The benefits of cannabis and CBD for digestive health are becoming well-known. But can they heal stomach ulcers or is this wishful thinking? Can CBD oil help with stomach ulcers, and if so, how? Stomach ulcers, also known as gastric ulcers, are a type of peptic ulcer disease. These persistent and open sores discovered in a few areas around your body are no laughing matter.
Can Cannabis Heal Stomach Ulcers? [Revealed]
All information on this website is for general informational purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Nowadays, people use cannabis to address a whole range of medical conditions, including digestive issues like stomach ulcers.
There are some obvious benefits to using marijuana for digestive problems. For example, we know that cannabinoids like THC and CBD can relieve nausea and pain symptoms. But can cannabis heal stomach ulcers, or is this just wishful thinking?
Read on to find out.
What Are Stomach Ulcers?
Stomach ulcers (sometimes called peptic ulcers or gastric ulcers) occur when the stomach acid damages the lining of the digestive tract. When the mucus layer of the stomach is worn away and stops functioning effectively, the acid can damage the stomach tissue, causing the ulcer.
Stomach ulcers are a common problem and can affect people of any age.
Ulcers can occur in the esophagus or the duodenum, the upper part of the small intestine.
Stomach ulcers are a common problem and can affect people of any age. However, they are more common in men and over the age of 60.
Stomach Ulcer Symptoms
The most common symptom of a stomach ulcer is abdominal pain. Patients describe the pain as burning or gnawing, and it usually occurs 2–3 hours after eating or at night. It usually starts in the central abdomen but can radiate to the chest, belly button, or back.
Some other common stomach ulcer symptoms include:
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
In severe cases, a stomach ulcer can rupture and cause internal bleeding. Seek medical attention immediately if any of the following symptoms occur:
- Bloody vomit (it may look bright red or brown)
- Dark, sticky stools
- Sudden, sharp pain that gets gradually worse over time
What Causes Stomach Ulcers?
People can develop stomach ulcers for several different reasons.
One of the most common causes of stomach ulcers is a bacterium called Helicobacter pylori, or H. pylori for short.
When these bacteria colonize the stomach, they cause inflammation (gastritis), which can eventually lead to ulceration. H. pylori are responsible for as many as 70–90% of gastric ulcers.
Another common cause of stomach ulcers is the long-term use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). They include medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, diclofenac, and naproxen.
People frequently use NSAIDs to reduce inflammation in and around the body and relieve muscle and joint pain. However, over time, they can irritate the stomach lining and eventually cause ulcers. The risk of ulcers increases if the NSAIDs are taken in high doses or regularly for a long time.
Some people believe that lifestyle factors such as diet and stress also contribute to stomach ulcers, although evidence is limited. However, things like spicy food, alcohol, and smoking irritate the stomach and could well aggravate pre-existing issues.
Traditional Stomach Ulcer Treatments (Not Cannabis)
Clinicians usually treat stomach ulcers with medications called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). They include drugs like omeprazole and lansoprazole.
PPIs work by reducing acid production in the stomach. If someone has an H. pylori infection, they will need a course of antibiotics in addition to PPIs.
Some over-the-counter remedies like antacids may offer temporary relief from stomach ulcer symptoms. However, symptoms will keep returning until the underlying cause resolves.
Does Cannabis Help Stomach Ulcers?
In recent years, interest in medical marijuana for digestive issues has increased. Many studies suggest it could help with inflammatory bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.
There is also some evidence that cannabis may help to protect the stomach from ulcers. It all surrounds something known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a regulatory system present in most of the body’s tissues, including the digestive tract. It includes cell receptors, known as CB1 and CB2, and chemicals called endocannabinoids.
A 2016 review for Current Neuropharmacology explains that there are high levels of these receptors and chemicals in the digestive system. They play a role in controlling inflammation and protecting the lining of the stomach and intestines from damage.
