In January 2018, the World Anti-Doping Agency removed cannabidiol (CBD) from its banned substance list. Some athletes have begun using it as a pain reliever instead of medications like Ibuprofen.
Because of its ability to restore balance to the inner body, CBD is gaining more recognition in many arenas, and sports is no exception. Athletes are benefiting immensely from the health effects of CBD. All over the world, more athletes are turning to it for their performance needs, both pre- and post-performance.
That physical activity can have destructive impacts on the body is not news. Every part of the body is affected by physical activity–from the bones that enhance movement to the internal systems that keep the body functioning at an optimal level. For most people, the aim of physical activity is to improve strength, endurance, and overall energy. CBD has proven over time that it can aid in this capacity.
What Is CBD and How Does it Work?
The hemp plant contains 113 known cannabinoids. One of the most abundant of these is cannabidiol (CBD). This cannabinoid and others work within the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), alongside other naturally occurring cannabinoids.
The ECS has a number of receptors spread all over the body. They can be activated by either the cannabinoids that occur naturally within the body, or by phytocannabinoids (plant-based cannabinoids), such as CBD, THC, CBG, CBN, CBC and THCV.
CBD interacts with the two primary ECS receptors (CB1 and CB2). CB1 receptors occur mainly in the brain and the nervous system, while CB2 receptors occur within the immune system.
Cannabinoids work with the ECS to enhance its efficiency, restoring the body’s balance, or homeostasis.
What Role Does CBD Play in Athletic Performance?
CBD has endless therapeutic and medical applications. It suffices to say that CBD can help boost athletic performance. This is done in the following five ways:
It minimizes the stress on the adrenal system: The adrenal system works extra hard to compensate for the body whenever it is involved in strenuous physical activity. It also works hard in non-strenuous physical activity. The adrenal system regulates the way the body responds to stressors such as physical activities. Engaging the adrenal system stimulates the release of a hormone, cortisol, into general circulation.
Research carried out by the Neuropsychiatry and Medical Psychology Department at the Sao Paulo University in Brazil found out that CBD helps arrest the secretion of cortisol, thereby reducing its quantity in the blood. With this, the stress placed on the body during exercise is lessened.
It aids with weight loss: Most individuals engage in physical activities and exercises for the purpose of weight loss. Studies have shown that CBD helps regulate appetite in individuals struggling with binge eating.
A research conducted by the Pharmacy School at the University of Reading in the UK investigated the effects of cannabinoids on appetite. Animal models were used for the study. It was discovered that CBD consumption reduced food intake when compared to other cannabinoids.
Restful sleep is promoted: One of the major therapeutic applications of CBD is seen in individuals with insomnia. Such individuals have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. A study published in the peer-reviewed journal Current Psychiatry Reports showed that insomnia and sleep disorders can be resolved with CBD.
Insulin sensitivity is improved: There are rising cases of insulin insensitivity and this may be the reason why some people are unable to shed some extra pounds. Studies conducted by the College of Medicine, University of Nebraska, showed that intake CBD can help improve insulin sensitivity. With a rise in insulin sensitivity, more glucose will be stored in the liver and muscle cells rather than in adipocytes (fat cells). When insulin sensitivity is decreased, more glucose will be stored as fat, a condition which does not favor athletes.
Anti-inflammatory properties: Inflammation impacts negatively on one’s ability to engage in physical activities. In many cases, this inflammation may be due to strenuous exercise such as the lifting of heavy weights, and high-impact cardio. CBD has significant anti-inflammatory properties (as defined by the Laboratory for Integrative Neuroscience, NIH). With this, it can suppress the inflammation of inflammatory responses by antagonizing certain receptors.
CBD offers a myriad of therapeutic and preventative health benefits, including boosting athletic performance. That the World Anti-Doping Agency would remove CBD from its banned substances list is evidence that more and more people and authorities are recognizing the benefits of cannabinoids.
The Nature’s Breakthrough educational resource is just one of the ways The Hemp Haus practices its sincere commitment to and passion for educating people about CBD and helping them find the right, high-quality product based on their needs.
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