Around 1 in 5 in the U.S. suffers from some type of anxiety. In case you are among them, you’d probably searching for an alternative option to relax your mind and body. With the growing prominence of Cannabidiol or CBD as a therapeutic medicine, a lot are asking whether it is the newest snake oil, or if it could really aid in improving anxiety symptoms without any adverse effect.

CBD is a naturally-derived oil containing phytochemicals known as cannabinoids. These compounds are also naturally occurring in the body which makes us feel relaxed and secured. They are also active in making us happy such as when we hug somebody we love or sit down to our favorite meal. They are also released when exercising or when we have a good night’s sleep. They bind to cannabinoid receptors, which are tiny docking stations in the body that aid in stimulating those “good feel” responses.  The primary cannabinoid found was found in 1992. It was called anandamide or the “bliss molecule”.

To aid the body to maintain balance, the cannabinoid system makes sure intestines and stomachs are functioning properly. It modulates pain and keeps inflammation down while maintaining a well-balanced mood. Studies indicate CBD cannabinoids may hinder the breakdown of anandamide. There is more bliss when we have more anandamide in the body.

How can CBD help with managing symptoms of mental health challenges?

The expert committee on drug dependence of the World Health Organization (WHO) has for many years provided a long list of medical conditions that CBD can help with. Studies on both humans and animals have presented that the compound may aid in reducing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), relieving symptoms of autism, and lowering down feelings of isolation. It appears that the compound has a brain calming effect and is able to support the hippocampus, the part of the brain crucial for memory and healthy emotion.

A study has shown that CBD can potentially reduce social anxiety in the same way that diazepam (valium) and ipsapirone do. In 2012, a double-blind, randomized clinical trial looked into how CBD can benefit psychotic patients. About 40 volunteer patients were administered with an antipsychotic drug or CBD. While all patients under each treatment reported improved symptoms, the group which received CBD has fewer side effects common among antipsychotic medications such as hormonal dysregulation, weight gain, and movement problems. A recent study has just been evaluated for treating childhood epilepsy, and will soon be introduced simply as a CBD oil

Is CBD safe?

Yes! The use of CBD in treating epilepsy was in fact studied in children and was proven to be safe for both consumptions of adults and kids. Unlike opioid drugs, CBD can help with pain and relax the body, without suppressing the brain’s breathing centers. This means, there is nothing to be concerned about, even in cases of overdose.

The medical research has gathered sufficient evidence on CBD’s safety since the 1960s. Common daily dosages between 10mg-100mg have shown no adverse effects. Even a study where patients took 1,280 mg daily dose did not experience any problem.

Nevertheless, be aware that due to the manner by which the liver functions, CBD could affect the clearance of other medications you may be having. Consulting your physician prior to trying out any new herbal supplements, especially when taking prescribed medicines, is always a good idea.