Benefits of CBD for Cancer Patients
Cancer is one of the most devastating diseases known to man. While we have made significant progress in our knowledge of the disease, there is still a long way to go. Although there still is no cure for cancer, researchers are finding different ways to help reduce the symptoms. One of the compounds that has been thoroughly researched for its ability to reduce symptoms in cancer patients is cannabidiol (CBD). So what exactly does research say about CBD and cancer?
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of over 80 compounds found in the cannabis plant. Although people often associate the cannabis plant with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), they are also beginning to discover the benefits of CBD. The two molecules are very different in the way that THC is the compound that gets its users high, whereas CBD causes no psychoactive effects. The fact that CBD is not psychoactive is what makes it so interesting for people with a variety of different conditions. Both scientific and clinical research show that CBD has significant potential as a treatment for several conditions such as:
These are just some of the conditions, that research indicates CBD has the potential to treat. Additionally, CBD has been shown to have neuro-protective and neurogenic effects along with anti-cancer properties that researchers are currently investigating. One of the most promising aspects of the compound is that it is impossible to overdose CBD on CBD – it’s 100% safe.
How CBD Works
Although we still need to see more research, researchers have learned a lot about how CBD works in the body. As a cannabinoid, CBD is an agonist that attaches itself to receptors in your cells that scientists call cannabinoid receptors.
Whereas some receptors are more concentrated in the central nervous system, you can find others throughout nearly every single organ of the body (skin, digestive tract, and even the reproductive organs).
To put this more simply, you can think of an agonist as a key and the cannabinoid receptors as locks. When you take in CBD, you are taking in an agonist (key) that interacts with the different locks throughout your body (receptors). This entire system is known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
Although you may never have heard of the ECS, it’s a massive system in your body that serves many different purposes. Just a few of the processes in which the ECS takes part are:
The four primary processes of the ECS are neuro-protection, stress recovery, immune balance, and homeostatic regulation (essentially the system that maintains balance in your body). One of the biggest benefits of CBD is that it taps into the homeostatic regulation system to help produce therapeutic effects.
Is CBD the Same as THC?
Part of the issue with the public perception of CBD is that many people confuse the compound (and the cannabis plant as a whole) with the molecule in the plant that produces a high, THC. Although both CBD and THC are cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, they interact in the body in different ways. THC engages the cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1). This receptor is found primarily in the central nervous system.
CBD doesn’t interact with the same receptor as THC. CBD binds to receptors in different locations throughout the body. This difference is huge in that this helps to explain why CBD doesn’t produce psychoactive effects when consumed. In fact, CBD can reduce the anxiety caused by consuming too much THC.
CBD Oil and Cancer Treatment
Although researchers are still carrying out studies on the efficacy of CBD in cancer treatment, there has been some great findings on the effects of the CBD molecule in relation to cancer.
Researchers found that one of the most valuable benefits of CBD for cancer patients is for those who are going through chemotherapy. During chemotherapy, most patients experience a significant loss of appetite (weight loss) and pain. Multiple studies show that CBD has potential to boost the patient’s appetite, as well as contribute to reducing the chronic pain.
In addition to helping reduce the pain of chemotherapy, CBD has also been shown to prevent cancer in the first place. Researchers reported that both THC and CBD have the potential to slow the growth and/or cause the death of cancer cells. According to other studies performed on animals, these cannabinoids also have the ability to slow growth and slow the spread of certain types of cancer.
The research on the efficacy of treating cancer with CBD is still in its early stages. There have been just a few trials with humans, and there are still more planned. Although studies have shown that CBD may have the potential to help slow the spread of cancer, nothing at this point towards CBD being a cure for cancer itself. At this time, doctors do not recommend treating cancer with cannabis alone in place of more traditional forms of treatment.
Side Effects for Patients Using CBD
Although patients are not going to experience any serious side effects, people should be aware of the few potential downsides of CBD. For example, CBD can affect heart rate. For some people, CBD may increase their heart rate, while it may decrease heart rate for others. This increase in heart rate can cause feelings of dizziness and lightheadedness.
Some CBD users report feelings of drowsiness and changes in mood when taking CBD. It may also increase or alter the effects of other drugs that you are taking (for example, sleeping pills or alcohol). As this may contribute to a decrease in motor skills, it’s important to take caution before using any heavy machinery.
We recommend that you consult with a doctor before starting to take CBD regularly.
The American Cancer Society’s Opinion
An important organization for cancer research, the American Cancer Society’s opinion on such matters holds a lot of weight. The Society believes that scientists and doctors should be continuously researching any and all potential treatments for cancer. As such, the Society supports the need for more scientific research on CBD as a treatment for cancer patients.
ACS believes that the United States government is impeding progress for cancer treatment by classifying marijuana as a Schedule I drug. The Society thinks that the treatment plan is between the patient and doctor, and what the patient decides to do on their own is their decision. The American Cancer Society also states that we need to continue to explore medical marijuana for its potential long-term adverse effects as well.
The legality of CBD varies from country to country but in the US, it depends on where the company sourced the CBD and what parts of the plant the CBD is derived from.
At CBDfx we only source European sourced hemp and our CBD oil is derived from the stalks of the plant only. The reasoning behind this is that the DEA considers these parts exempt from the definition of marijuana and states that “The new drug code (7350) established in the Final Rule does not include materials or products that are excluded from the definition of marijuana set forth in the Controlled Substances Act (CSA)” and that “ If a product consisted solely of those parts of the cannabis plant excluded from the CSA definition of marijuana, such product would not be included in the new drug code (7350) or in the drug code for marijuana (7360).
The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) defines marihuana by “The term marihuana means all parts of the plant Cannabis sativa L., whether growing or not; the seeds thereof; the resin extracted from any part of such plant; and every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such plant, its seeds or resin. Such term does not include the mature stalks of such plant, fiber produced from such stalks, oil or cake made from the seeds of such plant, any other compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such mature stalks (except the resin extracted therefrom), fiber, oil, or cake, or the sterilized seed of such plant which is incapable of germination” (21 U.S.C. 802 (16).
The CSA sets fort that CBD hemp oil derived from the stalk of the mature industrial hemp plant is exempt from the term “marijuana”. CBDfx is one of the only companies to offer a fully compliant line of CBD products made with full spectrum, CBD oil derived from the stalks of the mature industrial hemp plant. At CBDfx, our mission is to give people access to the best quality and fully compliant CBD products on the market.
Choosing a High-Quality CBD Product
To avoid purchasing a low-quality product, it’s important that you do your research before purchasing and consuming a product. One way that you can make sure that you get quality products is by requesting third-party lab results from the CBD company. If the company doesn’t want to share these results with you, it should be an immediate sign that they are hiding something.
Purity and potency is not everything. The quality of a CBD product is to a large extend determined by if its made with full spectrum CBD (Polycannabinoid) or CBD isolate (monocannabinoid). Full spectrum CBD has been proven to be up to ten times more effective than CBD isolate and it is generally accepted that users need a lot less full spectrum CBD than isolate to reach the desired therapeutic effect. That’s why we, at CBDfx, only make products with the highest quality full spectrum hemp CBD oil, with all the natural terpenes, amino acids and fatty acids.