CBD alleviates nausea & vomiting by acting on the brainstem directly. Learn what dose to take & how to use CBD for nausea symptoms. Best CBD Oil for Nausea of 2022 Nausea can be a sign of many different conditions. It commonly springs from low blood sugar, migraine attacks, appendicitis, dizziness, the flu, gastroenteritis, CBD oil, or cannabidiol, is a natural compound found in marijuana and another related plant, hemp. Unlike THC, another compound in the marijuana plant, CBD doesn't cause a "high." However, it may help reduce nausea and other unpleasant…
Best CBD Oil for Nausea and Vomiting: Does It Help, Dosage, & How to Use
There are few natural substances that offer the level of nausea support as CBD.
This phytocannabinoid targets the nausea center in the brainstem directly.
Here’s how it works & how to use it.
Nausea is a common symptom experienced by millions of people every day.
We’ve all felt it at some point or another — general queasiness, excessive drooling, and the urge to vomit.
Cannabis is one of the most reliable anti-nausea herbs available, even compared to ginger (known for its powerful anti-nausea benefits).
Here’s how CBD and cannabis extracts are used to alleviate nausea and vomiting.
MEDICALLY REVIEWED BY
Updated on November 13, 2021
Table of Contents
- Can CBD Oil Help With Nausea?
- What Causes Nausea?
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Can CBD Oil Help With Nausea?
All mammals have an endocannabinoid system — a series of receptors and hormone-like compounds that control homeostasis (balance) throughout the body.
One of the responsibilities of the endocannabinoid system is to regulate a special region in the medulla oblongata that controls the reflexes that trigger nausea and vomiting.
Research involving a new drug that blocks the endocannabinoid system shows that those given the drug often experienced nausea as a side-effect . This is an excellent demonstration of the role the endocannabinoid system plays in regulating nausea in the brain.
Blocking the endocannabinoid system makes us feel nauseous while boosting it eliminates nausea.
Other research involving a synthetic version of THC was shown to alleviate nausea and vomiting, supporting this theory even further .
Summary: Using CBD Oil For Nausea
- THC offers the most benefits for nausea. Find a full-spectrum extract with at least some THC content to get the most benefits for nausea relief.
- Always seek out high-quality CBD products. Poor manufacturing processes often use rancid oils and harmful additives that can lead to nausea.
- In order to get the biggest benefits, cannabis extracts need to be used at the first sign of nausea.
- For maximum anti-nausea effects, combine your CBD or hemp extracts with a strong ginger tea or other anti-nausea supplements.
Nausea begins with that queasy feeling in the stomach, accompanied by an urge to vomit. There are many different things that can cause nausea. The best treatment often depends on what triggered the queasiness.
Feelings of nausea originate in the brainstem in a special region known as the medulla oblongata. This region of the brain is responsible for regulating many of our autonomic (involuntary) functions such as breathing, sneezing, and vomiting.
Our automatic functions are regulated by higher regions of the brain that send signals to the medulla oblongata to make adjustments accordingly.
In the case of nausea, the brain activates the urge to vomit in an attempt to rid the digestive tract of toxic compounds (drugs or alcohol), infectious agents (bacteria or viral infections), or by mistake from abnormal neurological activity involved with migraines or brain tumors.
What Causes Nausea?
There are literally hundreds of different causes for nausea. The most common by far is food poisoning and other digestive system infections, accounting for as much as 37% of nausea cases. Roughly 3% of cases are reported to be the result of medication side-effects and pregnancy, while up to 10% of cases have no identifiable cause .
Nausea is also more common in young people. Children are the largest group of people who experience regular episodes of nausea, while people over the age of 65 appear to be affected the least .
Common Causes of Nausea:
Treatment Options for Nausea
There are pharmaceutical, herbal, nutritional, and lifestyle modifications that can be used to treat nausea. Not all of them work, and some are more specific for certain causes of nausea.
Treatments for Nausea Include:
- Antiemetic medications (such as Zofran)
- Ginger root (Zingiber officinalis)
- Cannabis (Cannabis)
- Peppermint (Mentha piperita)
- Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla)
- Antibiotic medications (such as amoxicillin, doxycycline, cephalexin)
- Opioid pain medications (such as oxycodone, morphine, fentanyl)
CBD vs. THC for Nausea
Cannabis is a reliable treatment for nausea and vomiting. It works through a couple of different pathways affecting the nausea center in the brain, as well as through indirect mechanisms that help manage many of the underlying causes of nausea.
