Superfoods are any kind of food that’s jam-packed with nutritional value and potentially amazing benefits to your body. Is CBD a superfood? We’re here to answer that.
What Exactly is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is a natural substance derived from the hemp plant. An increasing number of people are turning to CBD as a way to support the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Since the ECS works with just about every part of the body, it’s no surprise that people are seeing a wide variety of benefits after taking CBD. Because of this, more people are wondering: is CBD a superfood?
The nervous system in your body contains special receptors that are specifically activated by compounds called cannabinoids. Marijuana happens to contain a large number of different cannabinoids that target those receptors and bring different effects to the body, and CBD and THC are the most common among them.
THC is the compound that’s responsible for giving you that psychoactive stoned feeling. CBD, on the other hand, has no psychoactive effects. You can safely drive, work, or do anything else after taking it without fear of impairment.
The specific receptors in your body that CBD targets include serotonin receptors, which control anxiety, calmness, and mood; vanilloid receptors, which moderate pain; and adenosine receptors, which manage your quality of sleep. CBD may also influence other receptors in your body’s endocannabinoid system. This plays a role in your memory, levels of energy, stress, tolerance for pain, appetite, and several others.
CBD as an Antioxidant
Oxidative stress is believed to be a supporting factor in numerous ailments, including neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, ALS, multiple sclerosis and more. Oxidative stress is also believed to speed up the aging process by altering the structure of our cells – this is a common reason why you would find several ‘antioxidant’ creams in the beauty aisle.
Exposure to pollutants, UV rays, smoking and certain medications can lead to the excessive production of free radicals in the body, which are highly reactive molecules that can damage cells and impair their functioning. Dietary antioxidants usually aren’t enough to counter the effects of free radicals. CBD has incredible antioxidant properties which are even recognized by a patent by the US National Institute of Health.
CBDs antioxidant properties have earned it the title of being a ‘neuroprotectant’, which basically means that CBD can minimize neural damage caused by oxidative stress and even support the recovery of damaged neurons.
CBD Fights Inflammation
The process of inflammation is a totally normal cellular function that protects the human body from infections and parasites. Inflammation occurs when the body isolates an area and floods it with white blood cells and toxic chemicals that can destroy the intruder. It is only when this process is stimulated too often that it becomes chronic, and the toxic chemicals can start to damage healthy cells and tissue.
CBD has been proven to be a stronger anti-inflammatory agent than several over-the-counter medications.
CBD vs Hemp Oil
You’ve probably seen CBD oil and Hemp oil on the market. It’s quite confusing because some CBD brands market themselves as “hemp oil” – even though they aren’t standard cooking hemp oil. However, hemp oil and CBD oil are not the same thing. Here’s how to know the difference.
Hemp Oil is made from pressing the seeds (sometimes called hemp hearts or hemp nuts).
CBD Oil is squeezed from the flowers, leaves and/or stalks. Basically, from the hemp plant.
Hemp Oil is used for cooking and will likely come in a bottle similar to that of other cooking oils. Also, it’s likely to be in a food aisle.
CBD Oil is used as a supplement. Although it can be added to foods or drinks, that’s just a way to consume it rather than a necessary ingredient for a recipe. You will find CBD oil online or in a supplement aisle. CBD oil is sold as CBD tinctures (drops), capsules, or edibles. The packaging will not resemble cooking oil.
Hemp Oil will have a nutrition facts label.
CBD Oil will have a supplements fact label.
Other Common Superfoods
These are some of the most common superfoods:
- Nuts, particularly walnuts
- Seeds, especially flaxseeds and chia seeds
Are there benefits of taking CBD oil?
Due to how readily and specifically some of our bodies’ most important receptors receive CBD, an increasing amount of research is being done to determine just how beneficial it can be.
According to the director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Nora Volkow, “Rigorous clinical studies are still needed to evaluate the clinical potential of CBD for specific conditions. However, pre-clinical research (including both cell culture and animal models) has shown CBD to have a range of effects that may be therapeutically useful.”
In other words, what we know about CBD so far seems to be incredibly promising.
But is CBD a “food”?
As we mentioned, CBD is a compound in hemp oil. While you may take it in a supplement food, it still is, in fact, an oil. Some people like to sprinkle CBD tincture on salads or in their morning smoothie, so yes, we think it’s a food!
Now: Is CBD a Superfood?
Research about the power of CBD is still in a nascent stage. There is definitely a lot more work to be done. However, every day we seem to learn more about CBD, and so far, everything looks extremely promising. Is CBD a superfood? While the verdict’s not out yet, our vote is for yes.
Please note: Due to CBD being non-psychoactive, it’s entirely legal in all 50 states. However, you should take care that wherever you purchase it from has high-quality standards. Your CBD of choice should be transparent about their sourcing practices.