With 29 states and Washington D.C. already allowing the use of medical cannabis, the therapeutic properties of this plant are experiencing a well-deserved resurgence. After hundreds of years being used by herbal healers, the United States research teams are now finally able to catch up.
Thanks to these ever-increasing studies, there is limited proof that cannabis extracts such as CBD oil may provide an alternative for patients suffering chronic pain conditions, insomnia, migraines, and treatment-resistant forms of epilepsy.
Marijuana has been used in California since 1996 to treat numerous symptoms including loss of appetite and intense pain. Today, many people are starting to use CBD oil for Crohn’s disease, a gastrointestinal condition caused by inflammation at the end of the small intestine and the beginning of the colon. Could CBD oil for Crohn’s disease be a viable option?
What is Crohn’s Disease?
Crohn’s disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Like most chronic bowel conditions, Crohn’s disease is characterized by recurrent episodes of abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, and many other symptoms.
According to the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America, there are 1.6 million Americans that suffer from different types of IBD. Crohn’s disease is considered a chronic disease, which means that, as far as research currently shows, it cannot be cured. It can, however, be controlled.
Immediate and Long-Term Symptoms of Crohn’s Disease
The primary symptom of Crohn’s disease is an inflammation of the digestive tract. While the inflammation typically occurs in the small intestine and the beginning of the colon, inflammation may occur throughout any part of your intestines.
Inflammation in any part of your body is a big deal, but this is especially true for our gut. Inflammation of your digestive tract means your body won’t absorb water or process waste adequately. This, in turn, brings a whole new set of symptoms including:
- Abdominal pain
- The sensation of incomplete evacuation
- Weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Rectal bleeding
- Abnormal menstrual cycle in women
- Psychological limitations and anxiety (like fear of eating outside of your own home)
One aspect that is often overlooked when discussing the symptoms of Crohn’s disease is the financial impact it has on people. This impact also affects their quality of life.
Crohn’s is an expensive condition to have. Costs range from physician services to over the counter drugs, skilled nursing care, and ambulatory services. It’s estimated that supplementary care for Crohn’s disease alone may cost each individual patient anywhere between $5,000 to $28,000 each year.
People that suffer from refractory Crohn’s disease tend to face an even more challenging situation. While they are still affected by the symptoms and financial burden, these patients experience little to no improvements after taking prescribed medication.
As many as 16% of all people affected with Crohn’s disease fail to see any improvement with conventional treatments. Not only this, but 20% to 30% of all patients only experience partial betterment.
This, combined with the fact that cannabis extracts are being used to treat other types of chronic conditions, have encouraged people to turn to CBD oil for Crohn’s disease.
What is CBD oil?
CBD oil, which is the abbreviation for cannabidiol, is a powerful chemical compound found in a variety of plants including cacao, black pepper, and, of course, cannabis. This extract, often presented in oil form, is becoming a common supplemental pain alternative thanks to its therapeutic properties.
Cannabidiol is part of a larger group of molecules called cannabinoids. Cannabinoids interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is composed of nerve receptors scattered throughout your body. The two most common receptors are the CB1 and CB2 receptors. Both the CB1 and CB2 receptors play a pivotal role in regulating physiological functions that include memory, mood, appetite, sleep, digestion, the modulation of pain, and many others.
Cannabidiol (CBD) interacts with the CB1 and CB2 receptors, which may produce therapeutic effects on different parts of your body.
In CBD a Psychoactive Substance?
Unlike THC, the infamous chemical responsible for the psychotropic effects of marijuana, CBD is not a psychoactive substance. CBD on its own can’t get you “high.” Although, it’s worth noting that it is a powerful anxiolytic, so it usually has a soothing and relaxing effect once it enters your system.
Despite the fact that CBD is derived from the hemp plant, pure CBD oil may still contain up to 0.3% THC. However, keep in mind that this is 33 times less than the amount required to produce any sort of psychoactive effect. Today, thousands of folks are using CBD oil to treat different conditions that range from severe seizure-inducing disorders to chronic body pain.
CBD Oil for Crohn’s Disease and Other Inflammatory Bowel Diseases
Before going into the use of CBD oil for Crohn’s disease, please note that there is still a lot of research that needs to be done on the use of CBD oil. We know this compound has properties that help treat the symptoms of Crohn’s disease. But, large-scale controlled studies need to be carried out in order to determine the efficiency of CBD as an actual treatment option.
With that in mind, there is already enough evidence to back the use of CBD oil to manage some of the symptoms related to Crohn’s disease. These include:
Besides working as a general anti-inflammatory, studies suggest that CBD is also a great treatment for intestinal inflammation. While the research was carried out on mice, the results indicate that CBD oil can help reduce inflammation in the colon and small intestine without unwanted psychotropic effects.
CB1 and CB2 receptors are in charge of the vast majority of the functions in this list, and appetite is no different. Because of the way CBD interacts with these receptors, it can help regulate appetite and help your body crave food again.
One of the main reasons why medicinal cannabis was first legalized in California in the mid-1990s is because the plant is a powerful analgesic. Moreover, the research suggests that CBD oil delivered through oral route may pose a reliable alternative to treat chronic and IBD-related pain.
Prevent Vomiting and Nausea
Preclinical research also indicates that CBD, if dosed properly, can have antiemetic effects. In other words, it suppresses vomiting and nausea, whether it’s caused by a medical condition or the secondary effect of a medication.
A lot of people that suffer from Crohn’s disease and any other IBD tend to experience insomnia. CBD may pose a viable option for the treatment of insomnia, while THC may actually impair sleep quality long-term.
Quality CBD Oil for Crohn’s Disease – From The Healthy Place
If you want to learn more about using CBD oil for Crohn’s disease, feel free to swing by our Madison natural supplement store and talk to one of our team members. We’d be happy to help you explore alternatives to conventional treatment options and the pharmaceuticals that are often ineffective or carry a host of side effects.*
You can also give us a call or check out our online store and get your favorite supplements delivered straight to your home!
Let’s find your healthy place!
The Apple Wellness Team
*Never change, stop, or alter any medications you are currently taking before consulting with a medical care professional. Information supplied by our team should not be considered medical advice.
Check out our growing library of research studies on CBD oil’s benefits.
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