CBD is one of the most versatile medicines that has been discovered in recent years. It’s been used to treat a wide range of ailments ranging from chronic pain to irritable bowel syndrome to Crohn’s disease.
Recent research has begun to delve into the use of CBD for diabetes. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, diabetes is a very common problem. In the United States, over 100 million AMericans struggle with one of the two types of diabetes, and another 84 million are prediabetic.
There are a number of different causes of diabetes, ranging from genetics to age to dietary choices. People over the age of 40 are much more likely to develop diabetes, as are people from certain parts of Asia
There are many ways that people can manage their diabetes, but one of the most interesting and promising approaches is the use of CBD, or cannabidiol. In this article, we’ll explain why CBD can be a useful tool for helping people manage their diabetes.
What is CBD?
CBD – short form for cannabidiol – is a compound that’s found in the cannabis and hemp plants. Many people hesitate when considering the fact that this compound comes from a plant that’s known to cause intoxicating effects – but rest assured, CBD will not get you high.
CBD is also the most prevalent cannabinoid found in the hemp plant. Hemp is a popular agricultural staple and is preferred by many people because it is not intoxicating.
CBD is not considered a psychoactive compound – that means that it doesn’t directly influence your state of consciousness. Medical users of CBD are able to reliably use the compound without experiencing a serious change in their mindstate.
In fact, CBD isn’t known to cause many side effects at all. One of the only side effects commonly attributed to CBD is drowsiness, and this often only occurs at high doses. The majority of people who use CBD are able to do so without experiencing any side effects at all.
CBD Can Stop Diabetes In Its Tracks
One of the most intriguing aspects of CBD is the suggestion that it can actually be used as a preventative measure, to stop you from getting diabetes in the first place.
Why is this? There is one thing that’s common among people who are at a high risk of developing diabetes: they have a resistance to their insulin or high fasting insulin levels.
A study spanning 5 years, led by Elizabeth Penner, revealed that people who were regular users of hemp or marijuana had lower fasting insulin levels than study subjects who never used the plants. This made them less likely to develop diabetes.
Insulin is the compound our body produces to manage our blood sugar, and if you can’t properly produce insulin you’re more likely to get diabetes.
Hemp Oil Keeps Your Blood Sugar In Check
As I mentioned above, insulin is the compound that’s involved in the regulation of blood sugar. If the body rejects insulin – a condition known as insulin resistance – then the cells in the body aren’t able to absorb glucose – sugars.
When this happens, the glucose builds up in the bloodstream and causes what is known as high blood sugar. People with insulin resistance are much more likely to develop high blood sugar and are thus more likely to get diabetes.
While it’s not entirely certain how CBD is able to help people manage their insulin resistance, some suspect that it’s because of the way that CBD helps to reduce inflammation. As recognized by Dr. Steven Shoelson, there is a strong link between inflammation and insulin resistance.
Likewise, many researchers have recognized the powerful effect that CBD can have on inflammation. Dr. Nagakarti has even discussed the use of cannabinoids such as CBD to replace anti-inflammatory drugs.
Hemp Oil Can Help You Torch Those Extra Pounds
While there are many different things that can lead to the development of diabetes, one of the most common and prominent is that of obesity. This is especially true in the United States.
Having a body mass index, or BMI, of above 25 means a person is considered overweight. Having a BMI higher than 30 means that they are obese, and this puts them at a higher risk of developing diabetes.
At first, the idea that using a cannabis-based product can help you lose weight might sound ridiculous. Cannabis has, for so long, been associated with laziness and ‘the munchies,’ that the idea that it could help manage weight seems absurd.
A scientific publication released by Yann le Strat and Bernard le Foll cited a number of studies that proved that regular cannabis users are less likely to obese than non-users. This revelation, which was the complete opposite of what researchers expected, shows that CBD could be useful for fighting obesity.
One of these studies showed that even though people who use cannabis may actually consume more calories, they are less likely to hold onto them as excess weight than non-users. One of the suspected reasons for this is because cannabis is great for helping people metabolise carbohydrates.
If someone isn’t able to properly metabolize their carbohydrates then they are more likely to hold onto extra weight. This extra weight makes them more likely to develop diabetes.
Will CBD Oil Help Beat Type 2 Diabetes?
There are two types of diabetes – type 1 and type 2. There are similarities and differences between these different types of diabetes.
- Type 1 diabetes, also referred to as insulin-dependent diabetes, is an autoimmune condition that can lead to a number of complications such as ocular problems.
- Type 2 diabetes is far more common than type 1 diabetes and is referred to as non-insulin-dependent diabetes. Type 2 is often a more mild form of diabetes, though it can still cause a number of health issues. In America, it’s most often caused by obesity.
There is some indication that CBD could be useful for helping to treat type 2 diabetes.
One of the reasons for this is because of the way that CBD can help influence carbohydrate metabolism and reduce the likelihood of obesity. This is important because of the way that fat behaves when it’s stored in the abdomen.
Dr. Olga Hardy, et. al, revealed that fat, when stored in the abdomen, can cause the release of certain compounds that influence our metabolic systems – including our pancreas, which produces insulin. This greatly increases the risk of developing diabetes.
Another of the biggest risk factors for the development of type 2 diabetes is insulin resistance, as mentioned above. By helping to prevent insulin resistance, CBD is already a useful tool for helping to prevent the development of type 2 diabetes.
