CBD is touted as a cure-all to, well, almost anything.
But – what about your needs? Could CBD cure, treat, or improve the symptoms of your specific condition?
Inside this guide, you’ll find a list of conditions that CBD can help improve. Along with each condition, you’ll find the scientific studies and explanations to back it up.
Don’t waste time searching the web for lack-luster information that may or may not be correct; find what you need to know here.
Want to know if and how CBD could help you or a loved one? This guide is the place to start.
That’s okay. Get a copy of your own to read when (and where) it’s most convenient for you!
CBD Oil for Pain Relief and Inflammation
Chronic pain comes in many varieties and affects each sufferer differently.
Regardless of the source of pain, however, those who must deal with it on a daily basis face challenges that the average individual cannot understand.
Because pain sources can be difficult to identify and finding effective treatments can be a challenge, many suffer in silence, forced to modify or completely avoid certain activities.
Those who suffer are not alone. In fact, recent estimates suggest that at least 11 percent of the general population suffers from chronic pain that impacts their daily lives. (1)
In many cases, this pain is caused by, accompanied by, or worsened by inflammation. When inflammation is present, pain can become much worse thanks to biochemical reactions that this inflammation causes.
For both sufferers of chronic pain and chronic inflammation, CBD has known to reduce symptoms and provide relief, without the negative effects of standard over the counter pain relievers, anti-inflammatory medications, narcotics, opioids, and other traditional treatments.
The negative effects of traditional pain medication include:
- Liver Damage
- Cardiovascular Damage
- …and more.
Cannabis, on the other hand, has been known to reduce pain – and has been used to do so for thousands of years. Recent studies, most notably those published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine, have demonstrated the link between CBD and pain/inflammation reduction. (2)
While some sufferers of chronic pain resort to traditional marijuana use, it may not be necessary. Because of how CBD interacts with the body, it may be just as effective.
Specifically, CBD helps suppress pain by targeting a3 glycine receptors, which are found in the spinal cord and brain, controlling the way we react to pain. By interacting with these receptors, the sensation of pain is reduced, similarly to how traditional pain management medications act, without the traditional side effects and negatives. (3)
Quit Smoking with CBD
According to the CDC, 38.7 million adults in this country are currently tobacco smokers, that’s over 15 percent of the population, for reference’s sake. (4)
It’s a deadly habit, but most of us – smokers included – already know that.
What we might not realize, is just how deadly it is.
Smoking is considered the leading cause of death in the United States, accounting for about 1 in 5 adult deaths each year.
Many smokers have begun to realize this. In fact, 70 percent have a desire to quit or have attempted to quit and have failed. Nicotine and the other ingredients in standard, every day cigarettes are simply that addictive. (5)
While many have attempted to quit using medications, counseling, or even e-cigarettes (which some consider an alternative that might not be as healthy as we’d like to believe), a natural option may be available that’s, perhaps, even more, effective than any of these methods.
You guessed it.
Smoking cessation may be one of the many benefits of CBD oil.
As revealed by the results of a study published by the Addiction Journal and performed by University College London, smokers wishing to quit and treated with one 800mg dose of CBD, saw 40 percent more success in the first week of their attempt when using CBD products, than those treated with a placebo. Those treated with even a low dose of CBD claimed fewer intrusive thoughts, enabling them to go about their daily lives without the need for a cigarette, unlike those who were not given the cannabinoid. (6)
We don’t know for sure. However, nicotine addiction seems to be tied to the endocannabinoid system, which, CBD interacts with and helps regulate. When this system is balanced, traditional addiction cues may become less severe, leading to higher success rates with lower levels of reported discomfort.
These positive effects of CBD are promising news for the majority of the aforementioned smokers who want to quit the habit.
Treat Epilepsy Symptoms with CBD
Currently, studies around the country are ongoing to identify the way CBD can be used to treat epilepsy.
Because it’s already shown promising signs. Beyond that, just this year the FDA approved the first-ever CBD-based drug, Epidiolex, now available to treat rare and severe forms of epilepsy. (7)
In many states where the legal status of medical marijuana, and even CBD, is in question, treating epilepsy is often the exception.
