Cannabidiol (CBD) products are becoming more popular with every passing day, and research into this unique natural compound continues to reveal fascinating new benefits.
Not only can CBD help with various medical conditions, but some studies suggest that it may also aid athletes and sports enthusiasts with their recovery and performance.
Before we look at how CBD can aid with sporting recovery, it’s important to have a basic understanding of what CBD is.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a cannabinoid. Cannabinoids are natural compounds found within the plant matter of cannabis plants.
There are more than 100 known cannabinoids, with CBD being one of the best-known and most widely-used examples.
It’s often prescribed or recommended to patients by medical marijuana doctors, due to its many benefits.
Many people take CBD in order to ease sensations of pain or soothe areas of inflammation, for example, and research has shown that it may also provide stress-relieving properties, as well as promoting the body’s natural healing processes.
There are many other benefits associated with CBD, and more is being discovered about it all the time.
Legal Status Of CBD In Sports
Given that CBD comes from cannabis plants, many athletes may be cautious or concerned about using it, due to fears of legal trouble.
While it’s true that CBD products and other cannabis products are controlled in many locations, it’s actually another cannabinoid – THC – that is much more strictly controlled and illegal.
In contrast to THC, CBD can’t make people feel high and doesn’t have intoxicating effects. Because of this, legal restrictions around CBD are much more relaxed, and many CBD products containing only trace (0.3%) amounts of THC are perfectly legal in lots of US states and countries around the globe.
Mechanisms Of CBD In Sports Recovery
So, how does CBD actually work to help athletes and sportspeople recover after intense workouts or athletic events? Here are the main mechanisms involved in the process:
Interaction With The Endocannabinoid System
It is believed that CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, or ECS. The ECS is a complex cell-signaling system in the human body which is responsible for various processes and sensations, from hunger and pain to memory and tiredness.
Anti-inflammatory Properties Of CBD
By interacting with the ECS, CBD is able to provide anti-inflammatory benefits. It can soothe and calm any areas of inflammation, making it particularly important for athletes who may have sore muscles and joints after working out.
Pain Management And Reduction Of Muscle Soreness
CBD also has pain-relieving properties. It can soothe and reduce any sensations of pain that you may be experiencing. Again, this is very useful for athletes, who often have sore and tender areas after a sporting event or workout.
Potential Benefits For Sleep And Stress Reduction
Many doctors also recommend CBD oil for sleep and easing feelings of stress. It can promote a more relaxed, calm mindset, helping people forget their worries and stresses and feel more at ease. This can aid with insomnia and general stress levels.
CBD And Sports Performance
CBD may also be able to aid in sporting performance in a few different ways. Firstly, it can ease feelings of stress or anxiety that may usually tire athletes out or worry them before a big event.
By taking CBD, athletes should find it easier to sleep and prepare for an event, with better energy levels and a more positive mindset.
In addition, by helping to soothe stresses and anxieties, CBD can also help athletes have more focus and concentration on the task at hand. This could help them enjoy greater levels of success in their chosen sport.
Plus, some studies suggest that CBD may even be able to boost long-term endurance levels of athletes through its calming, therapeutic, anti-stress effects.
Considerations for Athletes Using CBD
Clearly, CBD can offer a lot of benefits to athletes. However, there are still areas of concern. Drug testing is prevalent in many sports at professional level, and even though CBD oils have low amounts of THC, there’s still a risk of failing a drug test, depending on the products you use and the dosage you take.
Athletes should therefore be very careful, making sure to do their research, understand correct dosages, and only buy high quality products.
In addition, always read the label and consult with healthcare professionals and sports experts for advice about the effects of CBD and how it might interact with other medications or supplements you are taking.
Overall, CBD’s benefits aren’t only for healthcare patients. This miraculous natural compound also holds great potential for the world of sports, and any athletes wanting to boost their performance or settle pre-event nerves should consider CBD as a possible option.