If you’re tuned in with the world of wellness, chances are, you’ve definitely come across the term CBD. The buzzword has exploded across the US and has also recently also entered the Asia and Europe markets—and it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. The global CBD market is currently valued at US$3.5 billion and is expected to reach USD 13.4 billion by 2028. But what’s it all about? Praised for its mental health and pain relief benefits—amongst many other things—CBD is a chemical in the Cannabis sativa plant, also known as cannabis or hemp. We speak with Dr. Julie Moltke, author of A Quick Guide to CBD, founder of Swedish wellness retreat Mindfulness Manor, holistic health practitioner and an all-rounded CBD expert who has been featured in Vogue, The Times, ELLE Decoration and more, on the benefits of the plant-based substance.
How does CBD work as an anti-anxiety treatment and what’s the best way to go about starting your first ‘experience’? CBD works by interacting with several systems in the brain including the serotonin system, the endocannabinoid system and the GABA system. These are all involved in the regulation of mood and mental health. We still have a lot to learn about the mechanisms of CBD but a research study that I recently did showed that more than 40% of CBD users are reporting to take it to help alleviate anxiety. In my clinical experience with patients, I would say that the most effective ways to use it are to either vaporise CBD or use it as CBD broad spectrum oil. CBD oil gives you a more long-lasting effect throughout the day whereas vaping can help with acute attacks of anxiety-like panic attacks. Start low and go slow until you find your perfect dose. This can vary but is often recommended between 25-50 mg per day used over 1-3 dosages. The FSA does not recommend exceeding 70 mg. My preferred brand is LDN CBD and they also have a special discount if you have a chronic illness or are a frontline worker.
What are some common misconceptions about CBD? Some people think that CBD can make you high because it comes from the cannabis plant. That is not the case though it does work on receptors in the brain it is not psychotomimetic. Another misconception is that it can cause addiction. CBD does not directly influence dopamine and therefore does not cause addiction.
What are some fascinating studies that are going into CBD at the moment?There are many great ongoing studies with CBD. It is being tested for autism and ADHD, for several psychiatric conditions including PTSD, anxiety and insomnia, CBD for anxiety in breast cancer and we have ongoing trials looking at CBD for chronic pain. If you look up studies with CBD at clinicaltrials.gov you will get over 800 results.
What are the most amazing benefits of CBD? In my experience, the most useful benefits of CBD are insomnia and sleep problems, stress, anxiety, inflammation and pain and seizures in children who suffer from epilepsy. I also see many people with fibromyalgia or migraines who can benefit from CBD.
Who does CBD suit? Does it work for everyone? Almost all my clients have responded well to CBD so far. In the cases when it hasn’t worked as well, it was often someone who had a very “wired” nervous system and where CBD seemed to somehow make them tenser. This only happened to a handful of patients.
Your book ‘A Quick Guide to CBD: Everything you need to know’ sums up the most frequently asked questions on the topic. What inspired you to write this book and how has it helped readers incorporate CBD into their lifestyle? I was already working with public education about CBD and went to conferences and fairs around the world talking about CBD and medicinal cannabis. I was interested to write an easy guide for the average consumer to use. Nothing too complicated or scientific. It was perfect timing when I was contacted by Octopus Books and we decided to make the book together and I think we succeeded with our aim. Just today I received an email from a reader from Japan who read the book and really enjoyed it. He wanted it to be translated into Japanese.