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  • Writer's pictureStef

Stress & anxiety and what it does to our bodies

stress and cbd

There are times in all our lives where we feel stress, anxiety and fear, some people more than others but I think it's fair to say that in the past 2 years we have all experienced this. Do you know what long term stress does to your body? It's not good.

When we are stressed or anxious (or afraid) our bodies automatically have a flight or fight response and our brains release a hormone, cortisol. Cortisol is sort of like your body's alarm system. It will curb functions that would be nonessential or harmful in a fight-or-flight situation. It alters immune system responses and suppresses the digestive system, the reproductive system and growth processes. This complex natural alarm system also communicates with the brain regions that control mood, motivation and fear. The body's stress response system is usually self-limiting. Once a perceived threat has passed, hormone levels return to normal, but what happens when the perceived threat doesn't go away?

When we are constantly under stress or anxious that fight-or-flight reaction stays turned on. The long-term activation of the stress response system and the overexposure to cortisol can disrupt almost all our body's processes. This puts us at increased risk of many health problems, including:

  • Anxiety

  • Depression

  • Digestive problems

  • Headaches

  • Muscle tension and pain

  • Heart disease, heart attack, high blood pressure and stroke

  • Sleep problems

  • Weight gain

  • Memory and concentration impairment

So how can CBD help you may ask? Several studies have shown that CBD can help reduce stress and anxiety. When applied topically or consumed through smoke inhalation or edibles, CBD interacts with neuroreceptors in your endocannabinoid system, which sends signals between your cells to help regulate your mood, movement, homeostasis and immune system. At high concentrations, CBD directly activates the 5-HT1A (hydroxytryptamine) serotonin receptor, thereby causing an anti-anxiety effect.

In lieu of living a completely stress-free life (and if anyone has the formula for that please let me know!) it is essential to recognize when we are suffering chronic stress and be sure to do whatever we can to bring ourselves back into a calm state.

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