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CBD & COVID-19 Coronavirus Symptoms

COVID-19 – can CBD help?

People swear by CBD (cannabidiol) and believe it can help in a whole slew of conditions beyond just sleep, pain and anxiety. In any case it’s important for your mental wellbeing, physical health and the strength of the immune system to get proper nutrition, exercise and manage their stress in addition to using for example CBD.

But now in addition to the lack of clarity coming from the media and government you also hear from friends and Facebook posts that CBD can help prevent and even cure or lessen the symptoms of Coronavirus. Is this true?

CBD and Coronavirus

Is this true that CBD helps in Coronavirus infection?

The honest answer is we do not know. While there have been studies done that under very specific conditions in cell culture or in mice – that does not mean that those conditions are valid or indicative to COVID 19 in humans.

There are reason why CBD could be effective in battling the disease but these reasons are mainly theoretical. As Forbes recently stated: “many are waiting and hoping for treatments to be developed that might treat, cure or prevent the potentially deadly disease. In a surprising turn of events, cannabis is on the list of potential treatments.”

Science is aware of the anti-inflammatory function of CBD and so many postulate that due to the almost ubiquitous distribution of endocannabinoid system in the body – it may help in reducing the severe inflammatory response to COVID 19 which is a major contributing factor in a large percentage of hospitalizations, need for intubation and deaths.

An area of potential benefit is for patients who are the most severely ill from this novel Coronavirus – particularly those with more serious levels of lung inflammation. This is due to the well documented anti-inflammatory effects and the reduction of cytokines which have a pro-inflammatory effect which can otherwise cause a ‘cytokine storm’ and a massive inflammatory response in the lungs – known as ARDS –  which worsens the patients already dire situation.

In July 2020 researchers from the Augusta University in Georgia published a study whereby mice suffering from ARDS and a severe cytokine storm and who were having trouble breathing were given CBD. The authors of the study state that after treatment with CBD “These symptoms were totally or partially reversed and returned to the level and condition of the normal after treatment with CBD.”

In addition to an increase in the infection fighting white blood cell count in the mice after dosed with CBD – additionally different markers that are correlated with cytokine storms were measured. This can help in determining the potential pathways through which CBD may be affecting the inflammation and lung damage.

An important marker known as Interleukin 6 – or IL-6 for short – was most drastically reduced though other markers did also.  The authors further explained that after the induction of the cytokine storm when the markers rose – “CBD treatment reversed all these inflammatory indices and partially re-established homeostasis”. (Homeostasis is defined as the normal setting and levels of these markers – an equilibrium the body keeps).

This study is both very promising and further supports the need for more studies on the use of cannabidiol in Coronavirus.

But if you have been or believe that you have been exposed to Coronavirus or if you have symptoms consistent with Covid-19 infection such as those below – that you quarantine and get tested. If possible consult a medical professional especially if symptoms are severe.

Coronavirus symptoms include:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Summary

While there are theoretical reasons to believe that CBD could be helpful in helping with the symptoms of Coronavirus there are not any studies that show benefit and further studies are required before anyone can recommend CBD. Particularly so as many new therapies are emerging constantly which have proven to help reduce symptoms or death.

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