We all know cannabidiol or CBD has numerous health benefits. Stress, mental disorders, schizophrenia, digestion, endometriosis, dental hygiene, insomnia — the benefits are countless. But can it cure heartburn and acid reflux problems too? This health problem is prevalent across the US (one in 5 Americans experience heartburn or GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease). The biggest problem for those who experience heartburn is medication. There’s no specific medication that can guarantee that your acid reflection problem will be completely cured. Well, if you experience acid reflux or heartburn and are sick of taking OTC medications in the hope of finding relief, it’s time to give CBD a try. After all, it’s a 100 percent natural cannabis compound. The good part is you don’t need to worry about side-effects.
What exactly are cannabinoids?
For some people, CBD is like a ‘wonder drug’ with no psychoactive effects of opioids. People are not only loving after experiencing complete recovery from pain using CBD but have also become its most vocal proponents. It is a natural, non-psychoactive compound that comes from seeds and stalks of hemp plants, a member of the cannabis family. CBD possesses properties that allow it to interact with the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) present in our body. The ECS is a complex signalling network that works as a regulator in the body to manage several functions like hunger, relaxation, sleep, metabolism, mood and appetite. By combining with the Endocannabinoid system, CBD works as a booster dose for the body. It keeps our body system in balance. Those experiencing stress in life or facing chronic pain issues or seizures problems have immensely benefited from the use of CBD products.
How does the WHO see CBD?
As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), CBD does not appreciably bind to the CB1 receptor, which mediates the behavioural activity of THC or causes ‘high’. “While the number of studies is limited, the evidence from well-controlled human experimental research indicates that CBD is not associated with abuse potential,” says the WHO report. As per the top world health body, CBD is being actively explored for a range of indications consistent with its potential neuroprotective, antiepileptic, anxiolytic, antipsychotic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anti-asthmatic and antitumor properties.
What is Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease or GERD?
Have you ever experienced food or anything you eat coming back to your mouth or a burning sensation in the esophagus? While sleeping, do you experience major pain in the esophagus? So severe that it becomes impossible to sleep. Well, that’s GERD or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease and CBD may improve it.
- In this condition, food comes back from the stomach to the esophagus, causing intense burning pain. In normal circumstances, people usually buy over-the-counter medicines to treat this condition. Some people also seek prescription-based medication. Despite that, it rarely cures to the full extent. In normal digestion, food passes via the Lower Esophagus Sphincter (LES) into the stomach. Once it enters the stomach, it will only leave into the intestines. So, no food or stomach acid returns into the esophagus.
- The problem of acid reflux arises when your lower esophagus sphincter is weak to handle food intake, which leads to loss of muscles and flowing up of content back in the esophagus. Those using contemporary medicines to treat acid reflux may also get cured, but the medicine process could take months. Not to mention the side-effects contemporary medicines pose for human health. This is why people are losing trust in CBD. And the results are phenomenal.
- From a medical standpoint, acid reflux and Gastroesophageal Reflux (GER) can or can’t be characterized as the same health problem. Generally, if your acid reflux problem becomes chronic, it can be termed as GERD. Both share the same symptoms of heartburn, but in GERD, heartburn may occur more frequently. In GERD, people can often experience sour liquid, regurgitation, wheezing, coughing, and swallowing.
How does CBD treat GERD & acid reflux problems?
We all know that our biological system produces endocannabinoids or ECs. The ECs are endogenous ligands of two major receptors – CB1 and CB2 — present in our body. It’s evident scientifically the endocannabinoid system comprising these receptors controls numerous psychological and bodily conditions.
- In a true sense, endocannabinoids are just like cannabinoids produced by hemp or cannabis plants. When you consume or apply CBD on the body, endocannabinoid present in the body binds with outside cannabinoids and gets expressed throughout our body. This affects bodily functions and reacts to internal complications and alleviates chronic pain issues. Our capacity to bear pain becomes much stronger as CBD suppresses alters brain function, giving you ‘feel good’ vibes.
- If you try CBD for GERD or heartburn, it’ll block the flow of gastric acid in the esophagus. By binding with the endocannabinoid system, it can prevent the formation of secretion of these acids, which is the prime cause of acid reflux. Many also suffer from inflammation or mucosal damage, which can be mitigated via the regulated use of CBD-based products. CBD use can reduce the motility rate or the ability of acids to move around into the esophagus or gut.
How to take CBD to treat acid reflux problems?
CBD-oils are the most common ones to treat GERD or acid reflux. Normally, users take a specific dose, depending upon the nature of their health complication, and hold CBD oil for one minute before swallowing it. The actual effect can start to show results in 15-30 minutes and last up to six hours. Some people also prefer to ingest CBD-based capsules, which contain a specific dose of the cannabis cannabinoid. However, capsules usually take longer — around 40-90 minutes — to show the overall effect than oils as capsules have to be metabolized in the digestive system first.
If you don’t want to go for oil or capsules, edibles like gummies, which come in numerous flavors. Some people also like to consume CBD using vapes, which offer the highest bioavailability of up to 56 percent compared to tinctures or oral products. The only drawback of using vapes is the effect of CBD lasts around 2-3 hours only.