Is CBD good for depression?
According to studies testing CBD for depression, yes!
Endocannabinoid professionals are conducting scores of clinical trials on CBD for depression. Millions of medical professionals, scientists, and patients alike are asking, “Is CBD good for depression?” Fortunately, now that lawmakers are redefining laws surrounding cannabis, scientists can finally answer that question in more depth.
CBD for depression works because the endocannabinoid system controls neuro-receptor 5-HT1A.
Literature originating at the Institute of Psychiatry of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro noted the connection between the endocannabinoid system and the 5-HT1A neuro-receptor. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24923339)
The psychiatric community was already aware that the 5-HT1A receptor was responsible for a variety of mood-controlling neurotransmissions. The National Institute for Biotechnology (NCBI) Information published such a study regarding the behavior of the 5-HT1A neuro-receptors in mood and anxiety. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3927969/)
Depression is a mental illness characterized by a low production of serotonin, dopamine, and other essential neurotransmitter compounds responsible for mood stabilization. Those who suffer from depression experience a constant state of anhedonia – a void of pleasure in otherwise pleasurable activities.
Regulation of the 5-HT1A neuro-receptor promotes healthy production of these compounds, thereby naturally prolonging feelings of general well-being. Furthermore, healthy and consistent neurotransmitter activity helps to restore and maintain a healthy sense of motivation.
Research like this is being conducted by labs everywhere to determine the efficacy of CBD and CBD oil for depression. Likewise, labs are hosting research specific to the manner in which CBD affects the 5-HT1A receptor and other receptors that affect a wide variety of psychiatric conditions besides depression.
CBD for depression produces similar results as pharmaceutical antidepressant.
A research team from the Department of Pharmacology in the School of Medicine of Ribeirao Preto at the University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil, conducted research concerning CBD for depression. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20002102)
In this research, they also identified interaction with the 5-HT1A neuro-receptor. Lab specialists separated mice into three groups. They treated one group of mice with CBD. They treated another group of mice with an equal amount of a pharmaceutical antidepressant psychiatrists generally use to treat depression. Specifically, the drug used was imipramine, brand name Tofranil. Finally, lab technicians treated the last group of mice with a vehicle solution.
Lab technicians forced mice into a swimming test after administration of each solution. Researchers discovered that CBD helped to minimize effects of depression like immobility. Meanwhile, there were no negative impacts on exploratory behaviors. Al finale, they also concluded that CBD should definitely be studied more as a natural and highly effective antidepressant.
Other labs are experiencing similar results when CBD and CBD oil for depression and anxiety are compared with pharmaceutical drugs.
The University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada released information with similar findings to those in Brazil. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21111017)
The signaling pathways responsible for neurotransmission regulating psychiatric conditions like depression, anxiety, and others are tied directly to the endocannabinoid system. As such, administration of proper levels of CBD for depression produce the same effects as those produced by more potent prescription pharmaceutical drugs. CBD is much safer for all ages, and the effects of CBD work much more quickly than traditional antidepressants.
Another fact about CBD is: There are no withdrawals. Research does suggest, however, that not consuming cannabis can pose health risks. This is a condition known as clinical endocannabinoid deficiency (CECD). For some, these health risks can cause extreme discomfort. In some cases, conditions caused by CEDC may even be fatal.
That truth may actually indicate that some type of withdrawal from CBD is possible. Once a patient has been taking CBD oil for depression and stops taking it, the receptors that were being regulated by CBD will no longer be regulated. The reality, though, is that a patient will be no worse off than she was prior to CBD for depression treatment. That’s not the case with psychiatric medications. Unlike the natural way in which CBD communicates with neuro-receptors, prescription antidepressants fight a chemical imbalance with more chemicals – causing an even greater imbalance when they are removed.
Some research about the role of various amino acids and proteins in major depressive disorder is as fresh as research regarding CBD for depression.