Does CBD Lower Heart Rate?
Diabetes is known for causing a wide range of side effects and complications. Some complications are quite severe, and others can simply be indications of other problems.
One study, headed by Dr. Mercedes R. Carnethon, PHD, revealed that there is a link between a higher resting heart rate and the development of diabetes. A high resting heart rate can also be an indication that you’re struggling with other heart-related issues.
Some people have suggested that since CBD is a very relaxing compound, that it will reduce a person’s resting heart rate. It’s important to note that this isn’t true, and while CBD can be useful for helping many other facets of diabetes, it won’t lower your heart rate.
That said, a study published by Khalid A. Jadoon revealed that while CBD actually increased the resting heart rate of the subjects, it did so while also helping to reduce blood pressure and help to enhance other areas of their cardiovascular health.
This is an interesting proposal because it suggests that, while CBD won’t actually reduce the resting heart rate, it will help to prevent diabetes by helping to improve the health of your heart and blood system in other ways.
CBD Helps Sweep Out LDL Cholesterol
Another thing to consider about diabetics is that they tend to have higher levels of a certain type of cholesterol in their blood. There are two main types of cholesterol:
- HDL, or high-density lipoprotein, is the ‘good’ type of cholesterol. Being harder than LDL cholesterol, it can actually help to ‘sweep’ LDL cholesterol out of the blood stream.
- LDL, or low-density lipoprotein, is the ‘bad’ type of cholesterol. Being lighter than HDL cholesterol, it tends to stick to the walls of arteries and can cause health problems like diabetes.
In the study headed by Elizabeth Prenner that we mentioned above, it’s also revealed that users of CBD have much higher levels of HDL cholesterol than people who weren’t using CBD. This means that they are much better able to get rid of the LDL cholesterol that could cause problems.
CBD Is Safer Than Pharmaceutical Medication
If there’s one thing that runs consistent among different types of pharmaceutical medication, it’s the fact that most medications are known to cause some sort of side effects. While these side effects may vary drastically, there are usually some side effects.
Fortunately, many people are able to use CBD without reporting any side effects at all. Except in the case of extremely sensitive people, the most common side effect experienced by users of CBD is simple sleepiness. If you’re using the medication at night, then this won’t be a problem.
Some people have to use very high doses of CBD. In this case, there is an increased risk for some mild side effects. These can include:
- Subtle changes in mood or perception
- Dry mouth and increased thirst
These side effects are short-lasting and are not very severe. However, it’s important to note that CBD is also not as powerful as many pharmaceutical medications. I do not condone or suggest replacing any pharmaceuticals with CBD, and it’s important to consult with your doctor before adding CBD to your medical routine.
CBD Is Changing the Medical Scene
The evidence compiled in this article makes it clear that CBD is useful for helping with a number of things that could be useful for diabetics.
- There’s some evidence that CBD can help to increase HDL cholesterol, making it easier for people to sweep out the LDL cholesterol that can contribute to diabetes.
- There’s a link between the use of CBD and other cannabinoids and a reduction in weight. This means that CBD users are less likely to become obese and develop diabetes as a result.
- CBD is known to help influence carbohydrate metabolism, making it easier for people to manage their blood sugar.
- CBD is also known to have a positive influence on people’s blood sugar and insulin levels. It makes people less likely to develop insulin resistance, and this in turn makes them less likely to develop diabetes.
This is all very promising news. However, it’s important to note that CBD is best considered an addition to a toolset that can help you fight diabetes. On its own, it may or may not be enough to help manage symptoms or prevent diabetes – but it’s best not to take the risk.
These things are all important in helping to manage and prevent diabetes.
- Regular exercise. It’s important to get your heart pumping every day. This helps to regulate blood pressure and can fight off obesity that might cause diabetes. People who don’t exercise at all are much more likely to develop diabetes.
- Eat healthy. Many people in the United States eat a diet that’s high in refined sugar, trans fats, and other unhealthy substances. It’s no wonder that the United States also has the highest population of people with diabetes!
- Make good lifestyle choices. Things like smoking, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol, and being sedentary can all make someone more likely to develop diabetes. It’s Important to make sure that you keep these things in check.
- Stay hydrated. Being chronically dehydrated can lead to a number of different problems. Dehydration can negatively affect your blood pressure, your digestion, and other important systems that can contribute to diabetes if neglected.
- Medical intervention. Remember, CBD is a relatively new discovery. Medical professionals have been helping people manage their diabetes for decades, and there’s still a lot that a medical doctor can do to help with your diabetes.
Whatever the case, make sure that you remain in contact with your medical doctor if you’re struggling with diabetes. CBD can be a useful tool to help manage symptoms or prevent the disease, but sometimes medical assistance is the only sure-fire way to stay safe.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is an incredibly versatile medicine.
As more and more research is done in this fascinating compound, more and more potential uses continue to emerge. One of the most recent areas of research regarding CBD is the way that it can help fight and prevent diabetes.
In this article, we’ve outlined some of the most well-researched areas in which CBD can help to ward off diabetes. Hopefully this has shone some light on the situation for you.
In addition to maintaining a healthy exercise routine, eating well, and leading a healthy life, consider adding CBD to your daily regimen – it might help you ward off some symptoms of diabetes.
Karen Asprey is a CBD writer and enthusiast who has made it her one woman mission to break down the taboo of cannabis, and make it more accessible to those who can benefit from it.