CBD is a product that we see everywhere now. In everything from chocolate to tampons, CBD is a hot property when it comes to the sphere of wellness technology.
In today's noisy and stimulating world, many of us are switching on to seek more natural ways to stay happy, healthy and balanced. It comes as no surprise, that both CBD and yoga - which naturally bring balance to the mind and body, are rapidly growing in popularity for their ability to improve our general wellbeing.
The rise of healing practices in the west are reflecting a desire to relieve the stresses of daily life with mindful pursuits, and CBD could be a great tool to help you take your practice to the next level.
I first started using CBD in my Yoga practice to relax more easily into quietude. After a couple of weeks of consistent use, I found I was able to focus more quickly and for longer during meditation, my muscles were a lot less achy after a busy week of teaching and the post-savasana ‘bliss’ lingered a little longer.
I followed this up with some research and found the relationship between CBD and yoga is by no means a contemporary phenomenon or passing fad. According to the Vedas, cannabis is considered one of the 5 sacred plants and yogis have been pairing it with their practice since, well, forever!
Fast forward to the modern day and researchers have started to uncover what those clever ancient yogis likely already knew – together, yoga and CBD can work wonders for the mind, body and spirit.
So we know CBD makes us feel awesome, but how?
The Endocannabinoid System
Discovered in 1992, the endocannabinoid system (ECS) exists to keep the body in homeostasis (balance) by regulating basic body functions such as appetite, memory, mood, pain and sleep. It’s like your body’s “master control.” The ECS uses naturally occurring endocannabinoids, produced in the body, which fit into receptors within cell membranes. These receptors are found mainly in the brain, spinal cord and immune cells in the peripheral nervous system.
CBD - Nature's Own Cannabinoid
In addition to the endocannabinoids your body makes, there are other, plant-based cannabinoids occurring naturally within the world that also interact with the cannabinoid receptors in our bodies, producing similar effects. They are found in the cannabis plant and include one particularly beneficial compound called 'cannabidiol' (CBD) that interacts with the endocannabinoid system to prevent the breakdown of a molecule called Anadamide -from the Sanskrit word ‘ananda’ - which roughly translates to pleasure/delight!
The bliss molecule, as it’s affectionately known, has been shown to rise steadily in the bloodstream during healing practices like meditation and asana and is thought now to be responsible for the wave of euphoria following a good workout.
Like all neurotransmitters, anandamide is quickly metabolised by the body, which can explain why the post-Yoga high can feel fleeting, but that’s where CBD comes in; CBD has been shown to inhibit the enzyme responsible for breaking down the neurotransmitter leading to increased levels of anandamide in the body. Put simply, yoga can boost levels of anandamide which give us the ‘natural ‘high’ and CBD can enhance the wonderful benefits that the bliss molecule is known for.
Hemp vs. Marijuana: What's the Difference?
CBD oil is extracted from hemp. Hemp is in the same family as marijuana (the cannabis family), but the chemical makeup of the two plants is quite different. Hemp has considerably more CBD than marijuana and only negligible traces of THC, the chemical that gives marijuana its psychoactive effects. This means, no you will not get high from your CBD oil!
Sounds great, but how can CBD enhance Yoga practice?
The best known effects of CBD use is the overall relaxation of the body and mind, and reduction of stress inflammation in the body. If you experience a particularly active mind, consistent CBD use can help settle disruptive thoughts, allowing you the space to calm down usefully. As many of us are still restricted to practicing yoga at home, CBD can be especially helpful to keep us from the distractions of home during our practice time.
As well as getting your mind ready for meditative states, CBD can assist in your body’s recovery thanks to its natural anti-inflammatory properties. Numerous studies have found CBD to be a powerful anti- inflammatory and muscle relaxant which can help to relieve muscle soreness post-practice. Topical CBD salves, bath salts and balms are a great choice to help with aches and pains.
Where can I get me some CBD?
A dropper is one of the ways to experience the benefits of CBD. To use, drop the recommended dose under your tongue where it is absorbed into the bloodstream, hold it there for around a minute before swallowing. An average dosage is 20 to 40 mg a day, it’s recommended to start low and then experiment with upping or lowering the dose until you reach the desired effect. I am obsessed with the amazing Reakiro Raw Hemp Extract Pen from Mellow! It's super concentrated and measures the correct dose out automatically. Super cool. Use code YOGINI10 for 10% off your order.
For achy joint and muscles, a topical CBD balm, cream or bath salts can be amazing at receiving soreness. I love the Healing Alternatives Bath Salts from Mellow. Use code YOGINI10 for 10% off your order.
If you are on any medication or are unsure, please consult with your doctor before starting CBD intake. :)
Happy practicing! x
20 views0 comments