The ECS is where the active compounds in cannabis exert their actions. For example, THC has a similar molecular shape to one of our natural endocannabinoids, anandamide. This allows it to bind with the same receptors, especially CB1.
In recent years, interest in medical marijuana for digestive issues has increased.
When it binds with CB1 receptors in the brain, THC produces the psychedelic high that has made cannabis so infamous. However, in the digestive system, it has very different effects.
It reduces gastric acid production and slows the rate at which the stomach empties. Because of this decrease in gastric acid, cannabis, in theory, may help offer a sort of protection if an ulcer has formed.
The authors of the 2016 review concluded: “the ECS can be a potential target to reduce the gastrointestinal mucosal lesions, hemorrhage, and inflammation.”
Further research from the Journal of Clinical and Translational Science in 2019 supports these conclusions. It looked at a large number of clinical records from cannabis users and non-users. The study’s results suggested that cannabis users had a lower incidence of H. pylori, peptic ulcer disease, and related complications.
Cannabis for Stomach Ulcer Symptom Relief
In addition to potentially protecting the stomach lining from damage, cannabis could help with some specific stomach ulcer symptoms.
Many patients use medical cannabis as a pain reliever. Humans have used the plant for this reason for millennia. Although the research into marijuana for pain provides somewhat mixed results, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence that it helps.
As well as helping digestive pain, cannabis could provide a safer alternative to NSAIDs for people suffering from conditions like arthritis.
Nausea is another common stomach ulcer symptom that cannabis may help. Research into cannabis and nausea suggests that both THC and CBD may have some benefits thanks to the way they interact with the ECS.
Cannabis is well-known for producing a side effect known as ‘the munchies.’ Research indicates that this is due to the way that the ECS interacts with hunger hormones. Therefore, cannabis can both promote appetite and increase food intake for patients with stomach ulcers.
Is CBD Oil Good for Stomach Ulcers?
Although many states now have medical marijuana programs, the herb is not legal everywhere. An alternative that is far more widely available is CBD oil from industrial hemp. CBD is non-psychoactive, and experts consider it relatively safe and well-tolerated.
Helping hundreds worldwide…
While CBD does not interact directly with CB1 and CB2 receptors like THC does, it may still have some benefits for digestive health. It can increase the levels of our natural endocannabinoids by inhibiting the enzymes that break them down.
There is currently no research specifically into CBD oil for stomach ulcers or CBD oil for ulcer pain. However, there is plenty of evidence to support its anti-inflammatory properties, and many people use it for everyday pain relief.
How to Use Cannabis and CBD Oil for Stomach Ulcers
The most typical way to use cannabis is by smoking it. However, smoking is one factor that may potentially aggravate stomach ulcers. Therefore, it may be better to choose an alternative consumption method.
We were unable to find any evidence that one way of using cannabis for stomach ulcers is better than another. However, we can hypothesize that marijuana or CBD edibles may be particularly useful. They must pass through the digestive system once they are eaten, meaning that their cannabinoids reach the target area directly.
Smoking may aggravate stomach ulcers. Therefore, it may be better to choose an alternative consumption method.
If a person lives in a state where cannabis is legal, it is highly recommended that they purchased products from licensed dispensaries. By doing this, they reduce the risk of purchasing products that may have contaminants from illegitimate sources.
Likewise, if a person opts for CBD products, they should be sure to buy from a reputable and trustworthy brand. There are a lot of companies selling low-quality products that contain little in the way of active cannabinoids. We recommend buying CBD online from a company that publishes third-party lab reports on its website. These reports ensure consumers are getting a product that is both effective and safe.
You can read about some of our favorite tried and trusted brands here. Ultimately, it is important for every individual to conduct their own due diligence when researching these various products.
Can Cannabis Heal Stomach Ulcers? Final Thoughts
There is some evidence that cannabis could help stomach ulcers, although it may be more useful for prevention than cure. It appears to protect the digestive system through its influence on the body’s endocannabinoid system.
