A recent article published by the Journal of American Osteopathic Association conducted a study with mice to answer whether or not CBD consumption affected muscle recovery. The experimenters injected each mouse with CBD directly into their thigh muscles. The results showed that after only three weeks, the mice who consumed CBD experienced an increased muscle mass and improved muscle strength. By comparison, the mice who did not receive CBD experienced decreased muscle mass and loss of muscle strength. The results from this study suggest that CBD could be used as an anti-inflammatory, potentially reducing pain and swelling after intense exercise.
So, Does CBD speed up recovery?
Yes! CBD speeds up recovery by reducing swelling and inflammation while promoting healing through increased blood flow to the affected tissue. CBD also stimulates mitochondria and protein synthesis, which aid in the body’s ability to repair itself. Like many of the health benefits of CBD, this was a first on a mouse model and needed to be explored further. Below are ways in which CBD speeds up recovery:
1. Reduces Swelling and Inflammation
CBD is an effective anti-inflammatory. Inflammation occurs due to the body’s immune system response to injuries, irritants, or diseases. Since CBD is a nonpsychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis plants, it does not cause feelings of euphoria or intoxication. Reducing inflammation and swelling at the site of an injury can aid in quick recovery. It reduces pain and allows you to return to your average activity level quickly.
2. Promotes Healing
CBD promotes healing through increased blood flow to the affected tissue. Increased blood flow means more oxygen and nutrients are delivered to the site of injury, which speeds up the healing process. CBD also has anti-inflammatory properties, reducing pain and swelling when you return to your normal activity level.
3. Stimulates Mitochondria Growth
CBD stimulates mitochondria growth, vital for muscle recovery after intense exercise.
Mitochondria are the “power plants” of cells. They help convert food to usable energy, so it also boosts your energy levels when they are stimulated. CBD enhances mitochondrial function, which has been shown to have anti-inflammatory benefits and aid in protein synthesis, which is necessary for muscle repair after strenuous activity or injury. These three benefits are essential to CBD’s ability to speed up recovery after intense exercise.
4. Prevents Muscle Atrophy
When your muscle cells undergo stress and damage, your body can respond by reducing the number of muscle cells you have. Muscle atrophy results from the lack of protein synthesis necessary for repair. CBD has been shown to prevent this atrophic response and stimulate new protein synthesis in injured muscles. This is important because protein synthesis prevents or slows muscle atrophy.
5. Promotes Early Muscle Recovery
CBD helps your body heal quickly by stimulating protein synthesis early after injury before swelling and inflammation set in. CBD stimulates the release of various growth factors like IGF-1 (Insulin-like Growth Factor 1) and FGF (Fibroblast Growth Factor), which are necessary to repair damaged cells. These nutrients help restore balance to your systems on a cellular level and repair damage caused by injury or strenuous exercise.
Are there any risks?
There are a lot of unknowns when it comes to using CBD. This study only used a small dosage which was enough for the mice to experience these benefits, but it is unknown if higher doses would have adverse side effects not seen at this lower dosage. It has been shown that CBD can cause sedation and changes in appetite. This should be considered before using CBD post-workout.
Does this mean CBD is superior to other recovery methods such as supplements?
There is a lot of research to be done before determining whether CBD is an alternative to other recovery methods. The study shows us that CBD has anti-inflammatory and mitogenic (mitochondria growth) properties, which may help speed up muscle recovery after strenuous exercise. CBD stimulates protein synthesis, which is necessary for muscle repair after strenuous activity or injury. One thing is clear, CBD appears to be safe and has few side effects when used at low dosages.
What Types of CBD Can You Use for Athletic Recovery?
There are many different types of CBD you can use for athletic recovery. All of them come in various forms, whether topical lotions or edibles infused with CBD oil. You can ingest the CBD, either orally or through vaping, to get the most out of its pain-relieving properties. To check out some great CBD products click here.
What are some of the benefits athletes are experiencing from CBD?
Athletes are beginning to use CBD for several different reasons.
- It helps reduce inflammation, which reduces pain and swelling after strenuous exercise.
- CBD boosts energy because it stimulates mitochondria growth and protein synthesis.
- CBD is associated with many health benefits such as improved sleep quality, mood elevation, better immunity against illness, and reduced aggression levels in athletes under high-stress levels.
How can I incorporate CBD into my training regimen?
CBD is a natural supplement with few side effects when used in the correct dosage but consult with your physician before taking any new supplement to determine what dosage would be best for you. It is recommended that athletes begin experimentation with CBD at a very low dosage and work their way up to a higher dosage if they do not experience any side effects. CBD can be ingested orally or through vaping to help reduce pain after strenuous exercise and improve recovery time.
Is it Legal to use CBD for recovery?
It depends on where you live. CBD is legal in many places but can be considered a banned substance if professional athletes take high dosages. Athletes should check with their governing bodies before using CBD to ensure it doesn’t violate any anti-doping regulations.
There is a lot of research still to be done on CBD and how it affects athletic performance and muscle growth. We know for sure that CBD has anti-inflammatory and mitogenic (mitochondria growth) properties, which may help speed up muscle recovery after strenuous exercise. CBD stimulates protein synthesis, which is necessary for muscle repair after strenuous activity or injury. While CBD can benefit athletes and people who exercise, it should not replace other recovery methods such as post-workout supplements. More research needs to be done before we can come to a conclusive answer to whether CBD is the future of athletic recovery.