The pursuit of antioxidants is more than a trend. In a world where pollution, junk food, and unhealthy habits such as smoking reign, we need to arm our bodies with antioxidants to protect us from chronic diseases such as cancer. The list of antioxidant-rich foods is significant. It’s easy to incorporate antioxidants into our diet when the list includes food like dark chocolate, Goji berries, pecans, and strawberries. Now, there’s a natural compound on the market that is proving to be the most potent antioxidant of them all, and its name is CBD.
What is CBD?
CBD is a cannabinoid found in the Cannabis Sativa plant species. The latter contains hundreds of cannabinoids, some of which are intoxicating. For example, THC, the cannabinoid found primarily in marijuana, causes users to become high. CBD has psychoactive effects as well, but they’re not intoxicating. This means that you can enjoy hemp-derived CBD that contains less than 0.3 percent THC without the risk of becoming high, paranoid, or overdosing from it.
The science on CBD is limited as researchers have merely scratched the surface on its potential benefits, but the first data released is encouraging. Early research shows CBD’s potential to help with a list of chronic and mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, insomnia, diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, PTSD, and so much more.
Researchers have learned that CBD works by signaling to the endocannabinoid system’s (ECS) receptors. The ECS is a molecular system that manages critical bodily functions such as temperature, mood, appetite, and pain. It uses its receptors to promote change when necessary, so the body is in a continual state of homeostasis. CBD triggers change by signaling, rather than binding, to the receptors and promoting change. For example, researchers note how this cannabinoid can trigger the release of serotonin in the body. Thanks to this release, users experience low anxiety symptoms as serotonin acts as a natural mood stabilizer.
Thanks to these benefits, the rise of the CBD industry is evident, and we are now flooded with high-quality products ranging from oil tinctures to bath bombs, vape liquids, skincare products, edibles, and more. While CBD gummies generally are more expensive than oils, there are some affordable options that are in the same price range as oils and tinctures.
Why do we need antioxidants?
Our body can naturally produce antioxidants, but they aren’t enough to combat the pollutants that make their way into our body because of the level of pollution we are surrounded with and the unhealthy foods many of us opt for rather than the unprocessed kind.
Antioxidants are essential to fight the free radicals in the body that make their way through the former pollutants to prevent oxidation. If oxidation occurs, we would incur more damaged cells and have a higher risk of suffering from chronic diseases and certain illnesses.
Antioxidants prevent oxidation by neutralizing the free radicals in the body. In simpler terms, they pair up with unpaired electrons to neutralize them and stabilize the molecule. Stabilization is essential to prevent the degradation of the cell.
CBD as an antioxidant
Early studies have placed CBD in the antioxidant realm. Indeed, researchers have deemed it a more potent antioxidant than vitamin C and E. With such a classification, CBD could be the daily supplement that could revolutionize our health by lowering our risk of chronic diseases such as certain cancer forms.
Scientists note the significant antioxidant level in this cannabinoid. They observe how CBD can affect the redox balance by changing the activity and the level of oxidants and antioxidants in the body. In promoting the balance of redox, this cannabinoid prevents oxidation. This leads to the body holding fewer free radicals. In neutralizing them, CBD prevents the harmful radicals from changing into more damaging forms and causing certain types of cancer.
Its thanks to its free oxygen atom, which helps in the neutralization of the free radicals that researchers have deemed CBD as a neuro-protector with the potential to lower the risk of some neurodegenerative diseases. Thanks to its antioxidant properties, CBD can reduce damage in the nervous system and the brain while encouraging new neurons’ growth.
CBD might even protect people from oxidative trauma caused by genetic and autoimmune disorders—damage that can be temporary or permanent. When there’s already damage present, CBD can still benefit by helping with the recovery process. As a neuroprotective agent, CBD can also contribute to spinal cord or brain injuries and a stroke’s aftermath. Studies show how this cannabinoid can benefit those with neurological disorders such as epilepsy, ALS, and Parkinson’s disease.
CBD as an everyday antioxidant
Besides its neurological benefits, CBD’s antioxidant properties can help with everyday issues as well. As an antioxidant, CBD can prevent dull skin and lower wrinkles’ visibility while promoting healthy and younger-looking skin. For this reason, the beauty industry is now onboard the CBD train, promoting high-quality CBD skincare products, including serums and moisturizers.
Its work on skin issues goes beyond common challenges. CBD’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties can prevent the waxy oil’s overproduction on the skin known as sebum. The latter is important to protect the skin from dirt and other pollutants. However, occasions, where the skin’s pores become clogged as dirt, gets stuck to the sebum. This can result in acne—a skin issue that doesn’t have a one-size-fits-all cure. Although more research is required to determine how effective CBD is for acne issues, researchers believe this cannabinoid can help people with this skin problem.