An exciting discovery by researchers at the Medical College of Georgia has opened up new avenues for CBD and COVID-19 induced inflammation. But how does this non-psychoactive compound alleviate the damage caused by the coronavirus? Let’s take a look at CBD for COVID-19 and how its chemical composition aids in recovery!
What Is CBD?
CBD or cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid derived from hemp plants and a popular medicinal alternative that has proven health benefits. Unlike other cannabinoids found in the Cannabis Sativa plant, such as THC, CBD does not intoxicate and has no adverse side-effects or abuse potential.
But what makes CBD for COVID-19 such a fascinating topic for research?
Interestingly enough, CBD is a super-antioxidant! This means that it contains more antioxidants than Vitamin C and E. In addition to this, it also has anti-inflammatory and soothing properties that align the natural systems of the body to boost both mind and body, making CBD for COVID-19 the ultimate research topic.
Researchers from MCG were able to demonstrate these healing properties by showing that CBD was able to enhance oxygen levels, reduce inflammation, and repair lung damage caused by ARDS (Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome). Since the symptoms of ARDS and COVID-19 are similar in nature, these findings have expanded research into how CBD fights COVID-19 and its potential to provide relief to those who suffer from chronic pain and inflammation induced by this virus.
3 Ways CBD Fights COVID-19 Induced Inflammation
- CBD Reduces Tissue Damage
Being a super-antioxidant, CBD reduces tissue damage by stopping free radicals from entering healthy cells. Think of free radicals as part of the body’s immune response; their purpose is to fight infections and attack foreign particles by invading cells that have been damaged. Unfortunately, free radicals can not really differentiate between healthy and damaged cells. As a result, they often end up entering healthy cells which interferes with proper functioning. CBD protects against this by donating its electrons to stop this oxidation process, stopping a chain reaction that has the potential to cause degeneration of the body and brain.
In this way, CBD acts as a neuroprotectant which is incredibly important for COVID-19 recovery and overall health.
- CBD and COVID-19: Anti-Inflammatory Potential
It’s also fascinating to note that CBD shares 20 protein targets that are connected to inflammation-related pathways.
There are 2 receptors with strong expression in the central nervous system and immune system, namely, CB1 and CB2. CBD interacts with these receptors to decrease levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines, movement, and adherence of immune cells and inhibits excessive multiplication of a certain type of white blood cells called T-cells. Since CBD for COVID-19 triggers both the immune and central nervous system to restore a homeostatic condition, it may be able to aid in recovery.
- CBD Fights COVID-19 By Reducing ‘Cytokine Storms’
When the coronavirus enters the body, it launches an attack known as ‘cytokine storms’ that cause structural damage to the lungs and can be fatal in many cases, especially for patients suffering from diabetes, cardiac conditions, and other respiratory problems. One way in which CBD fights COVID-19 is by improving the levels of a naturally-occurring peptide known as apelin.
Let’s take a look at how blood levels of apelin interact with CBD for COVID-19 and launch a proper anti-inflammatory response. Apelin is fundamental in reducing inflammation, and blood pressure. For example, in a perfectly healthy body, an abnormal increase in blood pressure will trigger an increase in blood levels of apelin which targets the abnormal increase and restores normal blood pressure.
In the ARDS model by researchers at MCG, apelin levels were zero before the introduction of CBD. However, CBD managed to increase blood levels of apelin by 20 times, which is important for normalizing inflammation in the lungs. Currently, researchers are working to determine the association and correlation between CBD and apelin levels which will a ground-breaking shift in our understanding of medicine.
The implications of CBD for COVID-19 are extremely innovative as they herald the advent of further research into the health benefits of CBD and how it complements overall wellness. Hopefully, with more detailed studies, CBD products will soon become the next, ultimate recovery package in our fight against COVID-19!
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