The most significant effect of cannabis when it comes to treating nausea is from the effects of THC — the main psychoactive compound in the cannabis plant. THC works by activating the CB1 receptors found in the medulla oblongata, the area responsible for making us feel nauseated . By activating these receptors, we can inhibit nausea.
CBD has also been shown to reduce feelings of nausea, though it’s not considered to be as effective as THC.
Most of the benefits from CBD are likely to come from its ability to increase anandamide levels, indirectly activating the CB1 receptors in the medulla through anandamide.
Anandamide and THC are similar structurally and activate the same receptors in the body.
Using CBD Oils with THC for Nausea
THC remains illegal for most of the world — however, times are changing.
Until the laws open up around the use of THC, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to find any products with this ingredient in concentrations over the 0.3% threshold.
THC doesn’t need to be psychoactive to be effective for nausea. THCA (THC-acid), the raw (unheated) version of the compound is non-psychoactive and has been shown to offer a similar level of anti-nausea benefits as activated THC.
As laws change around THC, it’s likely that there will be new companies popping up that sell non-psychoactive THC and THCA-rich cannabis preparations aimed at treating nausea and vomiting.
Until then, we’ll have to use the high-CBD hemp extracts. In order to maximize the benefit of these products, it’s recommended that you search for a full-spectrum extract that contains the whole gamut of cannabinoids including CBG, CBC, CBN, and indeed, THC (needs to be less than 0.3% to be legal in most places).
To really supercharge the anti-nausea effects, it’s recommended that you mix your CBD or hemp extracts with a strong ginger tea. Ginger is one of the best anti-nausea herbs available and uses different mechanisms than cannabis. When combined, the effects of the two herbs compound through a concept known as synergy.
The results of doing this are very impressive.
Mixing Cannabis With Other Anti-Nausea Herbs
For maximum benefits, we recommend mixing your CBD oil with other anti-nausea herbs.
This is useful because different herbs usually offer their anti-nausea benefits through separate mechanisms. These effects combine to produce even stronger effect profiles. This is a common technique used by professional herbalists for treating nausea — which is difficult to treat with single-herb preparations.
Mixing your CBD with herbs on the list below improve nausea relief, and can make the effects appear faster.
Other Herbs With Anti-Nausea Benefits:
You can take these herbs as tinctures, capsules, or as a strong tea. Always follow the directions on the package when using herbal supplements because the dose will vary according to how it’s manufactured.
What’s The Dosage of CBD for Nausea?
Figuring out the effective dose of CBD oil for nausea can be difficult — this is because the effects of CBD can vary significantly from one person to the next.
There are some general guidelines you can follow to estimate what the most likely dose you’ll need might be.
Below, we’ve outlined the rough weight-to-strength dosages for CBD oils.
When it comes to nausea, some people find relief at the low-strength, others need the high-strength doses to provide any benefit. The only way to find out how this works for you is to try it out. Start with the low dose, and build up gradually to the higher doses until you find relief from symptoms.
Best CBD Oil for Nausea of 2022
Nausea can be a sign of many different conditions. It commonly springs from low blood sugar, migraine attacks, appendicitis, dizziness, the flu, gastroenteritis, motion sickness, food poisoning, morning sickness, brain injury, and more.
Nausea is also a common side-effect of chemotherapy and general anesthesia.
While you can have nausea without vomiting, the latter happens very frequently in nausea sufferers. That’s because neuron circuits in the brainstem detect — or are fooled to detect — a toxic substance and attempts to get rid of it from the gastrointestinal tract.
Cannabis, particularly the CBD, has shown a lot of promise in preventing and easing nausea without the side effects induced by pharmaceutical anti-emetics. In this article, I’ll cover the science behind the potential anti-emetic (anti-nausea) properties of CBD along with my top 3 brand recommendations for high-quality CBD oil.
Best CBD Oils for Nausea (Brand Recommendations)
The market is full of different CBD companies selling all sorts of CBD products. Some of them excel in quality, while others leave a lot to be desired.
For those of you who don’t have the time to background-check each brand on the market, here are some of my favorite brands in the CBD space. I’ll cover criteria such as the hemp source, extraction method, cannabinoid spectrum, potency, and third-party testing.
1. Royal CBD
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- Their CBD comes from American-grown organic hemp
- Available in 4 potency options
- Contains the full spectrum of cannabinoids
- Up to 2500mg of CBD per bottle
- Nice neutral flavor thanks to the premium MCT oil
- Each batch of product was tested in a 3rd-party laboratory
- Free shipping available
- Slightly more expensive than the competition
What I Like About Royal CBD:
Royal CBD is leading the way in manufacturing premium CBD oils — offering products sourced from organically grown US hemp. Unlike many newcomers, this company likes to keep things simple. They offer basic CBD formats, such as CBD oil, gummies, and capsules.
