As CBD continues to gain popularity for its medical properties, many questions about how CBD works have been brought to the forefront of discussions.
What symptoms or illnesses can CBD treat? What are the risks involved? And even, How does CBD affect men and women differently?
CBD interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system and has recently shown strong potential for the treatment of many health issues including but not limited to: pain, inflammation, IBS, seizures, depression, and anxiety.
CBD, also known as cannabidiol, is found in the cannabis plant, and can come from either what is classified as "marijuana" or "hemp". While the former may or may not be legal in your jurisdiction, CBD derived from hemp and containing less than 0.3% THC is generally considered legal across the US. However, it is always advisable to check with your local laws prior to purchase and use.
CBD can be consumed by smoking cannabis, or by taking pure CBD in various forms such as: oils, gummies, tinctures and other preparations.
One of the Less Talked about, Yet Interesting Questions: Does CBD affect men and women differently?
CBD actually does affect men and women in slightly different ways. CBD and its interaction with the endocannabinoid system has the ability to impact hormones and various physiological processes, some of which are unique to either sex or exert varying effects.
Men and women may experience a slight variation in these reactions, determining how they are affected by CBD oils and other marijuana products like THC. Men and women have a different genetic makeup with up to 6500 different gene expressions.
Size, shape, body mass, lifestyle and physical health level also may play a role in the variance in CBD's effect on male vs female bio-physiology.
Women and CBD
CBD has the ability to impact estrogen levels, which may aid in increasing the ability of CBD to relieve pain in females, and may even help to improve libido and sexual arousal, comfort and pleasure.
In response to these developments, many CBD companies are launching products made from CBD oil geared toward women's health.
When it comes to CBD and estrogen, a woman's cycle can influence their experience with CBD. A Washington State University research team found that women experience the greatest effects from cannabinoids when estrogen has peaked and is beginning to fall. There is a sharp spike in drug sensitivity during ovulation when estrogen levels have peaked and are coming down.
The interaction between estrogen, THC, and other cannabinoids can make women more sensitive to CBD in general. The greatest pain-relieving effects are realized when the whole plant is consumed. This is especially true during a woman's period of menstruation, at which time CBD may offer additional pain relief. When testing THC's effect against chronic pain, a study found that female rats fared much better than males when it came to symptom relief.
Estrogen affects everything from mood to menstrual cycle, and even the desire for sex. CBD can play a role in affecting this hormone, so it may affect a woman's libido as well. In low doses, cannabis itself has been shown to cause an increase in sex drive. This may be because estrogen levels are major contributors to female sex drive, and the combination of estrogen, THC and other cannabinoids such as CBD influences libido. In high doses, though, these same cannabinoids may interfere with estrogen thereby decreasing sex drive. CBD can be a solution; it lacks a psychoactive component and will not produce an alternate state of mind, or "high".
Another interesting correlation between women and CBD use is that data shows many women stopped taking other medications and switched entirely to CBD, which is a heavy testament to its therapeutic potential. Women are more likely than men to use CBD and once they did start using CBD, they were more likely to stop using other medications or prescriptions.
Regarding THC, women are more likely than men to experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop smoking cannabis. Women tend to develop a tolerance more quickly, and they may become more forgetful while under the influence. This does not pertain to CBD oil.
As it relates to side effects from CBD itself, no notable differences have been studied to date between men and women.
Men and CBD
One of the most discernible ways in which men experience differing effects from cannabinoids includes appetite, often increasing the desire to snack.
Men also generally experience less pain relief, and sometimes more anxiety or paranoia, though these effects are largely variable and dependent upon the individual.
Other differences include a greater reduction in aggression and an increase in calmness.
Men tend to be less sensitive to the cannabis plant and all of its associated cannabinoids, as such, some of the associated effects may be blunted or require a higher dosage to obtain the desired outcome.
Some of the variances in how CBD affects men is related to metabolism and metabolic differences. Men tend to have a faster metabolism than women, which means CBD may get processed and also excreted faster. Meaning the onset of effects may come on faster for some males, but also not last as long as in their female counterparts before needed another dose.
To date, there has generally been little evidence to suggest a significant difference in any associated side effects of CBD, which are typically user-dependent and mild at best.
Cannabis can cause a slight dip in testosterone levels with use. This dip is not enough to cause any physical changes or even enough to impact athletic performance or recovery. However, it can impact libido and emotion helping some males make a deeper emotional connection with relationships and when engaging in sexual encounters. In this way, CBD may help some men with intimacy issues and even enhance sexual encounters.
CBD and cannabis can (and do) affect everyone differently, and what helps one person or increases their libido may decrease another person's. But some studies do show that CBD may also work as a natural aphrodisiac, by decreasing pain, increasing happiness, and helping people feel less anxious.
This information shows us that in addition to an improved quality of life with less suffering from pain and other symptoms of sickness and disease, those who medicate with CBD may see their sex life improve along the way, too.
CBD clearly shows different effects between men and women, and that there is a difference in the potency required to achieve said effects for men and women.