CBD, Cure-all or Snake Oil?


Stuart Geller and Gena Lara

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that derives from the hemp plant. This cannabinoid is one of about 400 found in hemp and Cannabis plants. CBD is often compared to delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) because of its relaxing effects on the human body. We are here to clarify on the topic of the medicinal effects of this cannabinoid and compare views of law enforcement and people who use and are supporting the medical uses of cannabis.

Before we continue in our article, I must state that CBD is only available for people who are 18 years old. Otherwise, you should seek parental permission before using this product.

The federal government considers marijuana and the plethora of products associated with it have been considered comparable to meth for decades. But is this a fair representation of this plant? Marijuana is considered by the Federal Government to be a Schedule 1 drug. This classification puts it on the same playing field as Cocaine, Meth, and Heroin.

Marijuana sales profited $3.2 Billion in revenue in both recreational and medical sales of marijuana according to Statista. We are not here to justify the use of marijuana. Not only have illegal sales increased exponentially, but crime has increased due to the ease of access.

People have claimed that CBD is a cure-all. When asked on what they use CBD for one anonymous student said: “Yessir, Insomnia and anxiety.” He claimed that it has helped him sleep better and he feels less stressed out during the school day.

Ipswich now has a connection to CBD on a much more local level. Recently a shop opened up downtown where Marty’s doughnuts used to be. Cape Ann Botanicals was endorsed by The Ipswich Chronicle. They claim to have helped people from all around town with everything to anxiety to pain. Kurt Kalker, a registered nurse that owns the business personally believes that this is a great and natural way for dealing with pain.

The evidence is there too. By encouraging the body to create more cannabinoids CBD helps relieve many detrimental conditions, such as Epilepsy, quitting smoking and drug withdrawals, and pain relief. For some, this can be a better alternative than prescription opioids for pain. According to Medical News Today, the side effects of taking CBD are tiredness, diarrhea, and weight changes. But to some, these side effects can be better than the prescription drugs that are generally prescribed by doctors. As most prescription drugs may have horrible side effects. CBD is often found in the treatment of Epilepsy of children under 2 years old. This is because doctors cannot prescribe the drug that is needed to treat Epilepsy to children under 2 years old.

According to Pew Research Center, among the younger age groups, support the legalization for marijuana. The growth of support for legal marijuana is due to the numbers of states that have legalized the drug for medical or recreational purposes. The majority in U.S. support medical pot, but “The poll also found that people do not support a Wild West approach to pot either.” Four out of the five supporters said that medical marijuana should be regulated like other medicines from medical professionals. One of the concerns is that medical marijuana will get in the wrong hands from kids or pets.

When speaking to the Ipswich police department, Chief of Police, Paul Nikas, he provided us with his thoughts towards the medicinal effects of marijuana. “In extremely limited circumstances CBD, and not THC, may provide relief to certain cancer patients when administered in an oil or pill delivery system.” As we know CBD oil can help with many different types of conditions. Including chronic pain, depression, acne, anxiety, and even cancer. For chronic pain, CBD can reduce joint inflammation, for a possible relief from arthritis in humans. With this in mind cannabinoids or cannabis can help reduce muscle spasms for sclerosis and reduction in chronic pain symptoms. Depression and anxiety are huge factors in many peoples lives. CBD has the ability to activate the brain receptors for serotonin, the neurotransmitter that manages mood, as well as sleep and appetite. For example, a small population was tested to see if CBD helped with public speaking. When tested on 60 people, the ecowatchs research found CBD to show anti-anxiety effects, but only a certain amount of doses. When asked what are the thoughts on obtaining medical marijuana legally, Chief Nikas, stated that is should be “A private issue between the student, their parents/guardians, and their doctor…” before obtaining the product.

A former student at the Ipswich High School admitted that CBD has helped him with insomnia and anxiety. When asked if he would use CBD products in the future he said: “ I think it’s a really good alternative and it is all natural and it is good for you.” It is true, CBD is an all-natural product; they are made from oils such as the seeds of industrial hemp. They are then cold-pressed into a nutty like oil. This oil has vitamin E and monounsaturated fats that are commonly used for skin care, cooking products, and biofuels.

There is evidence that THC and CBD are there that it helps people but we can never be too sure. There is still a mixed stigma amongst most of the public and we obviously need more testing to make sure that medical cannabis is all that it claims to be. For now, it might be a better alternative for some than using prescribed opioids, which can be addicting and are responsible for the opioid epidemic. But it is a good thing to always be skeptical and if you are unsure it is a better bet to wait for more thorough testing to be done.