CBD for Inflammation

CBD for Inflammation

By Cynthia Thaik, M.D., FACC

Interest in CBD has risen dramatically over the past few years, with many people turning to it as a natural treatment for a wide range of conditions. A growing body of scientific evidence suggests that CBD may be an effective remedy for inflammation, which means it can be useful for anyone suffering from inflammatory disorders such as arthritis, IBS, multiple sclerosis or heart disease.

If you experience inflammation or pain, you may have looked into CBD as an alternative to pharmaceutical treatments. While CBD is a natural substance, there are still some things you should know about what it is, how it reacts with the body, how it can help your condition, and how to use CBD safely

What is CBD?

CBD is an acronym for cannabidiol. It is a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant. The cannabis plant contains at least 113 cannabinoids, also known as phytocannabinoids. The two main phytocannabinoids are CBD and THC. Both these compounds can have therapeutic effects on the body.

While THC has psychoactive properties that can make you feel ‘high’, CBD does not. If you take pure CBD, it should not affect your motor skills or cloud your senses. It also has very few negative side effects. In fact, the World Health Organization stated that there is no evidence of dependence or abuse with the use of pure CBD oil.

How Does CBD Interact With the Body?

Scientists identified cannabinoids in the 1940s, and soon after learned that they react with a naturally occurring biological system in our bodies called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). They have since learned that the ECS regulates various bodily functions, repairs damage and works to restore and maintain balance in the body. 

Endocannabinoids are molecules in our bodies that act as neurotransmitters and bind to cannabinoid receptors. Endocannabinoids are similar to cannabinoids, but they are naturally produced by the body. They help to regulate a number of important functions including inflammation, pain, sleep, memory, appetite, and motor function.

Research suggests that chronic inflammatory conditions such as arthritis and IBS may be caused by endocannabinoid deficiencies in the body. This is where CBD may help. CBD acts like an endocannabinoid by interacting with cannabinoid receptors in the body, so it may be able to help restore balance to and moderate important bodily functions.

Can CBD Help With Inflammation?

Many people swear by CBD’s ability to reduce inflammation and alleviate pain. Many studies have been done on whether this can be scientifically proven, and a large number of trials do indicate that CBD can alleviate inflammation with fewer side effects than you might get with traditional pain killers and other pharmaceutical treatments.

A 2020 study reviewed the biological effects that CBD has on the body with a focus on its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and cellular properties. The researchers determined that phytocannabinoids do in fact have therapeutic effects that can help fight oxidative stress and inflammation. In addition, the researchers pointed to the fact that CBD is a preferred phytocannabinoid because of its lack of psychotropic properties.

Another study looked at the potential use of cannabinoids for inflammatory disorders and autoimmune diseases. Their research reveals that cannabinoids interact with specific compounds in the body to modulate and suppress inflammatory responses and regulate the immune system. The researchers conclusion was that cannabinoids have significant potential for the treatment of inflammation.

How to Take CBD for Inflammation

CBD comes in many forms. Once it is extracted from the hemp plant, it can be suspended in oil or collected as a resin or hash. It can then be sold as an oil, added to edibles like gummies or cookies, sold as capsules, or topical products. It can also be used as a vape oil that you can smoke. 

One thing to be aware of is that there are a wide variety of CBD products out there and many of them are unregulated, so it is important to do your research about the products first. Pure CBD products should contain less than 0.3% THC, otherwise you run the risk of experiencing psychoactive effects. Be sure to get your CBD products from a reputable buyer.

The correct dosage or amount of CBD you should take depends on a number of factors. Everybody experiences inflammation differently and no two conditions are exactly alike, so your dosage may be different from someone else’s. The best thing to do is speak with a medical professional who can advise you on the ideal dosage for you.

Is CBD Safe?

In general, pure CBD is safe for use in that it doesn’t get you high, is not addictive, and has very few if any harmful negative side effects. However, like any supplement, it can affect different people in different ways. Some people do experience mild side effects such as nausea, drowsiness and fatigue. In addition, CBD may react with certain medications, so it is important to speak to your doctor before taking CBD.

Holistic Health and CBD Advice in Los Angeles

The Holistic Healing Heart Center serves the greater Los Angeles area with whole-person healthcare that focuses on prevention, wellness and rejuvenation. Dr. Cynthia Thaik is a Harvard-trained cardiologist and functional medicine doctor who combines the best elements of modern and traditional medicine for comprehensive health care solutions that transform as they heal.

If you’re struggling with inflammation or pain, we invite you to schedule an appointment with Dr. Thaik to discuss your health history, concerns, and the possibility of using CBD for inflammation. Dr, Thaik can also answer any questions you may have about lifestyle, environmental exposures, and genetic influences that may cause poor health. 

NOTE: This article does not constitute medical advice. Always consult with a medical professional before making any changes to your diet, medication, supplements, or lifestyle.

About the author

Dr. Cynthia Thaik, M.D., FACC is a Harvard-trained cardiologist serving the greater Los Angeles community at her holistic health center in Burbank and Valencia, CA. Dr. Thaik is the author of Your Vibrant Heart: Restoring Health, Strength, and Spirit from the Body’s Core. To learn more about Dr. Thaik or the Holistic Healing Heart Center, or to schedule an appointment, please contact info@drcynthia.com or call (818) 842-1410.