CBD (cannabidiol) is one of the most profitable industries today, thanks to the increased awareness among people about the benefits of CBD in the medical and cosmetic fields. Yes, CBD, the non-psychoactive, chemical compound found in the Cannabis sativa plant, is loaded with a lot of anti-inflammatory, relaxing and pain-relieving properties. This has led to breakthrough discoveries about its role in relieving chronic pain, pain from arthritis, pain due to sports-related injuries, sleep disorders, seizures in epilepsy patients and more.
Now,, that we know how popular CBD is, wouldn’t be an interesting to look back into its history to know how it all originated in the first place? Here is a brief look into the first few days of CBD and its usage.
In the early days
You might be surprised to know that CBD was used for medicinal purposes during as early as 2737BC, when the Emperor of China, Sheng Nung is believed to have drunk CBD-infused teas to treat serious ailments such as malaria, gout and rheumatism.
The first ever official release about cannabis as a medicine and its medicinal effects was published in the year 1839 by William B O’ Shaughnessy. This Irish professor detailed quite a few facts about how CBD, extracted from cannabis plants can be used for various medicinal purposes and as an effective anesthetic as well. His paper didn’t go down well with many people, as many people believed he glorified the benefits of a product that was believed to contain psychoactive properties.
It was only after many years that people understood that though CBD is extracted from Cannabis sativa plant species, it doesn’t contain any psychoactive or euphoric properties. Though Shaughnessy’s study wasn’t appreciated by many people, it formed the base for many other researches that were conducted later on.
By 1940, a British chemist, Robert S Cahn, claimed that he had fully identified the structure of the first individual cannabinol. This led to further research on this compound. In 1942, American chemist, Roger Adams, developed this research and successfully isolated the first ever cannabidiol (CBD). When he isolated this compound, it also resulted in the discovery of the other major compound of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). This study by Adams is considered as one of the first ever breakthrough studies in the field of CBD.
The path begins
It was in 1963 that Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, came up with his innovative and path-breaking analysis of understanding the benefits of CBD as a separate compound from that of THC. In his study, Dr. Raphael also spoke about his discovery of the stereochemistry of CBD. In the subsequent year, he also went on to discover the stereochemistry of THC, thereby clearly differentiating that though obtained from the same source, CBD is vastly different from THC. In this study, he proved that CBD doesn’t contain any mind-altering compounds, which is considered as the foundation of today’s booming CBD industry.
The law cooperates
Thanks to the excellent report of Dr. Mechoulam, the 1978 Controlled Substances Therapeutic Research Act was passed in New Mexico to recognize and understand more about the medicinal value of CBD obtained from the cannabis plants. In the 1980s, Dr. Mechoulam and his team conducted various tests about the role of CBD on various ailments. Through these studies, he proved that CBD could result in a reduction of seizures. This was the main finding that led to the use of CBD in treating epilepsy patients and giving them immense relief from their seizures.
The current scenario
As the role of CBD on the human body’s endocannabinoid system was proved by many studies conducted later on, the Government of the USA passed the farm bill in 2018 to legalize CBD from industrial hemp plants. Thanks to these studies and benefits, the CBD industry is expected to give a turnover of around $22billion in a couple of years.