How To Use CBD To Aid SleepHere’s what you need to know about how CBD can improve your sleep.
Why It’s So Hard to Get Quality Rest Right NowWhile the hectic schedule most women in America juggle could lead to compromised sleep at any time, getting quality sleep has been especially tricky during this challenging time 2020, attests Haley Hansen, Equilibria Dosage Specialist. “We talk with women who are working from home and homeschooling their kids,” says Hansen. “And after-work can come with its own challenges.” This translates to many women finding that they are having trouble falling asleep. Because it is so tough to unwind or turn off their racing mind from the busy workday. Other women have trouble staying asleep, says Hansen. “They’re so exhausted from the day that they’re able to fall right to sleep for a few hours. But then they get up around 2 or 3 a.m. and start worrying or planning for the next day,” she notes. “It seems like this pattern is very common in 2020: falling asleep for a few hours, then waking up in the middle of the night and having trouble going back to sleep.”
The Relationship Between the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) and SleepWhile managing to get a good night’s rest could feel nearly impossible for so many of us right now, the good news is that balancing your endocannanbinoid system (ECS) with CBD could very well be the key to bolstering your sleep-wake cycle. Here’s the scoop. Your ECS is a system of receptors, spread across the various systems in the body, and it plays a crucial role in regulating a broad range of physiological processes that affect your everyday experience — from your mood to energy level, your immune activity, and how you experience discomfort, stress, hunger, and more. According to ProjectCBD, Italian scientist Vicenzo DiMarzo summarized the broad regulatory function of the endocannabinoid system in the phrase “Eat, sleep, relax, protect and forget.” At the same time, your circadian rhythms are overseeing a bevy of physiological processes. Like hormone production, heart rate, and metabolism. As well as how you fall asleep, stay asleep, wake up, and remain awake. There’s evidence that the two systems work together. Researchers have found that anandamide and 2-AG — two cannabis-like chemicals that are produced naturally in the brain — fluctuate in the sleep-wake cycle. So do metabolic enzymes that create and break down these compounds. According to ProjectCBD, anandamide is present in the brain at higher levels at night. And it works with the endogenous neurotransmitters oleamide and adenosine to generate sleep. And 2-AG works like your body’s own natural caffeine. As its levels rise during the day, promoting wakefulness. But as women age, levels of these compounds might drop drastically (especially after menopause. But also due to autoimmune disorders, genetics, fertility/childbirth, etc.), which is why adding a phytocannabinoid—aka CBD—can be so beneficial.
CBD & Sleep: What Studies Have ShownInterest in CBD as a sleep aid dates back to the 18th century when cannabis was actually referred to as a “narcotica” and “anodyna”. Or drowsiness-inducing pain reliever, in the acclaimed medical reference Materia Medica. Today, we have published research to back up its usefulness when it comes to getting quality rest—and more of it. A long-term study of sleep quality published in The Permanente Journal assessed CBD use in people with ongoing stress. More subjects self-reported experiencing improved sleep compared to poorer sleep. The subjects who benefited noted decreased nighttime sleep interruptions and increased total sleep time. Other research has shown CBD to be especially effective in addressing REM sleep behavior disorder—which causes you to physically act out vivid, often unpleasant dreams—and excessive daytime sleepiness. And in 2019, participants in a comprehensive research study by Project CBD found that:
- CBD helped them get to sleep more quickly. Reducing the average time from about an hour to 20 minutes.
- They also reported waking up much less often: 1.4 times per night versus 4.3 or about a third as many times.
- Without CBD, almost three-quarters of participants reported waking up tired; with CBD, 9% reported waking up tired.