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As far as products on the market go, CBD is still fairly new. Hemp-derived CBD products became legal under certain regulations found in the 2018 Farm Bill. Since then, certain communities have talked about CBD’s potential ability to boost one’s immune system. You may have even seen “immune health” thrown around on certain labels for the CBD market.
Today, we look at how CBD affects the immune system and what research has shown us so far. We want to answer whether CBD might benefit someone looking to promote general wellness or not.
Our bodies have an entire system dedicated to fighting off viruses, bacteria, and other infectious diseases. In fact, without the immune system, our bodies may be able to only last minutes before falling prey to the countless microscopic body invaders on this planet.
The immune system is a complex network of cells and tissue that is on constant alert for infection or illness. One of our immune system’s key players is our white blood cells, which are biologically designed to detect unknown visitors in the body and destroy them.
Any pathogen, virus, or other foreign substance the immune system detects is considered an antigen. Leukocytes, or white blood cells, are the warriors sent to fight these antigens.
Let’s divide our white blood cells into two different sections. There are phagocytes, which seek to neutralize and destroy anything the body is unfamiliar with. Then, there are the B and T cells, known as lymphocytes. These are the white blood cells that remember previous attackers and destroy them.
Another key role for our immune system is to kill off any malfunctioning cells. This base function is vital to prevent tumors, cancerous cells, and even normally harmless infections to run rampant in the body. The killing of cells is necessary for maintaining true homeostasis in the body.
The immune system tends to reach a peak point past our midlife where it then starts to decline. Fortunately, there are some natural ways to help improve your immune system daily. Working as both a way to promote a better immune system and provide preventative measures when the immune system does start to decline, consistency with healthy habits seems to be the key to living a longer, fuller life.
Eating lots of fruits and vegetables, making sure you’re getting enough vitamins and nutrients for what your body needs, exercise, and quality sleep are habits some like to instill to improve their health. Taking CBD every day for consistent, immune system boosting properties is another habit.
The reason that CBD can potentially affect the immune system is the reason it could affect just about any system within the human body. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is what’s connecting everything. Compounds found in cannabis are known to provide potential effects in humans because of the cannabinoid receptors our bodies naturally possess. We produce our endocannabinoids, but molecularly, phytocannabinoids from cannabis are almost identical.
The endocannabinoids in our bodies are naturally produced on demand. They work to modulate cell activity and travel backward across chemical synapses to generate specific responses. The endocannabinoid system is, along with the immune system, another base function the body uses to achieve biological homeostasis. This is also why the ECS is known as a homeostatic regulator – as it helps the body reach balance easier.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a hot contender for most popular cannabinoids found within the cannabis plant. As a bonus for many, it doesn’t get you high, so it has a leg up on THC. While THC may have medicinal properties, CBD shares some of its own – like potentially interacting with the endocannabinoid system. While it may not interact in the same way as THC does, it may be able to trigger specific positive responses that make it a worthy asset for improving the immune system.
Its anti-inflammatory properties maybe some of CBD’s best known. This is beneficial to those with arthritis, as well as those with autoimmune diseases. However, it can be so effective with lowering inflammation that it takes the body’s natural defense away against fighting off a virus.
CBD may potentially offer immune system control when utilized properly. The body already uses endocannabinoids to a degree to help regulate inflammation. CBD may give our ECS the boost it needs to get complete control of it and improve the immune system.
As a disclaimer, we don’t have all the answers yet. We see what CBD does for the wide community around us, for ourselves, for our families, and still attempt to look at all research on the matter in as unbiased of a manner as possible. We still need more rigorous clinical trials with wider ranges of participants. But we look at the research we do possess currently, and see the potential there is to offer.
Pre-clinical research is defined as trials on animal models, cell cultures, or both. These clinical trials have indicated there is a likely chance CBD may be therapeutically useful in a range of ways. It may possess anti-anxiety, anti-psychotic, anti-tumor, analgesic, neuro-protective, antioxidant, anti-seizure, in addition to the anti-inflammatory properties already mentioned.
In short, there are a variety of ways CBD can influence the immune system. Cannabidiol has the potential to be both an immunomodulator and an immunosuppressant. It may help better regulate inflammation throughout the body, aiding in the body’s ability to fight off infection.
Even for those in good health, this is why many are making the transition to taking CBD every day. Consistency is key for feeling the most effective results when it comes to any wellness supplement, and CBD is no different.
There are also other benefits to taking CBD. As 1 in 7 adults across the US takes or has taken CBD, we look at the reasons they’re reporting for taking it. 40% take CBD for some sort of pain relief, 11% take it to help with sleep, and another 20% take it to help with symptoms from anxiety. Arthritis, headaches and migraines, stress, and more also made the list.
For a healthy individual, you might be wondering if there’s anything more you can do to keep your immune system in the tip-top shape it needs to be in. Especially when the world is faced with illnesses that incite mass panic, it never hurts to feel prepared. Taking CBD every day may be the solution you’ve been looking for to feeling better, sleeping longer, or just having better overall health.
While we’re still looking for more answers on the subject of CBD, what we know already is promising for our immune system health. The results we’ve seen from our community, from our friends and family, and even from our personal experiences are worth trying CBD for a daily routine.
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