While CBD and marijuana have been used for centuries for many remedies, the role CBD can play in lessening the severity and number of seizures in those diagnosed with epilepsy came into the spotlight in the early 2000s. That’s when the Figi family began looking for a way to treat their daughter Charlotte’s seizures. At the time, she was suffering upwards of 300 seizures per week. (8)
After obtaining cannabis plants at a high cost, and extracting the oil by hand, they saw a major reduction in the number of seizures their daughter experienced. It was life-changing, leading to a series of legislative battles to change the status of medical marijuana and CBD products across the country.
Recent studies – in addition to new medication options that include CBD – have also shown promising results in various forms of epilepsy, including Dravet Syndrome. In summary, findings published by the U.S. National Library of medicine, multiple small clinical trials have shown that CBD is able to reduce the number of seizures and severity of seizures for those that experience specific forms of epilepsy on a regular basis. (9)
Perhaps just as exciting, studies have often shown that CBD has neuroprotective properties, allowing the brain to be better protected when seizures do occur.
Can CBD Reduce Anxiety and Improve Mental Health?
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illnesses in the U.S., affecting 18.1 percent of the adult population across the country.
Anxiety doesn’t come in a single shape or form. Officially diagnosed conditions that fall under the realm of “anxiety” include:
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder
- Panic Disorder
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Social Anxiety Disorder Phobias
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
- And others
In addition to a standalone disorder, anxiety often accompanies other medical conditions making diagnosis a challenge at best.
Those who understand the way anxiety can be debilitating – affecting daily functioning and activities and making simple tasks seem impossible – also probably understand the fact that finding a treatment that helps can be a significant challenge.
Most traditional treatments come with side effects that – in many cases – seem worse (or just as terrible) as the anxiety itself. These side effects range from mood-altering effects like depression, to weight gain or loss, to dependence (the need for higher doses to achieve the same effect and avoid withdrawal symptoms)… the side effects are often a deterrent. Only around 36.9 percent of anxiety sufferers receive treatment for their condition.
Once again, as with many other disorders, CBD may be a natural option to combat the side effects of traditional anxiety and mental health conditions while providing noticeable relief.
At the most basic level, CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system and is widely believed to directly impact the brain’s CB1 receptors – the same receptors that certain anxiety medications interact with – lessening the effects of anxiety and related conditions. This allows sufferers to live more normal lives, free from the constraints of anxiety. That’s just the tip of the iceberg… the positive effects of CBD for anxiety are incredible!
Can CBD Cure Cancer? No, But It Can Help.
The word all by itself is terrifying, perhaps because of how prevalent it’s become in our world – who doesn’t know someone who has (or has had) cancer? Maybe because there are so many unknowns – what if we’re next? Maybe because potential treatments seem so harsh, and the negative effects are so easy to see when someone is fighting the disease.
One thing is for sure, however: we can all agree that the need for a cure is more urgent today than it has ever been before.
According to the National Cancer Institute, over 38 percent of people will be diagnosed with one type of cancer or another at some point in their lives. While standard treatments – like medication, chemotherapy, radiation and various surgeries – have come a long way, there may be natural options to further the effectiveness of these drugs, or to provide an entire set of other benefits. (10)
One of these might just be CBD.
Before you roll your eyes, or write CBD off as another “hippie” remedy, check out the facts.
While CBD is often used to increase appetites, decrease nausea and decrease pain experienced by cancer patients, the true benefits of the compound may be further reaching.
In fact, recent studies have demonstrated that CBD may enable “antiproliferative, pro-apoptotic effects” that:
- decreases the ability of cancer cells to grow.
- decreases the ability of cancer cells to attach to various structures or “adhere.”
- prevent cancer cell migration to other parts of the body and organs.
- shrink tumors, and more.
With these potential health benefits, along with CBD’s proven interactions with the body’s endocannabinoid system to enable a sense of balance throughout various body systems, CBD may be an integral part of traditional cancer treatments in the very near future. (11)
CBD Hemp Oil for Diabetes (Type 1)
Unlike Type 2 Diabetes, often correlated with lifestyle factors and choices (including weight management, diet, and exercise), Type 1 Diabetes is an inherent condition that sufferers have little control over contracting.
1.25 million adults and children in the United States are currently living with Type 1 Diabetes, which is characterized as an autoimmune disorder, where the patient’s immune system destroys cells in the pancreas, leading to long-term damage and the inability to produce insulin properly, causing trouble controlling blood sugar. (12, 13)
The disease – especially when poorly controlled – can lead to major negative effects, ranging from gout and skin infections to cardiovascular and even brain damage.
