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CBD Oil and Cancer: What You Need to Know [2022 Update]

CBD Oil and Cancer: What You Need to Know [2022 Update] - SOL✿CBD

Cannabidiol (CBD) is rapidly gaining popularity as the years pass. Many individuals use it for various ailments or to promote general health and wellbeing. Some of the benefits of cannabidiol include fighting inflammation in the body, reducing stress levels and improving positivity, promoting relaxation, and supporting skin health. (Click to tweet)

So what can CBD do for individuals with various types of cancers? 

Table of Contents

1. Cannabinoids As an Anti-cancer Drug?
2. CBD Oil and Cancer: What Does The Research Say?
    2.1 Leukemia and Lymphoma
    2.2 Breast Cancer
    2.3 Colon Cancer
3. CBD’s Use for Reducing Cancer Symptoms
    3.1 Combats Fatigue
    3.2 Stimulates Appetite
    3.3 Reduces Swelling and Inflammation
    3.4 Manages Aches and Pains
4. Dosage for CBD and Cancer
    4.1 Consult a Medical Professional
    4.2 Start Low and Slow
    4.3 Be Patient
    4.4 Monitor Physical Reactions
    4.5 Look At the Label
5. What Does The Federal Government Say?
6. CBD Oil and Cancer: A Final Word

 

1. Cannabinoids As an Anti-cancer Drug?

 

As early as 1975, researchers examined various cannabinoids for potential use as an anti-cancer drug. Complicated legal restrictions on the plant haven’t stopped medical centers around the world from discovering some genuinely fascinating evidence regarding cannabinoids and cancer.

One of the cannabinoids showing exciting potential is CBD. Although found in the same plant as Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD has some very important differences. Unlike THC, CBD does not trigger psychoactive effects, making it much more applicable for widespread use than its infamous cannabinoid cousin. Because of this critical difference, the interest in CBD as a cancer-fighting agent has significantly increased in recent years.

CBD has shown exciting potential as a cancer-fighting agent.

 

2. CBD Oil and Cancer: What Does The Research Say?

 

To develop a deeper understanding of the potential of CBD for cancer treatment, it's a good idea to review the current research environment. What has been discovered so far? What cancers has the potential CBD oil therapy been applied to? Most importantly, does the research show that CBD can kill cancer?

Preliminary research has shown that CBD seems to target cancer at several different levels. This has caused a stir among cancer patients, the CBD oil industry, and cancer research centers around the world. 

The evidence speaks for itself, showing that CBD could trigger cell death, prevent cancer cell migration, and reduce cancer invasiveness. Plus, CBD may also have angiogenesis properties, meaning it blocks new blood cell formation, slowing the spread of cancer cells. [1]

A study from 2019 found that CBD had anti-tumorigenic activity and suppressed the viability of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC), demonstrating significant cytotoxicity and potential as an anti-cancer drug. [2] 

RELATED: Can CBD Be the Next Big Thing in Fighting Brain Cancer?

 

2.1 Leukemia and Lymphoma

 

Several laboratory and animal studies demonstrate CBD’s potential for the treatment of lymphoblastic diseases, including leukemia and lymphoma. 

Studies have demonstrated CBD’s potential for the treatment of lymphoblastic diseases, including leukemia and lymphoma.

Now:

According to the results thus far, CBD promotes lymphoma cancer cell suicide, known as apoptosis. Scientists have also discovered that lymphoma is typically linked with increased CB2 activity. Their study published in 2006 indicated that "CBD exposure led to a significant CB2 receptor-mediated decrease in the number of viable cells as well as to the induction of apoptosis, both in vitro and in vivo." [3]

In layman's terms, this means that through CBD's relationship with the CB2 receptors, it decreased the risk of cancerous cell formation. It also increased cancer cell suicide in lymphoblastic diseases. 

 

2.2 Breast Cancer

 

Several important studies have been published by the same group of researchers at the Istituto di Chimica Biomolecolare in Italy since 2006. The team has uncovered valuable details about how CBD acts as an antitumor agent, specifically for use against breast cancer.

The team discovered that cannabidiol, in comparison with three other cannabinoids, proved to be one of the most effective in the fight against breast cancer. This was even when compared to other potent anti-cancer cannabinoids such as with THC. Throughout their decade of research, the Italian team uncovered many of the complex pathways through which CBD prevents the proliferation of breast cancer cells and how it inhibits breast cancer metastasization. 

CBD acts as an antitumor agent, specifically for use against breast cancer.

