Cancer is an umbrella term for a group of diseases that affect the human body due to the rapid abnormal cell division. Cancer affects millions of people around the world and it is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. There are several types of cancer and all of them are named for the area in which the abnormal cell division begins.
The cancer will spread to other parts of the body and controlling the abnormal cell division and thereby the growth of the tumor is the main goal of all forms of cancer treatment. Changes or mutation to the DNA is the direct cause of cancer and this mutation can be caused by radiation exposure, smoking, lifestyle choices, certain viruses, exposure to carcinogens, etc.
What Is CBD?
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of the 113 know cannabinoids of the cannabis plant and possesses a lot of therapeutic properties that can help in the treatment of several health disorders. CBD is used by millions of people all around the world for alleviating several mental and physical health disorders.
There are numerous debates and discussions going around on the use of CBD for cancer treatment. It is still too early to claim that CBD is an effective treatment option for cancer. However, CBD can manage several symptoms of cancer and its treatment. Currently, many oncologists are suggesting the use of edible CBD products during the treatment of cancer.
CBD For Cancer Treatment
It is important to note that CBD is not a cure for cancer and no current studies have proven that CBD can completely treat cancer. Most of the existing studies on CBD for cancer treatment are in the early stages and we cannot draw any conclusions from these preliminary studies. However, the National Cancer Institute has reviewed several studies and concluded that there is a link between cannabis and cancer treatment.
A study conducted in the year 2016 found that the use of CBD could be effective in the fight against various forms of cancer. The study showed that the use of CBD seems to inhibit various types of tumor cell growth in both animal bodies and test tubes.
The study also noted that high dosages and some types of cannabinoid compounds might suppress the immune system of the cancer patients and this allows the unchecked growth of tumor cells. Additional studies are required to find the exact effects of CBD and other cannabinoid compounds in the treatment of cancer.
One study on people suffering from tobacco-related cancer showed that the use of cannabis did not increase the cancer risk. Another study that was conducted in the year 2015 found a promising link between bladder cancer and cannabis. The use of cannabis has reduced the risk of developing bladder cancer by 45%.
CBD As A Complementary Treatment For Cancer
Even though currently there is no conclusive evidence that suggests CBD as a cancer prevention treatment, there are several studies that show CBD can be used as a complementary treatment of cancer.
Chemotherapy and radiation therapy are the two most common cancer treatments and both these treatments are highly effective in controlling cancer growth. However, both chemotherapy and radiation therapy cause several side effects that can be easily alleviated with the help of CBD.
Nausea and loss of appetite are the two most common side effects that affect the people who undergo chemotherapy and radiation therapy. These side effects can make it difficult for cancer patients to maintain their body weight. The use of CBD will help in stimulating the appetite and thereby helps to maintain healthy body weight.
Cancer and its treatment can cause a lot of pain in the body. The main reasons for pain in cancer patients are inflammation, nerve injury, and pressure on the internal organs. When the pain becomes severe, even the natural pain relievers like opioids become ineffective. The studies have proven that CBD can interact with our bodies’ CB2 cannabinoid receptors and reduce the inflammation that causes pain. THC is also effective in alleviating pain caused by brain damage.
Cannabinoid compounds like CBD are very effective in alleviating nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy. This is because CBD possesses antiemetic properties that are very effective in alleviating nausea. Just like CBD, THC also possesses anti-nausea effects but people usually go for CBD products with a low amount of THC because of the psychoactive properties of CBD.
CBD Side Effects
Unlike most of the traditional medications for pain, CBD does not cause any side effects. However, studies have shown that using CBD in high doses can cause side effects like diarrhea, fatigue, loss of appetite, dry mouth, drowsiness, low blood pressure, etc. The use of CBD can also lead to drug interactions and can cause liver damage. Therefore, it is better to speak with a health expert before you start using CBD products.