Cannabis and Health

CBD as a supplement to quit smoking

Smoking is a bad habit that is difficult to abandon, but perhaps taking cannabidiol (CBD) will make it easier. Today, we all know that cigarettes are harmful to your health, but many decide to continue to put their safety at stake despite this awareness. What is the reason for this? Smokers are addicted to a substance called nicotine that is present in tobacco, creates a strong dependence, and is difficult to quit. But science says that in addition to having an iron will, taking CBD can help a smoker fight against this forced slavery.

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Interactions between drugs, medicines and cannabis (and THC)

The damage of tobacco and cigarettes to the human body

On the occasion of World No Tobacco Day 2019, the World Health Organization released this data: If effective law enforcement policies are not implemented by 2030, cigarettes will kill over 8 million people each year. It was estimated that, in 2017, tobacco was responsible for the deaths of 3.3 million individuals. Some of them chose to smoke while others suffered due to someone else’s choice by being exposed to secondhand smoke. The main complications of the use of cigarettes are the occurrence of chronic respiratory diseases, the appearance of cancer (mainly in the oral and respiratory systems) and the susceptibility to respiratory infections like tuberculosis.

The symptoms of tobacco addiction

Unfortunately, for smokers, it is not up his alley to give up this deadly habit, both for physical and psychological reasons. Nicotine dependence, like many others, is manifested in a very intense way, with symptoms that are very evident and continue over time. A lack of nicotine intake creates a real withdrawal crisis in the habitual smoker’s body, which is very similar to that related to alcohol or other substance abuse. The main symptoms are desire/obsessive thinking about cigarette consumption, depression, irritability, anxiety, panic disorder, tremor, compulsive hunger, and headache. In the long run, the temptation for many ex-smokers remains strong, and the desire to light a cigarette often accompanies them throughout their lives (making a relapse in a period of particular weakness very easy).

How can CBD help people quit smoking? What the studies say

This particular utility of the CBD is a relatively recent discovery. The idea was made public for the first time in 2013 in a preliminary investigation conducted by a group of researchers and published by the magazine, Addict Behav, in an article that investigated the potential action of CBD consumption (via concentrated inhaler) for eager smokers to limit the use of cigarettes. The study was tiny and of limited importance, but suggested that the road was the right one, given that the consumption of tobacco had fallen in the subjects in the test in question by 40%.

Since then, Cannabidiol (or the non-psychoactive cannabinoid present in cannabis) has been studied extensively, and the knowledge of this molecule and its reactions with the human body has increased considerably. A complete study carried out in 2018 at University College London used a very different and innovative approach to understand what triggers CBD use in smokers who try to quit smoking and have discovered that this substance limits the neurocognitive processes that reduce the craving for tobacco in the brains of dependent subjects.

CBD against anxiety and withdrawal depression

But it is also true that CBD can be a valid aid in the management of addictions also due to its tested action against anxiety and depression. As we reported in this article, Cannabidiol is considered an effective anxiolytic and an antidepressant, a potential undoubtedly related to its interaction with the endocannabinoid system present in the human body. Its action would be based on the stresses it produces on this network of receptors capable of influencing mood, the perception of pain, and muscular tensions by regulating the production of serotonin (the commonly called “happiness hormone”).

Thus, summarising the studies available to date confirm this: CBD can be a beneficial supplement in the fight against addictions. As we said, the reasons are many: its blocking effect against the stimulus of habit (which, according to various research, can help against many other problems related to substance abuse) and that of regulating the natural mood make it possible to limit the onset of anxiety and depression associated with the mental and physical stress of having to stop smoking.

This is what clinical studies say and also many ex-smokers who have experienced it on their skin: We are sure that in the future, even this particular gift of Cannabidiol will be brought to light along with the many other positive aspects that distinguish it.

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