What is Cannabis Essential Oil?
Cannabis dates back to the Neolithic period in 4000 BC. Asians have for a long time used it in treating various health conditions. Cannabis essential oil is derived from the flowers and upper leaves of the cannabis plant by a process called steam distillation. Applied topically and ingested, this oil treats different health conditions. Cannabis essential oil is also used in making lotions, candles, soaps, cosmetics, and edible products. It is green in color, sticky, concentrated, and highly volatile. People tend to mistake CBD oil for cannabis essential oil. Note that both oils are different, as the latter is extracted from hemp plants. This is addressed later in this article. Cannabis essential oil has loads of health benefits. We’ll take a look. But before then, let’s see quickly what this oil contains.
Constituents of Cannabis Essential Oil
- Cannabidiol (CBD)
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC): popular for its psychoactive effect
- Aromatic compounds (terpenes)
- Other minor cannabinoids (in minute quantities)
- Carrier oils such as olive or grapeseed oil
11 Health Benefits of Cannabis Essential Oil
People who have sleep disorders find cannabis essential oil quite beneficial. This is because it relaxes the body and mind.
Prevents Neurodegenerative Disorders
Cannabis essential oil contains cannabinoids which reduce the risk of amyloid plaques by obstructing the enzyme that makes them. Amyloid plaques kill brain cells and cause Alzheimer’s. So in essence, cannabis essential oil prevents Alzheimer’s. It is also helpful in combatting Parkinson’s disease by improving the motor skills of sufferers.
Manages Stress and Anxiety
Cannabis essential oil contains THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), a natural compound which aids the release of hormones required for pleasure and relaxation of the mind, which reduces stress and brings about calmness. Stress, over time, results in diabetes, high cholesterol, heart malfunctions, and high blood pressure.
Promotes Heart Health
Cannabis essential oil contains antioxidant properties which prevent cardiovascular diseases and lower cholesterol levels. It also promotes heart health by improving blood circulation.
Possesses Analgesic Properties
Cannabis products are popular for their pain relieving quality. They relieve chronic and acute pain. Their anti-inflammatory properties are part of the reasons for their analgesic effect. Cannabis essential oil definitely falls in this category, hence it reduces pain.
Cannabis essential oil contains cannabinoids which kill cancer cells and prevent them from spreading. It is effective when used with chemotherapy medicines.
Improves Eye Health
Cannabis essential oil fights glaucoma and macular degeneration, both of which lead to loss of sight. Glaucoma, for instance, occurs as a result of a buildup of fluid in the eye, due to excess pressure on the lens, retina, and optic nerve. Cannabis essential oil reduces intraocular pressure after a while of frequent use.
Cannabis essential oil is particularly beneficial to people who have dietary issues, or those who might want to gain some weight after an illness. It triggers a hormone responsible for hunger, hence increases appetite.
The Chinese and Indians have used cannabis essential oil to treat asthma for thousands of years. Asthma is caused by the constriction of the bronchi due to allergies or inflammation. The anti-inflammatory quality of cannabis essential oil causes the dilation of bronchi, hence treats asthma.
Treats Skin Conditions
Cannabis essential oil treats skin conditions such as eczema, acne, and psoriasis. Also, because this oil combats stress, it combats skin conditions in the long run, as some of these conditions such as wrinkles and age spots are as a result of stress.
Cannabis essential oil enhances hair growth and adds shine to your hair. You will enjoy this quality when you apply it topically.
How Does Cannabis Essential Oil Taste?
Cannabis essential oil has a floral taste. Ideally, it shouldn’t contain any added flavor. It tastes better when mixed with yogurt, peanut butter, smoothies, honey, and juices, however, all these delay its absorbance, as it digests as an edible when mixed, instead of going directly into the blood vessels as it would if you ingest it without mixing with other edible substances.
Cannabis Essential Oil for Topical Use
You may mix cannabis essential oil with butter or other oils to make salves or creams. Applying the oil topically doesn`t cause euphoria (it won’t get you “high”), unlike ingesting it.
To make salves with it, simply heat the oil into coconut oil and combine it with beeswax, then let it cool. For creams, heat the oil into shea butter and combine it with other other ingredients, then let it cool.
Topical application penetrates the skin and body tissues, giving some relief for allergic skin reactions, inflammation, muscle strain, swelling, and other similar conditions.
Some of the conditions that topicals combat are:
- some types of dermatitis
- superficial wounds
- certain nail fungus
- acne pimples
- arthritic pains
- back pains
- muscular pains
- menstruation pains
- breathing difficulty
- cold and sore throat
Side Effects of Cannabis Essential Oil
Cannabis essential oil and other oils with high levels of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) may have adverse effects of mental health. Some people experience depression, while others anxiety. It may even be as severe as psychosis. People who experience this may need to stop using the oil and see a doctor.
Reduced Blood Pressure
There may be signs of reduced blood pressure as you use cannabis essential oil. It isn’t much of a problem; just ensure your blood pressure doesn’t get unhealthily low. Your doctor would be of great help on this.
Some people use this oil for its sedative quality, however, for people who use it for other purposes, its sedative quality becomes a side effect. It causes a feeling of drowsiness or could even make you fall asleep.
Gastrointestinal Tract Issues
Cannabis essential oil has some effects on the gastrointestinal tract. Some people experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or dizziness.
Cannabis essential oil may make you hungrier. Inasmuch as this is advantageous to some, such as cancer patients and those who desire to gain weight, others may find it unfavorable.
Cannabis Essential Oil — What`s More?
Cannabis Oil Vs CBD Oil
As mentioned earlier, cannabis oil is quite different from CBD oil. Many make the mistake of referring to them as one and the same. Let’s discuss the differences.
- Cannabis oil contains CBD and THC, however, cannabidiol (CBD) oil has a higher concentration of cannabidiol.
- CBD oil is created by extracting CBD from either the cannabis or hemp plants, and then diluting it with a carrier oil like coconut or hemp seed oil.
- CBD does not produce psychoactive effects like cannabis oil because the former doesn’t affect receptors as THC does.
Tips for Using Cannabis Essential Oil
- Keep out of reach of children.
- If you’re pregnant or nursing a baby, consult your doctor before using this oil.
- If you’re undergoing treatment for any health condition, consult your doctor before using the oil.
- Don’t apply the oil on broken skin or abrasions.
- Avoid contact with eyes.
Quick Cannabis Facts
- There are actually three species of cannabis plants: Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis ruderalis.
- People have used cannabis for over 3,000 years.
- A surgeon, W.B. O’Shaughnessy introduced cannabis to the West in the 1840s.
Now That You Know…
Cannabis essential oil is quite beneficial. Contrary to what many thin, cannabis is not all about smoking and addiction. There are loads of health benefits that cannabis has to offer.