In the past several years however, public interest in CBD has skyrocketed based on claims — largely unsubstantiated through good clinical research thus far — that it may be a kind of cure-all miracle drug, with therapeutic effects ranging from pain relief to eradicating cancer. In fact, while CBD research has been limited due to federal restrictions, preliminary evidence does suggest that it might help with psychiatric conditions like anxiety disorders (note that while many people claim that CBD is not “psychoactive,” it’s potential as an anxiolytic medication suggests otherwise) and recent randomized, controlled clinical trials suggest a possible role in the treatment of psychotic disorders.2,3 In 2018, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Epidiolex, a form of CBD manufactured by GW Pharmaceuticals, for the treatment of rare forms of pediatric epilepsy (see my blogpost "Cannabis for Kids: Can Marijuana Treat Childhood Seizures?").
Emotional mental illnesses should be a particular concern in the United States since the U.S. has the highest annual prevalence rates (26 percent) for mental illnesses among a comparison of 14 developing and developed countries. While approximately 80 percent of all people in the United States with a mental disorder eventually receive some form of treatment, on the average persons do not access care until nearly a decade following the development of their illness, and less than one-third of people who seek help receive minimally adequate care. The government offers everyone programs and services, but veterans receive the most help, there is certain eligibility criteria that has to be met.
Keep in mind that CBD levels may vary from crop to crop—even from plant to plant. However, below are some strains that have been bred to contain higher CBD levels, so they might be a good place to start. Check the map on their strain page to see if these are sold at a dispensary near you. We also recommend checking with dispensaries about the specifics of their strains’ CBD levels. It’s always a good idea to purchase only lab-tested products that clearly state the CBD/THC levels so you know what kind of experience to expect.
CBD has some other very important jobs outside of the endocannabinoid system (ECS). For instance, CBD mildly activates one of the brain’s predominant serotonin receptors (5-HT1A), which may explain CBD’s effects on depression and anxiety. It also acts at the peroxisome proliferator activated receptors (PPARs), which halt the proliferation of cancer cells and convey neuro- and cardioprotection. By interacting with a particular PPAR (gamma), CBD could prove to be a promising new way to prevent alzheimer’s disease and other brain disorders.