I’ve been using their full-spectrum 500mg CBD oil to help with things like anxiety, upset stomach, and nausea — so far, it’s done an excellent job at making things more comfortable for me.
2. Gold Bee
- Organic hemp grown in California farms
- CO2 extraction
- Broad product selection
- Full-spectrum CBD
- Up to 2400 mg of CBD per bottle
- Sweetened with honey and stevia
- Third-party tested for quality and safety
- Some of the products are in high demand and sometimes out of stock
What I Like About Gold Bee:
Gold Bee is another premium company from California. The founders have spent several years in the superfoods industry before enrolling in the production of hemp extracts. The brand offers two strengths of CBD oil: 1200 mg and 2400 mg. The stronger version delivers a whopping 80 mg of CBD in every milliliter.
These are the best-tasting organic CBD oils out there. Despite being full-spectrum, their flavored options almost completely mask the earthy taste, countering it with fruity notes. In addition, the oils are sweetened with honey and stevia, making flavored CBD extracts a guilt-free way to take CBD — at last!
I’ve been using the 2400 mg bottle for episodes of severe nausea after food poisoning and it greatly reduced discomfort, stiffness, and the urge for throwing up. Overall, the company is my second-favorite right after Royal CBD.
3. Hemp Bombs
- Hemp Bombs uses certified organic hemp from European farmers
- Their CBD isolate is obtained through CO2 extraction
- Each batch is tested in a 3rd-party lab for potency and purity
- Up to 5000mg of CBD per bottle
- Not as high quality as others on this list
- Since this is CBD isolate, there’s no synergy from other cannabinoids
- For most people, such high doses of CBD are overkill
What I Like About Hemp Bombs:
Hemp Bombs may not offer the quality of brands like Royal CBD, but they do a fine job at making 99% pure CBD isolates on a large scale.
The company sells its isolate in every possible form, including tinctures, capsules, vape oils, gummies, topicals, syrups, or even beard products.
Hemp Bombs gives you more affordable CBD extracts at the cost of some quality. Since this is pure isolate, their products lack the much-needed synergy from full-spectrum extracts. Therefore, you may need a higher dose to feel the difference.
But, if you don’t tolerate other ingredients than CBD in hemp extracts, or you’re subject to periodical drug tests at work and can’t test false-positive for THC, an isolate may be your last resort.
- Their CBD is made from Colorado-grown hemp
- Available as full-spectrum CBD or isolate
- Diverse product selection
- Lab-tested for quality
- Very affordable
- Their hemp isn’t organic
- Their website is buggy
- Only natural flavor available
What I Like About CBDistillery:
CBDistillery offers a wide product selection, including CBD oil, gummies, and capsules. All these products are available as full-spectrum or “Zero THC” (pure oil).
The potency range is impressive as well — offering from 250–5000mg of CBD per bottle. Their products are also good for people looking to buy CBD on a budget. Their 250mg bottle costs only $20.
If you only have mild nausea symptoms, this brand offers you the best ratio of price to quality — even though CBDistillery doesn’t grow organic hemp.
What is Nausea
According to the Cambridge Dictionary, “Nausea is a feeling of illness in the stomach that makes you think you are going to vomit.” However, nausea and vomiting are not illnesses, but symptoms of other health conditions, including vertigo, food poisoning, overeating, concussion or brain injury, blocked intestine, infection, and more.
In very severe cases, nausea and vomiting can sometimes be symptoms of more serious diseases, such as liver disorders, central nervous system failures, brain tumors, and certain forms of cancer.
In a physiological sense, nausea is caused by a toxic agent that gets detected by a neuron circuit in the brainstem. That often leads to vomiting as a way to purge the body out of that toxin.
However, that doesn’t mean people get nauseous only after ingesting toxic substances. For example, motion sickness and morning sickness don’t involve a toxic agent; they often result from hormonal and neurological changes in the body.
Nausea can also be triggered by psychological factors such as anxiety, stress, and depression.
Common Remedies for Nausea
There are specific strategies you can employ to alleviate nausea.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, people experiencing nausea should do the following:
- Drink ice-cold drinks
- Eat bland foods; avoid spices
- Steer clear of fried, greasy, or sweet meals
- Eat smaller portions.
- Don’t mix cold and hot foods
- Drink beverages slowly
- Avoid exercise after eating
- Don’t brush your teeth immediately after eating.