It may also help with specific symptoms, including nausea, appetite, and pain. Thanks to their anti-inflammatory effects, cannabis and CBD could also help to reduce NSAID use for people concerned about ulcers.
However, it is essential to exercise some caution and only buy cannabis or CBD products from reputable sources. Finally, if a person intends to use either cannabis or CBD oil for stomach ulcers, they should always consult a knowledgeable clinician first to ensure that it is safe and suitable to do so.
CBD Oil for Stomach Ulcers – August 2022
Can CBD oil help with stomach ulcers, and if so, how?
Stomach ulcers, also known as gastric ulcers, are a type of peptic ulcer disease. ‘Peptic’ ulcer is the umbrella term for any ulcer affecting the stomach and the small intestines.
The stomach usually produces acid to help with the digestion of food and protect against bacteria and other microbes.
Meanwhile, cells on the inside lining of the stomach and first portion of the small intestine (duodenum) produce a natural mucus barrier to protect the tissues of the body from this acid.
There is usually a balance between the amount of acid that the body makes and the mucus defence barrier – as well as the amount of base produced by the pancreas.
Ulcers may develop if there is an alteration in this balance, allowing the acid to damage the lining of the stomach or duodenum.
Stomach ulcers are characterized by open sores in the lining of the stomach. While small ulcers may not cause noticeable symptoms, larger ones can cause pain and discomfort (1)
Ulcer symptoms are often worse on an empty stomach and at night. Ulcer symptoms include:
- Discomfort or burning pain in the upper abdomen
- Feeling bloated
- Weight loss and lack of appetite
- Dark black stools
CBD for Stomach Ulcers: What The Research Says
There is evidence that cannabinoids like CBD and THC have a positive physiological impact on stomach pathology, including ulcers.
According to research , there is evidence that CB1 receptor stimulation with cannabinoids inhibits gastric acid secretion in humans and experimental animals (2) .
Studies have shown that CBD can decrease gastric acid and increase blood flow to the lining of the stomach.
Researchers of a 2016 study published in Current Neuropharmacology found that direct activation of CB1 receptors by cannabinoids effectively reduces both gastric acid secretion and gastric motor activity and decreases the formation of lesions on the stomach lining (3) .
A study examined how cannabinoids impact the gastrointestinal tract of some species, like the mouse, rat, guinea pig, and humans (4) .
In another study published in Pharmacology Journal, researchers found that delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) inhibited ulcer formation in animal models (5) .
Although the studies did not focus on the cannabinoid CBD, the results are still encouraging. The authors believe the endocannabinoid system represents a promising target in the treatment of gastric mucosal lesions, ulceration and inflammation.
CBD for Pain Relief
Prescription medication is not the only reliable scientific solution to treating conditions, such as stomach ulcers.
Chemical-based painkillers have even been known to cause stomach ulcers in the first place.
According to the National Health Service (NHS) of the United Kingdom, taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen or aspirin, can cause stomach or duodenal ulcers, particularly if these pharmaceuticals are taken for an extended period or at high doses (6) .
Meanwhile, CBD may also help provide effective pain relief from the invasion of stomach ulcers.
Studies have shown that CBD may have promise in helping provide pain relief. CBD may be useful in treating different types of chronic pain (7) .
Chronic pain, particularly neuropathic pain, is a problem that is difficult to treat, according to the author of a study on neuronal mechanisms for neuropathic pain (8) .
CBD for Nausea
Nausea is a feeling or urge to vomit. It can develop for several reasons, including medications, chemotherapy, food poisoning, morning sickness, general anesthesia, and migraines (9) .
Nausea and vomiting both play an essential, defensive role by rejecting the ingestion or digestion of potentially harmful substances.
Cannabis has long been known to prevent or regulate nausea and vomiting from a variety of causes (10) .
The studies demonstrated that primary cannabinoids, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), have both been useful at regulating vomiting and nausea because they interact with cannabinoid receptor 1 (CBB1) of the endocannabinoid system.
