If you’re like me, I think you’ll agree with me when I say that lack of sleep really interrupts your life. You can become cranky and irritable, snapping at friends and colleagues while your body is screaming for rest. Maybe you’ve gone down the laundry list of “fixes” — meditation, yoga, alcohol, exercise, an electronics detox before bed, you know the drill— but nothing seems to be working. It can be frustrating beyond measure.
Dr. Will Cole, leading functional-medicine expert, consults people around the world via webcam at www.drwillcole.com and locally in Pittsburgh. He specializes in clinically investigating underlying factors of chronic disease and customizing health programs for thyroid issues, autoimmune conditions, hormonal dysfunctions, digestive disorders, and brain problems.Dr. Cole was named one of the top 50 functional-medicine and integrative doctors in the nation and is the author of Ketotarian in which he melds the powerful benefits of the ketogenic and plant-based diets.
Research works in this aspect are inclining in the favor of CBD for alleviation of insomnia. For example, a study carried out in the year 2006 revealed that cannabidiol (CBD), which is the second important constituent of cannabis, and is non-psychoactive in nature, may have an impact on the sleep mechanism of rats. It was shown to increase alertness with light, and had no particular impact on sleep with the lights off. This provides an insight that CBD could be brought into use for therapeutic relief of day-time somnolence, and hence, can this way improve night-time sleep.
Rich in CBD, cannabis has been used for centuries to fight illness, improve sleep, and lower anxiety. Today, our understanding of the potential benefits of CBD is growing by leaps and bounds—more and more, CBD is seen as a powerful disease-fighting agent. Thanks to decades of scientific investigation, it’s now possible to get the benefits of CBD in supplement form.
About one in ten Americans suffer from restless leg syndrome (RLS). This disorder is characterized by an overwhelming urge to move ones legs while at rest or trying to sleep. These urges are often unpleasant and can cause great discomfort and of course a lack of sleep. The cause of RLS is still unknown, but research suggests that it can be related to abnormalities in the central nervous system.
CBD likewise communicates with a neurotransmitter called GABA (gamma-aminobutyric corrosive). GABA transfers messages from one brain cell, or neuron, to another; that message usually is “Back off” or “stop pushing.” GABA advises the body when it’s a great opportunity to shut down, and since a huge number of neurons in the cerebrum react to GABA, the impacts include lessening anxiety, quieting the sensory system, assisting with rest, unwinding the muscles.
The interesting thing about CBD and sleep is that in small to medium doses, CBD is mildly alerting – stimulating the same receptors as caffeine. However, several patients with insomnia report that consuming CBD oil (in tincture or extract form) a few hours before bed leads to a great night’s sleep. So why do the anecdotal results contradict the reported medical studies?
Human trials are few and far between. The lone 2016 CBD and sleep-related study was restricted to a single adolescent suffering from PTSD and resulting insomnia. Although, the conclusions indicate the poor girl was sleeping better and on the road to recovery with a low sublingual spray dose of CBD. We must disclose that GW Pharmaceuticals founded the Cannabinoid Research Institute that carried out the research.
“This is a really powerful compound,” says Mikhail Kogan, the medical director of the George Washington University Center for Integrative Medicine. “I’ve seen it work for a lot of my patients.” He prescribes high-CBD strains of cannabis regularly for such illnesses as epilepsy, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, autoimmune disorders, autism and insomnia.
CBD is a safe, long-term aid which is why it has gained such momentum and why our customers are turning to it for relief. CBD, scientifically known as cannabidiol, is a non-psychoactive, organic compound found in the hemp plant. When it interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, CBD provides powerful health benefits without the side effects of conventional drugs.
Cannabidiol (300 mg), 99.9% purity without THC (kindly supplied by STI-Pharm, Brentwood, United Kingdom) was dissolved in corn oil (Zuardi et al., 1993, 2017; Crippa et al., 2004). The same amount of corn oil was used as placebo. The drug and placebo were packed in identical gelatin capsules. The 300 mg dose was chosen based on previous studies that detected the acute anxiolytic effect of this dose (Zuardi et al., 1993, 2017) and the studies by Chagas et al. (2014b) and Chagas et al. (2014c), in which this dose caused a reduction in the frequency of REM sleep behavioral events and improving quality of life (including sleep) in patients with Parkinson’s disease, respectively. The time of drug delivery was based on previous studies that showed that the peak plasma concentration of an oral dose of CBD normally occurs 1–2 h after ingestion (Agurell et al., 1981; Crippa et al., 2004, 2010; Borgwardt et al., 2008; Fusar-Poli et al., 2009; Zuardi et al., 2017).
In case you are unfamiliar, ipsapirone is classified as a 5-HT1A partial agonist that is understood to exert antidepressant and anxiolytic effects. Although it isn’t approved by the FDA to treat any conditions, it is commonly used as a research chemical. Additionally, the drug Valium is understood to be a potent benzodiazepine that acts as a positive allosteric modulator at GABAA receptors; it is FDA approved for acute anxiety.
For patients suffering from seizures, the legalization of cannabis would be a decisive turning point. Epilepsy makes you desperate. Seizures are painful, sometimes debilitating. And then there are the aftershocks: broken teeth, bruises and cuts, lost time, humiliation. People with epilepsy are often depressed, and have more than double the suicide rate of the population at large. Epilepsy is also associated with a syndrome known as Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy, wherein a previously healthy person with epilepsy simply dies without warning or explanation. Grinding on without relief isn’t an option, but getting help is enormously expensive. Research conducted by Charles Begley, a professor of public health at the University of Texas, found that epilepsy treatment costs between $8,500 and $11,000 per year. Real Scientific Hemp Oil is no less expensive than its pharmaceutical counterparts, with no assistance from insurance. A single three-gram vial costs $149, while a six-pack of 10-gram tubes can cost $1,999 (or $1,599 on sale). HempMedsPx suggests a “serving size” of 0.5 ml twice daily. Only when these drugs are recognized as such will insurance pick up the tab.
Mood enhancement: While CBD isn’t known for provoking a euphoric high, there’s some evidence to suggest that it may enhance mood. Research in animal models notes that CBD yields a combination of anxiolytic and antidepressant effects. That said, this research cannot be generalize to humans. If you’re severely depressed, don’t expect CBD to treat your depression. However, the fact that the drug targets the 5-HT1A receptor and CB1/CB2 receptors suggests that it could improve mood in certain individuals.
A geneticist, Kane studies cannabis from a unique perspective—he probes its DNA. He’s an affable, outdoorsy guy with a bright face and eyes that wander and dart inquisitively when he talks. He has studied chocolate and for many years the sunflower, eventually mapping its genome, a sequence of more than three and a half billion nucleotides. Now he’s moved on to marijuana. Though its sequence is much shorter, roughly 800 million nucleotides, he considers it a far more intriguing plant.
“Unfortunately, American scientists continue to have a hard time securing research funding because marijuana remains a Schedule 1 substance in the U.S. ― a controversial view that places it on a par with heroin, LSD and ecstasy,” Pearson said. Schedule 1 drugs are identified as having “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse,” according to the Drug Enforcement Administration. This designation can make research challenging, Pearson added.
Bonn-Miller also explained that it's imperative to exhaust the traditional and established front-line treatments that are available before seeking out these products. "CBD is not really a first-line treatment for anything," he said. "You don’t want situations where somebody says, 'I have cancer I'm going to forgo chemotherapy because I read something about CBD or THC helping with cancer.'" That's not a good idea, Bonn-Miller said. "Not only is the science not there, but you may end up worse off."
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