Because Type 1 Diabetes is classified as an autoimmune system, and because CBD is known to help regulate and promote balance throughout various body systems, especially as autoimmune conditions are concerned, it’s logical to assume that it could be helpful in the regulation of Type 1 Diabetes.
While the research is still forthcoming, and traditional medications and insulin are still the trusted first line of defense for Type 1 Diabetes, studies on the way that CBD interacts with the pancreas have become more popular, and the early results are promising.
In one study, posted in Clinical Hemorheology and Microcirculation, CBD was found to ease the inflammation Type 1 Diabetes causes within the pancreas in mice. Furthermore, it showed a lower overall occurrence of the disorder, which could have positive ramifications for future human studies. (14)
While CBD has not been proven able to reduce overall occurrences among humans, it has been demonstrated that the compound can reduce the amount of insulin a patient requires to reach target blood sugar levels and functionality.
CBD for Acne and Skin Care
Who hasn’t suffered from this unfortunate condition – or other skin conditions – at one point in life or another? Aside from creating social stigmas and challenges, the condition is uncomfortable and often associated with lower levels of self-esteem, and even, in severe cases, depression. (15)
A myriad of treatment options exist, from essential oils to prescription medications, laser treatments and more. But, what has dermatologists really excited is the potential for CBD, a compound nearly free of negative side effects, for treating acne and other common skin conditions.
According to one board-certified dermatologist who specializes in cannabinoids in skin care and treatment, Jeanette Jacknin, as recently published in The Strategist, the way CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, helps the skin look more “radiant and youthful” slowing down the signs of aging. Furthermore, its anti-inflammatory actions and interactions with the body can help decrease the effects of acne, eczema, and psoriasis. (16)
Other studies have found that CBD may help lower the production of the specific sebum that is known to cause acne, reducing its visible effects. (17)
At the core of these seemingly miraculous effects, is CBD’s proven ability to lower inflammation throughout the body. Much like chronic pain and other chronic disorders, acne – and many other skin conditions – are worsened by inflammation, which often leads to the overproduction of the chemicals and other hormones that cause visible effects.
Because traditional acne treatments are accompanied by various side effects, ranging from dry skin and irritation to more serious complications like dizziness, and even high blood pressure (when non-traditional treatments like birth control pills are used), finding a more natural remedy is a top priority for patients and researchers alike. (18)
CBD for Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s Disease is frequently associated with many things: memory loss, the inability to care for one’s self, an increased likelihood of wandering off or becoming lost, fear and (perhaps most importantly) the lack of a cure.
The disease is prominent; it’s the 6th leading cause of death in the United States and that figure is likely to increase. Between 2010 and 2015, the prevalence of Alzheimer’s cases grew by 125%. In stark figures, Alzheimer’s is responsible for more deaths than breast cancer and prostate cancer, combined.
Often times, the burden of care lies in family members and other unpaid individuals due to high costs and a lack of options.
While researchers continue to search for a cure, and while early diagnosis techniques are improving, there may be hope for current sufferers: CBD.
As a neurodegenerative disease that progresses over time, sometimes more rapidly than others, the disease attacks the brain and various neuroreceptors of sufferers. A few of the hallmarks of the disease, only identified post mortem, are plaque build-up in the brain and inflammation. Each of these affects the cognitive abilities of patients.
Multiple treatments designed to reduce the effects of the disorder exist, but none are able to stop the physical momentum of Alzheimer’s in its progression forward.
In one study, published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, researchers sought to study whether CBD’s known and proven anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative properties could help reduce the symptoms of sufferers. (19)
While the study was performed on mice, the results were promising. CBD was shown to reduce – and in some cases, remove – cognitive impairment and the inability to recognize familiar objects and structures in the rodents that were studied.
Manage Nausea and Appetite with CBD
Whether the side effect of disease – certain cancers, intestinal and digestive system disorders, cystic fibrosis – or the side effect of the treatment for a disease – medications, chemotherapy, epilepsy drugs – nausea and a loss of appetite can be just as damaging as the disease itself.
Our bodies rely on proper nutrients for regular functioning, for healing, for repair, and for growth. When those nutrients are difficult to take in (or to keep in), increased suffering is likely to ensue.
Television shows, the experiences of others and history have demonstrated cannabis’s ability to increase a user’s appetite… but what about CBD? Could the all-natural compound, relatively free of side effects help combat nausea, vomiting and limited appetite associated with specific drugs and diseases?
