Cannabidiol or CBD is one of the several cannabinoids which is found in hemp and marijuana, the two main types of cannabis plants. CBD has been known to be very effective in relieving pain and anxiety management. However, lately, a lot of buzzes has been created around it as an effective treatment for cancer. CBD oil for cancer may help people in managing some of the symptoms of the disease. It could also help with relieving some of the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation. Of course, a lot of research is required before a conclusive argument may be reached, but the initial results in various studies seem to be promising.
One of the things to keep in mind here is that only hemp-derived CBD, which has very low doses of THC to get you high can be used for treating cancer. THC can get you high but hemp-derived CBD is free from THC. It does not have any psychoactive elements and does not cause euphoria. This is why it is safe for people of all ages to take CBD oil.
Let us see how CBD oil for cancer works.
CBD oil can be found quite commonly these days. It can be bought online and is also available I local pharmacies and vitamin shops. CBD is available in many forms. It can be taken sublingually, with a drop or two placed under the tongue, slowly allowing it to assimilate with the body. It can be applied as roll-ons on the skin and it is even available as solutions for vaping. CBD oil is now also being added to edibles like gummy bears for ease of consumption.
However, how do cancer patients benefit from it? How does it affect cancer patients? Can it relieve the symptoms? Experts feel that the initial research on CBD oil for cancer looks promising. Here are some things to know.
How is CBD oil different from marijuana or hemp?
Both hemp and marijuana are different types of Cannabis Sativa plant. Both of them contain cannabidiols, namely CBD and THC. These are the two most active ingredients to be derived from cannabis. However, hemp has far fewer traces of THC as compared to marijuana. As mentioned earlier, it has no psychoactive elements.
So if cancer patients take CBD derived from hemp, they will not have to worry about drowsiness, hallucinations, or confusions, over and above their symptoms.
Is there any possibility that CBD can cure cancer?
The level of research at present cannot say conclusively that CBD oil can cure cancer. However, it cannot be said at this stage that it cannot. A lot of research is required but initial tests and researches have shown some positive results which can be cultivated further.
Can CBD oil do anything to alleviate the cancer symptoms or the side effects of cancer treatment?
As of now, it cannot be said for sure that CBD oil for cancer will alleviate symptoms of the side effects of cancer treatment. The research has shown mixed reviews and few of the studies are standardized. However, cancer patients can suffer from nausea, insomnia, neuropathy, and anorexia and CBD oil have been known to be very effective in that respect. Synthetic cannabinoids have shown positive results with nausea resulting from chemotherapy, so CBD too is most likely to work.
Have any CBD oil derived products been approved by the FDA to treat cancer or its symptoms or side effects?
No, the FDA has not approved any such product. So be careful of CBD products who claim likewise because some unscrupulous manufacturers will try to get the better of you.
Does CBD oil have any side effects?
CBD oil does not have any major side effects if you take it according to the dose or in keeping with the condition you are trying to treat. However, prolonged use of CBD oil despite no major issues could lead to liver malfunction. It could also inhibit certain enzymes in the body that is responsible for metabolizing medications in the body.
In other words, CBD oil will not produce its side effects much, but it could react adversely with other medications you might be taking. It could make other medicines inefficient or render them more dangerous. This includes the medicines given during chemotherapy.
Cancer patients should understand this because since CBD oil is not a medicine per se- they treat it more as a supplement, like a vitamin capsule. Hence, most of them do not mention to their doctors that they are taking it. It might later react with their cancer medication which can prove to be harmful.
So make sure that you mention in your medical records if you are taking CBD oil for cancer pain. That way, you will be able to avoid adverse reactions with other treatments. Make sure that you do not buy CBD oil products with health-related claims without adequate research.
What gave rise to the idea that CBD oil can treat cancer?
Some studies have shown that certain cannabinoids can reduce the rate of tumor growth in patients. This has been tested on some animal models of cancer. CBD can also increase the potency of some drugs that are used to treat cancer, making them more effective in killing malignant cells. However, it should not be treated as a substitute for cancer treatments at all.
What is the future of CBD oil for cancer?
Certain areas have to be explored more to understand how effective can CBD oil be in treating cancer. The areas of study will include whether CBD will be effective for cancer treatment without the presence of THC, the right dose of CBD, the effects of different administration techniques, how CBD will work with various types of cancer, and how it will react with other drugs and chemotherapy treatment.
Can CBD Oil be used as a complementary treatment for cancer?
Chemotherapy and radiation, the two widely used treatments for cancer can both produce a wide range of side effects. It could lead to nausea and loss of appetite and could also lead to weight loss. Since cannabinoids can ease neuropathic pain and nausea, it can be used to treat these symptoms.
It can be used to improve appetite and can also be used to reduce anxiety in patients, common for them during such a difficult phase in their lives. In some parts of Europe, cannabidiol drugs have been approved to treat cancer pain containing both CBD and THC. It is not approved in the US yet but further research is going on.
Some patients consider taking medical marijuana, but it should be consulted with the doctor first, regarding the correct dose and the manner of administering it. One thing to remember here is that CBD can only be rendered more effective by making some positive lifestyle choices. One should consider giving up smoking while using CBD or while undergoing cancer treatment.
Can CBD Oil be considered a cancer preventive?
No concrete results have been found as yet regarding whether CBD can reduce the risks of cancer. There is still a long way to go and long-term studies need to be conducted regarding doses and other variables.
Side Effects of CBD Oil
According to the World Health Organization, CBD oil is safe for consumption and there are minimal side effects if one follows all instructions and they take care to avoid its use with other medicines which could cause reactions. There is no evidence of health problems from taking pure CBD.
Yes, a first-time user could experience some side effects like diarrhea, fatigue, reduced appetite, and weight loss but none of them will result in any long-term damage. It could interfere with some liver enzymes and a higher concentration of other medications could lead to associated health problems, which is why one should always disclose to the doctor if they are taking CBD.
If you take antibiotics, antidepressants, blood thinners, oral or IV chemotherapy, anti-seizure medicines, or blood pressure medicines, be sure to inform your doctors.
The American Cancer Society strongly believes that further research is required when it comes to CBD oil for cancer treatment. They are chances that a whole new dimension of cancer treatment will open up if the studies come up with some solid evidence that CBD is effective in treating cancer or at least helps in managing the symptoms, bringing relief to cancer patients worldwide.