RELATED: Using CBD to Support with Breast Cancer

 

2.3 Colon Cancer

 

The authors of a recent scientific review believe that, “In the light of its safety records, [the] results suggest that CBD might be worthy of clinical consideration in colon cancer prevention.” Although their opinion is based on only preliminary results, these results are incredibly compelling. 

Their review covers an interesting study on CBD for colon cancer. The study demonstrates the ability of CBD to reduce the formation of several cancerous characteristics common in colon cancer. This includes the reduction of abnormal glands called aberrant crypt foci found in the rectum and colon. The study also found that CBD reduced the number of polyps and tumors. 

Beyond those common cancers, CBD has been studied for application to many other cancers. The vast majority of published preliminary research has uncovered a positive benefit of CBD in cancer therapy. Some other areas of research for CBD and cancer include fighting brain, bladder, lung, and prostate cancers, among many others. 

 

3. CBD’s Use for Reducing Cancer Symptoms

 

CBD also has massive potential for reducing cancer symptoms and for minimizing the devastating chemotherapy side effects. (Click to tweet)

In fact, many of the synthetic cannabinoids currently approved by the Food and Drug Administration are used to treat the side effects, including nausea, vomiting, and chronic pain, of cancer and traditional treatment options. 

CBD has massive potential for reducing cancer symptoms and for minimizing the devastating chemotherapy side effects.

This is where things get more interesting:

The preliminary data suggest that CBD is an entirely safe supplemental remedy that can easily soothe some of the more difficult side effects associated with traditional cancer treatments. Speak with any cancer patients using CBD oil, and they will tell you how beneficial they found the CBD oil regimen. (Click to tweet)

In general, people report that CBD vastly improves their quality of life during chemotherapy.

 

3.1 Combats Fatigue

 

Extreme tiredness and fatigue are common symptoms of cancer, regardless of the type. Cancer taps into the body’s nutrients so it can advance and progress, therefore those nutrients are no longer replenishing the body. This can make an individual feel worn out, zombie-like, and unable to do basic tasks without feeling exhausted.

While CBD has been known to promote relaxation, it may also help combat fatigue(Click to tweet)

This is because cannabidiol has the ability to enhance protein synthesis and expression in areas associated with wakefulness in the brain. 

CBD can also help in promoting better sleep and lasting energy by modulating your sleep-wake cycle. Feeling calmer may also improve your sleep and leave you feeling well-rested the following morning. (Click to tweet)

 

3.2 Stimulates Appetite

 

Cancer and its treatment have been known to reduce appetite and cause nausea. Cancer tumors release certain hormones that tricks the body’s perception of hunger, which can make one feel full when one is not. The disease is also known to change the metabolism and alters the way the body turns food into energy. Pancreatic, colon, ovarian, and stomach cancers may put pressure on the stomach and reduce the urge to eat. 

CBD may stimulate your appetite by relieving nausea, calming your nervous system, and soothing the digestive tract.

CBD does not induce the “munchies” like THC does, but may help stimulate the appetite in a different manner. Cannabidiol helps relieve nausea, calms the nervous system, and soothes the digestive tract. By reducing nausea and calming the digestive tract, it may motivate one to eat more often. [4] 

 

3.3 Reduces Swelling and Inflammation

 

Cancer or chemotherapy-related swelling is a vascular reaction which causes fluid in the cells to leak out into the layers of the skin, which results in swelling. Fluid retention causes swelling in the lips, eyelids, and tongue. Inflammation may also contribute to the development of certain cancers. Cancer-causing chronic inflammation often stems from inflammatory diseases. 

CBD has been known to reduce swelling and inflammation via reducing cytokine production and interacting with the endocannabinoid system. [5] 

RELATED: Here's Why CBD Is Inflammation’s Worst Enemy

 

3.4 Manages Aches and Pains

 

Pain from cancer can be caused by nerve compression, pressure on the bones, or pressure on the organs due to tumors. Sometimes pain can also be a side effect of your particular treatment. 

As we mentioned before, CBD can impact the ECS positively to achieve balance, or homeostasis, within the body. It can also reduce cytokine production. Not only does this reduce inflammation, but it also relieves pain. 

One retrospective observational study revealed that CBD-rich treatments had a beneficial impact on pain. [4]

RELATED: CBD Oil and Pain Management—The Ultimate Guide

 

4. Dosage for CBD and Cancer

 

It is vital that you consult with your healthcare practitioner before starting a CBD regimen. A doctor can provide essential information on how to dose CBD appropriately. 

