Hemp oil is the serum or oil derived from the hemp plant. The hemp plant originates from Cannabis Sativa, the same species of cannabis as marijuana. There are many differences between hemp and marijuana, but the most notable is that marijuana contains between .5 and 30% tetrahydrocannabinol (or THC), while hemp contains less than .3%. Though THC has medicinal qualities, it is also the cannabinoid with the psychoactive properties responsible for the euphoric high so often associated with recreational marijuana use.
There are many different strains of the hemp plant. Certain strains are used for industrial purposes exclusively, while other strains high in CBD, other cannabinoids, and nutrients are used for medicinal and healing purposes.
Hemp oil can be extracted from the flowers, seeds, and roots of the plant. Hemp oil can be ingested or used topically. Pure essential hemp oil, however, should not be used undiluted.
How Hemp Oil Works on Pain and Inflammation
Hemp oil can be ingested in capsule, tincture, tea, or used as an oil for cooking, and in dips and dressings. In addition to the CBD and other cannabinoids, consuming hemp seed oil also provides an excellent form of protein, the correct balance of essential fatty acids, and antioxidants such as Vitamins A, C, and E.
The topical use of hemp oil derived from the plant’s root has an effect on pain. It works on the cellular level through the Endocannabinoid System, or ECS. The hemp oil can be added to carrier oils, such as almond or olive for a massage oil or to creams. The warmth and pleasant nutty aroma offer instant relief. The oil then works with the ECS targeting the C1 and C2 receptors found in the cellular nucleus. This cellular action signals the DNA to produce a protein which in turn stops the production of the arachidonic acid. Arachidonic acid is responsible for causing the pain and inflammation.
When referring to research, we are not just referring to the process of methodically looking up information. Research, in this case, relates to scientific research and approved studies using quantitative and qualitative methodologies and/or instruments to measure results from a defined population. Interviews or case studies are also an important part of scientific research, especially in regards to medical findings. Some research uses a mixed-method by combining both techniques of qualitative and quantitative. The purpose of the research is to prove or disprove the hypothesis.
Indeed, the medicinal qualities of cannabis have been studied and documented for thousands of years. After the discovery of the endocannabinoid system in the late 1980s, however, there has been an onslaught of scientific journal articles on the virtues of hemp and marijuana – including many on the ability of cannabis to relieve pain.
In a research article authored by Rosenfeld and Fine, the pain phenomenon is thoroughly explained from its role in healing to the need to relieve chronic and damaging pain. The report details the ECS and the cellular action behind the usage of hemp and the ECS. The article also points out the damage and side-effects caused by prescription and OTC pain medications.
A 2007 article by Klein and Newton explains how through the ECS cannabis can determine what C1 and C2 receptors to manipulate, and what condition and symptom to target. The article points out that clinical trials have shown promising results in the use of hemp for arthritis, neuropathy pain, Muscular Sclerosis and others.
A 2013 case study by Singh and Bali takes readers through the trials of a 14-year-old leukemia patient who receives treatment with hemp oil, noting that morphine use for pain was decreased significantly with the utilization of the oil.
The research is becoming more and more convincing that cannabis has substantial analgesic properties. The campaign for legalization continues. Even now, though, the pharmaceutical companies have already taken advantage of the limited legal status and derived synthetic drugs which hone on the characteristics of both the THC and CBD cannabinoids.
Whether used topically or ingested, oil harvested from the hemp plant is an excellent way to target the ECS to alleviate pain and some other symptoms, especially those resulting in an inflammatory disorder. As the research indicates, hemp oil has minimal side-effects, but any concerns regarding side-effects or contraindications should be discussed with a healthcare professional.