While the benefits of CBD are rewriting the cannabis rulebook, the industry is finally dropping its stereotypical “stoner” image and adjusting its target audience. Cannabis might have once been considered a young man’s game, but it is the seniors of today who could experience the most valuable wellness gains from CBD, as it emerges as an effective therapy for a range of conditions (without the unwanted side effects).
Unfortunately, as we get older, our bodies and minds don’t necessarily behave in the way we would like them to. Common health troubles faced by the senior demographic include conditions such as neurodegenerative disease, arthritis, chronic pain, sleep difficulty and depression.
We can’t deem CBD to be the one-stop-shop for all senior health issues but there is increasing evidence that suggests it can ease a lot of symptoms associated with the list above. Importantly, CBD’s natural mood-boosting effects allow elders, who may be feeling frustrated or low about life’s difficulties, bring a more positive, can-do attitude to their day-to-day. That’s something we should all be encouraged to do!
Among some of the most groundbreaking research on cannabis, is CBD’s ability to alleviate a number of stressful symptoms associated with Alzheimer’s disease, and other neurological disorders. This is predominantly due to its anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties.
While a number of factors can lead to dementia, research shows that inflammation can increase the negative impact of such diseases. When the brain’s immune cells fail to clear neurological blockages, an inflammatory response automatically occurs. When these responses take place, it results in a build-up of oxygen and the deterioration of a number of brain functions, primarily memory loss. CBD can prohibit these responses due to its natural anti-inflammatory capabilities, leading to improved mental health among those suffering. At the same time, CBD can also increase neuroplasticity and neurogenesis; two brain activities which are shown to decrease with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.
Pain management is an ongoing battle for a majority of the population and is an inevitable part of the ageing process. Perhaps unbeknownst to western civilisation, cannabis has been used for pain treatment for thousands of years, given its prolific place in ancient Chinese medicine. The early Chinese doctor, Hua Tua (c. 140-208) has been credited as being the first person to use cannabis as an anaesthetic, who for generations after has been deemed the “master of surgery.” Fast forward to the present day, CBD has emerged as an effective remedy for a number of painful disorders including arthritis: a common condition in elders which results in stiffness and inflammation of the joints.
CBD’s relationship with the immune system suggests why it can be such an effective treatment for painful conditions like arthritis. Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s own immune system attacks the body’s joints. It often affects joints in a symmetrical pattern, such as both hands, both hips, both knees and will often result in frequent fatigue and a general feeling of discomfort. Research shows that those suffering with RA have a high concentration of CB2 receptors in the joint tissue. When people take CBD, it locks into the CB2 receptors, which activates pathways in the joints, making it easier for the body to battle the inflammation there and manage the pain.
These are just some of the common health issues among the senior group, and some of the ways in which CBD can help. While there is still a lot to learn in this area of cannabis research, older generations should feel comforted by the anecdotal evidence that already exists. In fact, Remedy Review recently conducted a study on 1000 adults over the age of 54 to evaluate the benefits for this demographic. 51% of respondents said they experienced an improved quality of life after trying CBD, and 89% said they would recommend their family or friends CBD for health-related reasons.
The versatility of CBD is what makes it such an appropriate remedy for this age group. It has the potential to combat multiple health issues at once, and can be approached and consumed in a number of ways; from drops, to gels, to edibles – the older generation need not feel intimidated by this form of cannabis.
To add, this entirely natural substance appears to counteract a lot of the stress and side effects now commonly associated with over-the-counter medication, which justifies all the attention CBD is currently receiving, and why we may hear a lot more about its timeless benefits moving forward.