Stress is a physical response to an external force. When we say that we are stressed, that means that we are responding to actions in the form of “fight or flight”. The body releases hormones like adrenaline, norepinephrine, and cortisol. This can cause various types of unwanted results in the body.
Studies have shown that almost 44% of Americans have shown a drastic increase in their stress levels in the past 5 years. Amongst this 44 % of Americans, one in five individuals has a very high-stress level which includes symptoms such as shivering, heart palpitations as well as depression. Increasing stress levels also increase the chances of getting a heart attack by 40% and a stroke by 50%.
Synthetic drugs play a role in suppressing the symptoms of stress but give no real long-term solutions. In addition, these drugs also have a huge list of side effects which are often ignored by people who are dependent on these drugs. Is CBD the solution?
Yes and no. This complex answer comes after a series of detailed researches, which have made it evident that effective treatment for stress with CBD can be achieved after keeping various factors in mind. 2 of these important factors are the amount of CBD used as medication and the Endocannabinoid system of the body. The Endocannabinoid system is what is responsible for reception of the cannabinoids. Be it synthesizing or breaking down of cannabinoids, it does it all. The Endocannabinoid system has 2 receptors – CR1 and CR2. If CR1 is more active than CR1, the CBD has a negative effect on the body and encourages the onset of stress. If the CR2 is more active than the CR1, CBD helps in reducing the feeling of stress and provides relief to the administrator.
The toughest task is determining the right balance between all these factors, but scientists continue to keep at it and are focused on finding the right mix so that CBD can be used and side effects are reduced. While these researches may be long and tedious, a few trials have been made in the past which makes CBD a favorite when it comes to finding a solution for the ever-growing stress levels. Most of the prior researches were carried out on mice and rodents, but a few were carried out on human participants, and have received great positive outcomes.
- In 2015, a trial was conducted in the presence of Chairman and Chairwoman of Drug Caucus in a session where NIDA (National Institute of Drug Abuse) was also present to provide some hard-hitting pieces of evidence to show the therapeutic and medical effects of CBD with respect to reduction of anxiety in animals and their different modal systems.
- A blindfolded clinical trial was also held in 2011. 24 volunteers were present, where half of them received 600mg of CBD and the rest were given a placebo. All of the participating volunteers had a history of some sort of emotional distress and a tendency to be prone to stress. After being administered the initial dose, all the volunteers were examined through randomized public interactive sessions. Their blood pressures, heart rate, and skin conductance were tested. This process was repeated 6 times. A Visual Analogue Mood Scale was used as well, along with the Negative Self Statement Scale. The results showed that volunteers treated with CBD showed no impairment of cognition or discomfort of any sort when they interacted with the public. A similar trial was also carried out in 1993 and also showed great results.
- A group of well renowned Brazilian scientists conducted 2 types of research in 1193. The aim was to work with the abundance of cortisol, the level of which rose when animals were placed in extremely stressful situations. Then CBD was administered to 11 of the volunteers. As expected, the CBD greatly decreased the level of cortisol which in turn reduced the stress in the volunteers as well, in comparison to those subjects who were given a placebo.
- More evidence on this study was found when another test was conducted. Scientists did a random double blindfolded test with 15 human volunteers, out of which some received 600mg of CBD and the others a placebo. It was found after the administration, that the volunteers who received CBD had a reduction in stress in comparison to a 10mg of Delta 9 -THC. CBD initiated receptors like 5HT1A, CB2, and TRPV1. CB2 and TRPV1 both were found to be anxiolytic or stress-reducing receptor centers. This was a great experiment which is, till date, held as one of the most important pieces of evidence of CBD reducing stress.