CBD for Cold and Flu: Can it Help?
CBD for Cold and Flu: Can it Help?
Since it was federally legalized in 2018, many people have switched to using cannabidiol (CBD) over other popular home remedies for treating a cold or flu. CBD is a naturally calming compound from the cannabis plant, and experts are continuously learning more about its benefits and characteristics.
From what we do know, CBD is efficient at directly managing inflammation, anxiety, and body aches and indirectly managing insomnia, nasal congestion, and sore throats.
How CBD Treats Common Symptoms
Thanks to its properties connecting to your body’s nervous system, anti-inflammatory proteins, and immune cells, many people seeking treatment use CBD for cold and flu symptoms. CBD oil and gummies may partially help your body’s blood vessels combat the viral infection. Even more so, CBD can significantly reduce common cold symptoms like aching, sore throat, stuffy nose, and insomnia.
CBD is often used for its anxiety-reducing and pain-treating properties, particularly at bedtime. Experts have found no substantial evidence to suggest that CBD or any cannabis plant compounds improve sleep directly. However, CBD’s other beneficial qualities anecdotally seem to impact how fast you feel asleep and your quality of sleep.
CBD may not treat insomnia directly, but for many people, its indirect effect is enough. CBD may actually be better for sleep than tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and other cannabinoids due to how mild yet tranquilizing its effects are. THC’s psychoactive effects sometimes reduce anxiety, while they can heighten it other times. Conversley, most CBD products are consistently anxiety-reducing.
Provides Anti-Inflammatory Effects
Many cannabinoids, such as CBD, THC, and hemp oil, have been heavily utilized in recent years for their anti-inflammatory properties. CBD, in particular, is useful for treating swelling, arthritis flare-ups, constipation, and common cold and flu symptoms. This results from your cannabinoid receptors interacting with inflammatory proteins in your body to clear up the flow of blood vessels.
Colds can cause inflammation along your nose and throat lining, creating symptoms like a stuffy nose or sore throat. CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties can reduce these symptoms for better comfort and airflow.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that inflammation from the flu can be extreme and unpredictable, especially for individuals with pre-existing conditions. CBD can help combat these flu symptoms and prevent inflammation from becoming more painful.
Reduces Pain From Body Aches
By interacting with your body’s dual cannabinoid receptors, CBD regulates your nervous system to reduce aches and pains across your entire body. These neuropathic traits, combined with CBD’s anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, make CBD an ideal natural remedy for many flu and cold symptoms and other conditions that the flu may interfere with.
CBD is particularly useful in treating pain from:
- Stomach aches
- Joint aches
- Full body aches
- Migraines and headaches
- Nasal congestion
- Arthritis flare-ups
- Muscle cramps
Contains Antiviral Properties
Using CBD for flu and cold symptoms doesn’t just help combat current conditions but may also prevent the virus from getting worse and prevent you from catching other bugs. Studies show that CBD and other cannabinoids may help improve your immune system by isolating infected cells and regulating your antiviral signaling pathways.
While CBD is no substitute for keeping up with your vitamins and nutrition, it can be beneficial for maintaining your immune system while you’re already sick. When you’re sick, your immune system is weakened, which is why many turn to CBD to keep their immune cells functioning while also reducing other symptoms.
Potential Adverse Effects
Using CBD for colds risks negatively interfering with any prescription or cold medicines you may already be taking. It’s crucial to talk to your doctor if you’re already taking any medications or are otherwise concerned before using CBD. A few known drugs you should not take with CBD include codeine, phenobarbital, hexobarbital, morphine, diazepam, and phenytoin.
CBD is not for everyone, and as we learn more about its effects, we may find it has negative properties we aren’t currently aware of. Standard CBD has over 80 chemical compounds that are active at once, which can be hard to trace at a micro-level. While there’s currently very little evidence that CBD is harmful to use, much like cigarettes in their early days, our understanding is subject to change.
Always be cautious when using cannabinoid products, and make sure to only buy from dependable manufacturers like Muscle MX that stay up to date with CBD’s scientific findings.
How the Scientific Evidence Holds Up
Many scientific experts are still on the fence over whether CBD is reliable for treating cold and flu symptoms. So, is CBD good for sore throat symptoms, and is its impact on immune cells truly effective?
At this time, there is little firm, non-anecdotal evidence of CBD’s effects actually being beneficial. This being said, there is very little evidence against CBD’s benefits either. With what studies we have now, many experts consider CBD to be an efficient form of treatment, though other experts believe more research is needed.
Many individuals and experts are working to further introduce CBD into the medical world. A non-addictive and non-habit-forming remedy, CBD is believed to be safer than prescription medications like opioids, which means it will be more sustainable for patients long-term. Currently, prescription CBD is used for treating forms of epilepsy and is being considered for other conditions, such as arthritis, cancer treatment, and hip pain.
Choose the Right CBD For for Your Needs
Finding the right CBD for cold and flu symptoms will depend on your specific conditions, limitations, and experience with cannabinoid products. Applying a CBD balm or lotion directly to the painful spot for specific aches and pains should give an immediate release. For full-body symptoms, Muscle MX’s variety of gummies and oil drops should get you feeling better in under an hour.
If you’re new to CBD, check out our dosage guide to determine what amount is ideal for you.