As more and more people turn to CBD as a natural and non-toxic remedy for their insomnia or anxiety, claims exist that CBD could also be beneficial for weight loss.
When it comes to losing weight and maintaining a healthy waistline, most people will stop at nothing in their pursuits of thinness. There are fad diets, diet supplements, Herbalife shakes, and just about anything you can think of when it comes to trying to look good at the beach.
All of these are supposed to help you lose weight, but many of them don’t work, at least long-term. However, there is some scientific evidence – albeit a little thin on the ground – to support the notion that CBD can aid with weight loss.
The claims surround the endocannabinoid system, which is present in all mammals. This system regulates things like sleep, appetite, and mood via receptors in the organs and body called CB1 and CB2. Yes, incredible as it might sound at first, humans all have dedicated cannabis receptors built into their bodies.
It’s known that people who are obese have too many CB1 receptors which are present in fatty tissue. That’s why some folks have concluded that there’s a link between CB1 receptors and obesity. Some people claim that CBD reduces appetite even though THC – the psychoactive compound in cannabis – increases it.
CBD is thought to work against the THC but in a symbiotic and natural way. According to a 2018 study, “CB1 receptor antagonists may help reduce appetite and control obesity.” Studies have found that CBD reduces appetites in rats, but as no such studies have been carried out on humans yet, there’s no conclusive scientific evidence one way or the other.
Another quality of CBD is that it can apparently convert white fat into brown fat. Without getting into the technicalities about these fats, white fats increase the risk of heart disease and diabetes. A study from 2016 found that CBD interacts with fat in some interesting ways.
In that study, entitled, “Cannabidiol promotes browning in 3T3-L1 adipocytes,” they also found that CBD helped the body to break down various fats more efficiently. CBD could be a good way of treating obesity in humans, but again, more research and clinical trials need to be done.
Metabolic disorders are another issue that CBD could be beneficial for. While there’s a strong link between diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obesity, many believe it’s all down to overactivation of CB1 and CB2 receptors in the body. As CBD blocks access to the CB1 receptors, it could help to work against diabetes and other metabolic disorders.
While the jury is still out on whether or not CBD is beneficial for weight loss, the studies that do exist (mainly on mice and rats) do seem to point to positive outcomes for humans. There are those people who don’t need clinical trials as they swear by CBD to regulate their appetite. Sure, it may just be placebo, but that’s alright too, as long as it helps.
As cannabis and hemp become legal in North America for the first time in decades, it’s natural to assume that robust clinical trials will be carried out on humans before long. It will be interesting to see the outcomes of those trials and further research to see of CBD could be the magic dietary supplement to exceed all others.