Many people who use CBD have discovered that it helps to concentrate their flow of thoughts when they are feeling chaotic and distracted; a common symptom of anxiety and stress. While CBD’s ability to aid concentration is so far mostly anecdotal, it does mean that within the context of meditation, it can be a useful tool to center the mind, particularly for someone who is new to meditation.
It’s not uncommon for first-time meditators to quickly throw in the towel as they struggle to concentrate on their breath or find it difficult to clear their minds of thought traffic. Again, this is where CBD’s mind-focusing aspect could come into play, as well as its anti-inflammatory properties, which some people say alleviate joint pain and improves mobility.
This anti-inflammatory property is actually something shared with mindfulness practice which studies show hinder the activity of genes associated with inflammation.
A further area of commonality between CBD and meditation is their ability to stimulate neurogenesis (new brain cell growth) in the hippocampus (the area of the brain associated with learning, memory, mood regulation, and perspective).
This promotion of new brain cell growth is thought by scientists to be one of the reasons why CBD may decrease feelings of anxiety. In fact, one of the most commonly expressed uses of CBD by patients is for its anxiety relief.
Scientists know that CBD can indirectly increase the levels of the body’s own cannabis-like chemical, the mood-boosting endocannabinoid Anandamide, named after the Sanskrit word for bliss, Ananda. Studies also show that CBD activates the 5-HT1a serotonin receptor, which they believe contributes to its reported calming, anti-anxiety effect.
How to Combine CBD & Meditation
If you are thinking of trying CBD with meditation, it is a good idea to consider how long it takes for your CBD method of choice to take effect.
If you normally use CBD drops or capsules, we suggest taking them an hour before you start meditating, while if you vape, you can meditate immediately. Anyone new to CBD should also begin with a very low dose. While the compound is considered non-psychoactive compared to THC, it can cause sleepiness at higher doses. If you’re trying to meditate, the last thing you want to do is take something that will make you snooze on the job.