• Research has indicated that phytocannabinoids (plant-derived cannabinoids) interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) components(1). It has been theorized that the two most prominent compounds in cannabis plants, 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (9-THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), have medicinal value.  
  • CBD is a potential therapeutic agent due to its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-tumor, neuroprotective, and anti-obesity properties(2).
  • The effects of CBD, CBG (cannabigerol), and CBN (cannabinol) on the appetite of rats were studied in published research(3). The researchers observed that only CBN increased the rats’ appetites, whereas CBD decreased their appetite.
  • A 2016 study published in Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry showed that CBD is essential in browning of fat cells(4). These findings indicate that CBD may regulate lipogenesis and thermogenesis. 
  • The study also implies that CBD may be employed to create brown-like characteristics in white adipocytes. In addition, the data suggest that CBD may stimulate lipid metabolism.
  • Research on CBD oil is still in its infancy. Studies exploring the association between CBD and body weight are few. In addition, CBD and related products are primarily unregulated, making it difficult for the average consumer to assess the quantity and quality of CBD in over-the-counter CBD products.

Research on CBD for Weight Loss

There are no direct studies about CBD and weight loss. However, there are clinical studies  on how CBD works as an appetite suppressant in the following research:

CBD on Rat Feeding Patterns

One clinical research noted the effects of CBD, CBG (cannabigerol), and CBN (cannabinol) on the appetite of rats(5). The researchers noted that only CBN boosted the rats’ appetite, whereas CBD strain lowered it.

The study did not show if cannabidiol suppresses appetite. However, CBD dramatically boosted the rats’ food intake during hour 1 and the total amount of food ingested during the experiment. 

In contrast, cannabidiol dramatically decreased overall food intake throughout the test period. Administration of cannabigerol did not affect the eating behavior.

CBD on Obesity

Many disorders associated with insulin resistance and obesity are becoming a global concern(6). These conditions may contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular illnesses. 

A diet high in triacylglycerols (TAGs) also induces adipocyte hyperplasia and consequent lipid buildup in peripheral organs (liver, cardiac muscle)(7). Therefore, novel therapeutic strategies for preventing, treating, and relieving the above-mentioned illnesses are pursued.  

Triglycerides are the primary component of vegetable and animal fats in the diet and the primary component of fat storage in the body(8)

Also, two processes contribute to the expansion of adipose tissue: hyperplasia (cell number increase) and hypertrophy (cell size increase)(9). The proportional contributions of these two pathways to the formation of adipose tissue in obese individuals are affected by genetics and nutrition.

Phytocannabinoids, which interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) components, are now the subject of extensive research. 

It has been hypothesized that 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (9-THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), the two most prevalent chemicals in cannabis plants, have therapeutic use. 

Due to CBD’s antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor, neuroprotective, and possible anti-obesity characteristics, the compound is considered a potential therapeutic agent(10)

According to the latest studies, CBD may help manage chronic conditions such as diabetes and obesity(11). CBD may also help lower the levels of insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome.

There is a relationship between obesity and various metabolic disorders, including(12):

  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke

These conditions include high blood pressure, excessive blood sugar, abdominal obesity, and abnormal cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

Endocannabinoid System and Its Role in Weight Loss or Gain

​​Obesity is a growing global health concern. Its associated comorbidities are costly to the National Health System and degrade the quality of life of individuals with this condition(13)

Adipose tissue (body fat) consists of three distinct cell types. White adipocytes are responsible for fat accumulation and hormone production.

Brown adipocytes contribute to thermogenesis and energy expenditure. Beige adipocytes are transitional adipocytes that, in response to a variety of stimuli, may transform from white to brown. Beige adipocytes may be protective against obesity and increase energy expenditure.

The transformation of white adipose tissue into beige tissue is a possible new treatment target for obesity

Cannabinoid receptors (CB) control thermogenesis, nutrient absorption, and inflammation. Ablation or inhibition of CB1 receptors reduces body weight and food consumption.

Meanwhile, stimulation of CB2 receptors reduces inflammation and promotes anti-obesity benefits by decreasing food consumption and weight gain. These receptors’ genetic deletion leads to the development of obesity

CB receptors are also crucial for transforming white adipose tissue into beige or brown adipocytes(14). Hence, their regulation may be seen as a possible obesity treatment target. The primary location of CB1 in the central nervous system is a significant limitation.

Stimulating CB2 receptors centered on peripheral cells should enhance the anti-obesity benefits without producing a notable psychoactive impact.

Thus, cannabinoids such as CBD interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS), regarded as one of the body’s most vital physiological systems. 

