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Appetite for Confusion: Let's Talk CBD and Yours.

Updated: May 23, 2022

Does CBD Affect Hunger? If you’ve been anywhere but living under a rock recently, you’ve noticed a huge interest in what CBD can do for us mere mortals health wise. One of today’s most searched questions is how it affects appetite (assuming it does.) If you’re looking for a one-and-done answer, I’ve got nothing. But if you’re in it for a bit of a haul, here goes: What Humans have in Common with Our 5-Leafed Friend. CBD is just one of many cannabinoids produced in the cannabis plant. Just like the plant, our bodies make endocannabinoids (inside) that work within our own Endocannabinoid System (ECS) to regulate things like sleep, appetite, and mood. Care to go deeper? ‘think I will… One of our own-grown cannabinoids is anandamide. Scientific findings suggest that this substance helps regulate emotions and anxiety. Pub. “Anandamide hydrolysis: a new target for anti-anxiety drugs?” Silvana Gaetani. Science is further showing that CBD works similarly in its broad spectrum form in cases of generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, OCD, and PTSD. “Cannabinoidiol as a Potential, Treatment for Anxiety Disorders.” Blessing, EM. Neuropathics. 2015 Oct. So why are you talking Anxiety when I’m interested in Appetite? Good question. Here’s the answer: According to the same scientists who are researching CBD’s impact on anxiety, it likely improves appetite. Their studies show 30% of people that they surveyed said they skipped meals when they were experiencing anxiety.2 Haven’t you ever been so wound up you literally couldn’t eat? Boom. That’s what they’re talking about. Not So Fast… Well, hey, you might be thinking, everybody knows that smoking weed gives you the munchies so of course CBD will make you hungry. Ummm…no. That’s not it. So the short and sweet on THC: it binds to your CB1 receptors in your brain and Central Nervous System which stimulates the release of Grehlin, the hunger hormone, and bam! You suddenly need French fries like a teenager needs her cellphone. CBD, on the other hand, does not bind to the receptor. It just interacts with it. It helps your ECS by reducing the breakdown of the magical anandamide and positively affecting the serotonin Type 1A receptors. 2/3/21 international journal Molecular Sci. Philippe A Melas. “Cannabinoidiol as a Potential Treatment for Anxiety and Mood Disorders.” In a nutshell, it looks like CBD supports balance and homeostasis in human bodies. No extreme zigging and zagging, thank you very much. And the Pendulum Swings. Do you remember way back when I said I had no simple answer? Here’s why: There are other studies that show CBD could be used as an appetite suppressant and if so, potentially more safely than appetite-suppressing pharmaceutical drugs. Not surprisingly, appetite suppressants work. But at what cost? They negatively interact with both anti-anxiety and antidepressant medications. They are not safe during pregnancy or breast-feeding. They can cause constipation, headaches, and possibly liver damage. The list goes on. That’s why if CBD can help curb your appetite, it would be a no-brainer for many people struggling to lose weight. Let’s go back to how CBD works in our bodies: It interacts with CB1 receptors in your brain. It doesn’t highjack them. It doesn’t bind to them. But it does somehow affect them. To be honest, the scientists don’t really have the how figured out yet. But one idea is since the CB1 increases your appetite left alone, CBD may reduce your appetite when it impacts the receptor. May 31,2021 CBD also appears to help the browning of fat cells while fostering the metabolism of fat. 2016 May;416(1-2):131-9. doi: 10.1007/s11010-016-2702-5. Epub 2016 Apr 11. Cannabidiol promotes browning in 3T3-L1 adipocytes Hilal Ahmad Parray 1, Jong Won Yun 2 In English: White fat cells are the ones we humans judge. They collect around our bellies, hips and thighs; put us at risk for heart disease and Type 2 Diabetes; and just aren’t healthy in oversized portions. Brown cells, in contrast, are super healthy. They are full of mitochondria and are rich in iron (hence their color), and they create heat by burning fat. How do they get kicked into action? Through exercise, sleep, cold exposure, and drum roll, please: ingestion of CBD. And Last but Most Confusing…CBD can Counter Stress Eating. So here’s the deal: different people react to stress differently. Some stop eating (the people in the first anxiety studies referenced.) Some can’t stop eating. And it’s usually food that tastes good but does bad. Essentially, by reducing stress and anxiety, CBD counters binge eating.Which is another way of saying it can reduce appetite. So What Are you Saying, Exactly? If you made it this far, you deserve a cookie. Kidding. How about a summary? Appetite is more than being hungry. It involves emotions and psychological aspects. That’s why anxiety and stress are inextricably involved in the conversation. If anxiety tends to shut down your appetite, CBD, by helping reduce it, may bring your appetite back. If on the other hand, you are a stress-eater, science is beginning to show that CBD is also your friend for the same reason. Mitigating anxiety means there’s less stress to eat, right? And that, my friends, is what we call a win/win scenario. In the case of CBD, it looks like all roads lead to balance.

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