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NFL to explore effects of CBD in players with chronic pain

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The NFL-NFLPA Pain Management Committee wants to find alternative treatments to manage player's chronic pain

America’s National Football League (NFL) is looking into how cannabis and CBD can help in managing player’s chronic pain.

The league and player’s association (NFLPA) made a formal request for information to researchers on “pain management alternatives to opioids” earlier this month.

In an official statement, the NFL-NFLPA Pain Management Committee (PMC) said it is working to “improve player health through evidence-based treatment of acute and chronic pain” and to “facilitate research to better understand and improve potential alternative treatments.”

The NFL is seeking out qualified researchers who could lead studies into pain management and athletic performance in its players.

Areas of investigation include the potential therapeutic role of medications and “non-pharmacological interventions” that are considered to be alternatives to opioids in routine pain management of NFL players, including, but not limited to, cannabinoids such as CBD.

The committee also wants to explore the cannabis or cannabinoids on athletic performance in NFL players.

The PMC was formed in 2019 as part of the NFL-NFLPA Collective Bargaining Agreement with the goal of benefitting the health and safety of NFL players through education and research.

Last year it conducted two informational forums on CBD to learn about the current state of CBD science and manufacturing in the US, as part of its aim to find alternatives to opioids in the pain management of players.

Respondents to the request are expected to have experience conducting controlled, experimental studies in the relevant areas and should be affiliated with institutions or companies that meet state, federal, and IRB requirements.

However the NFL is not committing to funding any specific studies at this stage, and instead wants to seek out qualified scientists who can assist with future research projects.

CBD is not currently listed on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Prohibited List and, as a result, is permitted for use in sport.

However, all other cannabinoids such as cannabis, marijuana and THC are prohibited in competition due to the receptors activated in the brain which cause a ‘high’.

A 2018 review assessed the impact CBD has on relieving chronic pain. The review examined a number of studies, concluding that CBD was effective in overall pain management and didn’t cause any other negative side effects.

In addition, it has been suggested that CBD can speed recovery and fight fatigue – welcome news for athletes suffering from long-term or recurring injuries.

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How much CBD should I take?

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CBD capsules
Giving yourself the correct dose of CBD is key

One of the most common questions people ask about CBD is how much they should take. Here we explore how to find the correct dose for you.

From easing chronic pain to alleviating symptoms of PMS and menopause, CBD is fast becoming one of the most popular remedies on the market. 

But whatever your reason for use, like most medications, there are a lot of variables to take into account when deciding how much you should take. 

Giving yourself an adequate dosage is key – while there are few known side effects to taking too much CBD, by taking too little you could reduce the benefits of the remedy.

Start low, go slow

The best advice, however, is to start low and slow. If you’re not feeling the effect you desire, increase your dosage until you find the right amount for you. CBDology recommends starting with two or three drops, a few times a day and increasing very gradually over several days until you find what works for you. 

But, what other factors should you consider to determine your dose?

As with alcohol and many other medications, height, weight and metabolism are the biggest variables to take into account. In simple terms, the more you weigh, the more CBD you’ll need to consume to feel its effects. 

The role of the endocannabinoid system

CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, but before its benefits can be felt, it needs to travel around the rest of the body first. The rate and efficacy with which CBD is absorbed is thought to differ depending on our size. 

Similarly, age can have an impact on how our body makes use of and breaks down CBD. Our metabolism helps to split the components into smaller pieces to help it travel through our body – and age is a significant factor in our quickly our metabolism operates. The younger you are, the more CBD you’ll need to consume to benefit. 

Does CBD effect men and women differently?

While research is still in preliminary stages, early studies also suggest that there is potentially a difference in how CBD affects men and women due to hormonal and behavioural variations. 

The general summary is that it may show a more profound physiological impact in men, and a more profound behavioural impact in women. However, it’s important to remember that this isn’t proven and there are other elements which will have a bigger impact on dosage. 

Work out what’s best for you

Another factor to be aware of is previous experience. If you’re a total newbie and haven’t tried CBD before, it’s even more important to heed the ‘low and slow’ advice. Everyone reacts differently, and while the above elements have been shown to affect potency, it’s important to gauge how you feel personally before diving in headfirst. 

Those same rules apply even if you’ve been taking CBD for a while now – especially if you’re branching out into a new brand or format. Oils and capsules, for example, can have very different potencies, so be sure to take the time to readjust.

Essentially, there is no set dose when it comes to taking CBD. Before trying it, speak to a doctor or healthcare professional who may be able to recommend the right amount for you.

The best advice is, as we mentioned above, start with a low amount and regularly build up your dose. Write notes of how much CBD you’re taking and how you feel to track whether your symptoms are improving, until you feel the remedy is working for you and you can enjoy its benefits. 

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The £10 CBD pillow which promises a “calmer night’s sleep”

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Early studies indicate that high doses of CBD could help aid sleep

The major discount store B&M has introduced a new collection designed to give you a better night’s sleep – including a CBD-infused pillow at a bargain price.

According to the store’s website, the Downland CBD Infused Relaxation Pillow “enhances wellbeing” for a calmer and more comfortable night’s sleep and even “relieves anxiety and stress”.

As with other similar products, the pillow is filled with microcapsules of CBD which burst throughout the night to continually release microdoses of the cannabinoid, encased in a soft, knitted polyester cover.

Early studies indicate that high doses of CBD could help aid sleep, and consumers report that taking oils or tinctures before bed helps them relax, unwind and wake up feeling better-rested.

As CBD becomes more widely accepted for its potential to relieve stress and help people switch off, the CBD pillow was bound to make an impact – particularly as the The National Sleep Survey reported that almost half of us are finding it harder to fall asleep since the outbreak of Covid-19.

