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Is CBD Oil All It’s Made Out To Be?

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola

With more states than ever approving marijuana in various forms, cannabidiol (CBD) oil has become a hot topic and commodity. Touted as an elixir for everything from epileptic seizures to inflammation to sleeplessness, CBD is the nontoxic extract of the marijuana plant’s flowers and buds.


It doesn’t contain the chemical that makes you “high” — tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)— but even so WebMD is cautioning consumers to be on their toes before they buy it or try it.

There’s a lot of misinformation out there about CBD as well as medical marijuana in general, and WebMD is right in warning that not every bottle of CBD oil on the market is guaranteed to be what you’re told. So, if you are in a state where you can purchase it legally, I agree: Make sure the product is a quality one bottled by a reputable company that can guarantee that what they’re selling you is actually in that bottle.

But that said, while WebMD advocates only for the “one purported use” for it (epilepsy) the truth is there is an abundance of evidence that it has other medicinal benefits, including treatment of:

• Rheumatoid arthritis

• Heart disease

• Multiple sclerosis and other autoimmune diseases

• Autism

• Glaucoma

• Nausea, vomiting and lack of appetite

• High blood pressure

And that’s just the short list. One important undeniable medical use for CBD oil is for pain. In fact, medical cannabis has a long history as a natural analgesic, and there are 14 clinical studies backing that up, most of which were FDA-approved, double-blind and placebo-controlled. These studies revealed that cannabis not only controls pain but in many cases, it does so better than pharmaceutical alternatives. In one study, three puffs of cannabis a day for five days decreased chronic nerve pain.

CBD oil has even been shown to protect the brains of stroke patients and those with Parkinson’s, and may also slow neurodegeneration caused by alcohol abuse.

But another promising use is for cancer treatment. Doctors working with medical cannabis are also using it to treat cancer-related side effects, and evidence suggests the herb may even have antitumor effects all on its own, with dozens of studies pointing to marijuana's effectiveness against many different types of cancer, including brain, breast, prostate, lung, thyroid, colon and pituitary cancers, as well as melanoma.

It apparently fights cancer via at least two mechanisms that make it difficult for a cancer to grow and spread: It's proapoptotic (meaning it triggers apoptosis or cellular suicide of cancer cells while leaving healthy cells untouched) and antiangiogenic (meaning it cuts off a tumor's blood supply).

You also may be wondering about another CBD-like product made from hemp which, so far, isn’t illegal. This is because, while marijuana plants contain varying amounts of THC, hemp contains very little or none of this psychoactive ingredient. And, the fact that studies are showing that hemp CBD has the potential to address many of the same conditions as marijuana-derived CBD, might be a reason to check into this form of it.