Despite the stringent regulations still in place, marijuana is gaining acceptance in various medical fields and the general public. As a result, the market is in a perfect position to grow over the years.
New Frontier Data, a D.C.-based cannabis market research firm, estimated the U.S. legal marijuana industry in 2019 at just shy of USD$14 billion. To put that into perspective, Canada-based research firm, Precedence Research, pegged the global market at USD$ 17.5 billion in the same year. Doing the math, the U.S. accounts for over a quarter of the overall demand for legal marijuana.
With the slow but steady changes in legislation, Precedence estimates that the global market value will almost quadruple by 2027. As of this writing, only six states have yet to pass cannabis-friendly laws. Still, most states that haven’t legalized marijuana have allowed medicinal use, namely cannabidiol (CBD) oil.
It’s easy to see why states would permit this much. With more studies validating its health benefits, the science behind CBD oil is becoming impossible to deny. This alone has set the stage for more people to enjoy CBD subscription benefits, mainly long-time CBD users and those with a packed schedule most of the week.
But why CBD oil? What makes this substance such a hit with people from all walks of life? Here’s a look into several reasons to use CBD oil.
#1. Alternative to Opioids
Before COVID, the U.S. has been struggling with another health crisis: opioid addiction. Despite the federal government’s action, deaths from opioid overdose have almost quintupled since being introduced in the late 1990s as affordable painkillers. The crisis was a combination of false claims of not being addictive, over prescription, and widespread misuse.
Doctors have since been more responsible in prescribing opioids, but people are still searching for less dangerous medication. Recent studies into CBD have shown promise as an opioid alternative, even as a possible treatment for opioid addiction.
In 2019, researchers from Mount Sinai Hospital in New York tested a CBD solution on 42 people with a history of heroin abuse (they haven’t used CBD before). Their findings revealed that heroin craving was lower among the group that took CBD than the placebo group.
Meanwhile, researchers at John Hopkins University are carrying out a randomized trial involving 50 heroin-dependent patients treated with Epidiolex. While a CBD-based drug and the only FDA-approved drug of its kind, Epidiolex is a treatment for severe seizures. They expect the study to be completed in June this year.
#2. Less Likely to Get ‘High’
Marijuana has two compounds that have been the focus of medical studies: CBD and THC. These substances react with your body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) in different ways. In the case of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), it binds to receptors in your ECS and encourages flooding the body with feel-good chemicals. The resulting euphoria is what many people call getting ‘high.’
However, CBD doesn’t produce this effect because it’s awful at activating your ECS receptors. It still has the same psychoactive effect as THC but not as strong; it’s almost impossible to get ‘high.’ People can consume anything laced with CBD in copious amounts and barely experience euphoria.
For the record, feeling happy isn’t a bad thing. But when that happiness starts affecting your daily decisions, which THC can do, it can be dangerous. Imagine being on the wheel along the freeway, only to feel so happy that you decide to go over the speed limit. A speeding fine that’s more costly than a vial of 1,000-mg CBD oil is anything but a pleasant experience.
People want to deal with their chronic pain while still being in control of their faculties. CBD can give them the best of both worlds.
#3. Managing Trauma
When you hear post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the first thing that may come to mind is the military—and you’d be right. Before it got its official term, it was known as ‘shell shock’ after the soldiers in the trenches of World War I suffering from its effects following an artillery barrage. In World War II, it became known as ‘combat fatigue’ to cover other frontline scenarios.
But war isn’t the only thing that can give you PTSD; horrific accidents, domestic abuse, and long-term confinement in intensive care are among other causes. The American Psychiatric Association estimates that one in eleven Americans will check out with the disorder at one point in their lives.
People with PTSD struggle with finding ways to cope with it, with most vouching for CBD oil as a remedy. Last year, psychologists at Washington State University studied 400 cannabis users via a cannabis analytics app. The study revealed that cannabis managed to mitigate flashback episodes and anxiety attacks associated with the disorder by around 60%, albeit temporarily.
But unlike other studies on CBD, the jury for its effects on mental well-being is still out there. For the most part, the human psyche remains shrouded in mystery. Studies in this field have toexercise more diligence to confirm CBD’s efficacy.
#4. An Ideal Food Additive
Many users take CBD oil directly as they can get the most out of its effects. Take the correct dose, let it sit under your tongue for half a minute, and distribute it all over your mouth. But its bitter or earthy taste may not be everyone’s cup of tea. Fortunately, that’s not the only way of consuming the product.
Others prefer dropping the oil into their favorite food and drink. You can get most, if not all, of the benefits with the food or drink masking its bitterness. This method may require a bit more oil than in a tincture, but it’s best to start small to avoid over dosage. More importantly, only add CBD oil after cooking or heating since direct heat will degrade its efficacy.
The oil is also applicable in non-food items like lotions and bath bombs. This is a great way to get the CBD to any aching part of your body and take effect quickly.
While some still question the effectiveness of CBD, the writing is basically on the wall. The market will grow as more people learn the various things this wonder compound can do for their plethora of health conditions. Nevertheless, never forget that no drug is a cure-all and use CBD responsibly.