CBD & Anxiety/Depression
CBD has become the next significant health and wellness trend as more and more people realize the benefits of these incredibly diverse products. CBD has become an excellent aid for people experiencing a variety of ailments from sleep disorders to joint pain and inflammation. One of the most common uses for CBD in the last year, however, has been for stress and anxiety. In this article, we will explore the connection between CBD and stress and look to answer the following questions:
- How common is anxiety, and what are its impacts on your health?
- What is the science behind CBD and anxiety?
- How can CBD help with anxiety?
- What type of CBD treats anxiety?
- What are the best CBD brands for stress?
The Global Stress Problem
Everyone has felt the effects of stress in one way or another. An upcoming exam, an important meeting, an event with unfamiliar faces can leave us all with a crushing feeling. General anxiety disorder (GAD) is experienced by 284 million people globally, making it the single most common mental health disorder in the world, affecting roughly 4% of the population.
These numbers are even higher in Europe and North America. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), 72% of those experiencing stress or anxiety say it affects their lives daily. This simple fact is why finding a reliable treatment or remedy for stress and anxiety is not only a significant business opportunity but also a significant issue that millions of people experience daily.
People experience anxiety and stress in a variety of different ways, not just from GAD, and can include:
- Social Anxiety Disorder
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
- Panic Disorder
Later in this article, we will discuss scientific findings showing CBD's ability to improve the symptoms of these disorders. First, it is essential to understand the difference between stress and anxiety, which one you are experiencing, and then seek the appropriate medical advice based on your assessment. Stress is your reaction to an external occurrence, i.e., the feeling experienced before making a speech in front of a large group of people. Stress is a common, naturally occurring response the body makes. Anxiety, on the other hand, is an individual's specific reaction to episodes that create stress. An entirely internal situation can often persist long after an event that makes a person experience stress. The focus of scientific studies and CBD have taken place on its ability to impact stress. Anxiety disorders require medical attention from a professional, and although CBD may help alleviate symptoms, it is not scientifically proven as a tool for treating anxiety. That being said, scientists are conducting more research studies to understand anxiety disorders and how they relate to CBD.
Dealing with stress can damage your body in the long term, and doctors often recommend a healthy diet, regular exercise, and better sleep as three primary ways to combat chronic stress. Stress, among other things, can lead to the following:
- Heart disease
- Digestive problems
- Weakened immune system
- Weight gain
- Muscular tension
Now that we have defined stress and anxiety, and addressed the size of the problem globally, we are going to explore the scientific research that shows a positive correlation between CBD and reducing stress.
Science: What do we know?
The rise of CBD has led many research studies to determine whether the compound has an impact on stress and anxiety. The consensus is 'Preclinical evidence conclusively demonstrates CBD's efficacy in reducing anxiety behaviors relevant to multiple disorders, including PTSD, GAD, PD, OCD, and SAD, with a notable lack of anxiogenic effects.'
In 2019, 39 teenagers diagnosed with Social Anxiety Disorder were involved in a double-blind study that tested whether CBD improved their symptoms. Over four weeks, one part of the group was given 300 milligrams of CBD oil, while the other part was administered a placebo. After the period was over, formal SAD questionnaires used to diagnose the disorder were given to both groups to determine how the CBD impacted their symptoms. The study decisively found that the group that took CBD scored significantly better on the questionnaire, meaning the CBD had improved the symptoms associated with SAD. Further, the scientists noted that the positive effects experienced by the teenagers who took CBD were tantamount to a commonly prescribed medicine Paroxetine (which is frequently given to people diagnosed with SAD).
New research on CBD is coming out every month, further demonstrating its potential benefits and any side effects. In particular for stress and anxiety, CBD has been shown in over 30 animal and human studies to be effective in reducing peoples' symptoms quickly and consistently. Although there is a lot still to learn, the promising results that have been shown so far are encouraging and hopefully lead to even more observational scientific work, and therefore greater adoption of CBD.
Dosing, Types, and Products
Choosing the CBD dosage, types of delivery and brand is always going to depend heavily on an individual's specific needs. Especially when using CBD as a remedy for stress and anxiety, personal preferences matter. This is because stress and anxiety can strike different people at different times of day (or night), result in varying symptoms, require different doses to take a positive effect, and see different outcomes depending on the type of delivery. In this section we are going to explore some general guidelines for choosing the CBD product that is best for you to treat stress and anxiety.
The amount of CBD that you take depends on a variety of different factors that are specific to each person. The chart below gives a rough list of guidelines for how much CBD you should take based on your weight and the strength of the dose you are targeting. Although this is a useful tool, it also leaves out some major factors that impact the dose of CBD you consume. This chart provided by DailyCBD is a great starting point:
The purity of the CBD product can have an impact on dosing. A CBD isolate with 100% CBD extract (zero other cannabinoids), is concentrated and thus can begin working rapidly in your body. This will impact your dose, and we recommend starting with a smaller dose and see how it affects you before ramping up.
Additionally, a full-spectrum CBD product may have an entourage effect, where all the other cannabinoids work together to increase the effects on the body. Again, we recommend starting with a small dose before ramping up.
As with any food, drink, or supplement you consume, your own metabolism will have a significant impact on how much CBD would be considered an appropriate dose. A person with a faster metabolism will require a larger dose than someone who is the same weight with a relatively slower metabolism.
It is important to read labels carefully before consuming any CBD products. Be particularly vigilant when identifying how much CBD is in each serving, use the above chart, your knowledge of your own body, and your past experiences with CBD, to make the right dosing decision.
2. Product Type
Deciding how to use CBD for stress and anxiety has a much more open-ended answer vs. how we recommended using tinctures for improving your sleep.
For stress and anxiety, vapes, oils, capsules, and even topicals can be used to improve symptoms, and these go back to the type of anxiety or stress users are experiencing. Marketplaces like Elements of Green offer a wide variety of CBD brands and delivery methods for consumers to explore. Topical CBD products are often infused with naturally soothing entourage ingredients like jasmine and aloe vera, which have been shown to relax tight and distressed muscles (a common symptom of persistent stress).
We like to recommend our consumers avoid black market CBD vapes due to the potential risk posed to your pulmonary system from vitamin E; legal CBD vapes are the fastest-acting method for CBD to enter the body. Additionally, it's challenging to estimate how much CBD is consumed while vaping (you can't accurately show how many milligrams of CBD' per puff', for example), which is a negative component. However, it is a much more tolerated and socially acceptable form if consumption. The decision to use a vape is entirely yours, and maybe the most effective relief for unexpected, sudden onsets of stress and anxiety.
Oilsand capsules are always a reliable way to ingest CBD. A pure hemp-based CBD is consistent and will offer you an experience that is familiar. New formulations are being released that are fast-acting and sustained release. (long-lasting) This will be ideal for someone who knows they have a stressful day of meetings and presentations, and want to be prepared in advance.
There is one specific brands that stands out to us as the one that makes the best products to fit your stress and anxiety needs. HempFusion has formulated a capsule specifically designed for stress, and it has received overwhelmingly positive reviews. Each serving of HempFusion Stress Capsule contains 5mg of CBD, 5mg of Terpenes, 221mg of Omegas and ashwagandha (a plant commonly used as a remedy for stress). The entourage effect of these ingredients makes for a product that is reliable, potent, and effective, and it will be available in the coming months on the elements of green shop.
Click here to view other products on the www.elementsofgreen.com shop that fit these parameters.