Professional Athletes Finding Relief With CBD
More and more professional athletes are turning to hemp-derived CBD oil as a natural alternative to potentially addictive opioids for battling chronic pain. Professional athletes frequently suffer injuries, some of which are serious and can lead down a rabbit hole of severe pain to insomnia and mood disorders.
For many, opioids and anti-inflammatory drugs such as NSAIDs, are common approaches to relieving chronic pain. However, some athletes today are starting to reverse that trend. The NFL ― not an entity known for rapid change ―is re-examining its strict drug policies and supporting research into CBD to help players manage pain.
All these trends come on the heels of the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized the commercial production of hemp-derived CBD extract, opening the door for professional athletes to discover its many benefits.
Athletes Using CBD
Retired NFL players Steve Smith, Tiki Barber and Rob Gronkowski; retired NBA players John Salley, Kenyon Martin and Matt Barnes; Olympic hurdler Lolo Jones and golfer Bubba Watson. These are just a few of professional athletes who have introduced CBD oil products into their training regimens to mitigate aches and pains.
Milan Ristic is another athlete who recently discovered the benefits of using CBD oil products. Ristic is a professional track and field athlete who holds the Serbian national records for the indoor 60-meter hurdles and the outdoor 100-meter hurdle events. Ristic said his experience with CBD to relieve chronic pain has by far been positive to the point he is spreading the word to others.
“I couldn’t believe it worked just like that,” he said. “I recommended it to a few friends and some family members, and they also loved it.”
What is CBD?
CBD stands for cannabidiol, a compound found naturally in hemp. CBD belongs to a larger family of compounds known cannabinoids, all of which are found in hemp and marijuana. However, what sets CBD apart from the rest of cannabinoids are its natural properties known to provide a wide spectrum of potential benefits without the psychoactive properties found in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which give you a sensation of being “high”.
Full spectrum, broad spectrum, and isolate are the 3 most popular types of CBD. Each type features a specific extraction method that causes it to contain or omit certain aspects of the hemp plant.
Full Spectrum CBD is the most pure, unprocessed hemp extract, which contains all the hemp plant’s beneficial nutrients, cannabinoids, terpenes, essential oils, and trace amounts of THC (<0.30%). The variety of naturally occurring cannabinoids and terpenes make it capable of the entourage effect ― the phenomenon of each element in the plant working together synergistically to provide maximum effect.
Broad Spectrum CBD is extracted from the flowering parts of the hemp plant and contains many of the same beneficial compounds as full-spectrum CBD except that broad-spectrum CBD oil has no THC.
CBD Isolate is the most processed form of CBD product because all parts of terpenes, other cannabinoids and oils are removed until only pure CBD remains.
Is CBD Isolate Best to Avoid Testing Positive for THC?
In 2018, the World Anti-Doping Agency removed CBD from its list of prohibited substances. THC, however, is still prohibited by most major sports leagues and athletic organizations, except for Major League Baseball.
Taking CBD shouldn’t cause you to test positive for THC, especially if you choose CBD isolate or broad-spectrum CBD products. Professional athletes may want to avoid full-spectrum CBD oil, which may contain no more than 0.30 percent THC by federal law but may still provide a positive result for THC.
Athletes who are subjected to periodic drug testing should be fully aware of the contents of the CBD oils, topicals and edibles they are using. Transparency regarding labeling and ingredients is key, which is one of the main tenets EARTHY stands by in the marketing of its products.