Can CBD heal your ailments? Yes, according to proponents, but scientific research on the efficacy of this chemical generated from cannabis are conflicting.
I was conflicted when a store selling cannabidiol (CBD), a chemical found in marijuana, opened near the coffee shop in my Southern California neighborhood. In fact, I wished for the company’s swift destruction for several weeks straight. As a physician, I simply know too much about the negative effects of marijuana use: memory problems, impaired judgment, addiction, longer-term cognitive problems, chronic bronchitis symptoms, etc.
With the passage of time, though, I began to see the other side of the conversation. In the end, I spent significant time with the managers of three CBD stores in my neighborhood, and each of them had uplifting anecdotes to offer about clients who soothed their aches, overcame chronic pain, lowered stress, or regained control of their life. After a month of CBD treatment, Lorraine, who had been thrown from a horse, fractured some vertebrae, and suffered from chronic pain, achieved such a remarkable recovery that she rode her horse 400 kilometers through the south of Spain.
That is surely worthy of a fairy tale. So, is CBD a wonder drug? If you’re hoping to find scientific evidence that CBD is a miracle product, I’m afraid you’re looking in the wrong place.
The truth is intolerant. Pure CBD, or CBD without THC, research is limited due to small sample sizes and inconsistencies in study design. In an interview, Jason White, chair of the World Health Organization Expert Committee on Drug Dependence, stated that he believes there are less than 10 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on pure CBD. The Food and Medication Administration (FDA) has not investigated or authorized pure CBD for any medicinal application, with the exception of a drug designed to treat two uncommon juvenile epilepsy disorders. This is a tangle of frequently contradictory claims. Can CBD heal your ailments? Let’s keep our reading.
Before delving further, let’s review the fundamentals. More than a hundred distinct cannabinoids are included within the marijuana plant. Its principal component is THC, which has psychoactive effects and gives consumers a “high” feeling. CBD, the second-most-common constituent, does not have the same impact.
THC and CBD are also present in hemp, but THC concentrations in hemp are extremely low. In the United States, hemp plants cannot contain more than 0.3% THC by definition, while marijuana plants are bred to have far greater quantities. In contrast to marijuana, which is predominantly utilized as a drug, hemp may be found in a variety of items, including fabrics and textiles, paper, food, animal feed, and supplements.
CBD’s popularity has skyrocketed due to its purported therapeutic properties and low abuse potential. Additionally, it is abundant and profitable. According to Julian Wright, founder of Science and Recreation, farmers can earn $60,000 per acre by cultivating CBD-rich hemp as opposed to $750 per acre by cultivating hemp for fiber. The commercial CBD industry is anticipated to increase from an estimated $500 million in 2018 to $1.8 billion by 2022.
Why so popular? Well, CBD is being sold as a health supplement and a medicine, with the ability to lower inflammation, lessen pain, and reduce anxiety, as well as the potential to alleviate post-traumatic stress disorder, some side effects of chemotherapy, and multiple sclerosis spasticity. The Hemp Farming Act of 2018 reclassified hemp from a highly regulated Schedule 1 substance, comparable to marijuana, to an agricultural commodity that can now be lawfully farmed and marketed.
CBD is permitted to sell, but the FDA has made it plain that unapproved CBD products cannot be used in foods, beverages, cosmetics, or as dietary supplements, nor can they be marketed with unproven health claims. CBD is available in several forms, including oils, tinctures, sprays, lotions, capsules, lollipops, chocolates, energy bars, trail mix, and gummies. It can also be vaporized. (According to Pam Miles, former president of the Association of Food and Drug Officials, one restaurant chain sold CBD-infused sandwiches as part of a promotion, so you know that CBD is already widely available.)
I visited three stores in and around San Diego. Jake C., the supervisor at Golden State Greens, informed me that his customers use CBD largely for stress, anxiety, sleeplessness, and pain. But can CBD heal your ailments? Well, several cancer patients discovered that the medicine helped them sleep and maybe restore weight lost during treatment. The owner of Injoi CBD in La Jolla, Shawn McManigal, reported that a 92-year-old customer quit taking his constipating pain meds after discovering that CBD candies reduced his discomfort and allowed him to rest. McManigal told me, “I’m not suggesting this is a miracle cure, but there is science behind it and it proves what it does.”