The science is promising! It’s also far from new.
Back in the 1970s and ’80s before the development of “modern” anti-nausea drugs, CBD was widely studied for its anti-emetic (vomiting) properties. Then, when new treatments were introduced, the research was waylaid, paused and put on the back burner, in simple terms.
The pharmaceutical industry had an interest in promoting more profitable options and pushed forward in supporting those initiatives instead of opting for the more natural option.
Recently, this has started to change.
One study – of many human trials – published in the British Journal of Pharmacology, found that cannabinoids – like CBD – may be more effective than standard anti-emetics in treating difficult to control, or difficult to treat – vomiting and appetite problems in both children and adults. (20)
CBD may work on the same receptors as traditional treatments, being similarly effective without all the negative side effects. The term promising may be an understatement for both suffering patients and medical professionals.
CBD Hemp Oil Helps Multiple Sclerosis
Multiple Sclerosis (or MS) is the most commonly diagnosed disabling neurological condition affecting young adults on a global scale.
Unlike many other neurological conditions prevalent among older population groups, MS primarily first affects individuals between the ages of 20 and 50. (21)
Currently, it’s estimated that 2.3 million individuals around the world are living with MS. Here in the United States, around 200 new cases are diagnosed on a weekly basis. (22)
While the lifespans of sufferers are generally considered “average,” the range of symptoms and progressive symptoms can range widely – from pins, needles and tingling in various parts of the body to the inability to function and walk independently.
MS affects the central nervous system of sufferers, with lesions affecting the myelin, neurons, and fibers of the brain and spinal cord, which, in turn, affect and limit various bodily functions.
Multiple studies have concluded that CBD may be useful in:
- Reducing the pain felt by MS sufferers.
- Reducing muscle stiffness experienced as a result of MS.
- Reducing extremity spasms commonly associated with MS and MS relapses.
- Reducing bowel and bladder dysfunction associated with MS, and more.
CBD Can Improve Cardiovascular Health
Ranging from long-term conditions (like valve problems, arrhythmias and more) to life-changing events (like heart attacks or cardiovascular-related strokes), the potential for cardiovascular problems throughout a given individual’s lifespan is great.
In fact, heart disease or cardiovascular disfunction is the leading cause of death among both men and women in the United States, with regional differences in prevalence and type. Each year, over 630,000 people in the United States die due to heart disease.
The numbers are staggering, the research is ongoing, and early intervention and symptom identification education have grown in prevalence in order to increase heart health.
Today, Americans are (mostly) aware of the risks of heart disease, attempting to remain active and to focus on nutrition, and to take other steps to prevent trouble. But, something that’s often left off the agenda might be more useful than previously thought – cannabinoids, like CBD.
CBD’s anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative properties may be useful in preventing cardiovascular disease and events, even for those considered “high-risk.”
Research compiled by the National Institute of Health hypothesizes that CBD may work directly on isolated arteries, to promote relaxation and to reduce negative cardiovascular responses to various models of stress, that could lead to damage over time. (26)
Other studies have shown promise in CBD’s ability to:
- Reduce cardiac arrhythmias.
- Reduce the risk of death following a cardiac event or heart attack for past users.
- Reduce the risk of additional heart attacks after the first in surviving patients.
- Potentially regulate hypertension.
- Reduce imminent death-rates among heart failure patients.
- Reduce cell-death relating to diabetic cardiomyopathy, and more. (27)
CBD is also helpful in combating and treating conditions that are risk factors for cardiovascular disease, including:
- And more.
CBD Shows Antibacterial Qualities
In-house hospital infections, multi-drug resistant bacteria, and “new” bacterial infections are on the rise with the potential to be a crisis in the very near future.
The ones that have scientists, researchers and medical professionals around the world most concerned – with good reason – are drug-resistant bacteria.
Because of the overuse of antibiotics, multiple bacteria have “evolved,” to develop a resistance to treatments that would have been effective not all that long ago.
Just a few decades ago, only 1-5 percent of bacteria and “bugs” were considered resistant to drugs. Today, that number has risen to somewhere between 60-70%.
According to the CDC, each year in the United States, over 2 million individuals become infected with a drug-resistant bacterial strain, and over 23,000 pass away. The age of superbugs has arrived. (28)
While researchers scramble for answers and new treatments, a more historically-trusted, natural alternative might be more widely available than any of us would have thought: CBD.
