CBD Oil for the Flu
If you have done your homework on CBD, also known as cannabidiol, then you know it has numerous potential benefits. However, what about its effectiveness against influenza or the flu? While CBD should not take the place of medical care, it may be able to help to manage the flu and its symptoms. If you are among the people having a hard time during the flu season, you may be wondering if CBD can help you get some relief and hasten the healing process.
CBD for Wellness
CBD is an acronym for cannabidiol, one of the numerous active compounds in the hemp and cannabis plants. When consumed, it interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, a network of receptors that controls an array of functions such as appetite, metabolism, body weight regulation, inflammation, etc. This interaction may affect these functions in a positive manner, and thus the numerous potential therapeutic effects. This is exactly what might make CBD oil effective when it comes to addressing the flu and its symptoms.
The Flu, Just What Is It?
Often addressed as influenza in the scientific domain, the flu is an extremely contagious respiratory condition that’s caused by viruses that take a toll on the nose, throat, and sometimes, the lungs. Most patients recover in less than two weeks, but some develop complications that prompt hospitalization and, in worst cases, death. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of influenza cases in the United States per year since 2010 has ranged from 9 million to 45 million, and deaths range in the tens of thousands .
As opposed to colds, which come about gradually, the flu comes suddenly, accompanied by the following symptoms:
- Sore throat
- Body and muscle aches
- Fever or feeling chills
- Stuffy or runny nose
- Diarrhea and vomiting (more common in kids)
The chances of contracting the flu reduce as people age. However, seniors are at a greater risk of life-threatening complications.
Influenza is not a single virus, but an array of viruses that share particular characteristics. This array is why, even with a vaccine, many people may still contract influenza. In fact, the vaccine is based on predictions made by doctors about which strains will be more common in a given year. When exposed to a different strain, the vaccine has reduced efficacy and might not work at all.
Ways to Prevent the Flu
It is imperative to protect you and your loved ones from the virus due to the possibility of complications. Since influenza can be transmitted from one person to another, ensure you wash your hands on a regular basis or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Ideally, you’ll want to avoid touching your mouth and nose with your hands.
The influenza virus can survive on hard surfaces for 2 to 8 hours , and so, you’ll want to spray or wipe the most commonly touched places in your home or workplace with a disinfectant. If you are looking after an individual with the disease, wear a face mask to protect yourself. Covering your sneezes and coughs also helps hamper the spread of the flu.
In addition, you may consider getting a yearly flu vaccination. It helps protect against the common strains of the virus, and it’s recommended for anyone over the age of 6 months. The vaccine is not 100% effective, but according to the CDC, it reduces the risk of contracting the flu by 40 to 60 percent .
Keep in mind that influenza or to be more specific, viruses, cannot be treated by antibacterial remedies or antibiotics. Once you are exposed, managing the symptoms is the only thing you can do. Even medication prescribed by a practitioner won’t cure the flu. It is just meant to help manage the symptoms. So can CBD help manage flu symptoms and how does CBD affect the flu?
CBD for Influenza
Before we get into how CBD oil may help address the flu, it is imperative to know what CBD will not do. Cannabidiol isn’t a medicine, and so, it will not help you diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure the flu. Using CBD oil doesn’t take the place of ideal medical care, although you may decide to use it in addition to your treatment. Thanks to the many potential benefits that come with consuming CBD, more and more people are considering it to help alleviate flu symptoms that cause the most discomfort when infected.
How CBD Oil May Help Symptoms of the Flu
Research on the efficacy of CBD oil when it comes to addressing the flu is still in its infant stages. Years of research on treatment as a controlled substance in addition to its psychoactive cousin, THC, the evidence is limited to smaller research programs, preliminary results from well-funded studies since its legalization, and anecdotal experiences. This evidence, so far, has pointed to the efficacy of cannabidiol in managing flu-like symptoms. The following are areas that CBD may address when it comes to the flu:
One of the worst things about having the flu is the headaches that accompany it. Headaches usually occur for an array of reasons. Inflamed sinuses result in throbbing pain in the front of the head, which makes it difficult to focus. The stress experienced during the illness can lead to stress-induced headaches that settle in the base of the skull and behind the eyes. Thanks to several studies, CBD is suggested to have an analgesic effect, as well as anti-inflammatory properties that may help alleviate headaches, in addition to better stress management.
