CBDA (cannabidiolic acid) is one of many compounds produced by cannabis and hemp. Abundant in the live plants of CBD varieties, it converts to the better known cannabinoid CBD (cannabidiol) over time and when exposed to heat.
Cannabinoids are cannabis compounds that interact with our bodies to produce medical and recreational effects, from pain and stress relief to euphoria. You’ve likely heard of CBD and THC—these are the most widely known cannabinoids, and both originally stem from the precursor “mothership” cannabinoid known as CBGA (cannabigerolic acid).
Potential Medical Benefits of CBDA
While most cannabinoids bind directly with either the CB1 or CB2 receptors, CBDA doesn’t work in this way. Instead, CBDA interacts with the endocannabinoid system by inhibiting the cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) enzyme. COX-2 enzymes are associated with inflammation after an injury or infection, so by blocking COX-2 enzymes, CBDA can relieve inflammation and associated pain.
In one rodent study, scientists found CBDA affected levels of serotonin, a chemical produced by nerve cells to aid in signaling between cells. Serotonin is vital to core human functions like motor skills, sleeping, eating, digestion, and emotions.
In the same way that it controls nausea, CBDA may also be a powerful anticonvulsive. In fact, scientists have shown that CBDA has 100 times the affinity for the 5-HT receptors compared to CBD; one reason is that CBDA has greater bioavailability, so the body can metabolize the compound with less effort and in less time.
This same receptor affinity could also mean that CBDA could perhaps effectively fight depression. After all, CBDA works on the 5-HT receptors in much the same way as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant medication would.
To date, most CBDA studies are preclinical non-human studies. While human trials are needed, some medical cannabis companies like British-based GW Pharmaceuticals are paving the way. GW Pharmaceuticals manufactures a pharmaceutical-grade CBD oil called Epidiolex, the first cannabis-derived prescription drug to be approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
According to a study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, the average person spends more than half of his or her waking hours in activities that require sitting (watching TV, commuting to and from work, sitting at a computer, etc).
According to a scientific report published in the medical journal, Current Cardiovascular Risk Rep, sitting too much can be as harmful as secondhand smoking.
Sitting too much can also damage your back and it is linked to chronic back pain and poor posture.
You can prevent the harmful effects of sitting by doing the following 10 stretches on a regular basis. These 10 yoga stretches can help you increase strength and flexibility, and prevent pain in your back and knees.
Why Yoga Stretches Can Undo the Damage of Sitting Too Much
Yoga has been originated in India and has been practiced for thousands of years. This ancient mind-body practice became part of our modern days and symbolizes peace and well-being. Nowadays more than 20 million Americans practice yoga according to the 2012 Yoga in America study.
Many studies have been published on yoga that suggest that it is an effective way to increase physical activity, especially strength, flexibility, breathing and balance, as well as reduce stress and increase mental abilities. According to HNS website, there is even some evidence that regular yoga practice is beneficial for people with high blood pressure, heart disease, aches and pains.
Chiropractic needs to be heavily involved in the war against the opioid epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2017, 17,029 people died from overdosing on prescription opioids alone. That number skyrockets to 47,600 when you take into account all opioid-related deaths, including the use of illicit opioids. Research indicates the majority of illicit users first misused prescription opioids. Early integration of effective and appropriate chiropractic care could have potentially saved thousands of lives.
Most experts agree that improving prescribing practices and the way pain is treated is an effective avenue to help prevent misuse, addiction and overdose. At the same time, it’s critical that patients continue to receive legitimate access to effective pain management. Educating patients and collaborating with other medical professionals on effective utilization of chiropractic care is the right thing to do for patients, and an important part of addressing this national crisis.
The American health care system is the most expensive health care system in the world and spends more per capita on health care than all other countries. Skyrocketing health care costs have placed an enormous burden on society, which has led to legislation designed to both improve quality and lower costs. Health care systems will be required to create innovative delivery systems with a coordinated model that reduces costs while delivering high-quality care across a continuum of care.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) encourages integrated health systems, providing incentives for physicians to form “Accountable Care Organizations.” In these groups, doctors can better coordinate patient care and improve quality, help prevent disease and illness, and reduce unnecessary hospital admissions.
Chronic pain affects more than 100 million people in the United States and leads to more than $635 billion per year in costs attributable to medical treatment and lost productivity. It is obvious musculoskeletal injuries are often poorly managed, and this lack of a clear path to pain resolution leaves patients frustrated, confused and suffering unnecessarily. Unfortunately, only about 10% of the public seeks care from chiropractors without a referral, leaving the other 90% to seek more expensive traditional avenues to manage pain.
However, as implementation of PPACA and the National Prevention Strategy moves health care from a system of sick care to one based on wellness and prevention, primary care providers will increasingly be called upon to provide treatment of chronic pain through coordinated care. This means medical providers are more open to collaborating with chiropractors than at any other time in history.
Making health care more effective
There is an obvious need in the United States to improve the evaluation and management of patients with chronic pain, and chiropractic services can be an integral part of the solution.
A new study presented at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) highlights the frequency of back pain in children and adolescents and suggests there is a significant linear increase in back pain, specifically in the lower back as kids age from 10 to 18 years old.
As a follow up to the recent report on poor posture leading to back problems, this is an excellent study that parents need to be made aware of.
