CBD oil has become more prevalent in recent years because of its range of abilities to help with health and digestive issues as well as with general health in the gut and intestines. Marijuana products have been used for a number of centuries as an alternative medicine in different cultures.
In more recent years, technology has allowed CBD to be separated from the components that make users “high.” This has enabled people to get the benefits of CBD without adverse effects. In particular, CBD has become popular for aiding in the treatment of a variety of digestive disorders.
People used to believe that the sole purpose of the gut was to help digest food. But now, the medical community is discovering more and more just how important of a role gut health plays in not only digestion but in the entire body. Even if there are no disorders in the digestive system, anyone can benefit by using CBD for their digestive health.
Improving the health of one’s gut can help a person to improve overall well-being. This is because the “good bacteria” in the gut help keep the “bad bacteria” in check by multiplying so rapidly that the harmful bacteria do not have enough space to grow. Having too many unhealthy bacteria in the gut can lead to common digestive problems such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and other similar problems.
Some types of bacteria in the gut have even been linked to both kidney disease and high cholesterol that leads to heart problems. Gut bacteria have also been linked to the emotions, whether or not someone is obese, and even mental problems. Regularly taking probiotics can help balance the number of bacteria in the gut, and CBD oil can also help strike the right balance.
To understand how this product can help prevent some of these problems, a person must first know a little more about CBD itself.
CBD Vs. THC
When people think of products that come from cannabis, many people think of things that will get them “high.” But this is not always the case with cannabis products. Tetrahydrocannabinol is the psychoactive part of the hemp plant, which means that it causes users to experience a feeling of being “high.”
CBD, on the other hand, has gone through a distilling and purification process to remove the parts that cause users to feel “high.” New technology has allowed manufacturers to be able to remove all traces of THC from the plant, leaving only the CBD isolated by itself. This means that even users who face routine drug tests for work or other situations can safely and discreetly take this product.
Usually, it is extracted from the hemp variety of the cannabis plant. This is because the hemp strain has a higher concentration of the oils. Tetrahydrocannabinol, on the other hand, is usually only extracted from the marijuana strain of the cannabis plant because it has a higher concentration of THC. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol, CBD is entirely legal in the entire United States.
How CBD and the Endocannabinoid System Work
CBD can help treat a variety of digestive problems by working with the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The benefits of the ECS are not widely recognized as the benefits of more well-known systems in the body, such as the circulatory system. But the endocannabinoid system is essential for well-being.
The endocannabinoid system helps keep the body in a state of balance by regulating a wide variety of functions. These include appetite, mood, and inflammation. The ECS is a high-level system, and it is made up of three main parts:
- Endocannabinoids: These neurotransmitters are similar to the cannabinoids found in cannabis. The body produces these naturally.
- Cannabinoid receptors: These receptors allow endocannabinoids to bind to them. CB1 receptors are part of the central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are part of the peripheral nervous system. Each of these two types of receptors plays a slightly different role in the body.
- Enzymes: After endocannabinoids bind to the receptors and the body has used these neurotransmitters, the enzymes break down the endocannabinoids so the body will not overcorrect the other way.
When endocannabinoids bind to the receptors, the ECS can communicate with the other systems of the body. This is how the ECS regulates the body’s other systems and makes corrections to keep the body in homeostasis, or equilibrium. After the body has made a correction, the enzymes break down the endocannabinoids, so the body does not correct too much the other way.
CBD oil helps the body produce more endocannabinoids. Because it makes the body produce more endocannabinoids, the ECS can help restore the body to homeostasis faster.
Many gastrointestinal tract issues could be improved if the body was able to fight these issues off better. Research has shown that the immune system contains receptors for both CB1 and CB2, meaning that both these types of receptors are responsible for maintaining homeostasis in this system. Because both receptors are responsible for regulating the body’s defense system, this cannabis product can be especially useful for digestive problems.
Digestive Issues CBD Can Help
Living with digestive problems can be debilitating, disrupting an individual’s day-to-day life. Many times, there is no cure for these problems, and symptoms can cause embarrassment. This can cause the individual to feel even more isolated, anxious, and depressed.
Both prescription medications and over-the-counter medicines often come with a long list of undesirable effects. Some of the problematic effects of these medications can include increased pain in the abdomen, constipation, and nausea. These are often the problems individuals were looking to cure in the first place.
The good news is that CBD can help ease the symptoms of a range of digestive disorders in the GI tract without causing undesirable side effects of prescription medications. It is also a good alternative for people looking to lead a more natural lifestyle with more natural, plant-based products. There are a few common issues whose symptoms CBD oil can help treat.
