CBDA & CBD For Anxiety
According to Dr. Sumak, a leading cannabis physician, one of the most common reasons his patients report using CBD products is for anxiety relief. But does CBD really work for anxiety and what’s all this I’m hearing about CBDA?
CBDA is the raw form of CBD found in unheated cannabis and hemp flowers. This non-intoxicating cannabinoid is similar to its decarboxylated partner CBD, however when it comes to treating anxiety CBDA may offer vastly greater therapeutic potential.
According to a 2013 Canadian study CBDA was 1000 times more effective at reducing nausea and anxiety than CBD on its own.
CBD has become a widespread ingredient in a wide range of products from bath bombs to infused candies and even makeup. Check out our guide to CBD & CBD Oil from our blog to learn more about CBD products and what’s right for you. Photo courtesy of Kush Queen.
To better understand CBDA let’s first take a look at cannabidiol or CBD for short. CBD is a well explored cannabinoid from the cannabis and hemp plant plant. CBD has well documented properties that include:
CBD works with the endocannabinoid system (ECS), however it is believed that it’s role in combating anxiety has more to do with its role as a serotonin receptor agonist. Serotonin plays a crucial role in regulating our happiness and feelings of calm and contentment. CBD acts on our serotonin receptors in a similar way serotonin does and may be why CBD is so highly regarded as a mental health supplement.
Cannabidiolic Acid or just CBDA is the raw precurser to CBD found in unheated cannabis and hemp. Until recently it was believed that CBDA offered no active therapeutic potential, new research however has shattered this myth.
CBDA primarily interacts with our body's endocannabinoid system (ECS) by inhibiting the Cox 2 enzyme which can have a direct effect on inflammation and pain associated with inflammation. However what makes CBDA truly unique as a potential treatment for anxiety is its role as a 5-HT 1A antagonist (serotonin receptor). My mimicking serotonine CBDA may play a vital role in future mental health treatments and as an antidepressant and general anti anxiety medication.
CBDA attaches to our 5HT1A receptor (serotonin receptor) and may provide relief from:
COX-2 enzymes are associated with inflammation after an injury or infection. By blocking COX-2 enzymes, CBDA may relieve inflammation and associated pain when taken orally or used topically.
CBD vs CBDA
CBD and it’s acidic precursor CBDA have many similarities, but CBDA appears to be far more potent than CBD meaning lower doses may be used to achieve desired outcome. CBDA would be recommended for those that have tried CBD and did not “feel anything” or for those that consume THC and don’t want the psychoactive effects of THC to be dulled (CBD reduces the psychoactivity of THC, however CBDA does not).
The Entourage Effect
The term The Entourage Effect was coined by cannabis researcher Ethan Russo and attempts to describe the complex synergistic relationship between different plant compounds, including, but not limited to cannabinoids and terpenes. The general idea is that the sum is greater than the individual parts and this is likely the case with CBDA and CBD being used together in the same formula. CBDA has been shown to increase the relative bioavailability of CBD when used together. Even a small amount of CBDA can have a big impact on the therapeutic potential of a cannabis or hemp product.
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