Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the primary chemical compounds found in cannabis. Along with THC, it is what gives the user a multitude of physiological experiences. However, unlike the THC, CBD has been found to have a highly positive benefit on the health and well-being of users.
CBD metabolism in the body is little understood. For one, not much is known about the constituents of the chemical and the metabolites (by-products of drug metabolism) it releases. Research by British bio pharmacological giant GW Pharma is providing ground-insight into the metabolism of CBD in the human body. We may soon find out what CBD is made of and how it affects the body.
CBD and us
Drugs, when ingested, are broken down by the digestive system and are transferred to the liver for processing. Each drug has a specific set of nutrients and metabolites, which are transported through the hepatic portal vein to the various parts of the body. These nutrients when absorbed by the organs help heal any injuries or illnesses that exist. In some drugs, certain chemicals are stronger than the others. The metabolites that these strong chemicals produce provide a much greater physiological and psychological benefit, compared to the metabolites produced by weaker chemicals.This is the case with CBD. It is a chemical that produces strong metabolites and has a positive impact on the body.
CBD has been found to have two metabolites - 7-hydroxy cannabidiol (7-OH-CBD) and the 7-COOH-CBD – which are extremely powerful and very helpful for the human body. The metabolites and the 7-COOH-CBD derivative D2 (E) Valproate are found to have antiepileptic properties.
When you consume CBD through cannabis, the CBD is first broken down by the body. Next, these metabolites make their way to special cannabinoid receptors located on the cells. These receptors are part of the endocannabinoid system, which is in charge of physiological processes like pain sensation, hunger, mood regulation, and memory formation & retention.
The CBD metabolites bind themselves to these receptors and stimulate a physiological response from the cell. Based on where the cell is located on your body and what its function is, the CBD metabolites stimulate specific responses which, in turn, reflect on the body in the form of mood swings, pain relief, sleep and more. CBD metabolites have a unique way of functioning. They bind themselves to receptors located on the cells and stimulate a physiological response from the cell. If for example, certain cells in the brain are causing patient seizures, the various metabolites in the CBD bind themselves to these cells and prevent them from releasing neural impulses that cause the seizure.
Can CBD be toxic?
The primary objective of prescribing medicinal marijuana is to benefit from the levels of CBD present in the compound. However, research by GW Pharma shows CBD inhibiting the activity of the enzyme cytochrome P450, which is responsible for metabolizing the drugs that enter the liver.
Studies show that CBD takes over the area of the liver where the enzymatic activity takes place, displacing other drugs in the body. Two things can occur when this happens. Either the ingested drugs will be rendered completely ineffective and useless by the CBD or the CBD may increase the levels of the medication in the bloodstream to such an extent as to make them highly toxic to the body.
Making CBD safe
The effects of CBD metabolism on the body are debatable. While the risk of post-metabolism drug displacement is very high, experiments show how CBD also helps relieve stress, improve bone density, increase nerve sensitivity, and reduce the impact of various psychological conditions. Experts state that the easiest way to get the best out of CBD is to control the amount of the drug you ingest.
If you’re planning on using medicinal marijuana, then it’s recommended that you speak to your consulting physician about it. This way you can monitor any physiological changes that you experience, which may occur as a result of the displacement of medication by the CBD, and take corrective action immediately.