CBDs, the Perfect Natural Anti-inflammatory?
Published on June 26, 2016
by Dr. Caitlin Gordon

CBDs, the Perfect Natural Anti-inflammatory?

Published on June 26, 2016 by Dr. Caitlin Gordon

CBDs are gaining national attention for their incredible therapeutic effects. CBDs are a potent natural anti-inflammatory, with the potential to replace riskier pharmaceuticals.  As marijuana becomes legalized in more states, the body of data on using cannabinoids as medical treatments will grow. Stay tuned my friends, this is an exciting topic in healthcare!

It’s all about the Cannabinoids.

how cannabis works graft explaining CBDs as an anti-inflammatoryCannabinoids are a chemical component of the cannabis flower that includes CBDs (cannabidiols) and THC. Cannabinoids mimic chemicals that our own body produces, improving cell communication to maintain stability and health. Our bodies are designed with receptors specifically for cannabinoids! CBDs are non-psychoactive (won’t get you high). CBDs will not show up as marijuana on a drug test because there is no THC.

The legal status of CBDs is still in flux. CBD derived from hemp oil is legal nationwide. However, CBD derived from the cannabis flower is significantly more therapeutic and medicinal. You can find details on the legal status of CBD and THC here.

Like many plant compounds, the effectiveness of CBD as a pain reliever, anti-anxiety, and natural anti-inflammatory is greatly enhanced by using it in a more whole-plant form, which includes the addition of some (even tiny amounts) of THC. THC has anti-tumor and anti-inflammatory effects of its own. Here in Colorado, we are lucky to have legal access to CBD/THC blends. Emerging research is showing CBD/THC blends are able to regulate autoimmunity as well by turning off certain inflammatory pathways. Studies show benefit for those with celiac disease, rheumatoid arthritis, type 2 Diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease, and fibromyalgia.

green capsule with leaf insideThis is amazing news for people on serious drugs like immunosuppressants or steroids to treat their rheumatoid arthritis or inflammatory bowel disease. The risk of dangerous side effects from CBD and THC is minuscule compared to most pharmaceuticals. Many people are finding these blends treat anxiety and insomnia equally or more effectively than addictive and harmful drugs like sleeping pills and benzos (Xanax, Ativan, Lorazepam). Granola as it may sound, Mother Earth really does provide the perfect medicine.

Tips for Using Cannabinoids

1. Go Organic

Be diligent and seek out organic sources. The marijuana industry does not yet effectively regulate pesticide and chemical spraying. I’ve seen firsthand plants sprayed with highly toxic chemicals before harvest. It is absolutely not safe to be smoking, vaping, or eating pesticides.

2. Ditch the Smoke

There are big advantages to using vaporizers, tinctures, patches, capsules, or edibles. While the anti-tumor properties of THC mean smoking it won’t give you lung cancer, there are other risks. The inhalation of tars and resins into the lungs from any source creates irritation and can paralyze the cilia — the little hairs that line the lungs and whose job it is to move phlegm and mucus out. Ever notice how long-term pot smokers often have a chronic hack or sinus issues? Edibles, tinctures, and vaping cut down or eliminate the irritating effect on eyes, sinus, lungs and throat. If you have allergies to weeds, pollens, or trees you are much more likely to induce similar effects from smoking marijuana (a weed).

Vaporizers offer the fastest effects, but they will also be the most short-lived. Edibles and capsules will have longer effects but may take over an hour for the symptom relief to kick in. Patches are great for an even dose throughout the day and take 1-2 hours to take effect. Use tinctures under the tongue and expect 30-45 minutes for an effect that lasts 4-5 hours on average, depending on your metabolism.

3. Experiment to Find a Therapeutic Dose

Like all herbs, there is a therapeutic dose. This is going to be unique to every individual. Some people
may need 10mg of CBD four times a day as a natural anti-inflammatory to manage their pain, while another person needs 5mg once a day to keep their inflammation symptoms under control. Some people are going to feel better with more THC, others will not. Experiment, and pay attention to how you feel! A great starting point if you’re brand new to cannabinoids is to try a tincture with a ratio of around 500mg CBD to 10mg THC. This will not get you high, will have potent anti-inflammatory effects, and will be easy to manage the dosage as you figure out what feels best. Most dispensaries have very well-trained and well-educated staff who can direct you towards the best product for your needs.

chart showing CBD benefits




Do you know what else is an incredible natural anti-inflammatory, pain reliever, and immune regulator? Acupuncture!

Are you looking for Acupuncture in Boulder, CO?

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