Research has shown that certain cannabinoids, including CBD, have antiseptic properties. Used both topically – as a cream on skin lesions and injuries – and internally, CBD – and other cannabinoids – have shown promising results against even the most deadly of drug-resistant bacteria (like MRSA). (29)
When applied to the skin, some studies have shown CBD and other cannabinoids to be more effective than traditional treatments and antiseptic lotions. Notably, the skin lotions had a lower number of negative reactions, in addition to their powerful results. (30)
Imagine the possibilities!
At the very least, CBD’s potential ability to mitigate a current cultural crisis – drug-resistant bacteria – warrants additional research, which is currently underway around the world. (31)
CBD Oil for Sleep and Insomnia
Sleep disorders come in many shapes and sizes. One thing remains clear: a lack of regular, quality sleep can have detrimental effects on the overall health of anyone.
CBD has shown promising potential for providing relief from many sleep disorders, including obstructive sleep apnea, REM sleep behavior disorder, excessive daytime sleepiness, nightmares associated with PTSD, reduced sleep due to chronic pain, and more. Then there’s the big one… CBD is proving to help with insomnia. (32)
This is significant: insomnia is the most common sleep disorder, affecting 30 percent of adults in the short term, and 10 percent on a chronic basis. (33)
The inability to obtain quality sleep doesn’t just lead to tiresome days; it can impact regular functioning. Each year, numerous individuals make life-altering mistakes on the job, in vehicles and more, leading to fatalities. In the medical field, sleep deprivation among practitioners may be responsible for up to 100,000 deaths in the United States.
But, when it’s hard to come by, what’s someone to do?
Traditional medications for helping an individual sleep have major side effects, including:
- Dependency with worsening symptoms after medications are discontinued
- A loss of balance
- Addiction and Withdrawal difficulties
- Digestive issues
- Impairment upon waking
- Changes in appetite
- And more
While many sufferers of insomnia depend on CBD due to its natural qualities and low rate of side effects, early scientific studies have begun to explain why.
It’s thought that the endocannabinoid system may be critical for regulating sleep and sleep stability, which makes sense, as it promotes balance throughout the body. Research seems to show that when CBD interacts with this system, sufferers may achieve longer periods of overall sleep. Furthermore, earlier research demonstrated that CBD may provide relief for insomnia sufferers who struggle to achieve REM sleep due to anxiety. (34, 35, 36)
CBD Successfully Treats Drug Withdrawal
The opioid crisis – the drug category responsible for the most addictions in the United States – is very real. Opioids were responsible for over 42,000 deaths in 2016, rising over 5 times from just a decade earlier, and over 20 percent from 2015 alone. Today, over 800 individuals die from overdoses each week in the US. (37, 38)
Many of these addictions are born with prescription pain killers (prescribed by medical professionals) used to treat varying levels of pain following accidents, medical and/or dental procedures, surgeries, chronic conditions and more.
After initial use, the brain’s chemistry changes to require the drug – often in higher doses – to achieve the same level of pain control. When the drug’s usage is stopped, the brain still “needs” it, causing (sometimes) debilitating symptoms including:
- Low energy
- Body twitching and shaking
- Digestive symptoms
- Muscle pain and body aches
- Hot and cold sweats
- And more
In most cases, the discomfort caused by these withdrawals (along with the brain’s need for the substance) force users to continue, often requiring higher doses to achieve the same effect. (39)
This cycle, along with the growing issues of synthetic drugs and Fentanyl lacing, leaves users forced to risk death from usage – OR – face life-threatening/life-altering withdrawal symptoms.
How could CBD make a difference?
Research is still in the early phases but has shown promising results. (40)
Because CBD helps reduce cravings for other addictive substances – like nicotine – it’s logical to believe it might be helpful for other addictions as well.
Those who have used CBD to reduce drug withdrawal symptoms have reported lower levels of anxiety and reduced side effects. But, why?
It’s believed that while CBD helps activate and regulate the body’s endocannabinoid system, it also helps regulate the neural pathways that are responsible for withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings. In early rat trials, those treated with CBD were less likely to exhibit anxiety-related withdrawal symptoms and drug-seeking behaviors after being exposed to cocaine. (41)
There’s more work to do… but multiple studies are underway to learn more.
Supplement IBS Treatments with CBD
Inflammatory Bowel Disease ranges in severity for sufferers, affecting daily functioning and requiring diet, lifestyle and (sometimes) medication for management.
