Digestive disorders, which include over 40 chronic and acute conditions involving the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, like Chron’s disease and irritable bowel, affect over 34 million Americans.
They can be incredibly debilitating, in fact, it’s been estimated that some 400,000 are totally disabled and 1.2 are limited in the work they’re able to perform due to GI issues. The pain and discomfort can lead to multiple negative impacts, including job loss and financial ruin, becoming a recluse or even premature death.
While there are all sorts of pharmaceutical medications for digestive woes, they often come with side effects that can severely affect the quality of life, like a weaker immune system, weight gain, and bone loss, not to mention that many aren’t even all that effective for treating the problem in the first place.
Could CBD Oil be an Effective Alternative?
As science continues to explore CBD’s many medicinal benefits, one of most common is its positive effects on gut health. In fact, many people who suffer from Crohn’s, IBS, celiac disease, leaky gut, gluten sensitivity and other digestive issues have been discovering its beneficial effects.
While cannabis has long been known to increase appetite as research delves deeper into marijuana’s properties, including cannabinoids other than THC, more and more applications for the digestive system are being discovered. That includes evidence that suggests CBD oil, the endocannabinoid system and digestion all have an interconnected, complex relationship.
When problems in the gut arise, they’re often related to problems with the contraction process involved in digestion, which helps to push food through the stomach and into the GI tract. The pain that’s triggered by the distress caused can be extreme and hard to diagnose which means it can take years of trial and error to figure out what the problem is and properly treat it.
While research involving CBDs for treating digestive problems is in its infancy, studies have suggested that it may be one of the most powerful remedies. That’s because CBDs interact with cannabinoid receptors that are found in the intestines, stomach, and brain, including serotonin receptors, CB-1 and CB-2 receptors. CB1 specifically has been shown to help regulate stomach acids, protect the stomach, and ease nausea and vomiting.
More Research is Needed, But CBD Oil for Health Gut Health Shows Great Promise
Further studies are needed, however many patients, as well as the experts, are hopeful. Lots of people are already using CBD to treat these issues on a self-prescribed basis and finding relief, however, with more in-depth scientific research there is great hope that its effects will be confirmed, and it may also help to legitimize CBD as an effective treatment. It is still unsure as to which specific diseases it may bring relief for, potentially improving intestinal motility for those with leaky gut and/or aid in relieving pain for Crohn’s, among other benefits, but there is no doubt as to the excitement over the possibilities.
As most gastrointestinal issues are intricately linked to chronic inflammation, inflammation and reducing inflammation is already the main target of treatments for diseases like IBS, this may be the key to how CBD can help. Multiple studies, though small, have confirmed the oil’s ability to provide analgesic relief due it its ability to reduce inflammation.