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If you suffer from Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), the news coming out of recent CBD research may herald some hope for you.
The rate at which instances of IBD have been reported has increased dramatically in recent decades, with those suffering from conditions like ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease on the up. But what is inflammatory bowel disease and how is it thought that CBD can help?
What is Inflammatory Bowel Disease?
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) describes a collection of inflammatory diseases that affects the digestive tract.
Symptoms of inflammation within the digestive tract include cramping, diarrhea and bloating, some of which can be painful, and all of which can interrupt one’s daily life.
There are two primary forms of IBD; Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis. Ulcerative Colitis is often limited to the colon or large intestine, whereas Crohn’s disease can affect any portion of the gastrointestinal tract from the anus to the mouth. Most likely, it affects the last part of the small intestine or colon or even both.
Causes of Inflammatory Bowel Disease
The common causes of IBD are largely unknown, however, stress and diet are associated with the condition most often, although most doctors argue that these are agents that heighten IBD, rather than cause it.
One of the more plausible causes, therefore, is immune system dysfunction. When the immune system tries to combat off the invading virus or bacteria, an abnormal immune response may trigger the immune system to attack cells in the digestive tract.
IBD has often been perceived to be an autoimmune disease. Although, studies suggest that chronic inflammation is not due to the immune system attacking the body, but instead it is the product of the immune system attacking a harmless virus bacteria, or food in the gut. This causes inflammation that results in bowel injury. Another cause of IBD can be a hereditary factor. IBD is likely to be seen in people whose family members suffer from IBD.
Symptoms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease
The symptoms of IBD might vary depending on the area the inflammation occurs and how critical it is. Symptoms could range from mild to severe. Commonly, you will experience moments of active illness, which are accompanied by periods of remission.
Signs and symptoms that are likened to both Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis include; reduced appetite, unintended weight loss, blood in the stool, fatigue and fever, diarrhea, cramping, and abdominal pain.
CBD for IBD
According to early studies and epidemiological data, it is thought that both the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD can help with the inflammation itself, while the other perceived benefits of CBD help to suppress adverse symptoms such as nausea, stress, anxiety, and fatigue.
How does CBD Oil Help with Inflammatory Bowel Disease?
A study carried out in Israel in the year 2018, discovered that CBD could help people with Crohn’s disease, to manage the impact of their symptoms. This is not to say that CBD was found to lower inflammation in the gut, however.
Another study carried out in 2019 revealed that CBD might assist in reducing leaky gut. The study focused on using both palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) and CBD. PEA is a fatty acid amide that is stimulated by the body. It is popularly known for lowering pain that inflammation causes. In the study, it was discovered that CBD and PEA could decrease permeability in the colon.
So while the research continues, and clinical trials gather pace, the early signs are relatively promising for those with IBD, particularly with regards to the use of CBD for relieving the symptoms. If you would like to share your stories of CBD and IBD, please get in touch, we’d love to hear from you!