The hemp industry is flourishing at an incredible rate, and with all the numerous hemp benefits that exist, we do not expect to see a slowing down of the trend anytime soon. At such speed, it is projected to hit $16 billion in the United States market alone by 2025.
Several companies are getting creative with its application, and that’s why we can see it added to even the most unexpected things like toothpicks and cheeseburgers. Recent research conducted by Brightfield Group, a cannabis market research firm, showed that over 60% of hemp users take it to quench anxiety.
Indeed, hemp oil benefits anxiety, but there are tons of other hemp oil benefits that draw people to it beyond that. Chronic pains, depression, and insomnia are all conditions that can attract anybody to the active use of hemp.
To help you further understand the benefits of hemp, we’ve focused this article on reviewing the top seven medicinal health effects of hemp extracts. We’ll also explain some of the basic things you should know about hemp oil, but before then, let’s understand what it means.
What is hemp?
Cannabidiol, popularly called hemp, is a naturally occurring cannabinoid contained in the cannabis plant. hemp is one of the hundreds of cannabinoids contained in the hemp plant. Unlike in the case of full cannabis plants, hemp doesn’t have THC as part of its ingredients. THC’s presence in the cannabis plant causes the high feeling that’s usually gotten from it. The absence of this ingredient in hemp means that it won’t cause any high.
The history of hemp can be traced to as far back as 2900 BC when the Chinese first utilized marijuana for medicinal purposes. Since then, the plant’s use has undergone many changes and civilizations; hence, an array of medical conditions that it typically helps.
Benefits of hemp
Proponents often claim hemp’ effectiveness in treating various conditions, including anxiety, acne, insomnia, pains, etc. The hemp oil benefits list is almost endless, with many of the claims having more scientific backing than others. Despite the incredible surge in popularity that hemp has enjoyed, it remains sorely under-researched. Here is a look into what some of the studies and evidence available say about hemp oil benefits.
This is perhaps one of the most significant medical benefits of hemp. A 2015 review of studies in the journal of Neurotherapeutics shows hemp to be promising in treating anxiety disorders. The investigators found hemp to demonstrate potent anxiolytic effects in animals.
Several similar studies also showed that lower doses of hemp (not surpassing 10 milligrams per kilogram) could help reduce symptoms of anxiety. Surprisingly, higher doses did not show any effect.
A significant part of the response was influenced by how hemp acts in the brain. Most times, hemp functions as an agonist, therefore triggering opposite reactions due to binding to a receptor. Lower doses will typically trigger positive agonist responses, while higher doses tend to overwhelm the brain, triggering compensatory effects that fight hemp’s effects.
There have also been human trials to evaluate hemp’s potential anxiolytic effects. The result of one of such trials was recorded in a 2019 Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry. The study featured 57 men receiving either a placebo or hemp oil before an event that would require them to speak publicly. During the event, different physiological measures were adopted to evaluate the anxiety level in the participants.
The investigators found men who received 300 mg of hemp to exhibit fewer anxiety symptoms than those that received a placebo. Interestingly, men that received 600 mg or 100 mg of hemp oil didn’t experience this. Therefore, it is safe to say that the right level of hemp oil benefits anxiety tremendously.
2. Nerve Pain
It is no longer strange seeing people talk about how hemp can be beneficial for nerve pain. In recent times, medical marijuana has become a popular prescription for people suffering from intractable pains, including people with terminal cancer. Past research has presented evidence to prove the contribution of hemp to these benefits.
For instance, a study in the Journal of Experimental Medicine, written in 2012, had researchers inject rats with inflammatory chemicals. The results showed that rats treated with different forms of hemp would experience less inflammation and neuropathic pain.
Several reports show scientists to believe in the ability of hemp to reduce nerve pains through a process of binding to glycine receptors present in the brain. The attachment of hemp to these receptors would help regulate the speed of the transmission of nerve signals between cells.
There have also been some human studies to evaluate the efficacy of hemp for treating chronic pain. The results of such studies are still unclear as a large percentage of them still include THC. Of course, the inclusion of THC makes isolating hemp’s distinct effects pretty challenging.
3. Heart Health
By now, you are probably aware of hemp’s efficiency in reducing the risk of heart diseases. After all, there have been several claims in the media regarding this area. Truly, hemp has such abilities. A 2017 JCI insight suggests that hemp has the potential to reduce hypertension in certain people.
The study featured nine healthy men placed on either 600 milligrams of placebo or 600 mg of hemp. The researchers pointed out that men who got hemp treatment had lower blood pressure after being exposed to stressful stimuli like extreme cold and exercise.
