Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the 113 phytocannabinoids in cannabis, which makes up about 40% of the plant’s extracts. CBD also happens to be the compound that accounts for most of the therapeutic properties of cannabis.
According to numerous studies conducted since cannabidiol was isolated in the 1940s, the substance might treat various medical conditions. Medical researchers mostly recommend CBD for diseases that manifest in pain, anxiety, motor and coordination problems, inflammation, insomnia, and cognitive dysfunctions. The best CBD gummies are the ones who address all these issues.
More recently, CBD-based supplements have become popular among fitness buffs worldwide who claim that the substance might help optimize their workouts.
But can CBD products enhance your fitness results? Read on for more insights on that.
- CBD and Pain
Pain is the primary medical condition that doctors often prescribe cannabidiol for. It also happens to be the main side effect of workouts. Whether you’re working the treadmill or lifting dumbbells, you’re bound to experience some form of pain. Workout-induced pain gets worse when you don’t allow your muscles ample time to recover.
While there are numerous pain-relieving fitness supplements out there, most of these products don’t really deliver on their claims. Plus, they could leave you with nasty side effects, especially if they’re formulated with artificial ingredients. And that’s where cannabidiol comes in.
CBD relieves pain by affecting the performance of certain pain-signaling receptors in your endocannabinoid system.
According to this 2018 review, cannabidiol might help to treat the pain associated with fibromyalgia, cancer, multiple sclerosis, and arthritis. Since these are chronic diseases, it only means that CBD would be even more effective against exercise-triggered pain, which is usually acute but short-lasting.
2. CBD and Anxiety
Workouts activate the release of the stress hormone cortisol. It’s cortisol that boosts your mental alertness by elevating your heart rate and blood pressure, ensuring that every organ within your body receives an adequate supply of oxygen and nutrients for the tough task ahead.
However, for people with anxiety disorders, a subtle rise in cortisol levels is all it takes to throw them off balance. One of the side effects of high cortisol levels is uncontrollable sweating, which might trigger dehydration. Abnormally high cortisol levels might also hamper your focus and concentration, leading to totally avoidable accidents.
The good news, however, is that you can purchase CBD products from reliable vendors and use the products to mediate the symptoms of anxiety disorders. CBD relieves anxiety by boosting the secretion of ‘happiness’ hormones like serotonin and dopamine.
Studies conducted on the anxiolytic properties of cannabidiol suggest that CBD might help with all anxiety disorders, including social anxiety disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.
3. CBD and Inflammation
Inflammation is the body’s natural response to the presence of bacteria and viruses. Inflammation could also result from heat, and in the case of exercise, it can be caused by trauma or damage to body tissues and muscles.
The damaged tissues and cells release chemicals, such as histamine, prostaglandins, and bradykinins, which trigger fluid leakage from blood vessels and into the tissues, resulting in swelling.
CBD alleviates inflammation by inhibiting the functions of the body’s inflammatory messenger activity. In essence, it reduces the efficiency of the receptors responsible for relaying inflammatory signals.
CBD is also a vasodilator. Therefore, it dilates blood vessels, facilitating the flushing out of toxins from the sites of inflammation.
4. CBD and Delayed Onset of Muscle Soreness
Delayed Onset of Muscle Soreness, commonly abbreviated as DOMS, refers to the muscle pain and soreness that occurs within 24 to 72 hours of engaging in strenuous workouts.
While DOMS is more common in people with erratic workout schedules, it can affect anyone and cause significant workout downtimes. Studies suggest that cannabidiol might delay or shorten DOMS, especially if consumed right after engaging in intense workouts.
CBD’s effects on DOMS emanate from its powerful analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. The substance relieves muscle pain while also preventing inflammation, the combination of which might trigger or aggravate DOMS.
- CBD and Sleep
Sleep is crucial to the success of any workout routine. As you may already know, it’s during sleep that your body heals itself in readiness for the day ahead.
But as significant as sleep is, it’s sad to note that between 10 and 30% of the global population live with chronic insomnia. Thankfully, CBD can fight insomnia and other sleep disorders, thereby boosting your workouts.
Cannabidiol combats insomnia by treating some of the core symptoms of the condition, such as post-traumatic stress disorder and REM Sleep Behavior Disorder (RBD). Other studies also cite CBD for its ability to shorten sleep latency, thanks to its immense sedating properties.
Plus, the substance can eliminate Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep. REM is the stage during sleep when most dreams occur. Depending on the nature of those dreams, they could adversely affect your sleep quality. According to sleep therapists, eliminating REM translates to a dreamless sleep. And the less you dream, the more likely you are to have an adequate sleep.
Evidently, there are numerous ways CBD products can boost your fitness. Just remember to start with small doses, especially if you’re a new user. Watch your body’s response before possibly upping your dose to avoid experiencing the common side effects of cannabidiol, such as nausea and dry mouth.