- Abdominal pain
- And other unpleasant effects
There’s no known cause for IBS. Theories held by different medical professionals include muscle contraction control in the intestines, inflammation, nervous system malfunction, imbalanced gut bacteria, infections and more.
Symptoms sometimes have no identified triggers. Other times, sufferers can find a link between certain foods, stress and even hormones.
Because CBD has proven effects on many of these potential causes – especially inflammation, bacterial infections, and nervous system malfunctioning – it’s reasonable to believe that it may play a role in regulating the disorder.
It all starts with the connection between the endocannabinoid system and intestinal function/motility. Recent studies have found that the transmitters regulated by the endocannabinoid system are located throughout the human body. Some of these transmitters are responsible for gut function; when imbalanced, negative effects are likely to occur. (42)
A study highlighting this was performed approximately one decade ago. The study found a link between IBS sufferers and clinical endocannabinoid deficiency, which relates back to the fact that the system directly impacts intestinal motility and function. When CBD was used to activate and regulate the endocannabinoid system, sufferers of IBS saw significant symptom improvement. (43)
Another study (performed in 2011) found a link between nervous and immune system involvement and IBS. When CBD was used to treat IBS patients, regulation of gliosis in the nervous system (commonly associated with negative IBS effects) seemed possible, without the psychoactive and other common effects of traditional treatments or even medical marijuana. (44)
CBD Oil for ADHD
Often thought of as a childhood disease – which it is – ADHD has been known to last well into adulthood and throughout an individual’s entire life.
ADHD, or attention deficit disorder, with or without hyperactivity, is often first noticed and diagnosed in school-aged children (it is the most commonly diagnosed neurodevelopmental disorder of childhood). Many sufferers must learn to adapt to difficulties in paying attention, remembering seemingly simple tasks, being over-compulsive and more, over the long term. (45)
This can lead to difficulties in performing at work, keeping a job and growing in a given career track, and even interpersonal relationships. Because an estimated 6.1% of American children are estimated to suffer from ADHD – a number that has skyrocketed in recent years – there’s clearly room for improvement. (46)
Current protocols include managing ADHD with a combination of behavioral therapy and medications. Numerous medications, both stimulants, and non-stimulants have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat ADHD. Because each individual reacts differently to each medication, finding an appropriate protocol can be a challenge associated with many negative symptoms, including:
- A loss of appetite
- Increased blood
- Weight loss
- And more
Researchers have begun to search for a better way. One potential option? CBD, of course!
Because CBD works with specific neurotransmitters to reduce anxiety and increase the ability to focus, initial studies have shown promise in its ability to increase the quality of life by decreasing the symptoms of ADHD for many sufferers. Much of this research is still in the early phases (with a lot of room to learn more), however, CBD may be worth adding to a daily routine for those frustrated with traditional treatment options.
CBD Oil for Arthritis
Arthritis hits close to home for many individuals. As a conservative estimate, around 54 million American adults, and 300,000 children suffer from arthritis that has been diagnosed by a medical provider, with many more believed to suffer in silence.
Furthermore, this number is expected to grow. According to the CDC, it is estimated that by 2040, over 78 million adults will have arthritis that has been diagnosed by a doctor, with 43% of those individuals limited in terms of activity because of the disease, without taking into effect other conditions that contribute to arthritis side effects, like growing obesity numbers and more.
Current arthritis treatments have a variety of negative side effects, including:
- Cardiovascular effects
- Hair loss
- Digestive issues like nausea
- Swelling and water retention
- Elevated blood sugar levels
- Breathing difficulties
- And more
In many cases, avoiding traditional treatments is not an option. Because the disease itself can harm the body due to chronic inflammation, many sufferers feel trapped; forced to decide between the “lesser” of two evils: allowing arthritis to continue its course – or – accept the side effects. (49)
There might be a better way: CBD.
One cannabis sativa derived medication, Sativex, has already been put to the test with impressive results, including an improvement in pain levels at rest and during movement, and increased quality in sleep due to lower levels of pain. (50)
Additionally, because of CBD’s ability to reduce inflammation, it has been noted that nerve damage (caused by inflammation) may be prevented or lessened by the consumption of CBD by arthritis sufferers. (51)
CBD – nature’s wonder drug – may reduce other effects of this debilitating disease, including cardiovascular damage, chronic pain, and more.
