By Ana Reisdorf, MS, RD
Although there is currently huge interest in the possible health benefits of cannabidiol (CBD), there is little research supporting its connection with the immune system. However, the fact that there are cannabinoid receptors on immune cells is cause for further research.
Measuring Immune Function
The immune system is a complex group of cells and organs that help protect us against invasion by foreign bodies that can make us sick. There are many different aspects to the immune system and methods to evaluate substances that improve or suppress its function. At this time, significant animal and lab data demonstrate the ability of CBD to suppress or enhance certain aspects of the immune system, but human studies are lacking.
Many studies on CBD and immunity have evaluated the effect of CBD on immune cells and viral load, but thus far they have been too limited to lead to any conclusions regarding the general population.
What makes research on CBD and immunity more complex is that the cannabis plant contains more than 500 different biologically active substances, including THC and more than 100 different cannabinoids. Determining the individual effect of each of these components of cannabis on the immune system is quite complex.
That being said, there are some hypotheses that can be explored about how CBD could potentially support optimal immune function.
CBD Immune Benefits
What we do know about CBD is that it has anti-inflammatory properties and can modulate the immune system. It may promote apoptosis, or cellular death, inhibiting the proliferation of diseased cells. CBD may also be an immunosuppressant: It may directly influence cytokine action and T-cell production, preventing the immune system from overreacting.
Further research is needed to determine the best way to use CBD to support the immune system.
Using CBD For Sleep and Stress
All of the above notwithstanding, there are known benefits of CBD that could indirectly help you fight off illness. For one, CBD helps promote restful sleep. Getting regular, quality sleep is one of the best ways to support your immune function, and CBD can help. Our sleep support tablets contain CBD, melatonin and several other natural, calming ingredients to help you get the sleep you need.
Mental stress also contributes to decreased immune function. Getting stress under control is beneficial to your immune system and can help to prevent serious health problems. Our CBD Mood and Calm tablets ease stress and promote well-being.
As we learn more about the benefits of CBD, there will most certainly be more information forthcoming about the connection between CBD and the immune system. For now, CBD can be used to support stress and a good night’s sleep, which may translate to enhance immunity.