What is inflammation?
Inflammation is the body’s response to something alien or dangerous, think invasion from either a wound or trauma, legions of deadly bacteria in the form of disease or infection. Inflammation is the defending army, a positive and welcome retaliation. It means your body is functioning normally. The inflammation surrounding a cut is a signal to the body to manage infection, to restore and heal the site. The body’s inflammatory response to disease or viruses is similar; it is part of the defence mechanism to ensure optimal health and ultimately, survival.
Good inflammation and bad inflammation
Acute inflammation is desirable, a short-lived transient reaction by the body to a specific problem. The inflammation subsides once the issue has resolved. Acute inflammation is a natural and beneficial component of the cycle of life. Chronic inflammation, however, is a whole different kettle of fish.
Chronic inflammation is a low-grade immune response to a threat which may be perceived or actual. A persistent low-level inflammatory response can end up swamping the system with white blood cells, randomly raging around with no specific target or end destination. Not only are the consequences unpleasant to live with and manage for the individual, but chronic inflammation is a contributory factor to the onset of some serious, life-threatening conditions including cancer, stroke and heart disease. The American Heart Association (AH) explains more about the ramifications of long-term inflammation.
What does inflammation look like?
Externally visible, acute inflammation would typically involve reddening of the area caused by increased blood supply. The dilation of the vessels transports as much blood as possible to the area rich in white blood cells to promote repair. It also diverts nutrients and prostaglandins to create blood clots. Inflamed areas are hot and tender to the touch. This is a normal part of the healing process and disappears once that procedure is complete.
What about chronic inflammation?
Chronic inflammation can be invisible but clinicians can test for its presence via a blood test specifically looking for CRP, C-reactive protein. High CRP levels indicate a number of issues either an infection or potentially a raft of inflammatory diseases such as lupus or arthritis. The Mayo Clinic has more information on the CRP test.
Can inflammation be hidden?
Yes, hence the point of the CRP test. Rather tragically and ironically, overuse of anti-inflammatory medications like steroids over the long term does more harm than good, interfering with the body’s own immune response. Even prolonged use of over the counter medicines can do this and wind up causing harmful and grave consequences.
Does diet make a difference?
Yes, the benefits of an anti-inflammatory diet are well documented. Think Icelandic – berries and fish – if that doesn’t appeal then Mediterranean fare is far more palatable with its connotations of olive oil, luscious fruits, sun-dried vegetables and al fresco dining. But it’s not just about ditching excess fat and carbs, it is about rejecting processed, readymade meals and fast foods, the universal and admittedly tasty offering of rapid paced modern 21st-century living. Get back into the kitchen and cook from scratch.
Changing eating habits is not enough
Diets are supportive for sure but where can you turn if you want to avoid prescription medication or it is not available? CBD oil as an alternative demonstrates real potential as an anti-inflammatory therapy. By tackling long-term or chronic inflammation, it improves pain levels, offering relief to those plagued with persistent conditions like arthritis or inflammatory bowel disease. Current research has focused on CBD oil for the treatment of epilepsy. Earlier this year, the FDA approved its first CBD medicine, Epidiolex but pharmacies are tripping over their feet in the rush to exploit the likely huge market in CBD oil, reflecting what users have known for decades. The question on everyone’s lips is, how does it reduce inflammation?
How does CBD Oil reduce inflammation?
The human immune system features a receptor called a CB2 receptor, this controls both pain and inflammation. The theory from scientists is that either, the CBD oil encourages the body to release its own native cannabinoids which target the CB2 receptors or, it actually attaches itself to the CB2 receptors. Whatever! Forget being blinded by science, CBD Oil really does work.
The best CBD oil for inflammation
Choose a hemp-based pure oil content product, aim for a concentration of 95% plus of CBD and microscopic or preferably zero THC. Try to opt for authentic third-party testing, essentially the manufacturer has proven that the contents are accurately described.
What format is CBD Oil available in?
You name it, there is a total smorgasbord of CBD Oil items available. Oils, tinctures, gel capsules, hard tablets, sweet candy gummies, skin creams, shampoo, chocolates and coffee. Even Coca-Cola is tentatively dipping a toe in the CBD pool with rumours of a ‘wellness’ beverage at the design stage, whatever next!
Our editorial team has exhaustively researched all the CBD oil on offer and picked the top five headliners, a real depth and variety of goods to suit all users but with no compromise on quality.
What is the right dosage of CBD for inflammation?
Until CBD oil becomes a chemist based item, then the dearth of dosage advice will remain. In essence, there are no standardised guidelines. Start with a small amount of your purchase and sample it slowly, increasing gradually until you hit the marker for your individual circumstances. In time and with more clinical testing, dosage information will become clearer and more readily available.