Health and wellness trends are always changing. It can be hard to keep up with what is good for you – one moment high-protein diets have grabbed the spotlight, and then some research study suggests that too much protein can cause you health problems. It’s almost impossible to please the experts, as everyone disagrees about what is actually best for you.
The truth of it all is most likely that everything is good for you as long as it is consumed in moderation. But fitness companies have clever marketing teams that can peddle their supplements to you in a way that makes them seem like the epitome of health. Diet pills, weight loss shakes, and a whole host of other fitness supplements are flying off the shelves. However, many of these fitness supplements don’t contain much more than laxatives that will help you to “lose weight.”
What if there was an all-natural supplement that could help you in your fitness routine? It turns out that CBD might actually be able to help you in your fitness and health journey, and unlike other supplements, it often contains just one ingredient – cannabidiol.
CBD and Your Health
Cannabidiol, or CBD, has been recently popularized as a health and food supplement. It is said to have a number of beneficial properties for your health; for example, in the US it is a patented anti-oxidant.
It works by interacting with your endocannabinoid system (ECS). This innate biological system is designed to keep your body in balance at all times, regulating things like your sleep cycle, immune response, appetite and more. All of these things are relevant to your health and can have an impact on your healthy lifestyle.
The whole system is controlled by endocannabinoids, little molecules that act as messengers throughout the body. These bind with specialized receptors called cannabinoid receptors, via which the messages are passed along the body. This adaptive messaging system is what allows us to adjust to certain conditions and adapt as life unfolds.
Sometimes, we struggle to produce enough endocannabinoids to keep up with the demand. This endocannabinoid deficiency can cause other complications for your body, which is why it’s important to find a way to keep the ECS functioning at its optimum level.
Luckily, the cannabinoid receptors we possess also respond to the phytocannabinoids found in plants, including CBD. Cannabidiol can interact with the cannabinoid receptors in the ECS to stimulate effects similar to those that our endocannabinoids produce. In other words, CBD can help to trigger beneficial effects for our health through its interaction with the ECS, boosting our health in general as well as helping us with some more specific things, too.
What Do We Mean by CBD Fitness Supplements?
There are a variety of CBD products already available out there. If you are taking CBD daily as a way to improve your general health, it is advisable to take a food supplement containing cannabidiol; these include CBD oils and CBD capsules. They are very easy to take and contain very few other ingredients. If you are an athlete, you of course have to be aware of the high fat content of oils, but a few drops each day is unlikely to impact your diet in any significant way.
Other CBD products are also available, including CBD-infused water, CBD-infused teas, and plenty more. Depending on your preferred method, anything containing CBD could technically be classified as a fitness supplement as long as you are using it as part of your workout and health regime.
You will see products out there like hemp protein. The hemp plant is a very high protein source and is therefore often used in the creation of vegan protein powders. However, these do not actually contain cannabinoids or CBD, so be careful that you are not tricked into buying hemp protein when you are after a means of acquiring CBD.
CBD for Pre-Workout Energy
It could be beneficial to take a dose of CBD before you work out. When you do this depends on the method – vaping CBD will take effect almost instantly, oils could take up to 15 minutes, and capsules or edibles may take up to an hour to kick in. But why would you want to use CBD as your pre-workout at all?
First of all, CBD may have vasorelaxant properties. A 2017 study at the Universities of Nottingham and Oxford in the UK found that high doses of CBD reduced heart rate and blood pressure in a group of healthy volunteers. Another University of Nottingham study was conducted in 2013, which found that the decreased heart rate and blood pressure were actually accompanied by an increased blood flow to key regions of the heart and brain.
This combination means that you could be able to train for longer without succumbing to fatigue. No more stepping off that treadmill early!
Another reason why CBD may help you pre-workout is that it could give you an energy boost. Research has suggested that CBD may be able to boost your energy if you take it during the daytime when you are supposed to be awake. This is because it can regulate sleep-wake cycles and ensure that the body is getting a natural amount of sleep. Be careful not to take it in the evening, though, as it could make you sleepy!
CBD as a Post-Workout Recovery
If you are not sold on CBD as a pre-workout supplement, it has an even stronger case as a means of recovering. After an intense exercise session, your muscles often become inflamed due to strain. This can cause pain and discomfort, especially if you are new to working out.
Did you know that CBD is a known anti-inflammatory? When you take CBD, its interaction with the cannabinoid receptors can reduce inflammation and therefore relieve pain. Many people are switching to CBD over synthetic painkillers, as its natural properties are much better for your body and allow for holistic healing. There is a lot of research backing up CBD as an anti-inflammatory, so much so that the US government has patented it.
It’s no wonder that so many athletes are turning to CBD as a way to recover after a workout. By throwing your ECS back into balance, it provides an all-natural way to let your body recover after a workout. Plus, the sleep effect it has can ensure that you get a good night’s sleep every night, allowing your body to get the restful period it needs to make a full recovery.
Are CBD Fitness Supplements a Huge Breakthrough?
Since fitness trends are changing all the time, it’s hard to say whether CBD supplements will stick around as a popular fitness aid. For the time being, however, it seems as though their popularity will continue to increase for a while.
In a world where we are constantly sold synthetic, man-made products that might do more harm than good in the long run, it’s refreshing to see organic, truly healthy products. Many people are turning toward a more organic way of living and actively seek out natural products, which is why superfoods are such a big deal nowadays. Hemp itself can be considered a superfood, even without the cannabinoids found in the leaves and flowers – many fitness addicts will swear by the addition of hemp seeds to their diet, and these contain little to no cannabinoids.
When it comes to CBD, it’s clear that we have found a natural product we can rely on. Though it is not a miracle cure-all, research is certainly pointing toward the fact that it makes a healthy addition to any diet. And with such a variety of products and supplements already available, there’s really no reason not to try adding CBD into your fitness routine.