Does CBD Provide Benefits For Sports, Fitness, And Recovery?
CBD is one of many powerful cannabinoids found in hemp known for helping to support our body and mind. Here at Healing Dragon CBD we do not intend to make unfounded medical claims about the health benefits of CBD. The FDA has not confirmed that CBD cures, treats, or prevents any diseases or conditions. Before reading this article please take a moment to read our full disclosure statement.
When cannabidiol (CBD) enters our bodies it interacts with our Endocannabinoid System (ECS). Research has shown that the ECS is involved in regulating many different bodily processes including pain, inflammation, and sleep.
There are numerous factors that promote recovery from exercise allowing restoration and balance to your body. Much of the muscle repair that your immune system performs happens during sleep and is considered one of the most important factors for recovery. Our bodies also produces greater amounts of muscle building hormones like testosterone and IGF (Insulin Growth Factor) while we rest.
A case series in 2019 to determine whether CBD helps improve sleep and/or anxiety showed anxiety was lowered (79.2%) within the first month while sleep increased (66.7%). Whether you lift weights, run marathons, play sports, or do yoga CBD might just be able to help with recovery by simply improving sleep. But there are potentially many more benefits.
Will CBD Help With Pain From Sports And Exercise?
We all know that if you push your body during exercise the inflammation will leave your muscles sore the next day. But because of the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD these symptoms can be reduced. Our Endocannabinoid System is a key player in the regulation of inflammation with studies showing CBD lowers chronic inflammation in conditions such as arthritis.
The two main factors in pain caused from exercising are Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) and actual injuries. Pain from injuries include sprains, strains, and dislocations (among many other much worse injuries). These injuries are sharp and immediate. And if you’ve suffered from one you’re route back to immediate recovery may unfortunately take more than a few days.
CBD may be able to help ease the pain by relieving inflammation and providing more restful sleep but you may also need to also focus on heat/icing, supplements, NSAIDs, and possibly some sports rehab. Keep in mind that all pain medications have side effects and regular use of ibuprofen, an NSAID, has been linked to stomach ulcers, kidney disease, and liver damage. Along with that prescription painkillers have their limitations and can be addictive.
Turning are attention to DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) research shows that CBD can benefit tremendously. Cannabidiol has been shown to ease daily soreness from exercise and possibly speed up that recovery time. Compression clothing and foam rollers can help with reduction of inflammation in muscles. And as with sports related injuries heat/icing, supplements, and NSAIDs can help you greatly but the same concerns from regular use apply.
Along with a a daily regimen of CBD using tinctures, gummies, or gel caps there are also CBD ointments/balms that can be used to spot-treat muscle soreness and pain before or after physical activity.
Can CBD Alleviate Stress And Anxiety For Sports?
Athletes are using CBD to treat more than just their pain and inflammation caused by the daily strain they put on their bodies. They are using it to alleviate the anxiety and stress required to compete at a high level.
Pre-game jitters are natural and can actually be beneficial for competition. However, this stress can affect appetite and the ability to get a good nights rest which will affect your ability to focus and may contribute to performance anxiety. Long-term chronic stress can cause more serious health concerns such as heart disease and high blood pressure.
Cannabidiol can help to ease these stress factors with the help of our ECS allowing reduced feelings of anxiety and stress. A study by the University of São Paulo found CBD reduced anxiety and discomfort of social anxiety disorder in recipients when taken before engaging in public activity.
In the wake of the opiod crisis, more and more professional athletes are being vocal about their choice of CBD over pain killers. In 2017, the World Anti-Doping Agency removed CBD from its list of banned substances. And the National Football League Players’ Association partnered with the NFL to study marijuana and CBD as alternatives to other pain therapies, namely opioids. Even more recently MLB has removed marijuana and CBD from their list of banned substances.
Should You Be Concerned With Drug Tests When Taking CBD?
But there are still concerns about the potential for testing positive for THC on drug tests. Obviously this isn’t a concern for only professional athletes but for those that have jobs that may test for drug use. THC is one of at least 113 cannabinoids identified in cannabis and probably the most famous because it is the one associated with getting “high”. CBD is non-psychoactive and therefore will not get you high.
The Farm passed in 2018 does not allow CBD that contains more than 0.3 percent THC. That is a pretty insignificant amount and even with daily high dosages of cannabidiol THC will likely not register on a standard drug test. But if you are extremely concerned about a positive drug test result one way to ensure there is no THC is to use CBD isolate.
CBD isolate removes all the active compounds from the cannabis plant stripping away all other phytocannabinoids including THC. In doing so you will receive all the benefits of CBD but may be lacking the entourage effect of full-spectrum CBD. On the other hand, using full-spectrum CBD will provide you all the cannabinoids that are found in the cannabis plant including trace amounts of THC.