Achiness that’s usually associated with influenza can be caused by the inflammation that comes with the immune system trying to get rid of the virus. Some studies show that cannabinoids have anti-inflammatory effects that may help reduce this inflammation and thus could help reduce pain and discomfort when battling the flu.
Lack of Sleep
Given the pain and sniffling that comes with the flu, it is hard to get a good night’s sleep. Well, consuming CBD when battling influenza may help you sleep better. The mental calmness that CBD brings may help you relax. Sleeping is important and it has numerous health benefits, and it is especially needed when you’re not feeling well.
It is not uncommon to have an upset stomach when you have a cold or flu. You may not have an appetite, and the thought of eating might make you sick. However, your body needs the energy to fight the culprit. Battling nausea with cannabidiol has been a tactic used by numerous CBD enthusiasts, especially those fighting nausea experienced during chemotherapy.
How a severe illness makes you feel both emotionally and mentally is one of the most challenging influenza symptoms to quantify. Using cannabidiol may be a great way to support a healthy and positive outlook as you recover. CBD users report the product giving them a sense of calmness and wellbeing. Positive thoughts may not cure the condition, but they could lead to better healing outcomes.
A Wide Array of CBD Products to Pick From
Nowadays, there is a wide array of CBD consumption mechanisms including edibles, pills, oils as well as topical creams that can be applied for pain and inflammation. You will even come across bath bombs or salts, that allow you to take a therapeutic and relaxing steam bath while getting a healthy dose of CBD. You can also try CBD teas or honey, two relatively new forms of CBD in the market.
Go for High-Quality CBD Products
There are many different types of CBD products ranging from CBD isolate, broad-spectrum, or full-spectrum. As such, you may have to experiment with several CBD products to find the right one for your needs. The problem is that it is hard to know whether the product you are getting has the actual CBD amount mentioned on the label. According to research by the University of Pennsylvania, where they looked at 84 CBD products from 31 different manufacturers, most products contain more or less of the indicated CBD percentage. Also, some products may contain substantial amounts of THC that can intoxicate the user. Because of this, be sure to look for a reputable manufacturer that provides a certificate of analysis from third-party testing. A certificate of analysis will show what is in the product and how much.
CBD oil might be ideal for symptoms of the flu, but THC can suppress the immune system and so, you may want to avoid it until you feel better. You’ll also want to avoid smoking when you’re sick with a cold, as the respiratory system is already compromised by the illness. And, you don’t want to spread the flu by passing a vape pen or joint.
A cold makes you feel miserable, but the symptoms tend to pass in less than 2 weeks. So, get adequate sleep and consider trying a few supplements to see if there is something that makes you feel better.
When you decide that cannabidiol is right for you, ensure you get the highest quality possible. Here at Tanasi, we offer high-quality hemp-derived full-spectrum products. Whether you are looking to use it against symptoms of influenza or other reasons, you can find an array of CBD products on our online store.
CBD Oil for Colds: Does It Help With Flu Symptoms?
Following the famous quote from Game of Thrones, it’s time to prepare for the colds and flu season.
Very few people make it through the winter without an annoying sore throat or colds.
Sure, you can go down the conventional route, get some anti-cold medications or even a flu shot that is laden with unknown chemicals, but you may just as well turn to natural remedies for help.
What many doctors won’t tell you is that it’s best to support your natural immunity while letting colds and cases of flu run their course. Natural solutions include herbs, teas, vitamins, minerals, and plant-based extracts — such as CBD oil.
In this article, we shed some light on how to use CBD to boost your immune system, preventing your body from catching infections.
CBD for Colds: Does It Help?
The common cold is triggered by inflammation that occurs in a person’s nasal and upper respiratory tract. Although many viruses can cause a cold or flu, rhinoviruses are to blame most of the time.
Experiencing a sore throat, congestion, runny nose, cough, sneezing, mild fever, headaches, and body aches, are some of the most common symptoms of colds.
There is no known cure for colds, but most cases go away within two weeks when a person uses natural remedies to control symptoms.
CBD (cannabidiol) has demonstrated antibacterial and antiviral properties in many studies — showing itself as a potential therapeutic agent for colds.
Scientists found that CBD has anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. Together with another major compound, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), it can be found in Sativex, a mouth spray used to relieve pain and spasticity.
One study concluded that CBD was able to improve the quality of sleep in patients with anxiety disorders.
