Updated: Mar 19
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) removed CBD from its 2018 prohibited substance list, which means it is now legal for athletes to consume CBD!
Cannabidiol, more commonly referred to as CBD, is the non-psychoactive, pain-relieving cannabinoid found in cannabis/hemp. In addition to pain relief, CBD offers a variety of other health benefits including reducing inflammation, antioxidant properties, as well as neuroprotective benefits for athletes who may be prone to traumatic brain injury such as football players and MMA fighters.
Many athletes across a variety of sports have been unable to use CBD because the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) had listed it as a prohibited substance. However, the WADA recently released their updated prohibited list for 2018 and CBD will no longer be prohibited for use by athletes. Unlike opioid pain medications, CBD has not been found to be addictive. In fact, some research has found that CBD can actually help decrease addictive use of opioids like morphine by blocking the reward pathways that lead to addiction
It’s important to note that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the better known psychoactive component of cannabis and its derivatives are still on the prohibited list. As a result, athletes who wish to use CBD must ensure any products they use don’t contain any THC.
How does CBD work?
Years of scientific research has revealed that cannabinoids such as CBD interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a complex system that works within the body and controls a variety of biological processes like appetite, immune responses, mood, pain and sleep. The ECS also contains a network of cannabinoid receptors found throughout the body of all mammals, called CB1 & CB2. By connecting with the two main types of cannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2, which are found on cells throughout the body, CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system and also stimulates other receptors in your body, helping it to achieve homeostasis—the body’s natural state of balance.
Here are 3 reasons why Athletes should use CBD:
Whether you are a runner, boxer, swimmer or just love working out at the gym gaining those muscle goals, CBD can serve you a purpose and here's how:
1) Sleep - One of the most reported benefits of CBD is its effect of your REM-sleep cycle. Athletes who use CBD have more restful sleeps, aiding in their athletic focus, recovery, and performance.
2) Recovery - After strenuous cardiovascular training, inflammation occurs in the body, leading to muscle soreness. CBD has been proven to be a powerful anti-inflammatory and pain reliever.
3) Energy - CBD’s biphasic, which means when it is taken it low doses it has been shown to increase alertness and wakefulness, giving you that natural energy boost to hit the gym!
CBD comes in many variations and can be taken orally in the form of an oil or capsules and it can also be used topically to apply directly to an area of the body that is inflamed or in pain.