Or is the recent buzz about this so-called pain reliever much ado about nothing? Recent studies have examined how CBD oil can benefit bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts, and the results are quite promising. Learn more.
Does CBD Oil Actually Work?
Or is the recent buzz about this so-called pain reliever much ado about nothing?
There is plenty of press around the benefits of CBD, but for every positive news clip, there’s a doubter ready to throw cold water on this so-called miracle oil. So what’s the truth? Well, it’s a bit more complex than it seems, so we decided to put CBD on trial.
Hemp-derived cannabidiol–CBD for short—has anti-inflammatory and anti-anxiety effects, thereby helping with pain relief. These benefits come with no known serious side effects.
Though CBD may demonstrate some of the said benefits, it’s structurally too similar to its chemical cousin, marijuana, which causes concern about its use. Furthermore, you can easily get CBD’s same potential benefits from non-steroidal anti-inflammatory products (NSAID) like ibuprofen.
The benefits of CBD seem to come from its effects on the endocannabinoid system, a system in the human body discovered recently (1992) that serves as a “motherboard” for most major organ system. The primary difference between marijuana and hemp-derived CBD is that CBD cannot get you high. A high-quality, high-purity CBD has just 0.3% of THC, about 400-600 times less THC than found in marijuana products. Think of CBD as decaf and marijuana as triple espresso.
“There is enormous potential for all individuals looking to optimize health and human performance via balancing the endocannabinoid system,” says Hector Lopez, M.D., C.S.C.S., a consultant for professional athletes and advisor at CV Sciences. “In simple terms, ingesting hemp-derived CBD regulates a healthy inflammatory response that encourages muscle, tendon, bone, and overall connective tissue remodeling and adaptation.”
A review in the FASEB Journal looked at the effects of CBD on chronic inflammation, exploring potential mechanisms and upsides of using CBD. The researchers noted that not only does CBD act on inflammation through different mechanisms than NSAIDs, but it is also free from the adverse effects of NSAIDs like stomach problems and hemorrhage.
A study published in 2018 in Cellular Immunology evaluated the effects of CBD on the inflammatory and recovery of function after spinal cord injury in mice. The CBD-treated mice showed a significant decrease in inflammation.
CBD provides analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-anxiety effects with no known serious side effects and without the psychotropic effects associated with marijuana. Additional research is required, but today the safety profile is high, and CBD appears to be useful for pain relief and to decrease inflammation. Hemp-derived CBD provides clear potential benefits with limited risks or drawbacks. Use it on sore muscles and joints for pain relief.
If you’re looking for a way to help your body recover from intense exercise—or relieve pain, reduce anxiety, or improve sleep—a CBD balm is worth a shot. Using it won’t hurt, so trial and success is a wise idea. Consider a brand that lists actual CBD content as part of hemp oil. The science is still in its infancy, so start low on dosing (e.g., 1-3 mg), monitor the response, and increase if desired.
CBD Oil and Bodybuilding – August 2022
Can CBD Oil help with bodybuilding, and if so, how?
Recent studies have examined how CBD oil can benefit bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts, and the results are quite promising.
While more research needs to be conducted, current science suggests that CBD oil has properties that may help with bodybuilding.
CBD for Muscle Growth
A study published in the Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research showed CBD’s anti-catabolic properties that enable it to help regulate hormone levels in the body (1 ) .
By taking CBD oil, cortisol levels are kept at bay, allowing for increased muscle growth and protein synthesis throughout a workout or bodybuilding routine.
CBD’s anti-catabolic properties may also allow for the slow breakdown of muscle mass and help athletes to build more muscle.
In addition to lowering the levels of catabolic hormones, CBD may indirectly boost muscle growth by improving stamina.
When individuals are able to spend more time lifting or bodybuilding without the muscles getting fatigued, they see results from their hard work faster.
CBD for Weight Management
CBD can also be beneficial to people who are trying to lose weight. In a 2008 animal study published in the PLOS One Journal , it was shown that CBD inhibits a receptor in the brain so that ghrelin, which stimulates the appetite, is unable to act (2 ) .
A study published in Nature Journal has shown that CBD could increase the levels of leptin in the brain (3 ) .
Leptin is the hormone that makes an individual feel full or satiated. The reduced cravings for unhealthy, calorie-dense foods may help individuals achieve their weight loss goals fast.
In another study, researchers found that CBD might interfere with the secretion of cortisol, reducing blood levels significantly (4 ) .
Chronic stress and persistently high cortisol levels may be associated with increased appetite and weight gain (5 ) .
CBD for Muscle Recovery
Working out can cause microscopic damage to muscle fibers. Those muscles then become inflamed, which triggers the body to respond and repair, causing muscle soreness or stiffness (6 ) .
Studies have shown that CBD might reduce soreness and swelling by inhibiting inflammation. Also, CBD might help with pain as the body recovers from an intense workout.
CBD’s promising anti-inflammatory properties were also demonstrated in a 2018 study published in the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics (7 ) .
In addition, CBD may also reduce muscle spasms, a feature of neuropathic damage which often manifests in painful, uncontrolled muscle twitches (8 ) .
CBD for Improved Sleep
The best training routine, diet, and supplement program can never compensate for insufficient rest. Sleep is essential for everyone, especially for active individuals.
Sleep affects almost every tissue in the body, says Dr. Michael Twery, a sleep expert at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). It impacts growth and stress hormones, the immune system , appetite, breathing, blood pressure, and cardiovascular health (9 ) .
A study published in Pharmaceuticals (Basel) in 2012 compared CBD with a sleep aid called nitrazepam (10 ) . The authors found that high-dose CBD at 160 milligrams increased the subject’s duration of sleep.
Similarly, a 2017 study published in the Current Psychiatry Reports noted that at moderate to high doses, CBD might have therapeutic potential for the treatment of insomnia (11 ) .
CBD for Reduced Stress and Anxiety
In general, training and workouts can reduce stress. Exercise can provide psychological benefits that can help improve physical health. The stress reaction can be a survival tool, helping to keep the body healthy and the mind alert.
On the other hand, chronic stress can bring devastating effects. It can cause the body to produce too much cortisol and adrenaline, resulting in anxiety , poor concentration, irritability, and low self-esteem.
Fortunately, CBD has been shown to possess antidepressant and anti-anxiety properties that may help reduce stress and anxiety.
In a 2019 study published in The Permanente Journal , sleep and anxiety scores were measured in human subjects, and the findings showed that CBD could hold benefits for anxiety-related disorders (12 ) .
Meanwhile, researchers of a 2019 study , published in the Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry, looked at CBD’s effects on anxiety and stress.
The study demonstrated that CBD might help reduce the response to stre ssful environmental factors when given in the optimal dosage (13 ) .
Using CBD might benefit bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts during high-intensity workouts and recovery periods.
CBD has also been shown to possess therapeutic properties that might help individuals get a restful sleep, reduce anxiety level, manage weight, and recover from soreness and muscle damage.
Still, a consultation with a doctor experienced in cannabis use is essential before using CBD to help with bodybuilding goals.