But it’s not just those with life-changing conditions that the compound can help; these products can actually be included in many people’s lives for a positive effect.
Of the many applications of CBD--and one of the least reported--is the reduction in metabolic stress. But how exactly can it help? We’re going back to the core of both the condition and the potential solution to find out.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol, or CBD as it’s more commonly known, is defined as a phytocannabinoid making up just one of 113 identified cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant.
Although discovered way back in 1940, CBD’s time really is right now. And with plenty of people swearing by the substance for a variety of ailments, it’s one compound that’s flying off the shelves. There’s everything from CBD tinctures and oils, to topicals--for application to the skin--baked goods, and even beverages. And there are no signs of the industry slowing anytime soon.
The CBD compound is used around the world by millions of people each and every day, thanks to increasingly relaxed laws surrounding the substance. In the US, all CBD is perfectly legal when derived from hemp in all 50 states, while those states that have legalized marijuana use are able to offer CBD from any source.
What is metabolic stress and what causes it?
Now that we’ve clearly defined a potential solution to many ailments in the form of CBD, let’s move on to so now what it can do to address metabolic stress.
Metabolic stress is a universally experienced stress, with symptoms relating to a number of different digestive problems. In short, digestive stress can include:
- Indigestion and heartburn - due to a build-up of stomach acid
- Stomach pains - due to cramping of the muscles in the stomach
- Diarrhea and constipation - due to changes in digestive speed and efficacy.
However, in the long term, excessive stress can exacerbate a number of existing conditions, including:
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) - characterized by stomach cramps, bloating, constipation and/or diarrhea
- Indigestion - characterized by stomach growls, aches, and burning sensations often accompanied by feelings of bloating, vomiting or nausea
- Heartburn - characterized by a burning pain caused when stomach acid rises up the esophagus and throat
- Stomach ulcers - not caused as a direct result of stress, although stress could make the stomach more susceptible to infection.
Understanding how stress exacerbates these problems is vital if we’re to see how CBD can help. These are the primary factors responsible for metabolic stress:
- ‘Fight or flight’ - Our ‘fight or flight’ responses are believed to be activated by both stress and anxiety; they are programmed to increase the heart rate and divert a greater blood flow to both the arms and legs, but this extra blood has to come from somewhere--and typically, this is done by slowing, or even stopping, the workings of the gut, causing the digestive system to function ineffectively.
- Acid attack - Heightened stress results in increased levels of stomach acid, leading to both indigestion and heartburn.
- Sleep - Sleep is vital to healthy digestion and, with active stress and/or anxiety issues, good sleep can be very difficult for some people to attain.
So, How Can CBD Reduce Metabolic Stress?
By using the very best quality CBD oils, and by looking at the ways which metabolic stress is caused in individuals, it’s easy to find three very clear pathways for CBD use in the reduction of metabolic stress.
1. Improves mood and reduces anxiety
One of the many uses of CBD that has caught the attention of thousands upon thousands of users is that CBD compounds improve the mood and keep anxiety at bay.
A number of recent studies have taken place surrounding the effects of CBD on individuals with anxiety, and these studies demonstrate one main common trend. This is that those choosing to supplement their diet with CBD products report lessened stress and anxiety, also experiencing an improved mood following consumption.
This decrease in anxiety means fewer flare-ups of the ‘fight or flight’ response, keeping optimal blood supply to the gut and thus ensuring good gut function.
2. Improves sleep and reduces insomnia
Next up on the list, improved sleep and a reduction in insomnia symptoms have been reported by many individuals across a variety of studies.
In a series of tests, those taking CBD found their sleep to be of better quality than before, and they were also able to enter a sleep state much faster than without supplementation. It’s theorized that this may also be due to the decrease in stress, allowing the mind to become more relaxed--and thus allowing the individual to fall asleep smoothly and without too much delay.
Individuals’ sleep quality per se is also improved, with fewer nighttime waking cycles and a greater feeling of being refreshed in waking.
3. Helps treat inflammation
Last up, we have the positive anti-inflammatory abilities of CBD, including a reported beneficial effect on a number of conditions including rheumatoid arthritis and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
In the latter case, taking a low-strength CBD compound in the form of a tincture or gummy is often said to reduce both the number and severity of episodes of stomach cramps, bloating, constipation and/or diarrhea. With this comes the reduction in the digestive stress of an individual, decreasing both symptoms and discomfort.
There are a number of ways in which CBD can be used to reduce metabolic stress, but the three main factors pertinent to the majority of individuals are as follows:
- Improved mood and reduction in anxiety
- Improved sleep and reduced insomnia
- Treatment of inflammation.
Of course, many say there’s also scope to include the ‘placebo effect’ of CBD among the reasons for conditions improving. All we can say is that even if the placebo effect is at play to some degree, it’s still a great thing if it helps people feel better when they suffer from metabolic stress disorders.
With so many reported benefits surrounding the use of CBD compounds in the treatment of metabolic stress, it may be of interest to speak to your doctor regarding a trial of CBD--even if just to document the effects.