CBD oil is a natural health supplement that has had a lot of press over the last few years for its ability to reduce pain, improve the immune system and support mental health.
Recently however, more and more business owners in the UK are choosing CBD oil as a way to manage stress.
It’s not secret that running a business is stressful. Not only is mental health an increasingly big problem throughout the British population, the risk for SME owners is particularly high with 4 in 5 reporting that they have experienced stress in the last six months (report from February 2019). However, CBD oil could help.
For more information about CBD oil, or to buy premium products, visit the Natural Hemp Company Ltd.
What is CBD Oil?
CBD (cannabidiol) is extracted from the hemp plant and interacts with a system in our bodies called the endocannabinoid system. Through this, it helps to promote the effective working of our immune system and a range of other processes, including stress response.
CBD oil is not the same as cannabis. Cannabis contains very small amounts of CBD and high amounts of another cannabinoid called THC, which is responsible for the feeling of being ‘high’.
Hemp plants that can be legally grown in the UK to make CBD oil contain less than 0.3% THC, making CBD oil itself completely safe for daily use without any psychoactive or addictive effects.
How Can It Help With Stress?
Biologically, stress is our body’s natural response to threatening stimuli and helps us to know how to react. It developed as a survival instinct, releasing adrenalin to improve strength and endurance so our ancestors could fight or run away from danger.
In modern times, the stimuli that trigger a stress response are somewhat different to what they once were, particularly when running a business — crucial financial decisions, tax return, Brexit, staff management, losing wifi… the list is endless.
The fast pace of running a business means that our stress response system is activated almost constantly and there is a relentless influx of the primary stress hormone, cortisol.
Constantly high levels of these hormones make temporary and, if stress continues, potentially permanent changes to our body and brain chemistry. (Source)
Stress chemicals slow down many processes in the body, like the digestive system and immune response, to give energy instead to quick processes that could help you avoid immediate danger.
It means that episodic acute stress and chronic stress can cause anxiety, feeling emotionally and physically drained, digestive problems, a less effective immune system and increased risk of heart disease. Cortisol levels also tell the body when to sleep and when to wake up, so stress can cause problems with sleeping patterns.
CBD oil does not reduce the production of cortisol, but it does promote the balanced production of stress-relieving chemicals that help the body to process cortisol.
Activation of the HPA axis in the brain causes the increase in stress chemicals in response to a stimulus. Studies found that CBD, which interacts with a specific receptor called CB1, helps to inhibit, control and balance the activation of the HPA axis. (Source)
In summary, this means that CBD oil could be, and is for many, an extremely effective way to manage the everyday stress of daily life and running a business.
Stress And Anxiety
There is a correlation between stress and anxiety, with constant stress from work often leading to anxiety disorders.
Cortisol from stress causes an increase in serotonin uptake. Serotonin is one of the hormones responsible for feeling happy. Increased uptake of serotonin means that your brain contains less of the chemical, which can lead to anxiety and, in some cases, depression.
Serotonin has at least 14 receptors and CBD binds to a specific one called 5-HT1A, which is thought to have the biggest impact upon anxiety — including anxiety related to stress. (Source) It is the same receptor to which many anxiety drugs bind.
CBD helps to balance the levels of serotonin and cortisol to improve the brain’s response to stress and decrease the risk of anxiety as a result of stress. It could help you to work more effectively and efficiently without causing problems to your health.
Stress And Sleep
Stress impacts sleep, but lack of sleep also impacts our ability to cope with stress in a healthy way.
Cortisol is a primary contributor to our sleeping pattern, known as the circadian rhythm. Cortisol should be naturally higher in the morning and reduce throughout the day. When cortisol reaches a certain level we feel sleepy, which should happen at around a similar time every day.
However, when stress causes high levels of cortisol, it can greatly impact our ability to fall asleep in a regular pattern — particularly if stress-related anxiety is also involved.
The way CBD helps the brain and body to process and balance cortisol means that it is very effective at improving sleeping patterns and quality of sleep. This not only helps you to sleep by reducing stress chemicals, but the extra sleep will better help you to cope with stress during the day — helping to break the cycle.
CBD oil could be a powerful tool for business owners to help better manage and utilise stress without the impact upon mental health.
Learn more about CBD oil or buy premium CBD at the Natural Hemp CompanyLtd.