If you’ve struggled with poor sleep the chances are you have tried endless gadgets, supplements and lifestyle hacks. There can be many factors involved in why you are finding it difficult to sleep and we have written previously about this. For long term resolution it is important to look at whether there are any underlying imbalances and/or inflammation that needs addressing. That said one new supplement you may wish to investigate is the use of CBD oil.
What is CBD?
CBD oil is gaining in popularity. It is made from the cannabis compound cannabidiol derived from hemp (not marijuana) so unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it does not get you high.
CBD oil is becoming popular for relieving pain and anxiety but increasingly people are finding it may also help with insomnia. There have been some clinical trials that indicate CBD may be effective for sleep although it may be dose dependent. Lower doses it seems do not appear to have much effect on sleep patterns but higher doses do. In part studies suggest that higher doses interfere with cortisol secretion which again explains why it may have a calming effect on the body.
Timing is.equally important. When taken at the start of the day CBD appears to increase levels of wake promoting neurotransmitters such as acetylcholine. Taken later in the day may improve sleep and in particular increase total deep sleep.
What is also interesting is the CBD appears to have an effect on our circadian rhythm. It appears that our 24h light/dark cycle directly affects the activity of cannabinoid receptors. This may explain why CBD oil can increase both wakefulness (taken early in the day) and promote sleep (taken at higher doses later in the day).
If you suffer with anxiety which interferes with your sleep then CBD oil may be a good option. Various studies have indicated it has a calming effect on the central nervous system making it beneficial for anxiety related conditions.
How to use CBD
CBD oil comes in different forms:
- Oil tinctures
- Capsules / tablets / gummies
- Mouth sprays
Your choice may depend on your issue when it comes to sleep patterns. For example mouth sprays and oil tinctures tend to be absorbed more quickly so may be useful if you struggle to get to sleep. Others such as capsules / gummies are often slower releasing so may help you sleep for longer without waking – useful if you are someone who regularly wakes up in the night.
The most effective dose will vary from person to person but based on the studies have used doses ranging from 25 mg to 1,500 mg of CBD per day. It’s best to start with a low dose and gradually increase it until you find something that works for you.. I have found personally a higher dose is needed and it is best taken 1 hour before bedtime.
Choosing a Brand
It is fair to say that good quality CBD oil is not cheap. If you are choosing a brand look for the following:
Organic Hemp source (avoids exposure to heavy metals and pesticides)
Extraction method – choose a safe option avoiding toxic solvents such as cold pressed extraction or carbon dioxide
Laboratory reports – do they provide laboratory reports on their quality standards and CBD content
Content – Do they contain the whole spectrum of active CBD components including naturally occurring terpenes, flavonoids which are known for their health benefits
Tested for THC content – The CBD content should be clearly stated on the label and it should be tested to ensure THC content is negliable and below the legal limit.
Side effects are rare but can include drowsiness, diarrhoea, changes in appetite, dry mouth and fatigue. Be mindful of any interactions with medications you are currently taking. It is known to block one of the phase I liver enzyme CYP2C19 which also breaks down various drugs. So do check if you are on long term medication.
Want to try some high quality CBD Oil?
One brand of CBD oil I have tried with good results is Provacan CBD. This particular brand meets the above criteria on choosing a high quality brand and has a range of products including high strength options.
Competition: Fancy trying some Provacan CBD oil?
I am thrilled to announce Provacan are offering one lucky reader a bottle of their 300mg CBD Oil as a competition prize.
All you need to do is tag me @christinembailey and @provacancbd on instagram posting a comment as to why you would like to try CBD oil or Like my facebook page: christine bailey in the kitchen and post a comment detailing why you would like to win a bottle. Don’t worry if you are not the lucky winner – you can purchase Provacan CBD oil here and if you use the code BAILEY15 you can get 15% off your purchase.
T&C – open to UK residents only. Competition runs until 31st July 5pm. Competition prize 1 bottle of 300mg CBD oil.