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CBD For Arthritis

CBD has shown promise in some studies for reducing pain and inflammation caused by arthritis. Arthritis is a painful but common condition that impacts over 10 million people in the UK. Anyone of any age can get arthritis but it is more common in older people. It causes pain and inflammation in a joint. The most common joints affected are in the hands, knees, spine and hips. There are two main types of arthritis: osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

What is CBD and is it Legal?

CBD, cannabidiol, is a cannabinoid that comes from cannabis plants. It is thought to have natural anti-inflammatory properties and has been used in traditional medicine for centuries. CBD doesn’t get you ‘high’ like cannabis because that sensation comes from another cannabinoid, THC. CBD products are legal in the UK as long as they contain no THC.

The best way to check if a CBD product is legal is to buy from a company that provides third-party lab reports. This means that their products have been tested to check they contain the amount of CBD they say they do and no THC. It’s important to make sure lab reports are available; a study by the Centre for Medical Cannabis (CMC) found that 38% of the oils they tested contained less than half of their advertised CBD content[1].

What does the science about CBD and Arthritis say?

CBD interacts with the body through the Endocannabinoid System. This is a system present in every human being and it is involved in processes like sleep, mood and appetite. It produces endocannabinoids which are essential to keeping your body functioning well. Problems with the Endocannabinoid System have been linked to conditions like fibromyalgia and migraines. The system has two types of receptors: CB1 and CB2.

A scientific review in 2019 about rheumatoid arthritis and CBD, found that cannabinoids showed anti-inflammatory effects by activating the CB2 receptors which decreased cytokine production[2]. Problems with cytokine are associated with the development of rheumatoid arthritis[3]. They also found that CBD specifically had antiarthritic effects independent of these cannabinoid receptors. If this wasn’t enough, they found that on top of controlling inflammation, cannabinoids were able to reduce pain by activating CB1, CB2 and other receptors in the body.

Another study in 2020 found that CBD possessed anti-arthritis activity and concluded that CBD may be able to help arthritis by targeting synovial fibroblasts[4]. Synovial fibroblasts have been identified as cells that contribute significantly to the continuation of arthritis and they may even play a role in causing it[5]. This suggests that taking CBD is a way in which you can prevent the development of arthritis in later life. CBD is easy to take every day as a plant-based supplement to keep your endocannabinoid system functioning well.  

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What type of CBD is best for Arthritis?

You can buy many different types of CBD. Some products are topical – creams that you can rub on the affected area. Others you take orally like liquids or powders you mix with drinks. To get the best results for CBD and arthritis it’s recommended to take CBD orally. This allows CBD to enter your bloodstream and interact with your endocannabinoid system. Rubbing CBD cream on the painful area may offer short term relief but it won’t allow the CBD to have its anti-inflammatory effects by interacting with your CB1 and CB2 receptors.

Water-soluble CBD is a great way to take CBD because it has increased bioavailability compared to CBD oil. Simply put, this means your body is able to absorb more of the CBD you take. When you take CBD oil, only about 10-20% of the CBD itself is actually absorbed by the body because the oil is broken down by your stomach acid. Another advantage of water-soluble CBD is that it tastes a lot better!

Are there any Side Effects of CBD?

CBD has been declared safe for humans by the World Health Organisation. Water-soluble CBD has fewer side effects than oil-based CBD. This is because taking large quantities of oil is not necessarily good for you and can cause an upset stomach. The most common reported side effects of CBD are a change in appetite and a dry mouth but these are normally mild. It’s important to consult with your doctor if you take prescription medication and are interested in taking CBD.

A Summary: CBD and Arthritis

CBD shows great promise for helping with the discomfort and root cause of arthritis. Its anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties are important for helping with the discomfort and pain that arthritis can cause. It’s best to take CBD orally so that it can interact with your endocannabinoid system. Water-soluble CBD is a great way to take CBD every day as a plant-based supplement.


[1] https://irp-cdn.multiscreensite.com/51b75a3b/files/uploaded/Report%20%7C%20CBD%20in%20the%20UK%20-%20Exec%20Summary.pdf

[2] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30920973/

[3] https://www.immunology.org/public-information/bitesized-immunology/receptors-and-molecules/cytokines-introduction

[4] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32873774/

[5] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16567358/

 

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