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September 10, 2018

CBD & Psoriasis

CBD (otherwise known as cannabidiol) is a compound found in Cannabis & Hemp. Unlike THC, CBD is NOT psychoactive but researchers have discovered that CBD offers an exciting new approach for chronic skin conditions including Psoriasis & Eczema. According to a 2017 review from the University of Colorado, CBD has particular benefits for psoriasis which led them to conclude that CBD oil was “a promising treatment” for Psoriasis.

How does CBD work?

Both Psoriasis & Eczema are auto-immune disorders and strongly associated with the nervous system as stress tends to trigger or augment symptoms. CBD has powerful effecst on both our immune system and our nervous system and this explains why CBD has been shown to alleviate (and, in some cases, erradicate) symptoms.

CBD has been shown to produce multiple biochemical effects in your body including:

Anti-inflammatory: CBD reduces inflammation
Anti-oxidant: CBD is a powerful anti-oxidant
Anti-Neuropathic: CBD protects against neurodegenerative disorders
Anti-Proliferative: CBD stops rapid skin cell growth
Anti-olytic/Anti-depressant: CBD alleviates anxiety and depression disorders
Analgesic: CBD alleviates chronic pain

These effects occur as a result of CBD interacting with our bodies ‘endocannabinoid system’ (ECS). The ECS consists of endocannabinoids (cannabinoids produced by our bodies) and cannabinoid receptors which are found in nearly every cell in the body. The CB receptors are literally all over the skin and in our immune cells.

This explains why CBD reduces inflammation, as well as alleviating pain and itching. And it doesn’t just help Psoriasis and Eczema sufferers. CBD helps literally anyone who has dry, itchy, or sensitive skin.

The potent anti-inflammatory effects of CBD alone make it an ideal choice for any imflammatory condition but the reason why is is so beneficial for Psoriasis & Eczema sufferers is that it is a powerful anti-proliferative agent meaning that it inhibits the rapid skin cell growth. In addition it calms the nervous system, boosts the immune system and alleviates itching and pain.

Assessing the value of CBD in the treatment of psoriasis, researchers have focused on a number of different aspects:

Slowing cell growth

Some studies have revealed that CBD slow the rapid growth of keratinocytes, which are the immature skin cells that cause the red, scaly psoriasis lesions. The efficacy of CBD in inhibting rapid skin cell growth led researchers to conclude that CBD is “a potential effective treatment” for Psoriasis.

Pain relief

CBD is most renowned for its ability to alleviate pain. Some studies have found that CBD may be more effective than commonly prescribed opioids in controlling acute and neuropathic pain.

Balancing the immune response

Some other studies have demonstrated that CBD is an effective immunomodulator which reduces auto-immune responses and acts as an effective immunosuppressant and anti-inflammatory agent. This explains why CBD tends to reduce the severity of inflammation associated with so many health auto-immune disorders such as Crohn’s disease, Rheumatoid arthritis and Psoriasis, to name but a few.

Associated Symptoms

CBD oil for psoriasis can also help with other symptoms unrelated to the skin but which are nevertheless associated to the disorder. For example, people with psoriasis are more likely to suffer from anxiety, arthritis, insomnia (caused by pain and/or anxiety), and depression, and CBD has a positive effect on of these symptoms.

While most of the research has focused on the oral application of CBD, many psoriasis patients also us CBD oil topically, reporting that it helps controls the irritation and proliferation of speed irritations whilst reduces inflammation.

Future research on CBD for psoriasis

Due to the fact that CBD is still classed as a Schedule I substance under the United States Controlled Substances Act, research into its therapeutic uses is severely restricted. Researchers have to jump through hoops and appeal to numerous regulatory bodies to obtain approval which requires specialist help and is excessively expensive and very time-consuming. However, CBD is a legal substance in many countries which is why we are starting to see more research being carried out.

The next few years are extremely exciting in relation to the medicinal uses of CBD and the evidence suggests that it will become a valuable agent in the treatment of all autoimmune disorders including psoriasis and eczema.

How much CBD do you need?

Doses of CBD are based in milligrams and depend upon a person’s health, symptoms and their body weight. In terms of skincare, the following doses are recommended:

A mild strength dose is 0.1mg per lb of body weight.
A medium strength dose is 0.2mg per lb of body weight.
A high strength dose is 0.4mg per lb of body weight.

Therefore, an adult weighing 12 stone (168 lb), would require between 16.8mg – 67mg twice daily.

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Research:
(1) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828614/
(2) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27164964

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