Does it, however? Genuinely tough to answer the issue of what pure CBD (without THC) has been proved to treat. The majority of peer-reviewed research examines CBD as a pharmaceutical or includes cannabis in the study. In a review of 79 randomized clinical trials (RCTS) of cannabinoids for the indications listed below, the authors found evidence of moderate quality for cannabinoid use in the treatment of chronic pain and spasticity, and evidence of low quality for improvements in chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, weight gain in HIV infection, sleep disorders, and Tourette syndrome. However, the study was limited because many cannabinoids were assessed at different doses and through different routes, and numerous items included THC.
The chair of the World Health Organization’s Expert Committee on Drug Dependence, Jason White, told me that he believes CBD will prove effective for a broader range of seizure types, that it likely has some anti-psychotic efficacy, and that it may improve the quality of life for Parkinson’s disease patients. CBD has been shown to be effective in treating specific types of seizures, schizophrenia patients with psychotic symptoms in two of three RCTS, and Parkinson’s patients’ daily activities and sleep in early trials.
Can CBD heal your ailments? In contrast, a review of 83 studies (40 of which were randomized controlled trials) involving over 3,000 people with various mental health conditions found “scant evidence” that cannabinoids improved depression or anxiety disorders, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, Tourette syndrome, post-traumatic stress disorder, or psychosis.
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine produced one of the most comprehensive reports, which examined over 10,000 scientific abstracts and concluded that cannabis and cannabinoids are effective treatments for three conditions: chronic pain, chemotherapy-induced vomiting, and muscle spasms. According to oncologist Donald Abrams, one of the study’s committee members, “there was little or no evidence for any therapeutic effects of CBD.” The active components of cannabis have been demonstrated to influence the immune system and inflammation; however, a WHO investigation stated that CBD’s effect on the immune system is ambiguous, with data indicating suppression at larger dosages and stimulation at lower amounts.
You can see the limitations of existing CBD research: several short trials with contradictory outcomes, as well as RCTs and meta-analyses that too frequently include marijuana and combined THC/CBD chemicals rather than just pure CBD products in varied quantities. These factors undoubtedly affect the outcomes, and they also leave consumers wondering what the optimal dose for them would be.
White informed me, “You don’t know the dose, you don’t know the formulation, thus you don’t know the absorption.” “In a number of locations, it’s practically a home pharmacy where individuals just make stuff up…. When people are essentially doing it themselves, the situation is completely out of control.”
As for potential users, the CBD store managers with whom I spoke said, “low and slow.” With CBD tincture, for instance, McManigal advised inserting one-half of a vial of oil under the tongue, which corresponds to 17 milligrams in his formulation, and waiting 45 to 60 minutes. “Use more if you don’t feel the benefit of being more calm,” he said.
According to a WHO report, CBD is generally well-tolerated and has an excellent safety profile; in humans, it shows no signs of abuse or dependence potential. The adverse effects are generally modest and may include drowsiness, diarrhea, and mood changes, among others, but there is a risk of liver damage, drug interactions, and male fertility problems. White stated that little is known regarding the long-term and/or cumulative consequences of CBD consumption, as well as its use in particular populations such as adolescents, the elderly, and pregnant women.
Can CBD heal your ailments? What authorities have to share with us? The FDA is investigating claims that CBD contains heavy metals (including lead), pesticides, germs, and fungi that are harmful to human health. 128 samples out of more than 350 analyzed by federal labs in nine states contained synthetic marijuana, according to law enforcement officials.
Jake C. of Golden State Greens informed me that CBD including THC is heavily controlled by the state of California and that he thinks the goods to be safe and adequately labeled. However, he stated that over-the-counter CBD derived from hemp (depending on state rules) or black-market cannabis products may include dramatically different quantities of THC and CBD, not to mention dangerous toxins.
The scarcity of high-quality studies is a reflection of the hurdles required to perform marijuana research. Regulatory hurdles must be simplified and financial sources must be established so that large, well-designed RCTs can be done to investigate the good and adverse health consequences of CBD use, ultimately informing states, the FDA, and the general public more thoroughly. Currently, 120 clinical investigations (planned, recruiting, or active) are registered as examining CBD; maybe, some of these trials will provide much-needed answers.
“This industry will not disappear. “Our sales are up,” reported one business owner. Even more incentive for us to do research, demonstrate CBD’s efficacy, standardize dosage, and guarantee quality, among other things. No longer do I snarl as I pass by my local store; the employees there sincerely feel they are doing good. Determine whether they are correct.
We hope you enjoyed reading our article and that you got your answer to the question “Can CBD Heal Your Ailments?”.
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