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What is CBD? A Complete Guide for Beginners

What is CBD? A Complete Guide for Beginners

CBD is the most popular cannabinoid right now, and it’s everywhere. It has a fervent following, and new promising products seem to appear on a daily basis. This popularity is most likely because many CBD-containing products claim various attractive benefits, ranging from treating insomnia and working as an anti-inflammatory to perhaps reducing PTSD and seizures.

We all have issues, and some of them keep us awake at night. With all of the buzz surrounding CBD, you might be wondering if it might help you with whatever ails you. This CBD beginner’s guide will help you learn more about cannabidiol.

What is CBD?

(CBD), or cannabidiol comes from the cannabis plant (Cannabis Sativa Plant). The plant contains over 100 different cannabinoids; however, there are usually two popular cannabinoids that you will hear about in today’s society. THC is short for tetrahydrocannabinol and CBD, which is short for cannabidiol.


THC is the cannabinoid that will get you high because it makes your brain release dopamine, which is a neurotransmitter involved in memory, pleasure, and motivation. It’s also known to cause numerous side effects such as rapid heart rate, red eyes, impaired thinking, dry mouth/nose/throat irritation etc.

How Does CBD Work?

All cannabinoids interact with cannabinoid receptors, which are part of the endocannabinoid system, to create effects in the body. The human body creates two types of receptors: (CB1 and CB2):

  • CB1 receptors can be found throughout the human body, but particularly in the brain. They coordinated movement, memories, emotion, mood, pain, thinking, appetite, and other functions.
  • CB2 receptors are more frequent in the immune system. They impact inflammation and pain.

THC binds to CB1 receptors, but CBD stimulates receptors, causing the body to produce its own cannabinoids (endocannabinoids).

How to Take CBD?

CBD is a naturally occurring chemical compound found in cannabis. It’s not psychoactive like it’s a close relation to THC, so it doesn’t get you high. But CBD does have a lot of potential for medical use and research into the effects. That makes it very attractive to people who want to avoid getting high or having any negative side effects from CBD. So, what’s the best way to take CBD? Let’s dive into it and find out.

CBD Oil: The Most Convenient Way

One of the easiest ways to use CBD is by taking CBD oil or tincture orally or sublingually (under your tongue). It doesn’t get much more convenient than that. All you have to do is take a dropper full or two of your desired CBD products and place it under your tongue for about 30 seconds. This allows it to get absorbed directly into your bloodstream.

CBD Gummies

If you’re looking for the easiest option, CBD gummies are definitely one of them. CBD oil is pretty easy too, but edibles sometimes come with a little added sugar and fat (at least the gummies do). The other thing about that you’ll need to follow specific dosage guidelines. If you don’t, you might not feel any effect at all, or it could be way too much.

CBD Topicals

Another easy way to use CBD is by applying a topical cream or ointment. This usually gets absorbed through your skin, so it’s a great option for your shoulders, knees, joints and other parts of the body that hurt. CBD topicals are a good choice if you want localized pain relief. It doesn’t get much easier than this either because it’s just about applying the cream or ointment onto the area where you have pain. Repeat as necessary.

CBD Capsules

The most convenient way to take CBD is by taking it in capsule form. This is especially true if you’re looking for a slightly higher dose of CBD. Capsules are easy to take, and since they’re made out of gelatin, they can be taken with or without food (which may affect the absorption rate).

CBD Drinks

One of the more interesting ways to take CBD is by infusing it into a drink. The actual CBD-infused drink is not too difficult to make. It just involves mixing your desired CBD strain with your favorite tea or juice smoothie, but the effects are quite interesting. Depending on how much CBD you mix in, your drink might be a very strong CBD beverage or not have any effect at all. The same goes for CBD oil drinks. If you follow the dosage instructions on the bottle, they should work fine. But if you accidentally take too much and start to feel stoned, it’s probably because of over-consumption.

CBD Edibles

If you’re looking for a fun way to take CBD, edibles are definitely the way to go! They provide excellent relief that is slowly distributed over time. The taste is pretty good, too, if you get something that has been flavored with CBD oil or a CBD-infused sauce. Just to be on the safe side, remember that a little goes a long way when it comes to edibles.