Because it can change the way the liver processes some other medications, individuals who are already taking other medications should consult with their doctors before using it.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
About 10 to 15 percent of people around the world suffer from irritable bowel syndrome. Generally, women suffer from IBS more than men do. People who are suffering from this disorder may experience symptoms such as cramps, pain in the abdomen, gas, diarrhea, or constipation. Sometimes these symptoms come and go over time. This is considered a chronic condition that people will have for a long time.
The cause of this disease is still unknown. However, there are some factors that may play a role in it. For example, inflammation may cause some cases of IBS. Problems with the nervous system may also play a role. Sometimes these problems can cause pain when the abdomen stretches from stool or gas. The disease can also sometimes be triggered by stress.
IBS does not have a cure. However, some of the symptoms can be managed through a combination of changes to one’s lifestyle, diet changes, medications, and increased fiber. CBD can help manage some of the symptoms and triggers of this disorder because it helps the user feel more relaxed, and it can reduce inflammation.
This problem occurs when the GI tract fills with gas, leading to discomfort and embarrassment for the individual. In some cases, it can make the individual’s stomach look noticeably larger than usual. Other symptoms might include nausea, heartburn, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Sometimes this problem is caused by foods that are eaten, such as dairy products like milk and cheese, in the case of people with lactose intolerance. However, other problems in the digestive area can also lead to this issue. These problems include IBS and inflammation. The good news is that by treating and reducing these problems, bloating can also be addressed.
This problem is a type of inflammatory bowel disease. This disease causes the digestive tract to become inflamed, leading to an array of symptoms. These symptoms include weight loss, pain in the abdomen, cramping, severe diarrhea, and fatigue. Depending on the person, Crohn’s disease may affect different parts of the digestive areas. However, the most common locations include the colon and the last part of the small intestine.
Like other bowel problems, the precise cause of Crohn’s disease is still unknown. However, it is known that it is caused by inflammation in the digestive areas, so reducing inflammation can help ease symptoms. It is also possible that it is triggered by a virus or bacteria that trigger the body’s immune response.
It is essential to treat the symptoms of this IBD disease because it can cause severe complications. These complications include:
- Ulcers, which are open sores in the digestive tract. They can become infected if left untreated.
- Malnutrition, because severe diarrhea can make it difficult for the body to absorb necessary nutrients.
- Colon cancer, because when the disease is in the colon, the individual is at a higher risk of cancer. People with Crohn’s may need to be screened for colon cancer more often.
- Bowel obstruction, because the disease can cause part of the bowel to become scarred and more narrow. This can eventually cause the bowel to become obstructed.
CBD can help manage the symptoms of this disease because it can help reduce inflammation. As the inflammation is reduced and symptoms become better, cannabidiol can also stimulate the appetite, helping the individual become better nourished.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease
The ailment is an umbrella term for several diseases related to the digestive area. IBD generally leads to a range of symptoms such as diarrhea, weight loss, exhaustion, and pain in the abdomen. Sometimes stress can aggravate the condition. It can lead to inflammation in the eyes, skin, and joints. It can also cause blood clots in the veins and arteries of people who suffer from it.
Research shows that CBD may offer treatment for IBDs. This is because it can control the neuroimmune axis. When the immune system is overactive, inflammation can increase, worsening GI disorders. CBD can stop this reaction, meaning there is not as much potential for long-term damage to the intestines.
A cramp occurs in an individual when a muscle contracts or shortens too quickly. Sometimes trapped gas from a GI problem can also cause a feeling of cramps. Problems in the intestines can frequently cause cramps because the muscles are spasming and quickly contracting. The cramps often go away when the individual uses the toilet, but sometimes they can linger.
CBD can help change the way an individual’s brain responds to pain. The muscles may continue to contract too quickly until the underlying problem is treated, but the individual can get some relief in the meantime.
Pain in the abdomen can be caused by a variety of disorders. It may be felt like cramps, aches, or sharp pains. However, it is most commonly caused by diseases or inflammation in abdominal muscles. Some of the organs that may be causes of pain in the abdomen include the kidneys, intestines, liver, pancreas, spleen, or the stomach. Abnormal growths and intestinal disorders are two other common causes of abdominal pain. CBD can help reduce the inflammation that causes this pain.
One study of mice showed that mice that suffered from inflammation in their intestines showed that they had a very high rate of turnover in their ECS. The enzymes in these mice were breaking down the cannabinoids before they had a chance to help restore equilibrium in their bodies. This meant each of the mice’s ECS systems could not regulate inflammation in the intestines as well as in normal mice. However, the study showed that when the mice received CBD, the intestinal motility, or abnormal contractions in the intestines, was inhibited. This helped relieve inflammation and pain in the intestines for the mice. The study concluded that CBD could have a similar effect in humans.
