August 8 is National CBD Day: here’s what you need to know about cannabidiol

As your home for all things cannabis, we naturally cover the topic of CBD on a regular basis. Here’s a look back at stories from the past few months

CBD-Day

Because absolutely everything needs its own day, August 8 is National CBD Day. Photo by Caitlin Riley/iStock/Getty Images Plus

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Because everything needs to have its own moment, August 8 is National CBD Day. No, really—it’s in the Bible!

Not the part about it being National CBD Day, mind you; the part about everything having its time. It’s in the Book of Ecclesiastes, to be specific, and Pete Seeger even wrote a song about it. This song, in fact:

You know what else is says in the Bible? It says that the love of money is the root of all evil. With that in mind, you may very well be dismayed to learn that the founder of National CBD Day is in fact a company that sells CBD-oil products.

Really, though, that shouldn’t keep you from marking the occasion in some way—even if all you do to mark the occasion is read this article.

What is CBD?

According to CannCentral’s very own Encycloweedia, CBD (or cannabidiol) is one of more than 60 naturally occurring compounds found in cannabis. Known as cannabinoids, these compounds have different effects on the human brain and body.

If you’re reading this—and I have good reason to believe that you are—you are no doubt familiar with tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. THC is a partial agonist, which interacts with cannabinoid receptors in the central nervous system, producing a psychoactive effect.

To put that in simpler terms, though, THC is what gets you high. It can produce a range of effects, from euphoria (which is good!) to anxiety (which is not so good).

The effects of CBD are less well known, however. We know it’s not psychoactive, but we also know that it hasn’t been studied as thoroughly as THC has. Anecdotal evidence and a growing body of clinical research both indicate that CBD offers a number of beneficial effects. CBD is purported to have anti-inflammatory and anticonvulsant properties, for example. Its medicinal and therapeutic benefits are touted by many—including the folks who dreamed up National CBD Day back in 2018.

Oh, and you can cook with it, too.

As your home for all things cannabis, we naturally cover the topic of CBD on a regular basis. With that in mind, here’s a look back at stories from the past few months.

Israeli research on CBD and COVID-19

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Back in April, we told you about two separate studies examining the effects of CBD on patients with COVID-19. Photo by chriss_ns / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Back in April, we told you about two separate studies examining the effects of CBD on patients with COVID-19. Both studies were taking place in Israel.

The first study was being carried out at Ichilov Hospital in Tel Aviv. Researchers were looking at whether or not CBD could slow down inflammation in severe cases of coronavirus infection and alleviate symptoms of the illness.

At the time, the Jewish Press reported that the study is being conducted “in collaboration with a number of the wards in the hospital and is expected to involve dozens of moderately ill patients.”

Around the same time, in a second Israeli study, Stero Biotechs, a company focused on cannabidiol-formulation research and development, had announced a small-scale clinical trial of a CBD-enhanced steroid treatment for coronavirus patients.

The 10-patient trial would take place at Rabin Medical Center Golda HaSharon Campus in Petah Tikva. Patients hospitalized with COVID-19 infection were to receive the treatment for a few weeks, with a subsequent follow-up period of the same length.

In a statement, Stero Biotechs founder and CEO David Bassa said: “We estimate that our CBD-based treatment can enhance the current treatment of those patients who are in life-threatening conditions. Hospitalized COVID-19 patients are mostly being treated with steroids and our study is planned to demonstrate the benefit of a combined solution with Steroid treatments. We are hopeful that this study will lead to faster benefit for the growing number of COVID-19 patients in Israel and around the world.”

CBD could be useful for hard-to-treat brain cancer

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Experiments showed that glioblastoma cells treated with CBD exhibited significant decreases in mitochondrial activity. Photo by gorodenkoff / iStock / Getty Images Plus

In April, CannCentral reported on a new study out of Colorado State University. It found that CBD could prove useful in therapy for glioblastoma, which is a fast-spreading and hard-to-treat form of brain cancer.

Researchers looked at glioblastoma cells from both canine and human brains. The cancer affects both species in strikingly similar ways. They tested a 100-percent CBD isolate and a CBD extract that also contained small amounts of other compounds.

What they found in treating cancerous cells with CBD was that targeting the mitochondria—the cells’ energy-producing structures—caused the mitochondria to dysfunction. Experiments showed that glioblastoma cells treated with CBD exhibited significant decreases in mitochondrial activity.

According to a news release from Experimental Biology, “the researchers plan to transition from cell cultures to animal models to test CBD’s effects on glioblastoma. If the animal studies go well, the work could progress to clinical trials on dogs that are being treated for naturally occurring glioblastoma at the Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital.”

Athletes turn to CBD for injury recovery

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Many athletes use CBD to treat injuries, reporting that it has anti-inflammatory properties. Photo by blyjak/iStock/Getty Images Plus

In June, Gail Johnson wrote about how many top-level athletes, including hockey players and snowboarders, are using CBD to help recover from injuries.

Johnson interviewed former NHL player Mike Cammalleri. He said he first tried medicinal cannabis after injuring his T-spine (upper back) with the Edmonton Oilers in 2018. To this day, he’s a believer in its benefits.

“I still use it daily,” Cammalleri told Johnson. “It has anti-inflammatory benefits and anti-anxiety benefits. It can benefit rest and recovery but it also helps with getting into the zone—being present, two things that all humans want. We want to be our best self, not just in sports. The less anxiety and less inflammation in your body, the healthier you can be overall.”

CBD for dogs

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Daily doses of CBD could help dogs suffering from osteoarthritis, says a study published in the Journal of Immunology. Photo by Rattankun Thongbun/iStock/Getty Images Plus

In July, CannCentral reported on a double-blind clinical study of large dogs diagnosed with canine osteoarthritis. Researchers discovered that dogs given high doses of CBD showed a significant improvement in their quality of life.

The researchers divided the dogs into four groups. One group received a placebo while the other three each received a different preparation of cannabidiol.

Researchers treated one group of dogs with 50 milligrams of pure CBD oil every day for the course of the four-week trial. Another group received the same oil at a lower dose—20 milligrams of pure CBD. The third group of dogs, meanwhile, received 20 milligrams of liposomal CBD, with the medicinal compound encased in tiny lipid bubbles for easier absorption. 

Based on veterinarians’ evaluations of the dogs’ mobility and pain before, during, and after the study—and reports from the pets’ owners—research determined that the dogs in the placebo group and the low-dose CBD group showed no signs of improvement. Dogs in the high-CBD group and the liposomal-CBD group did, however, see significant improvement in their conditions.

CBD mouthwashes are more effective

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Study shows that CBD-infused mouthwash is just as effective as prescription mouthwash and better than over-the-counter products. Photo by belchonock/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Also last month, we told you about Belgian researchers discovering that mouthwashes containing CBD and cannabigerol (CBG) are equal to prescription mouthwashes and better than over-the-counter brands.

The researchers treated plaque samples from 72 adults with five different types of mouthwash, including ones containing chlorhexidine. Chlorhexidine is the active ingredient in most prescription mouthwashes. Some research, however, suggests it can disrupt healthy bacteria.

The CBD and CBG mouthwashes, as it turned out, performed as well as ones containing chlorhexidine. They also outperformed store-bought mouthwashes. Moreover, they did so with the added benefits that they don’t discolour users’ teeth and don’t contain fluorides or alcohol.

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