As with any new industries, the world of CBD is changing quickly. As challenges are faced, solutions are found, and this is what helps a new industry evolve and establish itself.
The CBD industry is still very much in its infancy and this is one reason why it is so exciting. Although we can make predictions about what might be ahead, the path is often carved out according to some of the challenges which are faced by both the industry and the customers.
The CBD industry has really only existed for the past few years. CBD is one of the compounds which is found in the cannabis plant and significant research has only really been done on it since laws have been relaxed in recent years.
CBD and the endocannabinoid system
The reason why scientists are so excited about the future of CBD is because of the fact that it can impact the human endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system was only discovered in the 1990’s and it is from this moment on that things have started to change with regards to CBD.
The endocannabinoid system is a system within the body which helps to regulate a number of other processes. It ensures that the body temperature stays regulated, makes sure that the immune and nervous systems work at optimum levels and can help us to keep our mood in check. It is therefore vital that the endocannabinoid system works well.
The endocannabinoid system is based on the interaction between cannabinoid receptors and endocannabinoids (cannabinoids which are made within the human body itself) and when levels of endocannabinoids are depleted, the body can run into health problems.
CBD and other cannabinoids which are found in the hemp plant can help to boost these levels and allows us to get out body working properly.
Why do we need water soluble CBD?
CBD is extracted from the plant and is usually then mixed with a carrier oil like coconut oil, hemp seed oil or olive oil to help it to be absorbed into the body. This is because CBD itself is not water soluble. In other words, CBD alone cannot easily be absorbed into the bloodstream. It is defined as being hydrophobic – meaning that it doesn’t mix with water very well.
The human body is made up predominantly from water – in fact, the brain and heart are about 73% water, the lungs, 83% and the skin, about 64% water. If you imagine when you are making a vinaigrette and trying to mix your olive oil with balsamic vinegar, you can see why your body might find it difficult to effectively absorb CBD oil.
When CBD is taken, it is carried around the body in the bloodstream which then delivers it to the cannabinoid receptors. So, if the CBD is unable to be properly dissolved, it cannot be properly absorbed and ends up being flushed out of the body with the other waste products.
If you are taking CBD, we need to have a way to get it absorbed into the system. It would therefore make sense if CBD could be made to be soluble in water for a number of reasons:
- Bioavailability – Bioavailability is the percentage of a substance (or drug) that can be absorbed into the human body, and how quickly. In other words, it is about its ability to be effectively absorbed into the body. CBD alone has very bad bioavailability, which can be improved by the addition of oils. However, even with these oils, it means that high quantities of CBD are needed for a relatively small effect.
- Waste – If you are taking a CBD product with a low bioavailability, it means that high percentages of what you have taken isn’t used and disposed of by the body. So basically, you are buying and taking CBD to just dispose of it. Which is very wasteful both in the body and financially!
- Health – With our health it is never good to have too much of something, even if the body is disposing of it naturally. Although CBD is not dangerous to your body, it is never good to have an abundance of anything and getting rid of it takes up extra processing and energy.
- Choice – There are a number of ways that CBD can be taken, when it is mixed with oil. However, if CBD were to be water soluble it would open up a whole host of new delivery methods. It could be easily added to food and drinks, for example, giving more options to producers, as well as people the opportunity to add CBD to their own food or drinks.
It is therefore not surprising that one of the first major trends that we are seeing in the CBD industry is the emergence of water soluble CBD. With the fact that the body is over half made up of water, it therefore makes sense that scientists have been trying to develop water soluble CBD.
Water soluble CBD means that the percentage of CBD that gets absorbed by the body increases due to its higher bioavailability, meaning that the CBD that you are taking is more effective, wastes less and therefore should make it more cost effective as well. It also gives producers and users a lot more flexibility over how it is taken.
Making water soluble CBD
Making water soluble CBD is not as simple as it might seem. It involves a complicated chemical process called nanotechnology, which is often used in medicine and that involves breaking the CBD down into tiny particles. These particles are so tiny that they are then able to be ‘dissolved’ and blended with water molecules.
After the CBD has been ‘re-engineered’, it becomes a powder or a liquid which can then be sold and
then used to make CBD products.
The fact that the CBD can effectively be carried around by the bloodstream and then directly interact with the cannabinoid receptors, it can be not only more effective, but also come into effect much quicker if it is water soluble. This is beneficial to anyone who is taking CBD for whatever reason!
As we see the CBD industry moving forwards, efficacy, speed and flexibility seem to be important factors that we will see improvement on. Although one half of the CBD industry are working towards a better understanding of the health benefits of CBD and other compounds from the cannabis plant, the other side is working with what we already know and trying to improve the experience for those who already are taking it.
CBD can be useful for helping with a number of health issues, as well as giving your endocannabinoid system (and therefore your general health) a lift, and we are seeing more and more people around the world who are seeing its benefits. However, if you are already taking medication and want to try CBD – regardless of whether it is water soluble or not, it is important that you speak to your doctor first.
With the future looking so bright for CBD and other cannabinoids which are present in the hemp or cannabis plant, it is likely that we will see many other evolutions. However, the emergence of water soluble CBD is something that is set to change the lives for many people who take CBD, and open up an abundance of doors for people who make CBD products.