ECS governs several essential activities, including sleep and mood(15). There are two types of cannabinoid receptors, the CB1 and CB2 receptors. They are situated in the brain and immune system, among other bodily locations. 

When an endogenous cannabinoid binds to a cannabinoid receptor, several physiological processes in different bodily systems are triggered. Among these functions are mood, memory, pain perception, and hunger.

In the central nervous system, ECS activity controls food intake(16)

When individuals are hungry, the ECS sends signals to the hypothalamus, regulating appetite. The ECS also alerts the limbic system (which regulates emotions) that it is time to eat.

Endocannabinoids are essential for delaying the emptying and transit of the digestive tract and seem to boost ghrelin secretion (a hormone that increases appetite and food intake)(17)

Benefits of CBD for Weight Loss

A 2016 research published in Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry showed that CBD plays a crucial function in fat browning(18)

According to the study, brown fat and white fat cells are fats composed of distinct substances. The composition of white fat is large droplets of lipids or fatty acids. Mitochondria are abundant in cells of brown fat. Iron-rich mitochondria provide brown fat with its hue.

The present study is focused on investigating the effects of cannabidiol on the induction of browning in 3T3L1 adipocytes.

White adipocytes are often represented in vitro by differentiated 3T3-L1 adipocytes(19). In addition to the traditional white and brown adipocytes, which are produced from distinct cell lineages, beige adipocytes with features of both white and brown adipocytes have been identified.

The activation of CBD by converting brown fat-specific genes into protein molecules has been associated with the formation of 3T3L1 adipocytes

In addition, CBD increased the expression levels of various protein components, such as SIRT1, PLIN, and CPT1. 

The data suggest that CBD may play a role in regulating lipogenesis and thermogenesis. The findings also suggest that CBD may promote lipid metabolism. 

Changes in body composition can be predicted by lipid metabolism during energy restriction in overweight individuals(20).

Meanwhile, lipogenesis is the method of producing fatty acids from non-lipid precursors(21). Thermogenesis is the loss of energy through the production of heat in a specific way(22).

What Is CBD Oil?

In recent years, CBD oils, which are low in tetrahydrocannabinol and extracted from the Cannabis sativa plant, have gained tremendous popularity. 

Users have reported relief from several ailments, including pain, without experiencing the euphoric side effects of medicinal marijuana(23)

The FDA or US Food and Drug Administration authorized Epidiolex, the first CBD-based drug, to treat uncommon, severe epilepsy(24).

A number of preclinical and clinical data support how CBD oil helps in various illnesses, highlighting its potential significance as an additional treatment option for difficult chronic pain and opiate addiction(25)

Due to the lack of regulation and erroneous labeling of CBD and THC amounts, individuals must exercise caution when using CBD products(26)

Types of CBD Oil

There may be hundreds of distinct varieties of high-quality CBD oil, depending on their cannabinoid concentration and extraction methods. 

Users may usually encounter three types of CBD oil: CBD isolate, full-spectrum CBD oil, and broad-spectrum CBD oil. 

  • CBD Isolate

As its name indicates, CBD isolate is an isolated type of cannabidiol. CBD isolates may be considered a pure form of CBD oil. 

CBD isolate does not include any other cannabinoids derived from the cannabis plant.

To make CBD isolate, all of the plant’s components, except CBD, must be fully extracted. Depending on the extraction method, high-grade CBD isolates are often above 99% pure. 

This degree of purity is the primary advantage of this type of CBD. 

CBD isolate does not include any other cannabinoids, including the well-known psychoactive component of cannabis. Thus, this product may be a choice for those who choose to avoid THC.

Since all CBD products may include trace levels of THC, this CBD variety is often used by those who will undergo drug testing. 

  • Full-spectrum CBD Oil 

Full-spectrum CBD oil is a CBD-rich oil containing trace levels of THC, terpenes, and flavonoids. 

Numerous plants contain terpenes, which are often responsible for a plant’s unique aroma. Terpenes may be present in cannabis products at various concentrations.

Some individuals prefer full-spectrum CBD oil to CBD isolate due to the “entourage effect.” 

The positive effect that could come from adding terpenes to cannabinoids is called the entourage effect(27).

In addition, the majority of full-spectrum CBD oils may include a variety of terpenes and flavonoids, each of which may possess therapeutic benefits. 

Therefore, this form of CBD oil may be suitable if individuals prefer a less refined product and if they do not mind its earthy taste. However,  there are flavored full-spectrum variants available.

