the importance of sleep
According to the medical community, sleeping between 6 am and 8 am is the ideal amount for a regenerative sleep cycle. However, there are several factors that can influence sleep, such as stress, illness, or any temporary interruption in the daily routine. Sleep deprivation, when constant, can affect the brain, making day-to-day difficult, which results in a drastic reduction in energy, substantially impacting daily activities, productivity and all of life as a result.
The influence of the CBD
As mentioned in previously published articles, the cannabis plant is used for medicinal purposes, replacing pharmaceutical products, due to their compounds called cannabinoids, including cannabidiol, or CBD, and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. These two compounds interact with cannabinoid receptors to help treat or limit the effects of various conditions.
There are hundreds of cannabinoid receptors throughout the human body that cause specific physiological effects. Potential uses of these cannabinoids include the treatment of anxiety, depression, pain and are also considered as a sleep aid.
Public interest in the benefits of cannabis, and of CBD in particular, has been growing all over the world and also in Portugal, and has encouraged researchers to study its effects.
How does CBD improve sleep?
CBD has shown great improvements on a medicinal level in preventing any type of addiction, as it influences the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which comprises cellular receptors known as CB1 and CB2 receptors; chemicals called endocannabinoids, and enzymes. Their complex interaction has the function of maintaining a state of homeostasis (internal balance) in a constantly changing external environment.
Anandamine, also known as the “happiness molecule”, is one of the best-studied endocannabinoids due to its calming effects on the nervous system. It is believed that anandamide levels in the body increase under stressful circumstances and help to stay calm.
This interaction causes an increase in the level of sleep-promoting chemicals in the bloodstream that causes drowsiness, leading to deeper, more restorative sleep.
One of the ways CBD can help with anxiety is by slowing down the rate at which the body reabsorbs anandamide. CBD is also thought to affect receptors for serotonin, a neurotransmitter linked to feelings of happiness and well-being.
Research studies have been conducted on the clinical application of CBD for sleep deprivation in conjunction with usual treatment:
- 72 adults were examined before and one month after CBD administration. CBD was found to significantly improve sleep scores in the first month of treatment in most patients (66.7%).
- Furthermore, CBD was well tolerated in the vast majority of patients. This points to the safe profile as well as the effectiveness of CBD in overcoming sleep deprivation.
Benefits of CBD for Sleep
CBD, in addition to helping to reduce anxiety symptoms, has also been investigated for its anti-addictive properties. Although research to date has been inconclusive, it is known that CBD can help reduce the stress and cravings of people trying to get rid of addictive substances, with preliminary study results being incredibly positive. If confirmed, it will mean that CBD can be a useful tool to combat addiction to certain substances and drugs in the future. This is because the CBD:
- Increases total sleep time:
By increasing deep sleep cycles, it reduces the REM phase (dreams and nightmares), providing a relaxing effect. The stress hormone – cortisol – normally peaks in the morning, but for those who have difficulty sleeping, cortisol levels can also be elevated at night, as it is associated with an increased number of nighttime awakenings. In a study of the effects of CBD, the results showed that cortisol levels decreased more significantly when participants took 300 or 600 mg of CBD oil. These results suggest that CBD affects cortisol release, possibly acting as a sedative.
- Helps you fall asleep:
Pain can seriously impair well-being, but restful sleep is especially important for sick people, with CBD being particularly relevant for patients with severe pain. In that case, CBD may have a favorable effect against pain and, therefore, against insomnia.
Fear causes sleep deprivation, and for people with anxiety, falling asleep automatically can be quite tricky. CBD, by calming the nervous system, helps you feel relaxed and then fall asleep.
- Improves concentration:
CBD regulates the activation of microglia in the inflammatory cycle, not allowing the body to be flooded with stimuli, thus reducing stress.
In addition to sleep, well-being is also directly related to a good skin care routine, as it rebalances the skin, maintaining an intact and functional skin barrier.
On Smart Nature's website you can find a range of CBD-based products capable of improving your daily life: