Both cannabidiol (CBD) and essential oils have taken a leading role in providing alternative health solutions for maintaining wellness. With increasing clinical research on the benefits of both these compounds, it was only time before someone considered the advantages of combining the two—the results are impressive.
Evidence suggests that the combination of CBD and essential oils can produce greater health benefits than if the two are used separately. The following is an overview of the science behind how combining CBD and essential oils can provide greater therapeutic effects.
The Chemistry Behind CBD and Essential Oils
To understand how CBD and essential oils work better together, it is important to understand what these products do on their own. Both essential oils and CBD contain naturally-occurring compounds found in plants, but there are some differences.
Essential oils are the sum total of all the phytocompounds, and more specifically, secondary metabolites that are unique to that plant. The fragrance and chemical profile of any essential oil contains phenols, terpenes, and other aromatic essences in quantities and combinations unique to the plant.
It is these naturally-occurring chemicals in essential oils that are so valued for their capacity to relieve inflammation, relax the nerves, stimulate circulation, and so on. These benefits have been applied in aromatherapy for centuries with well-documented benefits.1
CBD is another natural product, but it is not an essential oil. CBD is only one of many different compounds found in the cannabis plant. The entire spectrum of cannabis contains over 100 cannabinoids, as well as many of the terpenes and phenols found in essential oils. The quantity of terpenes and other aromatic molecules in cannabis is what gives marijuana its distinctive aroma when it is burned or smoked.
Now you might be wondering: if the same beneficial compounds available in essential oils are also in the cannabis plant, why all the excitement about combining them?
CBD Extraction and the Entourage Effect
As mentioned previously, CBD is one of many compounds in the cannabis plant. Other members of the family include other cannabinoids like cannabigerol (CBG), cannabichromene (CBC), and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), as well as many terpenes.
However, most CBD products contain only CBD, as this is the molecule most valued for a variety of health benefits without creating intoxicating effects. This is where terpene-rich essential oils come in.
According to the research, phytocannabinoid-terpenoid synergy leads to an entourage effect. This improves the pharmacological benefits of both cannabinoids and terpenes when they are taken together.
Because of this, health enthusiasts opt for full-spectrum CBD products, as they contain terpenes and cannabinoids from the original plant.2
So, why mix CBD and essential oils? Many CBD oils are not full-spectrum because full-spectrum options are not always available in regions where recreational cannabis is not legal. So, instead, a combination of CBD with terpenes from essential oils could potentiate the effects of non-full-spectrum CBD. For those using full-spectrum CBD products already, the addition of more terpenes may enhance therapeutic effects.3
CBD and Essential Oil Combinations for Beginners
CBD and Lavender Essential Oil for Better Sleep
Studies have revealed that lavender acts as a mild sedative and can reduce the time it takes to fall asleep while improving sleep quality. CBD is also a potent sleep enhancer.
CBD and Bergamot Essential Oil for Anxiety Reduction
Bergamot essential oil has a bright aroma and a pleasant flavor that can be added to black tea. This combination mirrors the taste of Earl Grey tea. Throw in a drop of CBD oil to make that a bulletproof tea with anxiety-relieving properties.
CBD and Turmeric Essential Oil for Cough, Cold, and Flu Relief
This combination of herbal remedies is helpful for relieving the symptoms of illness and boosting the immune system’s defenses.
CBD and Peppermint Essential oils for a Digestion Boost
Both CBD and peppermint essential oil have been found to effectively control digestive issues and even suppress the urge to vomit.
These results have been observed on many scales. This includes relieving digestive discomforts in adolescents, as well as the discomforts of cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.
Combining CBD and essential oils is fairly simple. However, it is a good idea to research the essential oils you plan to use. Many essential oils cannot be ingested and most need to be combined with a carrier oil for topical applications. CBD is more versatile and can be rubbed onto the skin, ingested, or vaporized.
Given the promise that CBD and essential oils show, this could be a combination that gains more traction moving forward.
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