  • Broad-spectrum CBD Oil 

CBD broad spectrum falls midway between CBD isolate and full-spectrum CBD oil. This type of CBD oil includes cannabidiol and trace levels of other cannabis chemicals but no THC. 

As with broad-spectrum CBD, this type of CBD may provide enhanced effects due to the presence of other components that interact with the effects of CBD. 

What Is the Best CBD Oil?

There are insufficient studies conducted to establish which kind of CBD oil offers the best benefits for weight loss. Therefore, the optimal CBD oil will depend entirely on an individual’s lifestyle, personal preferences, and intended usage.

Other variables may also impact an individual’s CBD selection process. Suppose individuals desire a refined product that has a number of CBD compounds without losing strength. In that case, users may likely choose CBD isolate. 

Alternatively, if users do not mind trace quantities of THC, full-spectrum CBD offers some advantages. 

Meanwhile, if individuals search for a CBD oil that does not possess THC, broad-spectrum CBD is likely their best choice.

Whether individuals choose broad-spectrum CBD oil or CBD isolate, CBD oil products are not one-size-fits-all, so individuals may need trial and error to see what works best for them. 

The suggestion also applies to determining the best dose of CBD.

How Does CBD Oil Work?

The psychoactive component of Cannabis Sativa L. is THC. It also stimulates hunger(28). Thus, the nickname “the munchies has become associated with cannabis users.

In contrast, CBD has been shown to reduce appetite(29). Thus, this allows individuals to eat less and lose weight. When the body burns fat for energy, it suppresses hunger.

As mentioned, CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system. This mechanism is involved in the efficacy of CBD for weight reduction(30)

In addition to helping the breakdown of more body fat, CBD highlights the pharmacological characteristics of CBD and its effect on obesity in various tissues(31).

There is still much to learn about CBD oil and weight loss. The results cannabis users may have seen so far indicate that this is an excellent alternative for anybody who needs assistance with weight loss.

Forms of CBD Products

Another factor to consider is the forms of CBD products. Some individuals may prefer one form of CBD over another based on how or when they want to take it, despite the effects being often the same. 

  • Tinctures: Glycerin, oil, or alcohol are used as a foundation for CBD oil and tinctures. Individuals may take these extracts straight from the bottle, while other consumers prefer to mix the product with food or drink. Different CBD oils and tinctures have different strengths and flavors.
  • Edibles: CBD edibles are food products that include CBD components. CBD may be found in a variety of foods and drinks, including chocolate and tea.

Moreover, there are a wide variety of CBC gummies on the market, each with a different taste and intensity. Other CBD edibles include CBD candies, capsules, brownies, and chocolates. 

  • Vaporizers:  These products may deliver CBD extracts through inhalation for immediate effect. However, vaping has additional risks, such as lung damage(32).
  • Sublingual: CBD is often taken sublingually. Putting a few drops of CBD oil beneath the tongue lets the molecule dissolve and enter the bloodstream. 
  • Topicals: Topical CBD products, such as oils, creams, and lotions, are also available and are usually used for localized relief. Individuals may feel the effects of these products after several hours.

How to Use CBD Oil Products for Weight Loss

CBD oil may have several applications and health benefits. Here are some ways how to use CBD products: 

1. Individuals who are experimenting with CBD products should first consult with their doctor. These medical professionals will be able to gauge an individual’s current health and physical condition and then make dosage recommendations based on that information.

2. New CBD users should start taking CBS slowly(33). Taking a little dose for a certain length of time allows the body to get used to the medication. Tolerance to CBD oil may lead to an increase in dose. The body requires time to acclimate. Therefore, users should not make daily increases, which should also be stressed.

3. It is essential for CBD consumers to keep in mind that it may take weeks or even months before they experience any real improvements. It is also worth noting that increasing the dose will not necessarily provide greater results right away. In the absence of a prescription, patients should continue taking their medication as prescribed.

CBD Spray for Weight Loss

​​CBD weight loss sprays function similarly to CBD oil. Manufacturers may claim that these products may stimulate the endocannabinoid system, promote fat loss, and stimulate the metabolism.

When looking into CBD sprays for weight loss, it is critical to carefully study the whole ingredient list of the CBD product in question. And so is the case with CBD oil, be sure to follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer.

CBD Capsules for Weight Loss

Some CBD capsule products that assist in weight loss combine the cannabinoid with other naturally occurring substances that burn fat. The level of effectiveness that these CBD products achieve varies and is determined by the additional CBD components.

As with CBD oil and CBD weight loss sprays, users should verify the supplement information panel to confirm that there are no chemicals or prohibited substances included. Always adhere to researched and well-recognized natural components.

