What is it and why its use is skyrocketing in the wellness community

Deann Zampelli, Health Coach, M.A., HWC
3 min readMar 15, 2024


Photo by Chelsea shapouri on Unsplash

Cannabidiol. CBD. Don’t get too excited. This is the non-psychotropic part of either the marijuana or the hemp plant. According to the CDC, “Hemp is defined as any part of the cannabis sativa plant with no more than 0.3% of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).” Which is otherwise known as the “stoney part.” However, use caution when buying CBD at dispensaries, as most are not FDA regulated, and therefore not required to adhere to the under 0.3% standard.

CBD’s medicinal use goes back thousands of years and was used to treat a variety of ailments such as malaria, rheumatism, gout, and memory loss. But more recently, the FDA has approved a drug called Epidiolex, which contains a purified form of CBD and is used to treat some seizure disorders.

So how does it work? According to Forbes Health, “When applied topically or consumed orally via oils, capsules, gummies or drinks, CBD interacts with neuroreceptors in the endocannabinoid system, which sends signals between cells in the body to help regulate movement, mood, homeostasis and immune function.” So, there’s that.

I bet you a glass of kombucha, you can’t walk (ok, drive) more than a few blocks in our town without finding a product for sale that contains CBD. Creams for aches. Gummies for insomnia. Tinctures for anxiety. Oils for pain management, inflammation, and some neurological disorders. It is so readily available; CVS even carries it. But according to Brittany Bijan, Santa Barbara yoga instructor and CBD aficionado not all CBD is created equal, “It’s extremely important to ensure your CBD is USDA certified, hemp is such a mop crop that it absorbs all of the toxins in the air and in the soil so it’s really important to know where your hemp is coming from.” She is a big believer, as CBD changed her life by curing years of debilitating insomnia.

However, with anything you ingest, you should do your research. Like Lululemon leggings, one size does not fit all. Just because CBD is natural, does not mean it can’t cause complications. Many people forget to tell their health practitioners about herbal supplements or even vitamins they are taking, and they need to know EVERYTHING as there can be surprising drug and physiological interactions with even the most innocent of vitamins.

What seems clear though is that CBD usage is not only on the rise but is becoming more mainstream. Remember when acupuncture was considered “new” despite thousands of years of practice? Well, most insurance plans now cover it. Western medicine is catching up, albeit slowly, and perhaps CBD is the next one to take flight.

In 2023, the global CBD market reached $7.6 billion and is expected to grow exponentially over the next decade. More and more research is explaining why. According to the NIH’s National Library of Medicine, the use of CBD for psychiatric conditions is also gaining traction, “CBD is purported to be used for various medical and psychiatric conditions: depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, Alzheimer’s or other cognitive illnesses as well as pain. There is also a new trend to use CBD for the treatment of opioid use disorder.”

So, what’s the catch? Like anything, CBD can have side effects; dry mouth, stomach upset, decrease in appetite and drowsiness. And it isn’t for everyone.

Which brings us back to what Brittany Bijan said. Not all CBD is of equal quality. If you are interested, ask an expert, do your research, and speak with your health professionals. In the meantime, I highly recommend the hand cream. It worked wonders for me and my flying fingers and fit like a glove. Sometimes one size does fit all.

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