Autism Improvement with CBD
Autism. Most of us have been touched by a disorder that falls somewhere on the autism spectrum. That’s because its diagnosis is becoming more common than most other childhood conditions.
Today, 1 in 59 children has been identified as having symptoms consistent with autism spectrum disorders. This is up from 1 in 150 in the year 2000. (52)
Disorders that are classified as relating to autism are often shrouded in mystery. While some hereditary links seem to exist, other causes – though hotly debated – have been difficult to nail down with any clarity.
The symptoms range in both type and severity, from one individual to another. These could include:
- Difficulty in communication
- Struggles to connect
- Hypersensitivity to specific sensory situations and stimuli
- Emotional outbursts
- Lack of speech and/or eye-contact
- An inability to understand emotional cues of others
- Inability to handle specific textures
- Lack of coordination
- And more.
More severe forms are often identified in childhood, while others are often masked – or misidentified – as other conditions like anxiety or OCD. Treatments are often prescribed based on symptoms, in addition to behavioral and cognitive therapies, varying based on the individual patient.
This range of symptoms and lack of treatment leaves many parents and adults on the spectrum, wondering where to turn and/or where to start.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, CBD has shown promise in the treatment of autism-related symptoms.
Current studies, including one carried out by the UC San Diego School of Medicine, are looking into how the endocannabinoid system may be linked to reducing symptoms associated with autism. This is due to its role in social reward responsivity, neural development, and circadian rhythm and anxiety regulation – all of which are often affected by autism. (53)
If these links are found, regulation of symptoms may be possible using therapeutic CBD. (54)
CBD Oil Can Help Depression
Depression and major depressive disorders are the most commonly diagnosed mental health disorders in the world.
In the last year, nearly 7% of adults have suffered from one major depressive episode – lasting two weeks or longer – with 10 percent of physician office visits mentioning depression as a topic of conversation. (55, 56)
The potential negative effects of depression are great; each year, over 44,000 American lives are lost to suicide, with depression noted as a common link.
For those who seek help, therapy, lifestyle changes, and medications are often recommended. Unfortunately, finding a targeted treatment is often a long process with periods of worsening depression and other side effects, including:
- Weight gain
- Dry mouth
- Appetite changes
- Sexual side effects
- And more.
Currently, researchers are looking for a better way. Studies are currently being conducted to create a novel line of anti-depressants (that affect and help regulate the endocannabinoid system) using cannabinoids like CBD as a more natural treatment option. (57, 58)
Preclinical and research findings indicate that, by enhancing the signaling of the endocannabinoid system, CBD may be able to reduce activity related to neuroendocrine stress while enhancing serotonergic and noradrenergic transmission – similar to how current anti-depressants to function, but without the side effects.
Other research indicates that CBD may provide more fast-acting benefits, with a shorter time period between consumption and positive effects for those suffering from depression. (59)
The fact that CBD can help to combat the side effects of depression, allowing sufferers to function at their optimal level of performance, is nothing short of positive.
CBD Oil for Fibromyalgia
While many of us associate fibromyalgia as a pain-related condition, pain is not all the disorder causes.
It’s true that nerve pain is one of the most commonly reported symptoms of fibromyalgia, but it goes farther than that. Sufferers are often faced with fatigue, memory problems, mood changes, and much more. (60)
Unlike other chronic conditions, fibromyalgia is not known to cause muscle or joint damage, but the symptoms it causes are no less devastating. Today, 3.7 million Americans are living with fibromyalgia, often in tandem with other conditions, including depression, anxiety, arthritis and more.
Because the cause of fibromyalgia cannot be pinpointed, treatments are often prescribed to lessen the side effects, providing a better quality of life for those who are afflicted with the disease. (61)
These often include pain medications, sleeping pills, anti-seizure drugs, and anti-depressants.
As mentioned in previous conditions, these treatments are often associated with devastating side effects, ranging from mild mood changes, sleeping problems and/or appetite changes to depression, dependance and more. In many cases, as patients become acclimated to specific doses, they are increased, leading to a higher potential for negative effects.
Once again, CBD – nature’s miracle compound – may provide a better alternative. Because of its role in treating chronic pain, depression, nausea and appetite issues, and even nerve pain, CBD may provide benefits to fibromyalgia sufferers as well.
Because the endocannabinoid system may help regulate the way various neurons fire, this is promising for fibromyalgia patients looking for a better way to treat symptoms.