Poor sleep is often associated with susceptibility to the common cold. According to one study, people with low-quality sleep are more prone to getting sick upon exposure to rhinoviruses.
Despite positive initial findings, there’s no direct scientific evidence to prove that CBD can cure colds.
How CBD Oil Works to Help with Colds
Researchers have found that CBD interacts with receptors of the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a major regulatory network that modulates several vital functions throughout the body.
CBD’s relationship with the ECS is believed to be the reason for its immunosuppressant effects. Using this mechanism, CBD can improve the communication between the immune cells and selectively shut down overactive parts of the immune system — reducing inflammation.
In a 2008 study, CBD was found to modulate sleep-wake cycles through its interaction with the ECS.
The sleep-wake cycle can be modulated through the activation of the CB1 receptor. While CBD doesn’t directly bind to CB1, it signals the ECS to produce more endocannabinoids that activate it; it also slows down their breakdown, so in the end, more endocannabinoids can bind to CB1 receptors and contribute to a more restful sleep.
CBD activates the CB2 receptor, which, according to a study on respiratory viral infection, is responsible for anti-inflammatory effects in the body.
Why Is It Worth to Use CBD Oil for Colds?
- According to the aforementioned studies, CBD might benefit people with colds and flu due to its ability to reduce symptoms of the illness, such as inflammation and pain. in anxiety patients. Poor quality sleep is linked to a weakened immune system and a higher susceptibility to infections.
- Unlike THC, the intoxicating ingredient in medical cannabis, CBD doesn’t have mind-altering effects, so it won’t affect your daily performance.
- CBD is legal in the USA. You can purchase it without prescription in CBD stores near you or online.
- The FDA supports research on the potential therapeutic properties of cannabis plants and their derivatives.
What Are the Limitations of Using CBD Oil for Colds?
- No study has yet examined a direct link between CBD use and the symptoms of colds and flu.
- Despite its excellent safety profile, CBD can have some mild side effects in high doses. In humans, the observed adverse effects include diarrhea, dry mouth, dizziness, and changes in appetite.
- The CBD market isn’t regulated, so CBD products lack standardization and come with a high risk of mislabeling.
- Currently, the only FDA-approved medication from CBD is Epidiolex — an antiepileptic drug based on a synthetic version of CBD isolate. There are no other official marketing applications for CBD.
CBD vs Other Natural Treatments for Colds
Vitamin C, probiotics, and zinc are often mentioned as potential preventive and interventional methods for the common cold.
Data on Vitamin C shows that the compound can cause a decrease in the duration of colds in subjects.
Zinc intake within 24 hours of symptom onset was found to mitigate the severity of flu symptoms and colds in participants.
Probiotics are beneficial in protecting your system against upper respiratory tract infections due to their antiviral properties.
Taken together with these aforementioned compounds, CBD can work with them in a synergy, enhancing the efficacy of your cold treatment.
You can also find many CBD products today that are infused with vitamin C, probiotics, and zinc.
How to Choose CBD for Colds
There are three main types of CBD when it comes to common colds: full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and CBD isolate.
The most desired type is the full-spectrum option. Such products contain all of the naturally occurring compounds found in hemp — including CBD, adjunctive cannabinoids, terpenes, and trace amounts of THC.
Full-spectrum CBD creates the entourage effect, which refers to the synergistic effects achieved by the aforementioned compounds. The entourage effect makes whole-plant extracts more effective and predictable when it comes to dosing.
Broad-spectrum CBD is much like its full-spectrum counterpart, except for the lack of THC. The intoxicating cannabinoid is removed after initial extraction to create a zero-THC product that still benefits from some parts of the entourage effect.
Finally, CBD isolate refers to pure CBD, which has been isolated from other hemp compounds and turned into whitish crystals. These crystals are then powdered and infused into a range of CBD products, such as oils, edibles, capsules, vapes, and topicals. Although isolates carry the highest dose of CBD per serving, they don’t evoke the entourage effect — making them the least desired option.
Tips for Finding the Right CBD Oil:
- Look for a certificate of analysis of the desired CBD product. This is a form of a lab report that shows the results for the product’s potency and purity.
- Choose high potency CBD oils derived from organic hemp. Such plants are grown in natural conditions, without pesticides and artificial boosters, so they’re cleaner and contain higher concentrations of CBD than mass-produced hemp.