Consumers need to note that the dosages of these CBD pills may vary. However, individuals could discover something that is both manageable and suitable for their typical habits.

CBD Dosage

Due to the uniqueness of each individual’s endocannabinoid system, CBD has different effects on different individuals. Several elements affect CBD oil’s effectiveness. These variables include heredity, prior drug usage, general health, body mass index, or ethnicity.

Therefore, one individual may discover that 15 mg of CBD per day may work in suppressing hunger and promoting weight reduction. Alternatively, another individual may need 100 mg or more to attain the same benefits (or they may not experience any results at all).

When looking for the correct dosing of CBD oil for weight loss, it is always prudent to start modestly and stick to the old medical adage, “start low and go gradually.”

Effectiveness of CBD

There is moderate evidence to suggest that cannabidiol, or CBD, may help people with sleep difficulties, the discomfort associated with fibromyalgia, muscular stiffness caused by multiple sclerosis, and anxiety(34).

Individuals have reported that taking CBD in oral form may help ease anxiety and discomfort, in addition to improving sleep(35)

Nevertheless, this is not the case with a wide variety of different CBD products available on the market, particularly those applied topically to the skin(36). Due to the lack of proper testing, it is difficult to determine whether or not CBD has positive effects on clinical outcomes.

Meanwhile, CBD oil research is still in its infancy, and studies examining the relationship between CBD and body weight are restricted. 

Additionally, CBD and its products are primarily unregulated, making it difficult for the typical customer to evaluate the amount and quality of CBD in over-the-counter products. Nevertheless, individuals should research the safety of CBD has generally determined that it is safe. 

Risks of CBD

Misleading or false claims about the efficacy of CBD products may prevent people from seeking proper medical care(37)

It is important for individuals to talk to a healthcare expert about the best way to manage medical conditions.

There are also concerns about the quality of certain CBD products, in addition to potential health dangers. Customers may be in danger if appropriate controls and processes are not in place.

Consumers need to be vigilant about CBD products that do not really contain what the label is suggesting. An investigation is also underway into concerns that CBD is tainted with possibly harmful substances.

The FDA is also committed to ensuring the safety of the public. That is why the agency is doing all it can to ensure that the general public knows the goods’ safety and effectiveness. 

The FDA has instructed firms to avoid marketing items that promise to treat or prevent severe ailments like diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, or cancer(38).

Accordingly, despite its initial emphasis on CBD products that have previously been shown to be safe and effective, the agency is nevertheless keeping an eye on the market for potentially harmful items. Products sold to vulnerable populations and those containing harmful pollutants are among them.

The FDA has not yet assessed these CBD products for safety and efficacy. As a result, CBD’s effectiveness in addressing certain disorders or interacting safely with other medications is still unverified.


There were changes in the production and marketing of hemp when the 2018 Agriculture Improvement Act of Congress was signed into law(39). Industrial hemp extract is now subject to new federal regulations that alter the way the product is produced and sold.

Hemp has been removed from prohibited drugs as part of these reforms. Hemp, a cannabis derivative, will no longer be classified as a controlled substance under federal law.

FDA’s jurisdiction to regulate marijuana usage and other cannabis-derived chemicals remains unchanged despite the bill’s passing.

Congress acknowledged the Food and Drug Administration’s regulation of marijuana products, which passed legislation to enable the agency’s continued oversight(40). For the production and usage of marijuana, the agency continues to offer a regulated approach.

The FDA thoroughly reviews petitions for the clearance of CBD products. Products containing cannabidiol or other cannabis-derived chemicals are treated the same way as any other product by the organization.

Despite the fact that the legislation permits the FDA to continue regulating substances containing marijuana, the agency must nonetheless consider the substance’s origin. 

The FDA has set up a website to assist the public in better understanding the rules around the use of marijuana.

The agency will continue to establish additional rules to clarify the public health duties associated with these drugs as the number of products containing marijuana and other cannabis-derived compounds increases. In addition, the FDA will keep an eye on the items offered to the public.

It is detrimental to public health to utilize deceptive marketing tactics to promote untested remedies. In other cases, it may hinder people from receiving the proper therapy for their ailments because of the restrictions.

Items that include CBD or THC are likewise illegal to sell as dietary supplements or food products, no matter their nature. FDA-approved medications have both of these active substances. Therefore, these products must be judged safe and effective before being sold as supplements or food.

In addition, it is prohibited for corporations to sell CBD as dietary supplements or food items that include active chemicals, such as those derived from cannabis(41). Products containing active substances must meet the standard, such as food and beverages.

