The Benefits of CBD for Weight Loss
For some people, maintaining an optimal weight is easy. But for some, it can be downright difficult. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the prevalence of obesity is 39.8% in the US and affects approximately 93.3 million adults.
Not only does excess body fat have a negative impact on a person’s self-image, but it can also lead to a host of medical issues, including heart disease and diabetes, among others.
Many people attempt to diet as a means to shed the excess weight for aesthetic purposes, while many others do so out of necessity in order to get their health in check.
With so many people seeking to lose unwanted weight every day, it’s no wonder why the weight loss industry has been booming for so long — and it will likely continue to be well into the future.
In fact, the US weight loss industry is estimated to be currently worth an astounding $72 billion.
While that may sound like a lot — and it is — it should come as no surprise given all of the supplements, personal trainers, diets, and weight loss programs available with the sole mission to help cut the pounds. While many of these products and services are deemed safe and effective, others aren’t.
Luckily, there’s a new player on the scene that has been gaining traction in the world of weight loss: cannabidiol (CBD).
CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant and is quickly becoming just as well-known as its tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) counterpart.
Traditionally available as an oil, CBD is now widely available in various forms, including topicals, edibles, capsules, sprays, and vapes. Unlike THC, CBD does not have any mind-altering effects, which means that anyone who consumes the cannabinoid will not get a “high” feeling.
Instead, CBD has been shown to have a plethora of health benefits without negatively affecting the mind or body. This includes inflammation reduction, pain relief, reduced anxiety, better sleep, and many more.
While these potential benefits are amazing (and for some, life-saving), CBD may also provide another benefit that can be added to the list: weight loss.
In this article, we examine the science behind CBD’s role in helping people to shed unwanted body fat.
CBD’s Role in the Endocannabinoid System
Before explaining CBD’s link to weight loss, it may be helpful to understand the endocannabinoid system and the way that CBD interacts with it.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a biological system that is made up of CB (cannabinoid) receptors and endocannabinoids — endo meaning “within”.
This system is crucial in helping to maintain homeostasis – or balance – in the body.
When the body’s internal environment is not in proper balance, any number of ailments can occur, including pain, inflammation, anxiety or even more serious conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, and others.
Cannabinoids like CBD can help restore homeostasis in the body and therefore help to alleviate many issues that occur as a result of an imbalance. Let us explain.
CB receptors of the ECS – predominantly CB1 and CB2 receptors – are found all over the body.
More specifically, CB1 receptors are more abundant in the brain, and CB2 receptors are more common in other parts of the body but can be mainly found in the immune system.
CB1 receptors are fastened or bound by THC directly, and when this occurs, the person experiences psychoactive changes.
CB2 receptors, on the other hand, are the ones that CBD mainly interacts with and together, induce a kind of reaction that can address most or all of the ailments mentioned above, without causing any mind-altering effects.
As amazing as all of this sounds, the full spectrum of CBD’s effect on health still has yet to be uncovered. Research is still somewhat limited on CBD, largely because of the stigma attached to cannabis and the limitations that have been placed on clinical trials to test the safety and efficacy of the cannabinoid.
However, scientific findings on the links between cannabinoids found cannabis and weight loss are fascinating.
What is CBD’s Role in Weight Loss?
It seems as though the list of health benefits that CBD has continues to get longer and longer.
And one potential benefit that may be added to the list is weight loss. Here are a few potential reasons why CBD may be an effective agent in this process.
1. May Give the Metabolism a Boost
There may be evidence to suggest that CBD consumption may be linked to an increased rate of metabolism, which can support weight loss.
Some animal research has shown that CBD may impact weight through its interaction with CB1 and CB2 receptors of the endocannabinoid system.
In one study conducted on rats, CBD was administered via injections every day, which was found to help significantly reduce their body weight.
What’s more, the weight loss was more significant with higher doses of CBD injections.
While animal studies have shown an increase in metabolism associated with CBD consumption, clinical trials involving humans are needed to verify these findings.
2. May Suppress the Appetite
There is also some evidence to suggest that CBD may be a natural appetite suppressant.
It’s common to associate cannabis with a stronger appetite, as people who consume THC-laden cannabis often experience what’s known as the “munchies.”
But while THC may cause hunger and cravings, CBD has not been shown to have the same effect.
Recent scientific findings on rats have linked CBD to a reduction in food consumption.
One particular study found that CBD reduced food intake among rodents, which supports the need for additional examinations on humans to assess the potential effect that CBD may have on the appetite and weight loss overall.
3. May Promote the Breakdown of Fat
CBD’s role in weight loss may also stem from its potential to contribute to a process known as ‘fat browning.’
The body fat that people are most familiar with is known as ‘white fat’ and is the type of fat that stores calories.
But brown fat produces heat and is packed with mitochondria, which therefore helps to actually burn calories.
Research has found that people with lower body mass indexes (BMIs) are more likely to have more brown fat, which suggests that fat browning may play a role in metabolism and obesity.
Some studies involving animals have found that CBD may be able to trigger proteins that foster the breakdown and oxidation of fat.
The cannabinoid has also been linked to fat browning, which occurs when white fat is converted into brown fat. And, with more brown fat in the body relative to white fat, the body is actually better able to burn more calories.
Is CBD an Effective Weight Loss Tool?
The current research on CBD and its role in weight loss are certainly promising, as the cannabinoid has been shown to be beneficial in a number of other ways.
Though, continued studies are definitely warranted. Having said that, CBD should not be solely relied upon to achieve optimal weight.
CBD is a personal experience and, like any other supplement designed to help with weight loss, it should only be a complement to other changes, including diet and exercise.
If you are looking to CBD for assistance with your weight loss, we recommend that you speak with your primary healthcare provider for further information and guidance.
Ready To Try Hemp CBD Oil For Weight Management?
The research on hemp CBD oil is ongoing. It is still a relatively new field, particularly in the US where laws are still opening up.
Make sure to consult with your medical doctor if you’re already on medication to prevent hemp oil from interacting with them in your system.
If you’re ready to try using CBD oil for weight management, please browse out our categories of over 100+ exclusive hemp CBD products.