Unless you've been tuned out to the beauty world these last few months, odds are you've heard of an ingredient called CBD (short for cannabidiol). The buzzy ingredient, which, no, won't get you high, even if ingested as an oral tincture or supplement, has now evolved into a bonafide skin-care trend, with brands offering a luxe spin on what used to be a highly niche category. "With an impressive and evergrowing number of studies finding CBD to be a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory among many other properties, it is now being used to treat pain, anxiety, spasms, and much more," New York City-based aesthetician Jeannel Astarita tells Allure.
Researchers at the Department of Pharmacognosy, The School of Pharmacy, University of London, UK, basis the study conducted on mice found that CBD oil has analgesic properties and may relieve chronic pain of all kinds . It can disrupt the activity of pain receptors in the body and instead cause a release of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine – “feel good” compounds that can ease discomfort and pain, even if the pharmaceutical painkillers have no effect.
But because all these products are illegal according to the federal government, cannabis advocates are cautious. “By and large, the federal government is looking the other way,” says Paul Armentano, deputy director of the Washington, DC–based National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), but until federal laws are changed, “this administration or a future one could crack down on people who produce, manufacture, or use CBD, and the law would be on its side.”
The use of CBD is safe, with a few non-serious potential side effects. This is shown by the studies and that is what doctors and scientists say. Most CBD users do not experience any of these side effects. Even in very high doses of CBD there is no toxicity. However, everyone is unique and the body chemistry of each individual is slightly different.
A study highlighting this was performed approximately one decade ago. The study found a link between IBS sufferers and clinical endocannabinoid deficiency, which relates back to the fact that the system directly impacts intestinal motility and function. When CBD was used to activate and regulate the endocannabinoid system, sufferers of IBS saw significant symptom improvement. (42)