Companies that unlawfully sell and promote goods containing marijuana and other cannabis-derived chemicals may face legal repercussions, as these items may be harmful to the general public’s health. 

FDA has sent warning letters to firms that promise to cure or prevent severe diseases, such as cancer.

  1. Phytocannabinoids: Useful Drugs for the Treatment of Obesity? Special Focus on Cannabidiol https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7064444/
  2. Ibid.
  3. Cannabinol and cannabidiol exert opposing effects on rat feeding patterns. https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/346306.pdf
  4. Cannabidiol promotes browning in 3T3-L1 adipocytes https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27067870/
  5. Cannabinol and cannabidiol exert opposing effects on rat feeding patterns. https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/346306.pdf
  6. Phytocannabinoids: Useful Drugs for the Treatment of Obesity? Special Focus on Cannabidiol https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7064444/
  7. Ibid.
  8. Triacylglycerol https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/pharmacology-toxicology-and-pharmaceutical-science/triacylglycerol
  9. Hypertrophy and/or Hyperplasia: Dynamics of Adipose Tissue Growth https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2653640/
  10. Phytocannabinoids: Useful Drugs for the Treatment of Obesity? Special Focus on Cannabidiol https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7064444/
  11. Ibid.
  12. Metabolic syndrome https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/metabolic-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20351916
  13. Role of Cannabinoids in Obesity https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6163475/
  14. Ibid.
  15. The endocannabinoid system: Essential and mysterious https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/the-endocannabinoid-system-essential-and-mysterious-202108112569
  16. What Role Does the Endocannabinoid System Play in the Pathogenesis of Obesity? https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7911032/
  17. The role of endocannabinoids in the regulation of gastric emptying: alterations in mice fed a high-fat diet https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2275439/
  18. Cannabidiol promotes browning in 3T3-L1 adipocytes https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27067870/
  19. 3T3-L1 adipocytes display phenotypic characteristics of multiple adipocyte lineages https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4573194/
  20. Lipid Metabolism Predicts Changes in Body Composition during Energy Restriction in Overweight Humans https://academic.oup.com/jn/article/139/2/222/4750906
  21. Lipogenesis https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/biochemistry-genetics-and-molecular-biology/lipogenesis
  22. Thermogenesis https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/agricultural-and-biological-sciences/thermogenesis
  23. Clinicians’ Guide to Cannabidiol and Hemp Oils https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31447137/
  24. FDA Approves First Drug Comprised of an Active Ingredient Derived from Marijuana to Treat Rare, Severe Forms of Epilepsy https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/fda-approves-first-drug-comprised-active-ingredient-derived-marijuana-treat-rare-severe-forms
  25. Clinicians’ Guide to Cannabidiol and Hemp Oils https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31447137/
  26. FDA Regulation of Cannabis and Cannabis-Derived Products, Including Cannabidiol (CBD) https://www.fda.gov/news-events/public-health-focus/fda-regulation-cannabis-and-cannabis-derived-products-including-cannabidiol-cbd
  27. The “Entourage Effect”: Terpenes Coupled with Cannabinoids for the Treatment of Mood Disorders and Anxiety Disorders https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7324885/
  28. How cannabis affects appetite: Brain changes https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/07/180717094747.htm
  29. Phytocannabinoids: Useful Drugs for the Treatment of Obesity? Special Focus on Cannabidiol https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7064444/
  30. Ibid.
  31. Ibid.
  32. The Impact of E-Cigarettes on the Lung https://www.lung.org/quit-smoking/e-cigarettes-vaping/impact-of-e-cigarettes-on-lung
  33. Healing with CBD, page 218 https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AGlxnhS2SoFeOXEuysv75bd_C9pEnwsU/view
  34. CBD products are everywhere. But do they work? https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/cbd-products-are-everywhere-but-do-they-work
  35. Ibid.
  36. Ibid.
  37. What You Need to Know (And What We’re Working to Find Out) About Products Containing Cannabis or Cannabis-derived Compounds, Including CBD https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/what-you-need-know-and-what-were-working-find-out-about-products-containing-cannabis-or-cannabis
  38. Questions and Answers: FDA alerts companies to stop the illegal sale of products claiming to treat Alzheimer’s disease https://www.fda.gov/consumers/health-fraud-scams/questions-and-answers-fda-alerts-companies-stop-illegal-sale-products-claiming-treat-alzheimers
  39. Statement from FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., on signing of the Agriculture Improvement Act and the agency’s regulation of products containing cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/statement-fda-commissioner-scott-gottlieb-md-signing-agriculture-improvement-act-and-agencys
  40. Ibid.
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