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Still worried that CBD is marijuana? Here’s your answer.

Q: Help me understand what CBD oil is. I hear so much about it, but isn’t it marijuana?

CBD stands for cannabidiol, a compound found in different species of the cannabis family such as marijuana and hemp. These compounds — there are over 100 of them — are known collectively as cannabinoids. One of the best known cannabinoids is THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), better known as the compound that’s responsible for getting marijuana users stoned.

And lest you confuse cannabis with marijuana, let’s clear up a couple of things. Marijuana, or Cannabis sativa, is a species of the cannabis plant. Industrial hemp — which also is a species of cannabis — has an entirely different makeup. It has virtually nonexistent THC content, but a lot of CBD. For those who want the benefits of CBD without the high, hemp oil is the way to go.

CBD receptors are a part of the body’s natural endocannabinoid system (the ECS). The ECS is getting a lot of research attention now because it regulates all kinds of good things including sleeping, relaxation, eating, the immune system, inflammation and recovery. CBD, for example, even attaches to receptors in the brain that are related to serotonin production.

A fair amount of research is accumulating on the benefits of CBD for inflammatory conditions as well as for depression, anxiety, neurodegenerative disorders, and cardiac dysfunction. The anecdotal evidence is even more impressive. But there were problems with consistency and availability as most CBD products had previously been extracted from marijuana, which remains a controlled substance in many states. That’s why the emergence of hemp oil as a source for CBD is exciting.

Written by Jonny Bowden PHD, CNS for Clean Eating Magazine and legally licensed through the Matcha publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to [email protected]

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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

As with any dietary or nutritional supplement, it’s always a good idea to consult your doctor or a trained medical professional. It’s also important to keep in mind that the information in this article should not be considered medical advice.

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