Nowadays, CBD seems to be everywhere. However, we can find mentions of the plant even in writings from ancient times. That is when people found that the herb could be used for medicinal purposes. Today, experts build on those basics to derive new and better products.
Today, you can find a lot of meds with CBD content, and the list includes painkillers, sedatives, etc. Yet, there isn’t unified legislation for this compound. In other words, not all CBD items are legal in every US state.
However, doctors sometimes prescribe CBD and other hemp products to patients with chronic ailments. Therefore, these natural elements are beneficial. So, let’s take a closer look at the history of CBD in medicine from ancient times to the present day.
First Documented Use of CBD
We see the first reported evidence of cannabis’s medicinal in Shen-Nung Pen Ts’ao Ching. According to Chinese Mythology, Shen Nung was one of the first emperors of China who ruled sometime around 2000BC. Later, the nation gave him deity status.
However, researchers think Chinese physicians were passing their knowledge about the herbs through word of mouth. Then, they believe an unknown author took these accounts and put them in a book sometime after 200AD. Afterward, the plant kept popping up in texts from Egypt, Greece, the Roman Empire, and India.
Medical Use in Arabia and Africa
From India, cannabis use spread to Arabia. From 1000 to 1464 AD, prominent Muslim physicians like Avicena and Ibn-al Badri cited the drug in their writings. They used cannabis to treat multiple ailments like ear pain, digestive problems, high blood pressure, and even epilepsy.
The Africans used cannabis to treat illnesses like dysentery, malaria, fever, anthrax, and asthma. Also, they applied it during childbirth as well. However, till 1839, the plant remained relatively unknown in western medicine.
CBD in Western Medicine
Cannabis became popular in western medicine during the 19th century. William Brooke O’Shaughnessy studied medicine in Edinburgh but moved to India. There, he studied cannabis and wrote his observations. In 1839, he published all his findings and described the plant’s medical applications in detail. He also noted that the Europen herbs were less potent than those found in India. He attributed this to differences in the climate.
In 1845, Moreau (a French physician) studied cannabis for its psychoactive effects. During this time, People in Europe and America began using it for things like relieving pain, stimulating appetite, and treating coughs. At the end of the 19th century, we saw the discovery of the first cannabinoid, Cannabinol (CBN).
Later, during the first half of the 20th century, researchers managed to isolate cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The problem with cannabis was that not all batches had the same effect. This inconsistent potency interfered with using cannabis as a medicinal compound. Furthermore, the discovery of other anesthetics like morphine, aspirin, etc., put cannabis research on the back burner.
Steps Towards Banning Cannabis
During the 20th century, certain elements tried to ban all cannabis use in the west. Via movies like “Reefer’s Madness,” the government took steps to prohibit the plant‘s regular’s usage. The first such federal act was the 1937’ Marihuana Tax. That document brought strict penalties for cannabis users, prompting many to abandon it.
1941 was the year that cannabis left the American pharmacopeia. Later, the UN categorized cannabis as a Schedule IV drug in 1961. Placing cannabis within the same group as heroin caused further stigma. Then, in 1970, the US declared cannabis a Schedule I drug. These drugs have no medicinal value and are extremely narcotic. As a result, it became very hard for scientists to continue their research into the compound.
Renewed Interest in Cannabis
As researchers analyzed cannabinoids better, they discovered that THC was psychoactive while CBD was not. These findings, combined with the discovery of the endocannabinoid system, renewed interest in cannabis.
California was the first to legalize medical cannabis. Some other states later followed suit. The 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-derived CBD products at a federal level. However, there are some conditions. These included the limit that the THC level must remain below 0.3%.
While the fight to legalize marijuana continues, brands can make hemp-derived products and put them on the market. The majority of CBD use remains for anxiety and insomnia. However, people have been using CBD products like hemp cream for treating pain as well.
The Farm Bill was the first to divide the usage of hemp from marijuana. As a result, brands had more space to invent new CBD formulas. Today, CBD is available as capsules, edibles, oils, creams, vape carts, etc.
Also, you can buy these products online or via popular retailers like Sephora. However, you should learn the know-how before picking these items. After all, the FDA is yet to regulate hemp-derived products.