Cannabidiol can be used as a daily supplement at low doses, but can also be applied in high doses for acute remedies. Generally speaking, cancer patients will want to use quite high doses during their therapy to achieve the most benefit. The prevailing consensus among scientists is that CBD is safe to use, even during exceptionally high doses. (Click to tweet)

No matter what disease or illness is being supported with CBD oil, it's important to follow this process to find optimal dosage. 

How to find the optimal CBD dosage

RELATED: How to Dose CBD for Cancer

 

4.1 Consult a Medical Professional

 

First, it's important to consult a knowledgeable healthcare practitioner about how best to incorporate CBD into your treatment plan. CBD can actually increase the potency of chemotherapy, and therefore the dosage should be thoughtfully worked out beforehand.

 

4.2 Start Low and Slow

 

Always begin with the lowest-possible dosage. This serves two purposes; it saves you wasting valuable CBD oil and also lets your body become accustomed to change in medicine.

 

4.3 Be Patient

 

Maintain the same dosage for several days before increasing. However, some sources suggest doubling every four days. It is also recommended to spread the daily dose over several smaller applications to allow for maximum absorption.

 

4.4 Monitor Physical Reactions

 

Over the course of your dose exploration, monitor physical and physiological changes experienced. Are they positive or negative? In cooperation with your healthcare provider, it's crucial that you monitor blood levels of other medications, especially chemotherapy drugs. 

Considering that chemotherapy is essentially a toxic mix of chemicals, any change in toxicity could potentially lead to problems. Because CBD is thought to increase drug efficacy, it may be necessary to reduce medication levels to avoid increased toxicity. 

Many people also use CBD oil in conjunction with other cannabinoids, including THC, to benefit from the entourage effect. This effect has been demonstrated through research, but remains little understood. The entourage effect is how the entire plant, including all natural cannabinoids and terpenes, works exponentially better together than if consumed separately. 

 

4.5 Look At the Label

 

Whatever product you choose, pay close attention to the instructions listed on the label. This is always a good starting point, as it will tell you exactly how much to take and how often you should take it if you’re unsure. 

Experimenting with dosage is fine, however, you should give the recommended dose 2-4 weeks before increasing it. This will give you a better understanding of how the CBD is affecting you, and whether or not it’s giving you the results you were hoping for. 

Keep in mind you should also be using something potent and pure if you are using it for cancer symptoms. Try something like SOL CBD’s 4000 mg CBD Oil Tincture or the Pure CBD Oil Tincture in Cinnamint. Both of these products are excellent choices for someone who needs premium, pure, and effective cannabidiol.

Whatever CBD product you choose, pay close attention to the instructions listed on the label.

 

5. What does the Federal Government Say?

 

Despite the fact that the National Cancer Institute has an entire section dedicated to cannabis and cancer, there is not enough clinical data for it to conclude anything about CBD’s effectiveness. According to the institute’s summary, “An overall level of evidence score cannot be assigned to cannabinoids because there has been insufficient clinical research to date.”

Aside from laboratory and animal test data, clinical data on CBD and cancer remains almost entirely at the case-study level. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, there are many active CBD clinical trials, but it does take time for these results to be published. 

One thing that should be noted is that the FDA has approved one drug, Epidiolex, that contains a pure form of cannabidiol. It is used to treat seizures associated with Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. However, the FDA has not approved the use of cannabinoids, like CBD, for treating cancer yet. More research and studies may yield promising results, only time will tell. 

Those currently using CBD and other cannabinoids for treating their own cancer can breathe easy, knowing there is low risk from their experimentation. Especially for patients lucky enough to have the support of their physician, they should be able to incorporate CBD oil into their treatment regimen safely and easily. 

Those currently using CBD and other cannabinoids for treating their own cancer can breathe easy, knowing there is low risk from their experimentation.

RELATED: NCI Acknowledges CBD Oil May Be Helpful In Fighting Cancer

 

6. CBD Oil and Cancer: A Final Word

 

Over time, clinical results on CBD and cancer will come together with patient experiences to form a cohesive body of data. The preliminary conclusions clearly show that CBD has vast potential for treating cancer and cancer-related symptoms with little risk of side effects. 

Beyond simply attacking the disease from one angle, CBD seems to target many aspects of cancerous cell growth and movement. Its ability to attack cancer so effectively in preliminary study, and without the devastating side effects of chemotherapy and radiation, help set it apart from other potential cancer treatments. 

Sources:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7693730/ 
  2. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-77674-y#:~:text=Results,-Cytotoxic%20effect%20of%20CBD%20on 
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16728591/ 
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3165951/ 
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7023045/#:~:text=Therefore%2C%20it%20has%20been%20suggested,of%20immune%20cells%20%5B66%5D

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