- Keep a diversified diet and include foods from all food groups to avoid allergies
The Cleveland Clinic also has some tips for treating vomiting:
- Increase your fluid intake; drink larger amounts of clear liquids (gradually)
- Ensure You’re well-rested
- Temporarily stop taking all oral medications; they can upset the stomach and worsen vomiting symptoms
Aside from these short-term lifestyle choices, people typically use medicines such as Pepto Bismol, Dramamine, and Kaopectate to relieve nausea. If you’re afraid of the potential side effects of these medications, you can try a popular alternative — CBD oil.
Let’s see how CBD may ease or prevent nausea and vomiting.
What Effect Does CBD Have on Nausea?
Cannabinoids may play an essential role in dealing with nausea and vomiting.
A 2014 review of scientific progress regarding CBD from the European Journal of Pharmacology said:
“Cannabis has long been known to limit or prevent nausea and vomiting from a variety of causes. This has led to extensive investigations that have revealed an important role for cannabinoids and their receptors in the regulation of nausea and emesis (vomiting).”
Evidence from experiments shows that CBD can control nausea by acting on the serotonin receptors in the brain. Namely, CBD decreases the release of serotonin, which results in weaker stimulation on the vomiting controls in the brain. With the help of CBD, serotonin in our system becomes balanced and, thus, making it a great help to manage vertigo-induced nausea.
The anti-emetic properties of CBD are also linked to its influence on the CB1 cannabinoid receptors.
These receptors occur in the brainstem, where both THC and anandamide are used.
Studies show that increased production of anandamide, which is the CB1 agonist, relieves the feelings of nausea and reduces the urge to vomit. However, anandamide tends to quickly break down in the presence of the Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase (FAAH) enzyme.
According to studies on animal models, CBD can block that enzyme and thus make anandamide more available for the body. The same happens when you consume both THC and CBD. THC fools your brain to think there’s more anandamide to use, whereas CBD extends the life of this endocannabinoid and, at the same time, blocks the sites of CB1 receptors that respond to the psychoactive effects of THC.
What Does the Research Say?
The anti-emetic effects of cannabinoids are one of the best-researched areas of their medical applications. Below I give you a list of three high-impact studies underscoring the potential of CBD to relieve and prevent nausea:
A 2002 study published in Neuroreport concluded:
“cannabidiol, a major non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in marijuana and its synthetic dimethylheptyl homolog interfere with nausea elicited by lithium chloride and with conditioned nausea elicited by a flavor paired with lithium chloride. These results suggest that cannabinoids without psychoactive side-effects may have therapeutic value in the treatment of chemotherapy-induced nausea.”
A 2011 research paper published in the British Journal of Pharmacology indicates that:
“The neural mechanisms of nausea are still not well understood. However, the anti-emetic effect of cannabinoids has been shown across a wide variety of animals that are capable of vomiting in response to a toxic challenge.”
In a 2016 report in Pharmacology, the researchers came with the following conclusion:
“Administered subthreshold combines doses of THC or CBDA to significantly suppress acute nausea, but individual doses of CBDA were maximally effective.”
CBDA is the acidic form of CBD that occurs in raw hemp plants.
Why Use CBD Oil for Nausea?
CBD can be either vaporized, smoked, or ingested as drops or edibles. When it comes to nausea — at least from my own experience — I believe that CBD hemp oil applied sublingually is the best option.
Why CBD Oil is one of the best ways to use CBD:
- CBD oil is sourced from hemp, so it has little THC. There isn’t enough THC in hemp plants to make you high. It gives you the health benefits of cannabinoids without the psychoactive side-effects.
- CBD oil is extracted with CO2 and thus yields a clean and potent product with all the beneficial cannabinoids, terpenes, vitamins, and minerals of the source.
- CBD oil is easily absorbed. Since it gets into the bloodstream via a special membrane under the tongue, it starts to act within 15-30 minutes after ingestion.
CBD dosage for nausea can vary between individuals. I always recommend starting with small doses and gradually increasing your intake until you can feel some relief.
What to Look for When Buying CBD Oil for Nausea
Not all CBD oils are created equal. There’s an abundance of mediocre oil on the market. Such products often have lower CBD concentrations than advertised; some of them don’t contain CBD at all. When you buy CBD oil from an inferior vendor, the product may be contaminated with heavy metals or chemical fertilizers — their presence can even worsen your nausea instead of fixing the problem.
Take a look at the list below to make sure you don’t risk your health buying cheap CBD oil.
1. Hemp Source
Hemp absorbs all substances from its growing environment. This means if you want high-quality CBD oil, the hemp used in its production should come from organic farms and be grown in healthy soil without pesticides or herbicides. Organic hemp yields clean and potent extracts that are safe and effective.
