CBD and Coronavirus. What We Know.
As Corona Virus Emerged in early 2020, before Paradox even existed, I was doing research on CBD as it related to viral therapy. So, although this article is a bit dated, the science behind it is still relevant, especially as we appear to be in the midst of yet another wave of the Pandemic.
There have been a lot of unsubstantiated claims regarding the use of CBD and its effectiveness as an antiviral. To date, there has been no validated research we have found that confirms CBD works in this capacity in humans. That said, we look towards several studies and their abstracts shared by the National Institute of Health (NIH) for other ways CBD might influence the way our bodies fight this and other viruses.
We know from a wealth of existing research that CBD acts like a key that unlocks your body's anti-inflammatory response system, which is typically a good thing. Infections typically cause inflammation, and CBD seems to ignite one’s immune response accordingly.
However, many of those landing in the ICU as a result of Covid-19-related respiratory issues are dealing with a cytokine storm, or basically a hyper-reactive immune response. This over-reactive response can actually cause inflammation and fluid production that can flood the lungs and cause organs to fail.
A few recent studies do provide some extended insight as to the potential application and use of CBD as it relates to infections and use. Several recently released studies published on the National Institute of Health website (a few examples: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26059175 , https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2903762/ ) reveal that CBD appears to do more than simply ignite a response to inflammation, but more importantly, helps to regulate that response. Again, there is no evidence of CBD directly acting as an antiviral, but if it does in fact help to regulate response to inflammation, that could prove meaningful to an individual infected with any virus. Unfortunately, to verify these findings, parallel studies will have to reach similar conclusions and such studies take time and capital, both of which are currently in short supply.
We also read another recent abstract as it relates to CBD and canine corona viruses. It is important to note that this study was conducted on dogs, not humans, and the canine coronaviruses addressed in the study do not affect humans (although they can be deadly to dogs).
In this study, a supplemental amount of CBD did have significant impact on the dog’s initial response time to fighting a canine Coronavirus. As mentioned previously, CBD can activate immune response, and in the case of dogs infected with these types of Coronaviruses, it did just that.
So why do we care? We care because, for the same reason a virus can be passed from one species to another (sometimes directly, sometimes through a carrier), on occasion, a treatment can also work across species.
Tramadol is an example of this. A narco-like painkiller, Tramadol is prescribed to both people and dogs to manage and suppress pain and inflammation. Conversely, Ibuprofen, the most commonly used over-the-counter human painkiller in America, is deadly to dogs and cats. So as much as we want to believe CBD will help with immune response time as relates to corona viruses in humans, we need additional peer-reviewed studies to solidify these findings.
As a general rule, a quicker response time to a virus or bacterial infection can mean a less intense infection over a shorter timespan. Whether this has the same effect on Covid-19 in humans is unknown at this time.
There are, however, some valuable things we do know. It is widely accepted that CBD ignites our body’s natural inflammatory response system and that a growing number of peer-reviewed studies continue to confirm this. It also is suggested that having small amounts of CBD in the blood actually inhibits the production of pre-inflammatory molecules.
We know that CBD is widely trusted and used to combat stress, PTSD, and anxiety, insomnia, and well as other serious maladies and diseases. We also know it is used to control pain, both acute and chronic.