Therapeutic Benefits of Taking CBD

There is a hand touching the CBD leaf

CBD can produce various physical and mental effects that range from mildly-sedative to potentially psychoactive. It’s also used in tandem with THC in some medical cannabis strains. This is why it’s important to understand all there is to know before you begin experimenting with CBD oil.

Here are some of the therapeutic health benefits you can experience by taking cannabidiol regularly:

  • Relieve Chronic pain
  • Ease Arthritis or joint pain
  • Cope with Anxiety and depression
  • Sleep Improvement
  • Relieve Migraine
  • Alleviate Cluster and other headaches
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Treat Nausea
  • Treat Cancer
  • Help with Allergies or asthma
  • Epilepsy and other seizure disorders
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Lung conditions
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Alzheimer’s disease

Side Effects of Taking CBD

The side effects that you may experience when taking pure CBD include:

  • Low Blood Pressure: While CBD doesn’t cause a high, it does lower blood pressure which is why it reduces stress and paranoia.
  • Dry Mouth: While this may sound delightful, dry mouth can be a symptom of dehydration which is dangerous when taken in extreme conditions such as hot weather or intense exercise. It’s best to drink plenty of water while taking CBD.
  • Drowsiness: While this may sound similar to nap time in Mrs. Doubtfire, it can get dangerous when you’re driving or operating heavy machinery, which can lead to an accident. Make sure you won’t be followed by the paparazzi when taking CBD oil, so you won’t have to worry about any mishaps.
  • Diarrhea: Another side effect that you may experience when taking CBD oil alone is diarrhea which can cause dehydration. Make sure to drink plenty of water when taking CBD oil so you won’t have to worry about this side effect.
  • Reduced Appetite: Taking CBD oil by itself can reduce your appetite, which may lead to weight loss. This side effect of CBD is a double-edged sword because while it’s great for losing weight, it’s not healthy for your body if you don’t get enough nutrients from food.
  • Fatigue: Like the other effects listed, CBD oil has a mild effect on your body and brain, leading to tiredness and fatigue. However, the safe dosage is higher than when taking THC by itself, but it’s still not as strong as you think.
  • Slurred Speech: This is another potential danger when taking CBD oil because it can affect your coordination, interfere with being able to hold any objects or even speak clearly.
  • Decrease in Blood Sugar Levels: Another dangerous side effect of taking pure CBD by itself is that it may cause low blood sugar levels. Make sure you have some snacks on hand when taking CBD oil so that your blood sugar levels stay normal.
  • Changes in Hormone Levels: When taken alone, CBD can affect your estrogen and testosterone levels, which are linked to mental health conditions such as anxiety. If you’re currently being treated for a psychiatric condition, you should avoid taking pure CBD oil until you’ve consulted your practitioner.

Is CBD Legal?

CBD attained a federal legal status in the United States with the passing and legalization of the 2018 Farm Bill. But, hemp and hemp-derived substances must have a level of less than 0.3 percent. However, as a customer, you should do your extensive study. This is because CBD is still illegal in some states.


CBD is a compound found in cannabis that has many therapeutic benefits. It can be used to treat serious ailments like anxiety, PTSD, arthritis and more. There are no adverse side effects of using CBD. But it does not have FDA approval for medical purposes, so you should consult your practitioner before trying this treatment option. CBD is legal in all 50 states federally. However, you should check your state’s regulations before making any purchases, as each state has its own set of regulations.

Charles A. Lipman

Charles A Lipman graduated from Nairobi University in Kenya with a Bachelor’s Degree in Health and Biological sciences. His focus appears to be writing, and he goes on to publish his first Book on fitness in 2012. Charles Lipman later gets employment from a fitness and wellness company but does stay for long. He quits his job and begins writing and educating people about lifestyle, diet, fitness, and weight loss. He now boasts for his thousands of followers and subscribers who enjoy hits timely and educative content. Charles Lipman is an inspiration to all generations in writing and educating people about weight loss and diet plans that will lead to health and fitness goals.

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