- Opt for CO2-extracted products. CO2 extraction is the industry’s golden standard; it doesn’t require adding extra heat or toxic solvents and ensures the highest purity and consistency in potency in all product batches.
- Purchase products with targeted formulas. As mentioned, CBD oil can be infused with other complementary compounds, such as vitamin C, vitamin D, probiotics, and zinc.
- Consult a doctor experienced in cannabis use before purchasing CBD. Doing so will help you determine the right dosage and avoid potential interactions with other medications.
CBD Dosage for Colds
Since CBD products aren’t regulated in the USA, there are no official guides or charts for CBD dosage.
However, taking a look at human clinical trials using CBD may provide insight for a safe and relatively accurate CBD dosage range.
For example, using CBD for anxiety may require doses between 25–175 mg per day of CBD. These amounts are enough to produce a significant clinical response. However, the study’s authors used pure CBD, not a whole-plant extract, so the dosage may change depending on what kind of product you’re using.
CBD is also safe and well-tolerated in humans. Studies have shown that doses of CBD can reach as high as 1,500 mg per day without any dangerous side effects.
How to Take CBD Oil for Colds
The best way to take CBD for cold and sore throat is through oil or tincture. CBD oils are usually administered sublingually (under the tongue) and held there for up to 60 seconds.
You can also take CBD directly — as gummies or capsules — which is a great way to use CBD for beginners. That’s because they’re straightforward and contain a premeasured amount of CBD.
Vaping is another way to get CBD into your system. It offers the highest bioavailability and the fastest onset of effects. However, this form of consumption may not be recommended if you cough because it can irritate your airways, causing more cough, sore throat, and sneezing.
Why Do We Get Colds and Flus?
This is actually a quite difficult question to answer, but most of the time, it boils down to the following triggers:
- Being constantly in confined areas with other infected people who have influenza. Viruses become airborne when someone coughs, so it can only take a few breaths to catch the illness.
- Constant mutations of rhinoviruses. Unfortunately, our immune systems need some time to adjust to these ever-changing germs, and catching a cold or flu is actually a sign of a “system upgrade.”
- Touching items that have been touched by an infected person. Viruses can survive on non-porous surfaces for hours, so it’s possible to get sick by getting a second-hand infection.
How do Viruses Affect Our Body?
Colds and cases of flu are simply the outcomes of viruses attacking our bodies. Viruses are microscopic molecules of genetic material, covered by a thin layer of protein. Unlike the normal cells in our body, these viruses aren’t able to reproduce on their own, instead, they use the metabolism of your cells to produce many clones of themselves.
When a virus enters a cell, it will either use its constituents to copy itself, eventually breaking the cell seeking a new one, or, injecting itself into the DNA of your cell. By doing so, the virus can pass down through natural cell division (cytokinesis) and genetic duplication (mitosis).
Key Takeaways on Using CBD Oil for Colds
CBD has remarkable anti-inflammatory and anti-viral properties that may prove beneficial for individuals with a common cold or flu.
The cannabinoid interacts with various receptors of the ECS, which improve its ability to regulate immune response — enhancing your immunity as a result.
Not only that, but CBD can also curb inflammation and pain, which are the two common symptoms of a cold. On top of that, it can also help improve sleep in people with anxiety. Poor sleep is one of the major reasons why people have compromised immune systems.
You can add some zinc, probiotics, and vitamin C to your daily routine as preventive measures against colds. Holistic supplementation will help enhance your immune system and keep you resistant to illnesses.
Do you take CBD for colds? What other ingredients do you throw into your remedy box when you’re sick? Let us know by leaving a comment below!
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Nina created CFAH.org following the birth of her second child. She was a science and math teacher for 6 years prior to becoming a parent — teaching in schools in White Plains, New York and later in Paterson, New Jersey.
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How CBD Oil May Help Relieve Flu Symptoms
The flu (also referred to as influenza) is a contagious respiratory disease. Based on a 2018 CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) study, about 8% of Americans get sick from the flu every season.
Flu symptoms usually include body aches and joint pains in the knee , hands, hips, or spine. Generally, you only need to rest and take plenty of fluids to treat influenza.
Your physician may prescribe antiviral drugs or conduct various tests to detect the influenza virus. However, have you considered CBD for fever ?
If you’re starting to feel feverish quickly or running a fever for more than two days, the chances are high that you’ve got the flu. Animal studies suggest that fever triggered by a virus could be treated using cannabinoids.