Some digestive problems can cause chronic pain in patients, especially when the disease is a long-lasting one. CBD can help manage and reduce this pain by engaging the body’s CB2 receptors. Engaging these receptors can help reduce the pain in the body. The cannabinoids can also help the person feel less pain because they can bind the CB1 receptors in the brain.
How CBD Helps
Generally, diseases in the gut mean the gut is not regulating activity in the intestines as well as it should. This means the muscles in the intestines can spasm, cramp, and even become paralyzed. However, CBD can help prevent this from happening.
Health Benefits of CBD
While treating health problems is the main benefit of cannabidiol, it can also benefit a person in other ways.
Some studies have shown that CBD oil can have a protective effect against having digestive problems in the colon. Researchers examined the effects of activating CB1 receptors in the colon through the use of cannabidiol. By activating these receptors, the receptors were able to send a protective signal that can counteract pro-inflammatory responses.
The result was that these mice were less likely to suffer from inflammation-related disorders in the gut. The study concluded that targeting the gut with CBD could help prevent and treat disorders in the intestine that are caused by too much inflammation.
CBD can help control levels of inflammation in the gut by controlling the body’s levels of anandamide. This is an endocannabinoid that helps to regulate inflammation and pain in tissues that have been damaged. Some research has shown that CBD could help fight autoimmune diseases that are triggered by inflammation by supporting the immune response.
CBD can help users have more regular bowel movements. This goes back to how CBD affects the ECS system. Because the oil can help the ECS system regulate equilibrium in the body, users who take it may experience more regularity in their movements. This is helpful for people suffering from constipation or diarrhea.
Side Effects of CBD
The good news is that the unwanted effects are relatively rare. However, individuals may sometimes experience some of the following effects:
- Changes in weight or appetite
- Dry mouth
- Lower blood pressure
Compared to the undesirable effects that many mainstream medications come with, CBD is relatively safe. However, some of the problematic effects on this list are particularly relevant for individuals suffering from disorders in the intestines. It is important for an individual to stop taking CBD and consult a doctor if any of these symptoms occur.
Because CBD can impact the way the body processes some medications, individuals taking any medications should always consult their doctors before beginning CBD. This will prevent them from sustaining permanent liver damage.
How to Use CBD Products
There are many ways people choose to take CBD products. The best method will depend on an individual’s circumstances and preferences. How quickly they need relief from symptoms may play a factor in their decision.
CBD gummies are very popular with users because each one has an exact amount of CBD in it. This means the user does not have to spend time measuring it out. The flavoring in each gummy also masks any unpleasant tastes. This method of CBD ingestion also takes the longest to work because the CBD must first be absorbed by digestion in the body.
CBD topicals such as creams and lotions allow the user to relieve pain from digestive problems. This is because the CBD binds directly to the cannabinoid receptors under the skin. They last for a long time, ranging anywhere from four to six hours. However, it is difficult to get an exact amount with this method.
This is one of the most common ways people choose to take CBD. It is made by dissolving the oil in alcohol. Many people choose to use a dropper to place the tincture under their tongues, where it is absorbed into the body within 20 minutes or less. The effects can sometimes last for up to six hours. Many users prefer this method because they are getting the product without any added flavors or other additives.
The fastest way to take CBD is through inhaling it. Consumers can use a vape pen to inhale the product and allow it to enter the bloodstream instantly. While this is the fastest way to get CBD into the system, it also lasts the shortest at only two to three hours.
Choosing the Right Dose of CBD
It can be difficult to find the right dose of CBD to take. Because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not yet regulate it, they have not released any official guidelines on how much to take and how much is safe. However, it is generally recommended to start small and work up the dosage. It can take some time for it to build up in the body, so users should gradually increase their dosage over several weeks.
One recommendation is to take one to six milligrams of CBD per 10 pounds of body weight. For example, a 170-pound person would take 17 to 102 milligrams per dose. They would start at 17 milligrams per dose and gradually increase it over the course of a few weeks, up to 102 milligrams in one dose.
Research shows that unlike with other medications, people do not develop a tolerance to CBD. Once the proper dosage has been determined for an individual’s problem, they should not take any more.
Having problems with the digestive system is never fun. The problems can lead to adverse effects on an individual’s day-to-day life. While prescription and over-the-counter medications may provide some relief, they can also have some undesirable effects. Using cannabis products and hemp oil can help individuals relieve digestive problems, regulate movements in the bowel, support the immune system, and support the health of the gut.