Activating the CB1 receptor suppresses vomiting, as noted in the review published in the journal Psychopharmacology (11) .
Studies have shown that CBD’s effectiveness at producing anti-nausea effects may also be in part of its indirect activation of the 5-HT-1A autoreceptors in the “vomiting center” or “chemoreceptor trigger zone” of the brain stem (12) .
Activation of 5-HT1A heteroreceptors in these areas releases serotonin (13) .
Serotonin is found mostly in the digestive system, although it is also in blood platelets and throughout the central nervous system.
Serotonin is sometimes called “the happy chemical” because it contributes to feelings of well-being and happiness.
CBD’s purported therapeutic benefits may help with symptoms of stomach ulcers. However, more research is needed to validate the results of the studies.
WHO states that CBD “is generally well-tolerated with a good safety profile.” (14) Still, the long-term effects of CBD remain unknown, and the compound may also interact with other pharmaceuticals.
Thus, individuals looking to try CBD for the first time, or intend to use CBD as an adjunct therapy, should first consult with a doctor experienced in cannabis use for advice.
Can CBD Relieve Ulcer?
Ulcers can be excruciating and unpleasant. Whether you imagine oozy and infected wounds or stomach aches, these persistent and open sores discovered in a few areas around your body are no laughing matter. Some ulcers, such as those seen in the mouth, simply disappear in a matter of days or weeks. While stomach ulcers make eating difficult, skin ulcers or open wounds can lead to cancer, infections, gangrene, and amputations. But thankfully, now, various research has been done on different types of ulcers and how medicinal cannabis could aid in your healing.
Cannabis includes approximately 100 cannabinoids, terpenes, and other natural substances with different medicinal properties. The most widely used cannabinoids are 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), both highly sought after for potential benefits. Various Blush CBD products are available in the market like CBD Tincture, Oil, Cream, etc. Through the endocannabinoid system, cannabinoids interact with our bodies (ECS), a complex system of cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2, which interact with fat-based neurotransmitters produced by our bodies. CB1 receptors are assumed to influence the central nervous system, but CB2 receptors can be seen in many tissues and organs. Cannabinoid receptors are active when cannabis is consumed, and they can boost or drop endocannabinoids such as anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG).
Endocannabinoids are responsible for several vital processes in our bodies, including perceiving pain, soothing inflammation, slowing digestion, and maintaining homeostasis. Researchers have discovered that medical cannabis can help us improve or change certain biological functions, which can help us ease the symptoms of many chronic disorders.
Medical cannabis and skin ulcers
Skin ulcers are not to be taken lightly, and they can be much more than long-term wounds. They are frequently caused by circulation problems, in which blood flow is limited or cut off, usually in the legs, resulting in sores. Injuries that have not appropriately healed might also result in skin ulcers.
Decubitus ulcers arise when persons who are unwell and have limited mobility sit on pressure points on their skin for an extended period, causing sores. Bedsores are another name for this condition. Fortunately, there is plenty of evidence that medical cannabis can help with chronic pain , skin sores, and skin inflammation in illnesses including eczema, psoriasis, and acne.
Medical peptic ulcers and marijuana
Peptic ulcers, also known as duodenal ulcers, or stomach ulcers, are open sores that develop in the stomach or the duodenum, the first section of the small intestine. They are excruciatingly uncomfortable and can result in additional digestive problems such as acid reflux, loss of appetite, gastric cancer, abdominal pain, and nausea. Though doctors believed that stress was the primary cause of peptic ulcers, they now know that H. Pylori bacteria or overuse of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are the most common causes (NSAIDs).
When administered in high doses in medical cannabis, THC has been shown to inhibit stomach acid production and the digestive tract, slowing gastric emptying. They also believe it can help with the stomach lining pain, inflammation, and mucosal layer damage. Antacids, proton pump inhibitors to limit acid production, and other medications commonly treat stomach ulcers.
