It is no secret that the interest in CBD and its use in health and wellness products has grown by multitudes in the last few years. With each passing day, more and more people are becoming enlightened to the many medicinal properties of CBD and how effective this compound can be in ensuring good health. If you’re hearing CBD and corona virus together for the first time then you’ll find this interesting to read.
Naturally, however, with the audience for CBD becoming so saturated, it was only a matter of time that misinformation or exaggerated claims about the compound began spreading like wildfire.
In this article, we take a look at what CBD is, how it works, and how effective it really is in fighting against the global pandemic we are all currently living through.
What is CBD?
Since not all of our readers will be well versed in what CBD is, let us first take a moment to lay out some of the key points and facts that you as a consumer and target audience for many CBD producers should know.
Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is one of the 100+ chemical compounds that are found in the cannabis plant. It is extracted from the leaves, stalk, and flowers of the Cannabis Sativa plant. A common misconception around CBD is that it is the same thing as marijuana and that it can get the user high. This, in reality, however, is not true at all.
CBD is a chemical compound that contains levels less than 0.3% of Tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. THC is the compound found in the Cannabis plant that gives it the psychoactive properties, and is entirely different from CBD.
There are a number of health benefits that you can avail of by consuming CBD. Some of these benefits are listed below, and we will discuss some more benefits further down in this article.
- Relieving pain and inflammation
- Making the management of addiction easier
- Treating inflammatory skin conditions and disorders
- Treating neurodegenerative conditions
CBD and Corona Virus: Can CBD possibly be a contender for aiding against prevention or even curing COVID-19?
Many CBD companies, as well as consumers these days, seem to be claiming CBD to be the holy grail of preventing or treating the corona virus. While there is some weight to these claims, there is a lack of sufficient evidence to confirm if these statements are true or otherwise mere exaggerations as a marketing ploy. Before we get into debunking some of the claims, let us first take a look at why there is some substance in them.
For a better understanding, you firstly need to know how CBD works. Studies and research conducted over the last two decades have provided evidence that suggests that cannabidiol, which is the primary cannabinoid in CBD oil, can have anti-inflammatory effects on our bodies that can offer relief to patients suffering from certain conditions.
Indeed, studies conducted in the same year as the outbreak of the pandemic, which was published in the journal Antioxidants, brought forth evidence that points to the possibility that the endocannabinoid system in our bodies might be responsible for some inflammation. This is where CBD comes in, because it binds the endocannabinoid receptors, and thereby has the aforementioned anti-inflammatory effect.
So what’s the problem?
These studies go a long way in laying out the health benefits of the CBD compound, but that is really where it ends. Some people, however, have used these studies and twisted them to align with their own agendas to suggest that CBD is an effective way of combating the contraction and spread of the Corona virus pandemic.
As a result of this, misinformation about the effectiveness of CBD has become rampant, and consumers such as yourself, who may be afraid and uncertain about how to cope and deal with a pandemic the likes of which the world has never seen before, end up with nothing but confusion and frustration.
So before you take the claims of ill-intentioned companies who could not care less about your health at face value, make sure you educate yourself with some of the following facts so that you can be well equipped with the right information to make the best choice for yourself and your loved ones.
CBD and Corona Virus: What are the theories that have led to the connection between COVID-19 and CBD?
The research, as we mentioned above, that has been conducted on the effects of CBD and how it interacts with the human body has given scientists and researchers a lot of valuable insight into the workings of this chemical compound.
The research has made it clear why cannabis and hemp have been in use for centuries for their antidotal benefits. Studies conducted in recent years show that with consistent use of CBD, the reduction and treatment of seizures, hypertension, anxiety, and more is possible in both humans as well as animals.
This, coupled with the anti-inflammatory properties that we discussed earlier in this article has led some people to the conclusion that on account of these healing properties, CBD may be the best remedy for all types of anti-inflammatory diseases, one of which is the corona virus.
Marketers and CBD product companies will have you, the consumer, believe that because CBD inhibits the endocannabinoid system in our body from causing inflammation, it can be used to prevent inflammation in the lungs, and ultimately prevent you from getting infected or lower the damage if you have already contracted the disease.
In reality, however, that is not how CBD works as an anti-inflammatory agent in the human body.
What do the relevant authorities have to say about the CBD and COVID-19 connection?
Companies can claim CBD to be the solution to the global pandemic, but statements issued by relevant authorities point in the opposite direction.
Back in March of this year, when the outbreak of the pandemic first began reaching countries around the world and was no longer contained to China, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or the FDA for short, stated a serious warning, which urged people to be wary of the use of non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs as an alternative form of treatment for the rapidly spreading corona virus.
The letter from the FDA that was published in The Lancet Medical Journal, warned that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs consisted of an enzyme that can possibly further complicate the symptoms that COVID patients were exhibiting and interfere with the treatment of this highly infectious disease.
The same advice from the FDA was also echoed by the National Health Service, or NHS, in the UK in their earlier efforts to combat the spread of the corona virus outbreak. However, there was a shift in their sentiment by April 2020, when they retracted their warning of the use of non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory (often known as NSAIDs) substances. In their later statement, they acknowledged that there was an admitted lack of sufficient evidence to suggest that: “…the acute use of NSAIDs causes an increased risk of developing COVID-19 or of developing a more severe COVID-19 disease.”
This goes to show that more research is necessary to find out what role anti-inflammatory substances such as CBD play in the treatment of the corona virus disease. However, to be on the safe side, it is prudent to infer that CBD should not be used as the sole product for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19.
Can CBD help in any way in the prevention or treatment of COVID-19?
CBD and the prevention of COVID-19
Currently, there is admittedly a lack of verifiable research data that can link cannabinoids with the prevention of COVID-19.
However, there has been some research on some new approaches that can aid in the prevention of COVID-19. For instance, a research project studied the potential of incorporating CBD into medication that is administered orally, like mouthwashes and throat gargling liquids, for the purpose of seeing whether CBD could lower or modulate the levels of ACE2 in tissues that are at high risk.
Studies on the corona virus have found that the levels of ACE2 fluctuate with the progression of COVID-19. Because ACE2 has been proven to be essential for lung function in animal models of COVID-19, this finding gives some weight to the possible connection between the prevention of corona virus contraction through modulation of ACE2 and CBD.
CBD and the reduction of severity and impact of the disease
In studies conducted on COVID-19, a phenomenon known as the cytokine storm syndrome has come to light. When this occurs, a release of an excess of the cytokine protein is triggered in the body of the patient. These proteins go on to attack the lungs, ultimately overwhelming the patient’s immune system with hyper inflammation.
Evidence presented in the findings of earlier research into cannabis products suggests that CBD and THC can be effective in treating a pathogenic anti-inflammatory response of the infected body.
The evidence points to cannabinoids having some ability to lower the response of the immune system without causing suppression, and it appears that combining cannabinoids with terpenes can be twice as effective as some of the other steroidal drugs in the effort reduce inflammation from COVID-19.
CBD and Corona Virus: Conclusion
While some research suggests that there may be a direct connection between prevention and treatment of the corona virus pandemic and the use of CBD, you should be wise and not rely on your favorite CBD products as the only source of prevention. While CBD can be an effective combatant against COVID-19 by ensuring you are healthy, make sure you take all the precautions laid out by the relevant authorities to keep yourself and your loved ones out of harm’s way.