CBD and Potential Weight Loss
Maintaining a healthy weight is essential for optimal health. To date, obesity is the leading cause of death, increased health problems, and disability in the United States . Being overweight or obese –– the accumulation of excessive fat –– can take a toll on daily activities, mood, pain sensitivity, and overall health. Some of the many causes of excessive weight gain and obesity include:
- Behavioral dietary patterns
- Little to no exercise
- Side effects of certain medications
- Genetics, etc. .
However, one of the many benefits of Cannabidiol (CBD) is its ability to help prevent obesity, while promoting weight loss and a healthy appetite.
So what is CBD and how does it promote weight loss and a healthy diet?
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol or CBD is a phytocannabinoid that naturally occurs in the cannabis sativa plant. It is the second most prominent cannabinoid among over 100 cannabinoids naturally present in the cannabis plant, with Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) being the most prominent.
The metabolism and CBD
There are numerous studies on CBD and its amazing therapeutic properties. It’s an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antispasmodic, anti-depressant, antipsychotic, etc. And now, more exciting research indicates that CBD can, in fact, promote weight loss and curb addictive carbohydrate cravings.
In a 2016 study, published in the Scientific Journal of Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, researchers noticed that CBD directly affects the metabolism in three different ways. The first, they noticed that CBD triggers the genes and proteins that impact the breakdown of fat cells. Second, CBD increases the activity and number of cellular mitochondria –– the ability to take in nutrients from the cell, which then breaks them down and turns them into energy. And finally, CBD decreases the division of fat cells by reducing the proteins that help create new fat cells throughout the body.
This study suggests that CBD effectively helped in “inducing the brown-like phenotype as well as promoting lipid metabolism.” In other words, CBD can potentially help turn white fat into brown fat which ultimately helps enhance weight loss .
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) helps CBD interact within our body. And it’s within our ECS that several metabolic functions are connected –– the balance of energy, nutrients, appetite, gastrointestinal tract (GI), etc. The ECS also helps trigger these metabolic functions through two of our body’s naturally produced endogenous cannabinoids, 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) and anandamide. It’s with these cannabinoids that the CB1 and CB2 interact together. When the ECS is overactive, the CB1 receptors that reside in various parts of the body — including the brain, skeletal muscle, fat (adipose), and organs — are also activated which induces obesity, glucose uptake in fat cells, and a resistance to insulin in the muscle [4,5].
However, when CBD is consumed, it indirectly helps the body create additional endocannabinoids. This allows the CB1 and CB2 receptors that exist throughout the body to be more susceptible to our natural endocannabinoids. In this same study, CBD helped in treating the overstimulation of the CB1 receptors, concluding that CBD is a CB1 antagonist, which helps in weight loss and a reduction in food intake .
Although more research is needed regarding CBD and weight loss, current studies demonstrate that CBD affects the metabolism by encouraging the breakdown and oxidization of fat. And it can help reduce food consumption when compared to two other cannabinoids –– THC and CBN .