At some point in our lives, all of us have experienced inflammation, whether we’ve twisted an ankle or fallen and cut our knees. The process of inflammation is a natural response to when the body is harmed and it can come in two different forms - chronic or acute. When acute inflammation occurs, it is usually from an injury or an infection. Chronic inflammation is a different beast altogether.
This type of inflammation is attributed to a prolonged response in the body which can have a detrimental effect on your tissues and organs - not something anyone wants. This damage occurs due to the production of free radicals which develops into oxidative stress, a condition that occurs when there is an imbalance between free radicals and the antioxidants in your body.
How can CBD help though? Chronic inflammation can be caused by multiple diseases including autoimmune disorders. CBD has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties that could be used to alleviate symptoms and serve as pain management for those with disorders that create inflammation. Perhaps, the ultimate natural anti-inflammatory, the use of CBD is showing promising results in studies.
CBD as an Anti Inflammatory
Consistent inflammation isn’t good for the body and chronic inflammation can lead to significant pain and anxiety. CBD has shown consistent potential as a plant-derived anti-inflammatory which allows those who suffer with chronic illnesses to experience pain relief without the side effects of medications.
For those who have tried a myriad of prescriptions, CBD has proven to reduce their swelling and make their inflammation bearable. While research is still ongoing, the studies are promising and provide doctors with other options than traditional pills.
Research on CBD’s Properties
CBD interacts in our bodies using our endocannabinoid system and it appears that cannabinoids are able to exploit this relationship to interact with the immune system positively. This leads to reduced inflammation as well as a reduction in pain for many people who are exposed to this type of agony.
Research published in the Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry in 2015 revealed a detailed review on the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD. Scientists found that CBD positively reduced inflammation through several pathways in the body.
This is incredibly promising as it shows CBD as a potential treatment for chronic pain conditions that have inflammation as a symptom, and also encourages further study around the subject.
In the Clinical Hemorheology and Microcirculation Journal, a 2016 article delivered research into CBD being used as a treatment for early pancreatic inflammation in diabetic mice. This study was particularly interesting as it observed one of the leading causes of diabetes - pancreatic inflammation.
Essentially, diabetes can develop from pancreatic inflammation due to an invasion of immune cells that totally destroy insulin-producing cells. The study saw mice receive ten weeks of treatment with CBD against a control group that didn’t receive any CBD at all.
The mice that received CBD developed diabetes much later than those who didn’t. Another interesting discovery from this experiment was that the CBD-treated mice had a significant reduction in immune-cell activity proving their ability to reduce inflammation.
Another study using rodents was conducted by the journal Pain in 2017. It examined rats that had osteoarthritis and the effects that CBD had on them. After treating the rats for two weeks, it was found that the acute inflammation around the joints was reduced in the area that CBD was applied to. It was also found to prevent the development of joint pain as well as nerve damage in the rodents.
Continued research using these animals has proven to be very successful with studies showing that CBD can modulate the immune system. The journal Neurology published a study in 2018 that showed CBD bound itself to receptors which, in turn, desensitised them. This then allows for the mediation of pain and sensory perception, body temperature, and also inflammation.
With promising results, scientists are hoping that clinical trials on humans will be approved to ensure that CBD is transformed from an alternative treatment to a bonafide option for healthcare professionals to prescribe as medication.
The Medicine Behind CBD
There are plenty of scientists who are dedicating research to determining whether or not CBD is a good treatment for many chronic conditions. Studies continuously show that cannabinoids, that include CBD as well as others, are very effective anti-inflammatory agents.
CBD and other cannabinoids have been shown to reduce nerve tissue inflammation, help with arthritis, vascular inflammation, inflammatory bowel disease, and also help certain cancers which can be triggered through chronic inflammation.
Jeremy Riggle who is the Chief Scientist for Mary’s Medicinals does believe that these results should be treated with caution as inflammation is a complex process and the full effects of cannabinoids in regards to inflammation aren’t fully understood yet. He does advocate that it is a low-risk and high-reward treatment for inflammation as it has minor side effects.
Another expert, Stacia Woodcock, a pharmacist at Curaleaf New York, does believe that the effect CBD has on your body can only be complemented by other cannabinoids. She does recognise that CBD has anti-inflammatory qualities but is more effective when accompanied by other cannabinoids.
Woodcock recommends full spectrum CBD if treating the body for inflammation. Full spectrum CBD includes the cannabinoid THC which is renowned for its inebriating effects on the body.
All products sold legally in the UK will only contain 0.2% THC which simply won’t have the effects that THC at full strength would. Full spectrum CBD works quicker in the body due to the ‘Entourage Effect’ where all the cannabinoids enhance each other’s properties.
Due to this, Stacia Woodcock does recommend CBD as an anti-inflammatory treatment, particularly when compared to other anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen or naproxen.
She considers CBD a safe alternative as it doesn’t have the blood thinning properties that accompany these drugs nor does it cause stomach ulceration - common side effects from anti-inflammatory meds.
Beat Inflammation with Natural Remedies
There is consistent evidence that suggests that CBD is an anti-inflammatory and can be used for pain management to help with debilitating conditions. Studies are ongoing and are still in their infancy, so if you are considering using CBD to treat inflammation, discuss your decision with your doctor.
If you want to know more about the incredible benefits and properties of CBD or are curious about CBD products in general, get in touch with CBD Farmacy today. We have a range of full spectrum products available that can treat an array of ailments.