A medical team at Neuroscience Research Center at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, WI, published a study they conducted based on theories regarding the endocannabinoid system and the behavior of fatty acid amine hydrolase in the treatment of depression. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24180398)
The CBD research team hypothesized that major depressive disorder was a symptom of CEDC. They concluded that using CBD to stimulate the CB1 receptor was effective in treating depression. Additionally, they encouraged the scientific community to conduct more research involving fatty acid amine hydrolase inhibition while testing CBD for depression therapies.
Two specific, non-psychotropic cannabinoids have been identified as effectively managing depression: CBC (cannabichromene), and CBD (cannabidiol) – the most common therapeutic CBD.
The Pharmacology Department conducted research in the School of Pharmacy at the University of Mississippi regarding CBD for depression. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20332000)
Scientists actually tested four different types of cannabinoids. The first two were CBG (cannabigerol), and CBN (cannabinol). Researchers concluded these two cannabinoids had no impact on mood elevation. Notwithstanding, they produced no negative side effects. CBC and CBD were highly effective in treating depression. Like many other labs, researchers compared the effects of CBDs to those of traditional psychiatric medications.
CBD oil for depression may also be able to help prevent depression-related heart disease.
The Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology conducted research at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, WI, concerning CBD for depression as a cause for elevated blood pressure and increased risk factor for heart disease. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22373123)
In this study, doctors treated females suffering from depression with CBD. During the course of the study, blood pressure and other vitals were monitored. Researchers concluded that CBD plays a vital role in regulating blood pressure – particularly in those with depression or another condition known to elevate blood pressure to dangerous levels.
Many labs are already conducting research on CBD oil and heart disease, and research like this helps to identify the many ‘opportunistic conditions’ that CBD may be able to prevent. That being so, medical professionals can work on simply managing the primary disease for which CBD therapy is being sought. Perhaps one day with CBD as a primary therapeutic agent, doctors will get out of the habit of prescribing more drugs to counter-act the negative side effects of potent drugs.
CBD positively improved the mood of rats in another study related to CBD for depression.
A medical research team at the Geha Mental Heatlh Center in Petah Tiqva, Isral, conducted a study on CBD for depression. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27010632)
In this study, the researchers used rats. Scientists split 48 rats into two groups. Researchers treated one group of rats with an oral solution of CBD oil for depression. Meanwhile, they treated the other group of rats with a vehicle solution. The handlers presented the rats with a variety of standard tests. They used the tests to measure the effect of CBD (or lack of) on a variety of factors relating to depression and cognitive awareness. Like scientists in many other studies, this research team realized positive results.
They noted that CBD therapy was successful in making the rats more relaxed and exploratory. They also observed that the rats did not suffer from any cognitive impairment. Conversely, the rats who had received CBD oil for depression were free from anhedonia. Therefore, they experienced an increase in social and mobile activity.
CBD for depression works quickly and stabilizes serotonin levels. Research also indicates that CBD helps to maintain healthy levels of glutamate.
NCBI published a study on CBD for depression. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26711860)
Specifically, researchers noted the impact that CBD had on stabilizing serotonin levels and stimulating healthy production of glutamate. Glutamate is an amino acid which is a vital constituent to a variety of healthy proteins. As with other research concerning CBD and CBD oil for depression, medical professionals were already aware of the importance treating depression by regulating serotonin and glutamate levels. NCBI backed this information up with another study regarding the role serotonin plays in modulating glutamate production. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2430669/)
CBD for Depression Conclusion
Endocannabinoid professionals have conducted plenty of research indicating CBD oil for depression is just as effective – if not more – than traditional pharmaceutical-grade antidepressants. Aside from that, patients run risks of both short-term and long-term side effects of pharmaceutical antidepressants. Medical professionals have already proven that CBD is safe and well-tolerated; and they have documented their findings in thousands of studies. Moreover, nobody can rightfully ignore the positive and natural effects of CBD for depression.