CBD (cannabidiol), a phytocannabinoid (plant cannabinoid), is an active component of marijuana. Although it’s a vital element of medical marijuana (also called medical cannabis), it’s derived from the hemp plant, a relative of marijuana.
There has been a rising medical interest regarding CBD’s purported therapeutic effects. This article will discuss how CBD oil may alleviate flu symptoms.
How CBD May Help With Inflammation
A research article from the journal Nature highlighted the importance of humans’ innate immunity. Based on the report, the influenza virus may lead to inflammation, impairing the inherent immune control of pneumococcus.
Pneumococcus is a bacteria that can induce numerous kinds of infections.
When your immune system becomes inflamed because of bacteria, toxins, or trauma, it triggers your body’s immune response.
The immune response is your body’s ability to recognize and defend itself against foreign and harmful substances.
CBD (cannabidiol) may help your body boost its immune response when the compound interacts with the cannabinoid receptors of the ECS (endocannabinoid system).
The ECS regulates your body’s processes in response to changes in the environment to promote homeostasis. Homeostasis is any process by which living things maintain the stability necessary for survival.
Meanwhile, two cannabinoid receptors, namely CB1 and CB2, are found on cells throughout the body. CB1 plays an essential role in pain sensation, while CB2 stimulates a response that fights inflammation.
CBD’s ability to bind with these cannabinoid receptors contributes to the compound’s ability to suppress inflammatory responses.
According to a March 2020 study, CBD’s anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties may be a natural remedy for various health conditions.
Another study mentioned that CBD may have beneficial effects on numerous pathological conditions, such as epilepsy, cancer, addiction, and inflammation.
How to Use CBD Oil for The Flu
CBD oils are made by infusing a carrier oil (coconut, olive, or hemp oil) with an extracted concentrate from hemp or cannabis. You may ingest CBD oil by either holding it under your tongue or swirling it around your mouth before swallowing.
When you ingest CBD oil, you may feel its effects within 30 to 90 minutes. The therapeutic effects may last for six to eight hours.
Meanwhile, when you opt for the sublingual method (under the tongue), you may feel the effects of the compound within 15 to 30 minutes. You can continue to benefit from its effects for two to four hours.
In choosing the best CBD Oil for the flu, you may select one of the following extracts:
- Full-spectrum CBD oil
- Broad-spectrum CBD oil
- CBD isolates
Full-spectrum CBD oil has all the natural elements of the cannabis plant, including essential oils, terpenes, and flavonoids. Full-spectrum CBD oil also has less than 0.3% of THC.
THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the mind-altering chemical in marijuana.
Meanwhile, broad-spectrum CBD oil is similar to the full spectrum, except it’s nearly THC-free. Lastly, CBD isolate is cannabidiol in its purest form.
The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has not approved CBD as a form of treatment. Therefore, there’s no standard dosage for CBD.
The general rule, however, is to start low and slow. You may then cautiously increase the amount of CBD when no adverse effects occur.
You may try micro-dosing, ranging from 0.5mg to 20mg CBD per dose daily. These doses may be effective for headache, a common flu symptom.
On the other hand, standard doses of CBD, ranging between 10mg and 100mg daily, may be effective for inflammation and pain.
Is CBD Oil Safe?
Generally, CBD has a good safety profile and is well tolerated by humans. Still, this non-psychoactive compound may have a few minor side effects, such as:
- Dry mouth
- Reduced appetite
Is CBD Oil Legal?
The 2018 Farm Bill decriminalized the commercial use of industrial hemp products on a federal level, provided that the THC level is not more than 0.3%.
Despite this development, it’s still recommended that you learn about the different state laws regarding CBD use.
Remember that not all states in the U.S. allow the use of CBD. Therefore, you must read and understand various state laws to avoid legal repercussions.
For instance, in South Dakota, owning CBD oil products is deemed a violation of state law.
Though the studies about CBD’s purported health benefits are promising, more longitudinal research is recommended to determine CBD’s efficacy and long-term safety.
If you’re considering CBD to manage flu symptoms, remember that you simply can’t rely on anecdotal evidence or testimonies you read online. Everything must be backed up with scientific data.
It’s still best to consult your healthcare provider whenever you feel ill. You may also ask for the suggestions of a doctor experienced in cannabis use if you’re eager to use CBD for the flu.