Downland CBD Oil Infused Relaxation Pillow. Source: B&M

Home furnishings company Plush Living launched its CBD Pillow last year, hailed as ‘the world’s most relaxing pillow’ the founders told Cannabis Health they wanted to create the “safest and least intrusive way to deliver CBD to people who could benefit from it most.”

But while most CBD pillows on the market will set you back around £100, this B&M beauty comes in at just £10.

Is it worth the hype or just a typical case of the retail giant cashing in on the rise of CBD?

“CBD has been one of the biggest trends over the last few years,” reported Ideal Home.

“Not having the right pillow can stop us from feeling well-rested, and can aggravate headaches.

“While we are yet to test the supposed benefits with B&M’s CBD pillow costing just £10 we’re happy to give it a try.” 

 

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Is cannabis good for exercise?

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Despite decades of being associated with inactivity, cannabis could actually be just what we need to get our bodies moving.

Everyone knows the old stereotype of a ‘pothead’. A lazy couch potato with a bong who gets nothing done, especially not personal care like exercise. But those old stigmas could be nothing further from the truth. Consuming marijuana (and other forms of cannabis) may be exactly what more people need to get up off the couch and get their bodies moving.

A global need for physical activity

Today, billions of people around the world do not get enough exercise. Rates of obesity around the world have risen over the past few decades. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports worldwide obesity has “nearly tripled” since 1975. 

The number of people aged 18 and older who are overweight is more than 1.9 billion. That’s about one out of every four adults who could benefit from more exercise.

Exercise is one of the main factors in maintaining a healthy weight. According to experts at Harvard University in Boston Massachusetts, USA, people need about 30 minutes of moderate exercise on a daily basis.  The time is reduced depending on the intensity of the exercise. People who do more intense exercise need less time before their exercise needs are met.

But, getting off the couch is not always the easiest proposition. Pain, inflammation and past injury can be devastating for those who experience them. No one wants to exercise when it doesn’t feel good.

Then there’s the issue of motivation. Some people have it and others don’t. Getting regular exercise is about building a habit. Habits are created through repetition, and repetition through consistency. If you have something to look forward to building a habit of regular exercise is easier. This is where cannabis comes in.

Healthy ‘stoner’?

We’ve come a long way in a short period of time. Studies from 2004, show the old way of approaching cannabis and health. There’s a strong anti-marijuana tone and the concern of passive inhalation, a fallacy. It’s due to the stigma plaguing marijuana use.

For years people assumed the worst about marijuana. Part of that stigma is the notion that cannabis consumers sit around and do nothing all day but eat, watch TV, and play video games.

The old stereotypes have held people back for decades, especially in the area of health. As more places replaced prohibitive law with more marijuana-friendly ones the research grows and we know more about the benefits of cannabis than ever before.

Today this research on the benefits of cannabis is tearing down erroneous beliefs. Experts and the general public are coming to know cannabis and the effects it has on our health.

Cannabis-use and exercise

Exercise is one of the areas of health researchers believe cannabis use can improve. A recent study reveals cannabis use is linked to an increase in exercise. The data was collected from more than 1,200 survey participants. The results show adults who use cannabis are more likely to exercise than those with no history of marijuana use.

The common conception of the inactive adult pot smoker is entirely wrong. There is a positive relationship between marijuana use and exercise.

There are some exercises cannabis may not be good with such as resistance training. Use before or after or both may be better depending on both the type of activity. It’s always best to do the research.

Approval from sports leagues

This relationship extends to sports as well. Recent headlines suggest major sports leagues are loosening their restrictions. Past restrictions against the use of nature’s most benefit-giving plant.

These two examples illustrate the point.

1) the National Hockey League (NHL) in North America tests for marijuana use but does not penalise players for a positive.

2) Major League Baseball (MBL) in North America removed marijuana from the list of banned substances.

Both leagues treat high levels of marijuana like alcohol, even though alcohol is toxic at high levels and marijuana is not.

Other leagues have yet to permit marijuana. Some are in the process of allowing it. But not all.

Retired athletes who still take their health seriously choose marijuana. Injuries from the field caused inflammation and pain. So they rely on some form of cannabis for relief.

Getting daily exercise with cannabis use

Daily exercise is one of the cornerstones of personal health. Reject it and the whole muscular-skeletal system will disintegrate. The good news is, there’s no reason why you can’t get daily exercise while using cannabis.

In fact, athletes prefer marijuana for its benefits. A 2019 study of 605 adult cannabis users in states with full legalisation showed cannabis use is preferred. The majority (81.7 percent) of the participants endorsed the cannabis feeling during exercise. Cannabis use before and after exercising was enjoyable. Not a bad motivator!

Why athletes prefer marijuana

Marijuana has fewer side effects than pain medication. Athletes can use it with no hangover or dehydration, plus they don’t need to worry they will go into withdrawal while filling their prescription.

But there are a few side effects worth thinking about. Smoking cannabis is not good for the lungs and people with a history of heart disease should consult a physician. There are also very good reasons why a non-adult should not use cannabis.

Overall the benefits of cannabis are vast. We have only begun to uncover what this plant can do for the human body and are even discovering marijuana use is connected with lower Body Mass Index (BMI).

As our knowledge of cannabis increases, we discover the relationship between cannabis and our well-being strengthens.

JuicyFields promote good health with cannabis 

JuicyFields promotes cannabis health by partnering with medical marijuana cultivators around the world.

Our online community of crowd-growers buys plants and our partners raise them. Our website provides a wealth of information about all things related to cannabis. To learn more about the benefits of marijuana, cooking with marijuana, marijuana news, and crowdgrowing marijuana please visit juicyfields.io 

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