The Ultimate Cannabis Alternative: CBD And Here’s Why

If you are the type of person that likes cannabis but can't handle the paranoia and weirdness that comes with THC, then perhaps you should try using cannabidiol instead. Cannabidiol provides many of the medicinal properties that you normally get from marijuana, but instead of causing a high, it actually helps to calm you down and improve things like focus, awareness, and energy levels.

But what is cannabidiol?

Cannabidiol, or CBD as it's more commonly known, is an extract of the cannabis plant, and functions as one of many compounds (called cannabinoids) that make up what we know as cannabis or marijuana. But to be clear, the effects generated by CBD are very different than what you'd normally experience from smoking or ingesting marijuana.

CBD is nonpsychotropic, meaning it won't cause you to feel high, but it also delivers many health benefits that you can only get from taking cannabis. As one of the main active ingredients in cannabis, CBD delivers a significant amount of nutritional value to the human body, but often these effects are harder to pinpoint when THC is present.

Tetrahydrocannabinol is the powerful psychoactive that gets you stoned when using marijuana; and while this compound does have its benefits, it can cause distress when used by someone who had anxiety.

Is CBD legal?

Cannabidiol is completely legal in the U.S. and can be purchased at any number of health stores and even some food stores countrywide; although products containing THC in amounts exceeding 0.3% may be prohibited in some states. Keep in mind that THC is still a controlled substance until federal policies on marijuana change.

To make sure that you purchase the right type of CBD, always go for hemp-extracted cannabidiol because then the plants will have been grown exclusively for CBD and won't have any high amounts of THC.

Can I vape CBD?

This is without a doubt one of the most popular methods of taking CBD, and it works by delivering the compound into your brain and body almost instantly – which makes it efficient when using CBD as treatment for chronic pain, anxiety, or other condition that might be considered an emergency. But having said that, we should point out that vaping devices aren't always safe to use, so focus on getting a good quality product that won't cause respiratory problems.

How do I take CBD?

There are a number methods that you can use to get some CBD interested to your system, and we're going to look at some of the most popular ways.

Ingesting CBD

The good news is that you will find cannabidiol sold in a variety of products – usually as a main ingredient or just added to other healthy ingredients. And what this means is that instead of vaping the compound, you may have the option of buying CBD snacks and/or drinks. Or better yet, get some CBD oil to use with your recipes.

CBD edibles include just about everything that we love to eat: so think chocolates, cake, energy drinks, smoothie, and even vegan food.

Sublingual administration

If eating CBD products doesn't do it for you (remember, it might take a while for the effects to kick in), there's always the option to take it directly using a tincture or other device. Place a few drops of CBD oil under the tongue and wait a minute before swallowing. That way, cannabidiol will be absorbed through the glands under your tongue.

Using topical products

CBD is used on a variety of conditions ranging from severe internal ailments to more common conditions such as skin rashes and sunburn. For this reason, you will find multiple topical products designed for use on the skin, probably to treat things like muscle soreness, skin infection, joint pain, injury, and so on.

CBD-infused lotions and creams are available to use on many external conditions that require treatment by applying a layer of CBD oil on the skin.

What are some of the benefits of CBD?

Before we go into the specific ailments that may be treated with CBD, it's important first to understand how this compound works and how it engages multiple processes in the human body. It may also help to answer the question of side effects and possible downsides to using CBD.

Cannabidiol is a naturally-occurring cannabinoids, much like what the human body produced through the Endocannabinoid System (ECS).

Now, this important because the ECS is one of the most complex systems in the human body and has direct influencer over processes such as mood, energy levels, hunger, sleep, stress (particularly with regard to stress hormones), and many more processes.

CBD is thought to engage the human Endocannabinoid System to generate many of the therapeutic effects that both cannabis and CBD are known for.

Buy aside from its action on the ECS, cannabidiol is also anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and (among other things), it helps to regenerate cells, including those in the hippocampus that control memory and other processes.

Although much of the study around CBD is still ongoing and in the early stages, there is strong evidence that it can be used to treat conditions such as these:

  • Pain
  • Inflammation
  • Anxiety
  • Sleeplessness
  • Low energy
  • Muscle soreness
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Dementia
  • Mood
  • Addiction

Keep in mind that we are not recommending that anybody stop seeking medical assistance for anybody these conditions. Instead, we merely point out the benefits of CBD and how it might be used to alleviate the symptoms of certain conditions – especially pain and anxiety, which the pharmaceutical industry had made billions from, despite not offering a safe and lasting solution.

3 min read

Help! My Friend Is a No Show

Email armchairpsychologist@swaaymedia.com to get the advice you need!

Help! My Friend Is a No Show

Dear Armchair Psychologist,

I have a friend who doesn't reply to my messages about meeting for dinner, etc. Although, last week I ran into her at a local restaurant of mine, it has always been awkward to be friends with her. Should I continue our friendship or discontinue it? We've been friends for a total four years and nothing has changed. I don't feel as comfortable with her as my other close friends, and I don't think I'll ever be able to reach that comfort zone in pure friendship.


Dear Sadsies,

I am sorry to hear you've been neglected by your friend. You may already have the answer to your question, since you're evaluating the non-existing bond between yourself and your friend. However, I'll gladly affirm to you that a friendship that isn't reciprocated is not a good friendship.

I have had a similar situation with a friend whom I'd grown up with but who was also consistently a very negative person, a true Debby Downer. One day, I just had enough of her criticism and vitriol. I stopped making excuses for her and dumped her. It was a great decision and I haven't looked back. With that in mind, it could be possible that something has changed in your friend's life, but it's insignificant if she isn't responding to you. It's time to dump her and spend your energy where it's appreciated. Don't dwell on this friend. History is not enough to create a lasting bond, it only means just that—you and your friend have history—so let her be history!

- The Armchair Psychologist

Need more armchair psychologist in your life? Check out the last installment or emailarmchairpsychologist@swaaymedia.com to get some advice of your own!