Cannabis use and oral ulcers
Mouth ulcers can be annoying, but they usually go away fast. They can be caused by various things, such as oral herpes (cold sores), canker sores, head and neck malignancies, or mouth irritations. As per the research published in the Journal of Dental Research, CBD can help repair stomach ulcers caused by acidic meals or trauma (16). This study also found that using CBD as an oral spray lowers the number of cells killed by inflammatory cascades and speeds up the healing of oral ulcers.
Veriheal does not intend for anything to be taken as medical advice. Please do not self-diagnose or prescribe treatment based on the information on this website. Always seek medical advice before making any treatment decisions for a medical issue.
Many people are turning to more natural approaches to treat ulcers, such as diet, over-the-counter medicines, or pharmaceutical medications. Many people are now wondering how CBD (cannabidiol) or a combination of CBD and THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) can aid in the treatment of ulcers.
Ulcers can affect more than 4 million people in the United States each year; according to Harvard Medical School, 1 in 10 people will develop an ulcer.
Ulcers of various types
Ulcers are classified into different categories based on their location in the body. Peptic ulcers are sores on the stomach, small intestine, or esophagus lining. A gastric ulcer is a peptic ulcer in the stomach. A peptic ulcer develops in the first segment of the small intestine, known as a duodenal ulcer (duodenum). The bottom region of your esophagus is affected by an esophageal ulcer.
What CBD and THC can do for you
The endocannabinoid system contains cannabinoid receptors in our stomachs. The cannabinoids bind to these receptors. The CB1 receptor instructs the stomach to cease manufacturing stomach acid, which helps reduce acid reflux. The antisecretory, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and vasodilatory properties of cannabis/cannabinoids protect the stomach mucosa. It was discovered in 1978 that acute and long-term cannabis administration reduced the rate of stomach ulcers in rats subjected to restraint stress.
‘The digestive system includes endogenous cannabinoids (anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol), and cannabinoid CB1 receptors can be detected on myenteric and submucosal neurons,’ according to a 2001 study of cannabinoid gastrointestinal effects. GGI motility, intestinal secretion, and stomach acid secretion are inhibited when CB1 receptors are activated. ‘The intestinal placement of CB1 receptors could provide novel techniques for managing gut problems,’ the study concluded. Cannabis’ muscle relaxant qualities make it effective for treating acid reflux in addition to affecting stomach acid. The sphincters in the stomach relax, which reduces reflux. The CBD inhibits acid output while it interacts with the endocannabinoid system, resulting in physical burn when dealing with acid reflux symptoms.
CBD also has anti-inflammatory qualities , making it an effective treatment for acid reflux sufferers. Cannabis can also help patients relax and reduce tension.
Final thoughts: Choosing the best dosage and delivery methods
Individuals choose different delivery methods. Here are the most frequent:
- Smoking. Smoking cannabis provides the quickest relief, but it comes with the danger of irritating your lungs or throat, as with all forms of smoking.
- Vapourising. Vaping, like smoking, provides quick relief, but it does not expose you to the adverse effects of smoking. If you want to vape CBD and are concerned that: does CBD smell like weed, so be assured, it’s safe to use.
- Tincture. A tincture is an effective treatment for upper digestive diseases since it is absorbed immediately into submucosal tissues upon eating. You can use tinctures as a mouth spray for quick relief. Additionally, cannabis tinctures can be mixed into meals or drinks or taken sublingually for fast symptom alleviation.
- Capsules. Although slower acting, capsules may be preferable if you want a more precise dose. To acquire your THC dose, you can use tinctures, edibles, or sublingual mouth sprays. If the psychoactivity (of THC) bothers you, you can always add CBD to the mix, so 5 mg of THC and 5 mg of CBD three times a day would be a decent place to start.
Robert Haynes did his degree in psychology at the University of Hertfordshire. He is interested in mental health, wellness, and lifestyle.
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