As we have explored in previous blogs, CBD can have a range of effects on the body. A Nootropic is defined as,
“A substance used to enhance memory or other cognitive functions.” (Google).
The etymology of 'Nootropic', comes from the Greek “Noos” meaning ‘mind’ and “Trophe” meaning ‘turning’.
Why is CBD important? Because CBD interacts with our body’s Endocannabinoid System (ECS), which is an important regulator of the entire body, in particular it has a number of effects on mental faculties.
What does this mean?
This means that CBD may be a reliable nootropic for improving mental performance and clarity and diminishing the effects of drains on cognitive function. We will now explore the ways in which CBD can help achieve better focus.
- Sleep – Sleep is critical for a healthy, focused brain. Sleep is the mechanism that allows your brain to recuperate and remove itself of any build up of waste from the day.
The basic reason why you feel groggy the next day from lack of sleep is understood to be that the brain has not had sufficient opportunity to rest and cleanse itself of any built-up waste.
CBD can help improve sleep in a number of ways; firstly many users of CBD report feeling calm when taking CBD, whilst not directly an aid to sleep, it may put you in a headspace where you feel like you can fall asleep more easily. Additionally, by feeling more calm it means less cortisol is being produced which can affect the quality of sleep.
- Anxiety & Depression – It is difficult to focus on any task demanding attention when you are afflicted by anxiety. Anxiety is the tense, consuming feeling of worry about something either immediate or impending. CBD has been shown to induce feelings of calm, mitigating the symptoms of anxiety such as worry, an elevated heart rate and sweating.
CBD therefore may have a nootropic effect in this sense as supplementation allows the user to be in an optimal state of mind, which in turn allows for greater concentration and attention on a given task.
- Focus – Following on from point 2, less anxiety allows for more focus. When we are stressed, our higher cognitive functions tend to step back and allow our more primitive systems to take over in order to protect us; commonly referred to as the ‘fight or flight’ response. By calming oneself in this way higher cognitive function is retained, allowing the individual to think clearly, focused and logically.
- Protection – An important characteristic of a good Nootropic is not just to cognitively enhance, but also to protect and preserve the brain. A study conducted by the Department of Neuroscience and Behaviour in a University in Brazil found that CBD not only mitigated decline in cognitive function, but also helped to protect neurons in the brain and better regulate mental faculties through CBD’s interaction with the ECS. You can read the study