Struggling with digestive issues can make life difficult. Indigestion, constipation and stomach pain are some of the common problems that people face. Medicine is available to try and relieve these symptoms but it is not always effective. CBD is completely natural and offers a plant-based way to feel better. However, CBD is not only for people who suffer from digestive problems; it can be taken every day to help keep your body healthy.
What is CBD?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a cannabinoid derived from hemp plants. It doesn’t have any psychoactive properties. The reason for this is that it doesn’t contain THC, which is the cannabinoid that causes the ‘high’ feeling. It is legal to take, buy and sell CBD products in the UK if they do not contain THC. However THC is illegal. CBD is a natural supplement that can be taken every day to help promote good health and general wellbeing. Research is taking place to understand how it can also be taken to aid specific mental and physical conditions.
How does CBD interact with the digestive system?
In 1992 scientists discovered the first endocannabinoid and this led to the discovery of the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This is a system in our body that is involved in many different processes. It helps regulate our moods, sleep and appetite. It is also heavily involved in the digestive process. Studies have found that the endocannabinoid system controls hunger signalling, inflammation, gut permeability and motility. These are very important functions when it comes to helping digestion. For example, issues with gut permeability can lead to ‘leaky gut’, where bacteria and harmful substances enter the body because the gut wall has become too permeable.
CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system through CB1 and CB2 receptors in your gut. By interacting with these receptors it may be able to help stabilise and support the endocannabinoid system as it assists with your digestion. A 2016 review of studies found that the activation of CB1 receptors by cannabinoids helped to reduce the production of gastric acid and decreased the formation of gastric mucosal lesions.
How can CBD help with digestion?
Many of the problems with the digestive system are related to inflammation. This includes constipation and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). CBD increases the levels of anandamide in your body which helps to reduce inflammation. Anandamide is an endocannabinoid that moderates pain and inflammation in damaged tissue. CBD blocks an enzyme that breaks anandamide down and therefore the level in your blood increases. This reduction in inflammation reduces stomach pain and can also help with spastic constipation caused by IBS.
For people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), CBD may also be able to help. In 2011 a study of patients with IBS found that many of them had successfully used cannabis to relieve stomach pain, diarrhoea and poor appetite.
How else can CBD Help?
Digestive problems can be closely linked to mental health. Stress, anxiety and depression can both cause and be caused by digestive issues. CBD is known for its anti-anxiety properties and studies have found that it can help people feel calmer. If you find that your mental health negatively impacts your digestive health, then CBD may be able to help.
What type of CBD is best for helping digestion?
Taking high quantities of CBD has typically been associated with diarrhoea. However, this appears to be less to do with the CBD itself and more related to the carrier oil it is in. If you take large quantities of CBD oil which uses sunflower oil or coconut oil as a carrier oil it is likely to cause these problems. At Mee CBD, all our products are water soluble and don’t come with any type of oil. This means that you can avoid any potential digestive problems. Our CBD drops and powders can simply be added to a glass of water or any other drink. You don’t have to worry about taking anything that could harm your digestive system.
Summary: CBD and digestion
CBD shows strong potential for helping with digestion because of the important role the endocannabinoid system plays. Taking water soluble CBD daily won’t harm your digestive system because it doesn’t contain any oil. It can help reduce inflammation and anxiety, which can cause digestive problems. Even if you don’t have a specific digestive condition, CBD can help keep your digestive system healthy when combined with a balanced diet. Be sure to check out the range of water-soluble CBD products available at Mee Organic, and don’t forget to share your feedback with us!
 DiPatrizio, N.V., 2016. Endocannabinoids in the gut . Liebert Publishers. Available at: https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/can.2016.0001
 Ravikoff Allegretti J; Courtwright A; Lucci M; Korzenik JR; Levine J; 2013. Marijuana use patterns among patients with inflammatory bowel disease. Inflammatory bowel diseases. Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24185313/
 Nagarkatti, P. et al., 2009. Cannabinoids as novel anti-inflammatory drugs. Future medicinal chemistry. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828614/
 Lal S; Prasad N; Ryan M; Tangri S; Silverberg MS; Gordon A; Steinhart H; 2011. Cannabis use amongst patients with inflammatory bowel disease. European journal of gastroenterology & hepatology. Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21795981/
 J;, S.J.W.D.C.M.C.Z.E., 2020. Use of cannabidiol in anxiety and anxiety-related disorders. Journal of the American Pharmacists Association : JAPhA. Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31866386/