If there’s a group of people who would benefit most from CBD it might be professional athletes. And they are using CBD in large and growing numbers.
If you think you’re sore after getting back into your exercise routine, just imagine what an NFL football player feels like after a game. Or how the shoulder of a major league pitcher must feel after nine innings of 90 mile per hour fastballs.
And while those are both cringe-inducing thoughts, imagine the exhaustion and stress felt by professional cyclists or triathletes who take their bodies to the absolute limits of endurance.
Yet how often have we heard of a professional athlete being suspended, fined, banned or having their titles stripped due to failed drug tests? Lance Armstrong is the most high-profile example but American cyclist Floyd Landis was also stripped of his Tour de France title due to a failed drug test. To say nothing of the entire “steroid era” in professional baseball. Athletes are constantly under a microscope the way very few other people ever are.
While opioid based pain relievers can be prescribed and taken without fear of sanction, they may also carry a much higher price tag: the destructive threat of addiction. As opioids are becoming a major scourge for so many people here and around the world, it is time to consider alternatives.
In a statement from September, 2017 the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) removed CBD from its list of banned substances. This is huge when you consider that over 600 amateur and professional sports leagues throughout the world use the WADA guidelines to protect their sports.
The groundbreaking announcement was little more than an acknowledgement of what so many athletes have already realized: CBD’s powerful anti-inflammatory, analgesic and neuroprotective qualities can make it an essential part of coping with the physical and mental stress of professional sports.
NFL players are some of the most interested in CBD, not surprisingly considering the physical toll the game takes. In fact, one study suggests that NFL players use opioids at four times the rate of the general public. Yet, while the league is involved in a federal lawsuit concerning its overreliance on pain medication, no changes are in the works there.
The story of Kyle Turley is a sad one. After retiring from the NFL Turley was having major trouble readjusting to life without the game. His emotions and anger were out of control to the point where he became suicidal. He was able to get his life under control in part due to a regimen that included CBD. Yet had he used CBD while he was playing, he could have been suspended for violating the league’s drug policy.
Few sports are as violent as MMA (mixed martial arts), so it should come as no surprise that its members turn to CBD pre and post bout. Nate Diaz famously smoked a vape pen after a bout while looking like he’d survived a car wreck (but just barely).
Floyd Landis, the 2006 Tour de France winner, used pain killers constantly after a hip replacement. When trying to kick the opioid habit, he reached for CBD and never looked back. Says Landis, “It’s the only thing I use now. I try not to oversell it, because I don’t want to sound insane. But if you can stop taking other pain medications, if you have a natural solution, that’s probably the better option.”
Landis has gone so far as to be involved in the founding of Floyd’s of Leadville, a CBD business out of Colorado.
The list of pro athletes using CBD is a long one. Many of them are retired or come from sports other than “the Big 3” which still consider CBD a banned substance.
Over half of the US population is taking a prescription medication and the number is growing. Life expectancy, meanwhile, has declined two years in a row for the first time since WWI. The opioid crisis is ravaging the country, led by OcyContin a drug aggressively pushed by its maker in the face of private knowledge of its capacity for addiction and abuse. The price of drugs – even generics – is going up all the time. Over half of the people who take CBD stopped taking a prescription medicine.
It’s obvious we’ve reached a saturation point with big pharma.
So it’s not at all surprising that people whose very livelihood depends on their bodies being in peak condition are turning in droves to CBD. In fact, it probably is to be expected. The people who push their bodies the hardest are the ones who are naturally going to find the best ways to maintain them.
Let us know what you think!