Additionally, these men’s stroke volume reduced significantly, showing the heart’s efficiency in pumping more. The research clearly points to hemp as an excellent complementary therapy that can be administered to hypertensive patients whose condition is complicated by anxiety and stress.
Please note that this study does not suggest the use of oil alone for treating hypertension. In fact, there’s yet to be any evidence to show the ability of hemp to treat or prevent hypertension when used alone.
Another area where hemp is gaining increasing popularity is as a possible treatment for epilepsy. Although research is still in its early days, we can already see that hemp is useful for reducing the number of seizures epileptic patients would experience. Researchers are still testing the efficacy of this as well as its safety. The American Epilepsy Society is of the opinion that research on cannabidiol offers some level of hope for seizure disorders. They also stated that there is currently ongoing research on the subject.
Another study conducted in 2016 had 214 epileptic patients. The study participants were given daily doses of hemp to be added to their existing anti-epilepsy medications. They were kept under close watch for 12 weeks, with the researchers recording any adverse side effects and the frequency of seizures.
The results showed that participants who had doses of hemp with their medication had their monthly seizures drop by 36.5%. However, about 12% of the participants suffered severe adverse effects.
As you probably know before now, one of the areas where hemp’s popularity has soared over time is its role in acne treatment. Several research results suggest that hemp’s effects on receptors may help reduce inflammation in the body. Apart from preventing acne, it also offers benefits for acne management, Making hemp oil a must-have for people suffering from this condition.
Recently, the Journal of Clinical Investigation published a human study into the effect of hemp oil in the sebaceous glands. The study showed the oil to prevent activities going on in that sebaceous glands. Of course, the sebum, which is a natural hydrating oily substance, is produced by their glands. However, excessive sebum can cause acne, hence the need to regulate activities leading to its production.
Thankfully, this is one of the hemp oil benefits for the skin. However, before considering hemp oil for treating acne, it’s worth discussing with your dermatologist. We await more human studies into the potential benefits of hemp for acne.
6. Brain Health
With brain health becoming a big concern these days, researchers are finding new ways to maintain the brain. The Alzheimer’s Association recently released a report suggesting that over 14 million Americans will be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease by 2050. This has become a major concern for the authorities considering the amount of money it’ll cost the nation to manage the situation.
MBG recently published an article that highlighted recent research into how hemp oil will benefit brain health. The study specifically targeted how hemp protects the brain from diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s. hemp’s ability to reduce inflammation, prevent free radical damage, and protect brain cells would help a human’s mental health. This is why hemp had gained popularity among patients suffering from seizures.
Several studies are already being carried out to determine how hemp can benefit people with epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. A few years ago, the FDA advisory panel approved the use of some hemp-based medications for treating two rare forms of childhood epilepsy.
7. Protects Against Broken Bones and Bone Diseases
Bone metabolism is a process where old bone materials get replaced by new bones. The process typically happens at a rate of about 10% per annum. Overtime, cannabinoids have shown potential in helping to facilitate this crucial process of maintaining strong and healthy bones.
Hemp oil has properties that can lower the risk of age-related bone diseases like osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. It does this by blocking an enzyme there known to destroy the bone-building compounds contained in the body.
Is hemp Legal?
Although hemp’s exact legal status is still not very clear, you can readily purchase hemp products in most parts of the U.S. hemp has now been legalized in all 50 states of the United States, although with varying degrees of restriction. Therefore, despite considering cannabidiol in the same class as marijuana, the government cannot habitually enforce it.
Even so, several people can still obtain hemp from online platforms with a medical cannabis license. With everything going on in the country’s political scene, we can already predict that hemp’s legality will eventually change.
Today, the government’s position on the legality of hemp is still influenced by whether it comes from hemp or hemp. Therefore, you’ll need to know the source of a particular product to decipher its complete legal status.
There you have it, a review of some of the significant hemp oil uses and benefits backed by research. As hemp’s usage continues to evolve, we expect to see more benefits in the coming years. There is already ongoing research on the safety of hemp going on. However, so far, there’s no major concern, although you’ll still need to consult your doctor to be sure that it’ll be right for you.
hemp products exist in different forms, making it easy to pick one that best suits you. The form you’ll choose would likely depend on what you intend to treat. You’ll also want to buy from a reliable manufacturer. A good way to learn about a manufacturer’s reliability is by checking reviews from previous customers. That way, you’d know whether their products are effective or not.