CBD for Lupus: What does the Research Say?
Given the present world population of over 7.5 billion people, Lupus is not considered to be a common disease. However, according to the National Resource Center on Lupus, there are some 5 million people who presently suffer from this debilitating disease with some 1,600 new cases reported each year. Fortunately, Lupus is not a contagious disease. However, the effects of Lupus can range from relatively mild to life-threatening however most of them find ways to to live a normal life.
What is Lupus?
Lupus is defined as a chronic immune system disorder that can cause damage to any part of the human body such as the skin, joints, and/or internal organs. Thus, in a person with a healthy immune system, proteins called “antibodies” are created which are responsible for fighting germs, bacteria, and viruses. But, in a person suffering from Lupus, their immune system also creates proteins called “autoantibodies” which mistakenly attack and destroy healthy tissue resulting in inflammation, pain, damage to various part of the body.
Common Symptoms of Lupus?
Diagnosing Lupus can be difficult even for doctors who are familiar with the disease because no two cases are precisely the same. In addition, the symptoms of Lupus can sometimes appear to be those of other medical conditions which further complicates the diagnosis. As a general rule, patients who suffer from Lupus tend to experience multiple symptoms consisting of:
- Skin rash (most commonly on cheeks in the shape of a butterfly).
- Swollen joint and muscle pain (usually in the wrists, ankles, fingers, and knees leading to arthritis)
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Mouth sores
- Nausea and vomiting
- Weight loss
- Irregular heart rate
- Hair loss
- Changes in mood, depression, and anxiety
How the Endocannabinoid System affects Lupus?
The human body’s Endocannabinoid System is a biological system composed of endocannabinoids (endogenous lipid-based retrograde neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors) which is responsible for regulating a variety of physiological and cognitive processes. Some include fertility, pregnancy, pre-natal and postnatal development, pain, appetite, mood, and memory.
However, due to a lack of research, it is not presently known if mutations in the ECS are directly related to the development of Lupus. It is known that the ECS contains two primary endocannabinoid receptors called CB1 and CB2 and that the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (which is active at both cannabinoid receptors along with its own mimetic phytocannabinoid), as well as the cannabinoid CBD are involved in the regulation of immune system functions, appetite, and pain management.
What does CBD do for Lupus?
Two of the main symptoms experienced by people suffering from Lupus are pain and inflammation. CBD works with the endocannabinoid receptor which controls both pain and inflammation.
According to customers, CBD has helped without having the detrimental effects caused by prescription opioids. This can be tied to increasing the levels of the anti-inflammatory protein Interleukin-10 and by decreasing the levels of the pro-inflammatory protein Interleukin-2.
In addition, CBD has also been shown to suppress the human body’s immune system by activating Myeloid-Derived Suppressor Cells (MDSCs). This may help to dampen the hyperactive immune system of those people suffering from Lupus.
Consuming CBD for Lupus
You're probably asking what options are available for consumption? Well, the answer to that question is that there are four common ways in ingesting CBD:
Vaporizing is an excellent way of consuming CBD. Rather than burning the flower, vaporizing heats the air around the cannabis which causes it to release a wide range of cannabinoids that each have a unique medical benefit. Therefore, vaporizing CBD is a significantly better way to consume it than smoking because smoking cannabis releases carcinogens similar to smoking tobacco. This can irritate the lungs and, it often disintegrates beneficial cannabinoids.
Another viable option for consuming is to ingest CBD oil. Thus, many cannabis dispensaries sell CBD capsules which is often a popular method of ingesting CBD because they are tasteless and easy to swallow. In addition, CBD oils can also be purchased in pre-loaded syringes which enables the user to simply squirt a bit of the oil into their mouth or into a hot or cold drink.
Furthermore, most cannabis dispensaries also sell various types of food products which have been infused with cannabis oil extract, cannabis butter, or cannabis cooking oil to create a product called a edibles. Some users of CBD find that this method is more palatable to them than ingesting the extract orally. Using CBD edibles does take significantly longer for the user to experience its effects. However, the effects of consuming edibles infused with CBD can last significantly longer than simply ingesting the extract orally.
CBD Lotions and Creams
Some people experience the skin lesions that are often associated with Lupus as well as the pain and swelling in the joints. Customers have reported to using CBD for it. There are many CBD lotions and creams which have been infused with CBD that can be applied topically.
These statements have not evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any disease. Always check with your physician or medical provider before starting a new dietary supplement program.
Unfortunately, the FDA does not allow us to make any claims about CBD. All of our findings are what is reported by customers and the research studies from various sources are included.