Currently, there are more than 100 different types of cancer and it is the second leading cause of death in the world. In fact, it’s said that cancer affects 1 out of every 3 people in the United States. While cancer is a relatively broad term, on a basic level cancer refers to abnormal and unrestricted cell growth along with unusual cell divisions that occur in the human body. Cancer may pertain to slow or rapid abnormal cell growth and in some cases show visible symptoms (tumors) while in others it might not be as physically obvious (such as leukemia). Over the last few years, due to its inherent therapeutic and non-psychoactive properties, there is hope that CBD oil might have uses in aiding in the treatment of cancer.
Research is currently being done on the potential of CBD to help people with cancer in multiple areas. Some scientists are exploring whether CBD could actually stop or slow down cancer cell growth while others are looking at whether it can help relieve common symptoms that arise from cancer and its treatment. Let’s break down some of what they uncovered and why there is hope that CBD might be able to help.
A Brief Overview of Cancer
Our body constitutes several billion living cells that make up its entire structure. Cell death is a naturally occurring phenomenon and part of an organism’s development (a process referred to as apoptosis). Apoptosis occurs after a cell receives instructions to die and a better functioning cell takes its place.
However, in cancer, the cells lack the component responsible for instructing them to stop functioning after a certain time. Thus, the cells keep dying, growing, and dividing abnormally and unrestrictedly. Consequently, these cancerous cells start consuming oxygen, depriving other cells of nourishment. Moreover, tumors can form and the cancerous cells spread via lymph nodes (a cluster of immune system cells).
Research On CBD As a Treatment For Cancer
Although it is too early to say conclusively, there is evidence that CBD may have some uses in the treatment of cancer and research is uncovering more every day.
A 2019 study that explored the potential of CBD to treat pancreatic cancer found that due to the way it interacts with the body, CBD shows promise in inducing tumor cell death, reducing tumor invasion and growth, and inhibiting tumor angiogenesis. However, they did point out that their results while promising, demonstrate the need for further research.
A study published on ScienceDirect found that cannabis extract with high content of CBD reduced colon carcinogenesis and inhibited colorectal cancer cell proliferation.
Data from another preclinical study demonstrated that CBD can be effective in inhibiting breast cancer cell proliferation.
In a 2016 report titled ‘The use of cannabinoids as anticancer agents’, researchers uncovered evidence supporting that cannabinoids and THC exert anticancer actions in preclinical models of cancer. They went on to note that it might also enhance the efficacy of cytotoxic drugs in people with glioblastoma (which accounts for a large number of brain tumors).
According to the National Cancer Institute, results from a number of animal studies showed that cannabinoids might have:
- Antitumor effects
- Antiemetic effects (reduces nausea and vomiting)
- The ability to stimulate appetite
- The ability to induce analgesia (pain relief)
- Relieve anxiety and improve sleep quality
It’s also important to note that many of these studies included other treatments like chemotherapy which makes it more difficult to evaluate the efficacy of CBD by itself.
That said, these are just a few of the studies currently underway and while it’s too soon to say for certain, they do demonstrate the potential of CBD as a potential cancer treatment as well as the urgent need for further analysis.
Benefits of CBD For Cancer and Treatment Related Symptoms
Researchers have also begun exploring whether CBD can be effective as a complement to current treatments and as a means to relieve some of the more uncomfortable symptoms they present.
Common treatments for cancer such as radiation therapy and chemotherapy often come with a number of side effects including nausea and loss of appetite.
While as of now the only CBD product approved by the FDA is Epidiolex used to treat specific forms of epilepsy, two synthetic THC drugs (Dronabinol and Nabilone) have been approved for medical applications according to the American Cancer Society. Both Dronabinol and Nabilone have been approved by the U.S. FDA to help patients undergoing cancer chemotherapy and have failed to respond to conventional antiemetic therapy.
As researchers continue to explore both of these drugs, they have shown promise in treating nausea and vomiting resulting from cancer chemotherapy as well as other symptoms.
Further, a cannabinoid drug that comes in a mouth spray called Nabiximols is currently being tested in the U.S. It contains both CBD and THC and is available in parts of Europe and Canada to treat pain linked to cancer.
While these drugs might be different from the CBD you can buy online, they clearly show the potential of cannabinoids in dealing with chemotherapy-induced nausea.
One 2016 preclinical animal study further supported this, noting that due to the role of the endocannabinoid system in regulating nausea, CBD has the potential to reduce acute nausea and anticipatory nausea.
Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, CBD has been shown to reduce symptoms of chronic pain and inflammation. Because some cancer pain is related to inflammation and can at times be resistant to treatment using opioids, CBD might be able to help manage some of these symptoms.
A 2020 study noted that CBD presents an opportunity for treating chronic pain in cases where primary treatment alternatives are not possible or insufficient.
This echoes the sentiments of another study titled the ‘Therapeutic Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids’ where researchers found that when CBD was given to adults with chronic pain, they were more likely to experience a significant reduction in symptoms.
Aside from pain and nausea, there is hope that CBD can help manage other resulting symptoms commonly experienced by those in treatment for cancer. While most studies were not specific to those with cancer there is promising evidence that CBD can help alleviate anxiety, insomnia, depression as well as appetite management.
What You Should Know First
It’s important to note that CBD should not be used as a replacement for other cancer treatments and it’s essential to consult with your doctor before adding it to your routine; especially if you are taking other medications. Your doctor will be able to let you know if it might interfere with other prescriptions as well as give you advice on using it.
Before you buy CBD it’s also important to know what to look for. Make sure you are only buying from a trusted brand with lab results to backup their claims and the quality of their products. Remember to check the product labels carefully as well. At Easy Day, you can read the lab test results on our website and scan a qr code for every one of our products to ensure each product’s quality and purity.
Additionally, be wary of any company that makes wild claims of their products being a ‘miracle’ cure. While there is evidence that CBD can help with a wide variety of physical and mental conditions, any company making these claims should be considered a red flag and you should exercise caution.
To help make sure you are only using quality products you can trust we put together a helpful guide for buying and using CBD we suggest checking out.
Getting Started Improving Your Quality of Life
While it is too soon to say definitively that CBD is a safe and effective treatment for cancer, the growing evidence shows that it has the potential to help deal with some of the serious symptoms related to treatment and there is hope that it can do so much more.
Once you consult with your doctor and are ready to see how CBD can help improve your quality of life, Easy Day Hemp has a wide collection of top quality CBD Oils and Gels to get started. For more serious symptoms we suggest trying out our Maximum Strength Full Spectrum CBD Oil.
And now when you subscribe to Easy Day we’ll text you a 20% discount off our CBD products; so you can start experiencing the benefits for yourself and have your own Easy Day.
Disclaimer: The FDA has not evaluated these statements. Our CBD products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any diseases. Consult your physician before taking any new supplements or beginning a new treatment plan.