The subjects were equally split by age and sex, and proportionally representative of the population of state of residence, race/ethnicity, and health insurance status as determined by census data. After outlier subjects with an unusually high or low height, weight or BMI were excluded (in order to eliminate outlier responses), 3,669 participants were included in the final analysis.
Among the findings of the research:
Back pain is common in children and adolescents, and the incidence of children who experienced pain in the past year increases linearly with age (about 4% for each year of age).
Of the cohort, 33.7% (n=1,236) had some episode of back pain in the previous year and only 40.9% of this group sought treatment such as physical therapy (44%), massage therapy (33.9%) and chiropractic treatment (34.1%).
While back pain is common in children and adolescents, it very rarely requires invasive treatment such as injections or surgery, as less than 5% (n=23) of the 40.9% who sought treatment needed surgical or procedural intervention.
Females reported more back pain (38%) compared to males (29%) in the previous year and, among both groups, lumbar back pain was the most common at 68.9%.
“While adult back pain has been widely quantified and studied, there has been little research looking into similar effects on children and adolescents,” said Dr. Fabricant. “We know that it’s a real issue affecting kids and this study allowed us to collect a vast amount of data and provide a high-level analysis. Now we can use these results to further study specific activity-based, physiological, and psychosocial contributors to back pain in this population.”
You heard it a million times growing up: “Stand up straight!” “Quit slouching!” “Watch your posture!”
Sure, as teenagers we may have rolled our eyes at those statements. But poor posture may now be to blame for the aches and pains so many of us feel as we age. And in today’s tech-obsessed, 24/7 world, there are more opportunities than ever to strain or injure our back, spine and neck. But stopping the slouch may be more than a mental exercise – you may need hands-on help.
“When you’re 15 and hunched over, and someone tells you to stand up straight, you can, and you do,” she said. “But when you get to be older, it’s not as easily done. The muscles aren’t as pliable,” explains Kathy Farkas, a physical therapist at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas.
Years of poor posture can actually result in structural changes to the spine, muscles, ligaments and tendons, making standing up straight a little more difficult as you age.
To strengthen the muscles that promote healthy posture, the core muscles – those lying bellowing the abdominals, connecting to and surrounding the spine – are the most important muscle groups you can focus on. That includes your glute muscles and back extensor muscles, too, which help stabilize the pelvis and give the back extra support.
“Most people have stronger chest muscles than back muscles, which ends up ‘pulling’ them into a hunched position,” said Dr. Carl Wang, a Spine Team Texas pain management physician and a member of Texas Health Physicians Group. “Keeping good strength in the the core muscles, including the ones on the backside, is important.”
Are you reading this on your phone or other mobile device? Increasingly, many of us get our news and information this way. Likely, your head and neck are tilting forward to look down at your phone.
The average human head weighs 10 to 12 pounds. Research shows that we put about 60 pounds of pressure on our necks when we hold them forward – like we do when we are looking at and replying to text messages, emails and more via our smartphones. Those aching muscles in your neck and back? They result from the pressure we put on them every day, interacting with our hand-held devices.
From the neck down, good alignment is important, whether you are active or taking a seat. “Office workers often believe they are not stressing their spine with their everyday tasks. Unfortunately, office workers make up the majority of our patient population, likely due to inattention to proper ergonomics while sitting for six to ten hours a day,” Dr. Wang said.
While slumping is one habit Mom might have asked you to stop, another habit may be helpful in battling back pain: fidgeting.
Movement can help keep our bodies happier. Whether you sit or stand for long periods of time, changing positions often can relieve pressure from being in one position.
Farkas said that if you stand a lot at work, shifting your weight and moving can help with lower back pain as well. “Shift your weight, prop a foot up on a stool or inside an open cabinet, or lean against a wall,” she suggested.
“If you are sitting, I recommend changing your position every 20 to 30 minutes,” Farkas said. “Use a small towel rolled up at the lower back to provide postural support. Sit with your feet evenly on the ground, with your thighs parallel to the floor.”
To battle “text neck,” check your equipment settings for everything from your monitor to your phone. Your head should be level with the screen, or just slightly lower so you’re gently glancing down, not with your head flexed forward.
Back to Health
Good posture has been proven to have benefits, in addition to alleviating back pain.
A study at San Francisco University revealed that students who were told to walk down a hall in a slouched position reported increased feelings of depression and lower energy than the students who were asked to skip down the hall.
And Harvard researchers found that people who used “power poses” (they stood up straight, with their shoulders back) had a 20 percent increase in testosterone levels and a 25 percent decrease in cortisol levels, while people who slouched had a 10 percent decrease in testosterone and a 15 percent increase in cortisol levels.
Take this Back
“Probably the most beneficial thing about having good posture is that it decreases the stress on the spinal musculature, the spinal structure and the joints,” Farkas said. “That can decrease the general aches and pains that occur with poor posture — the pains that come with overstressing those postural muscles.”
So, strengthen your core, practice you posture and reap the benefits. Standing up straighter does make us feel more ready to conquer the world.
Measure how back and neck pain affects your life with the free, online 5-minute assessment. Or find a spine physician on the medical staff of Texas Health hospital near you. If you live in DFW and want to join The Feel Good Network's Chiropractic Doctor referral program, contact site admin.