Anxiety is a natural and often healthy emotion which can become a life-threatening medical condition when it escalates to disproportionate levels. Medical anxiety is a disorder affecting mental health and can lead to excessive worry, fear, apprehension, and nervousness. About 18% (40 million) of adults in the United States (18 years and above) are battling with anxiety-related disorders.
Although the causes of anxiety are quite complicated, data gathered from clinical and laboratory research has shown that it has a strong link with environmental stressors like work, family issues and relationship challenges, genetic disorder medical conditions, brain chemistry and withdrawal from addictive substances which can elicit negative effects on the body. The common treatment for anxiety have relied on the use of prescription medications like antidepressants, lifestyle changes and the use of natural supplements like CBD. While using medications can bring about a lot of side effects, CBD can play important roles in not just suppressing the cause of the anxiety (like most antidepressants do) but treating it accordingly.
Cannabidiol is a phytocannabinoid with great potential, acting as an antioxidant, antidepressant, anti-tumor, anti-cancer and anti-microbial agent which can all play key roles in reducing the rate of anxiety by taking care of the root cause. It has been widely documented to act as a treatment for a wide range of disease conditions including migraines, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), chronic pain and osteoarthritis.
HOW DOES CBD WORK FOR ANXIETY?
CBD can interact with the CB1 and CB2 receptors of the endocannabinoid system (ECS) to elicit the following activities which may be important to anxiety patients.
- Boosting Brain Activity
Alteration of brain chemistry can lead to a wide range of medical disorders including anxiety. The successful interaction between CBD and the ECS receptors can trigger the regeneration of neurons and the production of immune cells which can assist people suffering from anxiety-related disorders.
2. Triggering Hormonal Balance
CBD can trigger hormonal and homeostatic balance in the body. This can help keep the levels of anxiety low.
3. Fighting Against Diseases
CBD can serve as a good antimicrobial agent limit the growth of pathogenic bacteria thereby limiting the spread of inflammation and further infections in the body. CBD can also interact with the brain to improve the production of immune cells and improve the body’s defense mechanism.
4. Antioxidant Activity
Coming in contact with lots of toxins and pollutants can be life-threatening. This may lead to the accumulation of free radicals in the body which can cause adverse effects on the brain including anxiety. CBD can play active roles in neutralizing the harmful effects of these free radicals and keep the body as active as possible.
5. Improves Relaxation
CBD can boost the release of feel-good hormones which keeps the body relaxed, improves sleep and rate of metabolic activities.
Ron Goedeke MD, BSc Hons MBChB, FNZCAM
Dr. Ron Goedeke, specialises in alternative and functional medicine and sees huge medical potential in cannabis based extracts such as CBD. With over 20 years of experience in the anti-aging field, Dr Ron Goedeke is recognized as one of New Zealand’s leaders in this new and growing field of medicine.