Many U.S. companies grow organic hemp, but they don’t certify it because the certification procedure requires a lot of time and money. If you’re not sure how the company sources their CBD, you can ask them in an e-mail or search their website for more details.
The severity of your symptoms will determine the potency of your CBD oil, among other factors, including your weight, metabolism rate, lifestyle, and age. If you’ve never tried CBD before, start with lower potency (e.g., the Royal CBD oil 250mg) and decide whether it does the job or not. If it doesn’t, or the effects come at the cost of high amounts of oil, you may want to try a more potent product.
3. Cannabinoid Spectrum
For nausea, I would recommend full-spectrum products because they give you the benefits of other cannabinoids and terpenes occurring in the extract. Ideally, you should aim at CBD oil that has significant levels of CBDA, which has been shown through some recent studies to have anti-emetic potential.
There are products on the market that combine decarboxylated (active) extracts with raw CBD oil that packs lots of CBDA.
4. Third-Party Testing
Companies have the option to send a batch of each finished product to a third-party laboratory for testing. These laboratories check for the cannabinoid consistency in the extract as well as for potential contaminants. If the sample returns with a negative result from the lab, the product shouldn’t be allowed for sale until the problem is resolved.
Trustworthy manufacturers display their third-party test results to prove their credibility to the customer. Always buy CBD oil from companies that provide lab reports on request.
If you — or someone close to you — suffer from nausea, consult with your doctor to see if cannabinoids may be an effective treatment. There is sound evidence that the endocannabinoid system plays a vital role in regulating nausea and vomiting, so if you’re looking for a natural alternative to pharmaceutical anti-emetics, CBD oil may be your best bet.
Just keep the above buyer’s guide in mind, so you always end up with high-quality CBD oil.
Do you use CBD oil for nausea? Which form of CBD works best for your symptoms?
- Sharkey, K.A., Darmani, N.A, & Parker, L.A. (2014). Regulation of Nausea and Vomiting by Cannabinoids and the Endocannabinoid System. European Journal of Pharmacology, 722, 134–146.
- Van Sickle, M.D. et al. (2001). Cannabinoids Inhibit Emesis Through CB1 Receptors in the Brainstem of the Ferret. Gastroenterology, 121(4), 767–774.
- Parker, L.A., Limebeer, C.L., Rock, E.M., Litt, D.L., Kwiatkowska, M., Piomelli D. (2009) The FAAH Inhibitor URB-597 Interferes With Cisplatin- and Nicotine-induced Vomiting in the Suncus murinus (House Musk Shrew). Physiology & Behavior, 1, 121–124.
- Parker, L.A., Mechoulam, R., Schillevert, C. (2002) Cannabidiol, a Non-psychoactive Component of Cannabis and its Dimethylheptyl Homolog Suppress Nausea in an Experimental Model With Rats. Neuroprotection, 13(5), 567–570.
- Parker, L. A., Rock, E. M., & Limebeer, C. L. (2011). Regulation of Nausea and Vomiting by Cannabinoids. British journal of pharmacology, 163(7), 1411–1422.
- Rock, E.M., Connolly, C., Limebeer C.L., Parker, L.A. (2016) Effect of Combined Oral Doses of Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiolic Acid (CBDA) on Acute and Anticipatory Nausea in Rat Models. Psychopharmacology, 233(18), 3353–3360.
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 to Take CBD Oil for Nausea
This article was co-authored by Aimée Shunney, ND and by wikiHow staff writer, Megaera Lorenz, PhD. Dr. Aimée Gould Shunney is a Licensed Naturopathic Doctor at Santa Cruz Integrative Medicine in Santa Cruz, California where she specializes in women’s health and hormone balancing. She also consults with various companies in the natural products industry including CV Sciences, makers of PlusCBD Oil. Dr. Aimée educates consumers, retailers, and healthcare providers about CBD oil through written articles, webinars, podcasts, and conferences nationwide. Her work has been featured at the American Academy for Anti-Aging Medicine, the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians Conference, and on Fox News. She earned her ND from the National College of Naturopathic Medicine in 2001.
There are 13 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.
This article has been viewed 8,131 times.
CBD oil, or cannabidiol, is a natural compound found in marijuana and another related plant, hemp. Unlike THC, another compound in the marijuana plant, CBD doesn’t cause a “high.” However, it may help reduce nausea and other unpleasant symptoms, like pain and anxiety. If you have nausea due to a medical condition or a medication you’re taking, such as chemotherapy drugs, talk to your doctor about using CBD to get relief.