It's no surprise we're all looking for quick fixes and cure-alls. With the stress of the regular world bad enough as it is, adding a pandemic on top has totally thrown our ability to cope out of whack, on a global scale. Despite how much research goes into a widely touted miracle product — or maybe because of it — there's never been a better time to stay skeptical about what one drug or ingredient can do.
That's why researchers from the University of California San Diego have been collecting data on CBD, the hemp-adjacent chemical that patients and sellers have been touting as an all-natural panacea. With claims that CBD can alleviate or cure everything from autism symptoms to insomnia to epilepsy, it's important to know how much of that is just snake oil. The researchers have just published a paper on the phenomenon, and they're urging a lot more caution than we've collectively demonstrated thus far.
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"The public isn't spontaneously coming to the conclusion that CBD is medicine," said coauthor Dr. John Ayers. "Instead, this is a natural response to the largely unchecked marketing claims of CBD retailers."
The study found that many of the claimed benefits of CBD are fuzzy concepts like "wellness," which is concerning when a staggering 90 percent of surveyed testimonials "cited using CBD to treat diagnosable medical conditions." This is one of those situations where it's important to eliminate confirmation bias while doing your research. Before you commit to CBD above any other treatments, get your facts from as many independent sources as you can — especially your own physician.