CBD flower, otherwise known as hemp flower, comes from the buds of cannabidiol-rich hemp plants. Though almost indistinguishable based on their appearance, CBD hemp flower contains only trace amounts of the compounds that produce a high compared to dry herb cannabis.
Beyond not giving someone a high when they're not in the mood, premium CBD hemp flower can offer a host of other benefits, from psychological to medicinal. Here's what you need to know about the non-psychoactive flower people are smoking -- and what to consider if you're looking to purchase it.
What Is CBD, Again?
Short for cannabidiol, CBD is one of the most important compounds in both cannabis and hemp. Though these compounds exist in both hemp and cannabis, they're called cannabinoids because they exist in the plant's psychoactive form.
But beyond that, a cannabinoid is an active compound, meaning that it produces effects within the human body when ingested. These effects are not limited to making someone feel "high." For example, CBD oil for pain may reduce inflammation, thereby reducing cramps or aches.
What Does CBD Do? 11 Benefits
Great question. There is a lot of confusion surrounding CBD oil, especially. Though this cannabinoid may produce all sorts of beneficial everyday effects, it isn't a "miracle cure" for illnesses. If you're looking to treat a specific condition, please speak with your physician.
Beyond that, a variety of research and personal accounts have found that CBD may assist in treating the following conditions. We'll dive into the specifics later.
- Chronic pain
- Menstrual cramps
- Alzheimer's disease
Disclaimer: Remember that CBD flower or oil is not a cure-all. Many of these are serious conditions that may require professional medical care. If you believe you're suffering from one or more of these, please speak with a doctor.
7 Types of CBD Products
There are lots of different ways to take cannabidiol, including:
What Is CBD Flower?
CBD flower is the same thing as the bud of a hemp plant. This is why it's also called hemp flower. There are many ways that someone can take it, including smoking it in your Hydroponique to vaping it or baking it into an edible.
CBD flower is also available in different "strains" like your typical cannabis, including sativas, indicas, and blends. These are a matter of personal preference.
The legal distinction between CBD hemp flower and cannabis is that it can contain no more than 0.3% THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, the most common active cannabinoid that makes someone stoned or high. Usually, these buds have approximately 20% cannabidiol in addition to other cannabinoids, terpenes and plant matter.
Why Smoke It?
Everyone has their own reasons for enjoying cannabis and hemp. For some people, it's a relaxing ritual and a great way to end the day. There are also a few technical reasons why CBD flower may be a better choice than the compound in its other forms.
- Taste: It smells, looks and tastes like weed, which is a major plus.
- Health: We're partial to CBD hemp flower because it may be easier to know exactly what you're ingesting. CBD oil is not always third-party tested to ensure that it actually has the compound in it. Gummies and edibles may be full of sugar and a person typically ingests less of a cannabinoid when it's digested, rather than inhaled.
- Safety: Vaporizers have a whole different set of health dangers that we're keen on avoiding.
6 CBD Flower Benefits
There are many reasons people choose to take cannabidiol in all its forms. Here's what some of the research says regarding cannabidiol and human health. Keep in mind that due to cannabis' complicated legality, there is a serious lack in clinical research on all aspects of the plant -- even hemp. Due to legalization in a variety of states and countries, however, we're finally getting access to some good data surrounding CBD and other compounds.
CBD and Chronic Pain
Everyone who has smoked weed knows that humanity's favorite plant can be great at reducing pain. Given the situation, though, you may not want to be high. That's why CBD for pain is revolutionizing both medical and medicinal treatments.
More specifically, the cannabinoid may help reduce inflammation and the sensation of pain through its interactions with neurotransmitters in the brain. This can range from arthritic pain to other serious conditions like multiple sclerosis. A study examining the response of multiple sclerosis patients to Sativex, a THC and CBD-containing spray designed for medical use, found that the medication reduced muscle spasms as well as pain.
Note: The optimum ratio of CBD and THC in pain management is not always clear. In other words, sometimes studies look at how the compounds work together to aid in pain management, rather than individually.
Sleeping and Hemp
Cannabidiol's potential benefits as an anti-inflammatory and pain reducer are another reason why the compound may assist with sleep, especially for people suffering from painful conditions. Research suggests that the compound may assist people suffering from Parkinson's Disease with sleeping.
Anxiety, Depression, and CBD
Anxiety and depression affect millions of Americans annually and treatment is often expensive, unavailable or seriously lacking. More specifically, approximately 18% of Americans experience a form of anxiety every year, according to ADAA, the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.
Medications used to treat these conditions may be ineffective in the longterm or produce negative side effects such as sexual troubles, insomnia, and drowsiness. Addiction is also a risk. In other words, many people turn to alternatives from pharmaceuticals, such as CBD flower or other forms of the compound.
- In one study, researchers used CBD oil to treat PTSD in children.
- Research on animals has shown that the compound may have antidepressant-like effects.
- Another study found that a cannabidiol pill may reduce anxiety in a test-taking situation.
Keep in mind that anxiety and depression are serious conditions. If you are concerned about your mental health, speak with a doctor. We are not doctors and this information is for educational purposes only.
CBD Flower for Nausea
Studies have shown that in addition to reducing pain, cannabidiol may reduce nausea, too. This may come as no surprise to people who have used cannabis to treat nausea or pain before. However, research suggests that it's the CBD and THC together may help with reducing vomiting and nausea.
Specifically, cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol may assist people suffering from chemotherapy-related nausea. One study suggests that a combination of the two may be effective in doing just that in a variety of cases.
Why Would CBD and THC Work Well Together?
This is due to a phenomenon called the Entourage Effect. This theory postulates that cannabinoids are more potent when ingested side-by-side as they're found in nature. This marks the difference between isolate and full spectrum CBD: the former contains the isolated compound while the other includes 0.3% THC along with other cannabinoids and terpenes.
The best CBD hemp flower would also be full spectrum.
Suggested Reading: What is Dabbing?
Neuroprotective Properties and Cannabidiol
An array of research suggests that cannabidiol may have neuroprotective properties, meaning that it may assist or prevent damage to neurons in the brain. Specifically, one study suggests that giving the compound to mice slowed the cognitive decline associated with Alzheimer's Disease. This may be due to cannabidiol's anti-inflammatory properties and their interactions with the body's endocannabinoid system.
Why CBD Flower May Affect the Human Body
Why would this compound found in hemp flower and cannabis affect the human body? It all comes down to a crucial biological network known as the endocannabinoid system: a complex framework of proteins, and neurotransmitters that control a variety of crucial biological functions including:
- Pain sensation
The endocannabinoid system is the most recently discovered of the major biological networks. In other words, it's just as crucial to health as the nervous system, skeletal system, or circulatory system.
CBD Flower and the Endocannabinoid System
Notice that cannabis and endocannabinoid have the same root? This is because the endocannabinoid system was discovered when scientists were investigating cannabis' effects on the human body.
In simple terms, cannabinoids such as cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol can attach to the cannabinoid receptors within the endocannabinoid system. This can produce all sorts of effects including a high in the case of THC or a reduction of pain or inflammation. It is possible because the body naturally produces its own types of cannabinoids called endocannabinoids.
Enjoying CBD Flower in 2020
Gone are the days when smoking was reserved for weed with lots of THC. Today, people are enjoying cannabidiol in all its forms, with CBD flower being the latest trend. Not only might it produce a variety of benefits and a sense of calm, but it feels like the timeless ritual of smoking the herb.