CBD as an Anti Inflammatory Drugs: What You Need to Know

Medical marijuana has already been tested to be naturally potent against many types of diseases such as chronic pain or depression or even has been a miracle drug for alleviating symptoms of mysterious diseases like the Dravet syndrome. Dravet syndrome is a rare genetic dysfunction of the brain and is often misdiagnosed after appearing in normally developing children. 

Fortunately, marijuana has been proven to help stop seizures caused by Dravet syndrome. The effectivity of marijuana strain led to the development of Epidiolex which is a CBD based oral solution that was approved by the US FDA in 2018. This drug is also recognized by the Epilepsy Foundation. 

But what about mundane sicknesses which are not really life-threatening or life-changing such inflammations? 

WHAT IS AN INFLAMMATION

Inflammation is part of the body’s complex biological reaction to harmful stimuli such as pathogens or disease-causing germs, damaged cells or irritants. Inflammation happens in order to protect the body from cell injury and to clear our damaged tissues. The inflammatory process also initiates vital tissue repair. Feelings of heat, pain, redness, swelling, and loss of function or immobility are all signs of inflammation. 

You get swelling and pain whenever you get injured or after surgery in order for your body to heal and recover. Inflammation is generally good for the body except that when it gets out of control and you get all the swelling in your body that is not triggered by any real medical necessity. These out of control inflammation are damaging you instead of healing your body. 

Acute inflammation is the result of an injury such as injuries to the skin, bone, and muscles. Cells known as macrophages are a type of white blood cells come immediately to the injured area or scene of infection through the blood to fight infections and clear up any dead cells and foreign organisms particularly germs. This causes acute inflammation. 

Chronic inflammation of the other hand persists over long periods of time and is caused by pathogens, viruses or even an over-reactive immune system. Also known as autoimmune diseases, chronic inflammations include asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, and sinusitis.  

ANTI INFLAMMATORY DRUGS 

Anti-inflammatory drugs have the property to treat and reduce inflammation and swelling. Anti-inflammatory drugs remedy pain by reducing inflammation in contrast to opioids or opium-based drugs that affect the central nervous syndrome to block the pain signal. Opiates contain opium which is a drug that is derived from opium, which is also a plant just like marijuana and is known since ancient times as a painkiller and anesthesia. 

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are perhaps the most common anti-inflammatory drugs today and they work by counteracting cyclooxygenase (COX) enzyme. COX enzymes synthesize with prostaglandins, a group of physiologically active lipid compounds that have hormone-like effects that are found in almost every tissue of humans and other animals. This synthesis creates inflammation.

CBD ANTI-INFLAMMATORY DRUG

CBD has become more popular as a medicine and dietary and wellness supplement. Over recent years, this non-psychoactive cannabinoid has been studied in depth and is displaying some impressive results in being used as anticonvulsant, neuroprotective, and antioxidant. 

CBD or cannabidiol is also capable of reducing inflammation because our own body produces its own cannabinoid which is received through the cannabinoid receptors in our bodies. These receptors alter neurotransmitter release in the brain and affect a variety of physiological processes including appetite, mood, memory, and sensation of pain. 

Cannabinoids achieve their effect by binding to these receptor sites. CDB does not directly bind with these receptors and may even do the opposite but still influence the endocannabinoid system or receptors by enhancing or reducing the binding action of certain receptors and inhibits the reuptake of anandamide. 

Anandamide is endocannabinoids too which are naturally found in the body and they are very similar in characteristics to the phytocannabinoids or cannabinoids that could be found in plants, marijuana in particular. This similarity allows the cannabinoid receptors in the body to readily receive phytocannabinoids. This makes CBD effective against inflammations. 

CBD may have a therapeutic effect on both acute and chronic inflammations. Cannabinoids have shown the ability to regulate the body responses associated with autoimmune diseases. It also shows the effect of neuropathic pain, hypertension, Alzheimer’s disease, and depression. A scientific paper written by George W. Booz of the University of Mississipi Medical Center, titled, Cannabidiol as an Emergent Therapeutic Strategy for Lessening the Impact of Inflammation on Oxidative Stress sheds light to this. 

Dr. Booz concluded by saying, “CBD has been shown to modulate the function of the immune system. Overall these actions may be nuanced and concentration-dependent, but in general include suppression of both cell-mediated and humoral immunity and involve inhibition of proliferation, maturation, and migration of immune cells, antigen presentation, and humoral response.”

Dr. Booz’ paper also includes his findings on bow CBD could help in different medical conditions such as pain, diabetes, hypertension, depression, neurodegenerative diseases, obesity, atherosclerosis, and others. 

Dr. Booz further concluded, “Inflammation and oxidative stress are intimately involved in the genesis of many human diseases. Unraveling that relationship therapeutically has proven challenging, in part because inflammation and oxidative stress “feed off” each other. However, CBD would seem to be a promising starting point for further drug development given its anti-oxidant (although relatively modest) and anti-inflammatory actions on immune cells, such as macrophages and microglia. CBD also has the advantage of not having psychotropic side effects. Studies on models of human diseases support the idea that CBD attenuates inflammation far beyond its antioxidant properties, for example, by targeting inflammation-related intracellular signaling events. The details on how CBD targets inflammatory signaling remain to be defined. The therapeutic utility of CBD is a relatively new area of investigation that portends new discoveries on the interplay between inflammation and oxidative stress, a relationship that underlies tissue and organ damage in many human diseases.”

CONCLUSION

CBD is a wonder ingredient of cannabis that naturally has healing potential to many human ailments. It is only a matter of time before this plant that is considered illegal in most countries will be playing a big part in the production of safe, natural and cheap medicine for all.