Fearless and Free: How CBD Erases the Lingering Impact of Predator Stress!
People take CBD for lots of different reasons, but one of the most popular is for anxiety or stress relief. According to results from Forbes health survey research, at least 50% of CBD users across all age categories use CBD to relieve stress.
Stress is a very interesting medical phenomenon. We all experience it, and it has significant impacts on all of us. Stress is something that many of us see as just part of everyday life… but stress can have some major medical effects, including heart issues, mental health issues, and immune system problems. Stress impacts every aspect of your health– even your fertility and ability to have kids.
Finding a way to deal with stress is important, so let’s talk more about stress, why it impacts us, and how CBD research shows a way to deal with stress. Please note that these statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The products discussed here are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Why Does Stress Affect Us So Strongly?
There is a close relationship between stress and health. Stress affects our health strongly due to its impact on various physiological systems in the body. When we experience stress, our body undergoes a series of reactions as part of the “fight or flight” response, which is the body’s way of preparing to deal with perceived threats or challenges. While this response is crucial for survival in the short-term, chronic stress can lead to significant health problems.
Stress triggers the release of hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline. While these hormones are helpful in short bursts, prolonged release due to chronic stress can disrupt the body’s hormonal balance, leading to issues like weight gain, high blood pressure, and compromised immune function. If you experience chronic stress, you may develop a weakened immune system, making the body more susceptible to infections and illnesses. This occurs because stress hormones suppress the effectiveness of the immune system, reducing the body’s ability to fight off pathogens.
Stress also contributes to chronic inflammation in the body, which is linked to numerous health problems including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and autoimmune disorders. Prolonged stress can lead to a persistent state of inflammation, increasing the risk of developing these conditions. Stress can raise blood pressure and heart rate, increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke over time. Chronic stress contributes to the buildup of plaque in arteries, leading to atherosclerosis and other cardiovascular problems.
Stress can also affect the digestive system, leading to issues like irritable bowel syndrome, indigestion, and acid reflux. Chronic stress can disrupt the balance of gut bacteria and reduce blood flow to the digestive organs, making these problems worse.
Finally, chronic stress is closely linked to mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression. The constant activation of the stress response can affect neurotransmitter levels in the brain, leading to mood disturbances and cognitive issues. Stress can also interfere with sleep patterns, leading to insomnia or poor-quality sleep. Lack of adequate sleep further exacerbates stress and can contribute to a range of health problems, including impaired cognitive function and increased risk of chronic diseases.
How Do We Study Stress?
It can be challenging to study stress because when we talk about stress in people, there are often a lot of contributing factors. An easy way for researchers to look at stress is by studying a phenomenon called predator stress.
Predator stress, also known as predatory stress, is a type of psychological stress induced by the presence or threat of a predator. It is a well-established model used in laboratory research to study the physiological and behavioral responses to acute stress in animals. Predator stress is one of the ways that researchers are able to induce stress that can then be used as a proxy for stressful experiences in humans.
The goal of inducing predator stress in research is to understand how animals respond to acute stressors that mimic real-life threats in their natural environment. This stressor triggers a cascade of physiological and behavioral responses, including the release of stress hormones like cortisol or adrenaline, changes in neurotransmitter levels, alterations in brain activity, and changes in behavior such as freezing, fleeing, or defensive behaviors.
Studying predator stress in laboratory animals can provide valuable insights into the mechanisms underlying stress responses and how they impact various physiological systems in humans, including the nervous, endocrine, and immune systems. This research can have implications for understanding stress-related disorders in humans and developing potential interventions or treatments to mitigate the negative effects of stress on health and well-being.
How Does CBD Impact Predator Stress?
In a recent study, neuroscientists looked at the impact of CBD on predator stress in rats. Specifically, they wanted to understand the potential impacts of CBD for PTSD-related symptoms, which can be modeled with long-term predator exposure.
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a serious condition that can develop after a traumatic event. Exposure to predators can cause lasting anxiety in rodents, similar to symptoms seen in people with PTSD. Cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis plants, is frequently used for stress relief, so the researchers wanted to understand how it might be able to help the rats. In this study, researchers gave male rats CBD after they were exposed to a cat– the predator in the predator stress question. Some rats received a single dose of CBD, while others received repeated doses. A week later, the rats were tested in a maze to measure their anxiety levels.
The researchers also looked at how CBD affects specific brain receptors called 5HT1A receptors, which are involved in anxiety. They found that repeated doses of CBD prevented the long-lasting anxiety caused by the predator exposure, implying that it might be feasible to use CBD for PTSD treatment, possibly by affecting these specific brain receptors.
Why Use Predator Stress?
Exposure to predators like cats can lead to immediate defensive behavior and long-lasting changes in behavior in rodents. These changes are more significant compared to models using other stressors like electric shocks. The exact brain mechanisms behind these lasting effects are still unknown, but they might involve changes in certain brain structures and neurotransmitter systems related to fear and memory.
What The Study Found
In the study, the researchers found that giving rats repeated doses of CBD after they were exposed to a predator helped prevent long-lasting anxiety caused by the traumatic event. However, after the predator exposure, the rats also showed reduced activity in certain parts of a maze, which could suggest a decrease in general activity rather than just anxiety. This reduction in activity is common in studies using anxiety-inducing drugs or procedures. The researchers believe it might be because these drugs or procedures make rats more alert to potential threats in the maze.
Previous studies have shown that CBD can reduce anxiety in rodents and humans. It’s thought to work by affecting brain activity related to emotions. Unlike previous studies where CBD was given shortly before testing, the researchers started giving CBD to the rats one hour after the predator exposure and ended it 24 hours before testing. This suggests that CBD might not only have immediate effects on anxiety but also affect long-term changes caused by stress.
Overall, the researchers’ study suggests that repeated doses of CBD can help prevent long-lasting anxiety caused by exposure to predators in rats. CBD might work by affecting serotonin receptors in the brain, but its exact mechanisms of action are still unclear. More research is needed to fully understand how people can use CBD for PTSD and other stress-related disorders.
Using CBD for Stress
If you want to try CBD for your own stress, you want to make sure that the product you use is as safe and effective as possible. Full-spectrum CBD allows you to take advantage of the entourage effect without the psychoactive effects of many other cannabinoids. You should always choose lab-tested CBD for your safety! Many people find that a tincture is the easiest, most effective way for them to take CBD.
At Myriam’s Hemp, we believe that everybody should have the information they need to take charge of their own wellness. Stress impacts everybody, and more and more people are turning to natural remedies like CBD to help manage the long-term effects. If you’re interested in trying CBD for yourself, don’t hesitate to reach out– we’d love to hear from you!
FDA Disclaimer: The claims in this blog post are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, and these statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Please consult your healthcare professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any CBD product.