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- CBD and Osteoporosis: What the Research is Showing So Far!
CBD and Osteoporosis: What the Research is Showing So Far!
Osteoporosis can be a devastating condition that creates a host of daily struggles in a person’s life. This condition involves the bones of the body becoming brittle and weak, meaning that many of the daily tasks we take for granted can come with major risks of bone breaks.
But, it’s also a condition for which there is treatment. At the same time, scientists are exploring the potential that cannabidiol (CBD) has when it comes to managing osteoporosis symptoms, along with the progression of the disorder itself. So, with that said, we are going to take a closer look at the new research coming out on CBD for osteoporosis, and how you might be able to apply it to your life.
What is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a skeletal disorder resulting from a lack of bone mass, and/or the breaking down of bone tissue. Those who have osteoporosis have weak and brittle bones that consequently break far more easily than the average person, meaning that a fall can lead to broken bones. Osteoporosis is a disorder that requires that the patient is extremely careful with their daily movements, to avoid breaks caused by mishaps. Besides the vulnerability of the bones, the disorder can also lead to a lot of pain and difficulty with mobility.
Symptoms can take a while to appear after the disorder is well underway, as initially, the bone mass is mild enough to not affect a person’s day-to-day life. But, once the disorder has progressed, those with osteoporosis may experience:
- A reduction in height
- A stooped posture
- Bones that break easily
- Difficulty with mobility
- Chronic pain, particularly in the back
What are the Risk Factors Pertaining to Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis can affect anyone at any age, and sometimes it can be caused by a hereditary condition like osteogenesis imperfecta (glass bone disease), in which a person is born with brittle bones due to an inability to produce adequate amounts of type 1 collagen, which keeps the bones and teeth strong. Overall, however, osteoporosis is far more of a risk factor in the elderly than it is in the young, and thus, affects a much larger proportion of women – particularly white and Asian women – who become at greater risk with each year following menopause. This is because sex hormones play a role in maintaining bone mass, and following menopause, these hormones begin to decrease.
There are other factors that can increase the risk of osteoporosis. One is eating disorders, as the bones rely on nutrients in order to be strong. Generally maintaining low calcium levels in the body, as well as low vitamin D, can also lead to a loss of bone mass, as the bones depend on these nutrients.
How is Osteoporosis Treated?
Of course, if you are experiencing any of the symptoms of osteoporosis, such as frequently broken or fractured bones, changes in posture or chronic pain in the bones, you should see a specialist. A bone specialist can measure bone density using X-rays, in order to diagnose the condition.
Treatment is going to depend greatly on how advanced the disorder is. For those with only mild osteoporosis, this may revolve around changes in diet, such as getting in more calcium, and avoiding anything that can make osteoporosis worse, such as alcohol consumption. For those with more advanced osteoporosis, bisphosphonate medications may be prescribed which aim to reduce the breaking down of the bones.
How Can Osteoporosis be Prevented?
While there is no guaranteed way to prevent osteoporosis, there are some things you can do to reduce the risk of developing it later on.
- Consume the daily recommended amount of calcium
- Get adequate sun exposure to boost Vitamin D levels
- Refrain from consuming more than 2 alcoholic beverages each day
- Quit smoking
- Maintain a healthy bodyweight (those underweight are more likely to develop osteoporosis)
- Consume a generally balanced and nutrient-rich diet
- Incorporate weight-bearing exercise into your fitness routine
What Research Has Been Conducted on CBD for Osteoporosis?
As of now, there is only limited research on the link between CBD and osteoporosis. But, what we have seen so far looks very promising.
The reason why cannabidiol is suggested to have a positive impact on bone health is because of the endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) possesses cannabinoid receptors in the skeletal system, which use cannabinoids such as CBD to regulate important processes related to skeletal health and function.
Research has shown that this relationship can lead to regulating bone mass. In fact, preclinical trials showed promising results when CBD was tested on animals. More research found that CBD may have a positive influence on bone healing.
How Can Someone Use CBD for Osteoporosis?
As you can see, CBD is known for being natural, gentle, non-intoxicating, and highly accessible, meaning that it’s an easy choice for working into your routine. However, if you do have an interest in using CBD as part of your daily routine for bone health, here are sever things to consider.
- 1.Speak with Your Doctor: First off, it’s always important to talk to your doctor when it comes to anything related to your health. If you suspect that you have osteoporosis, you should seek out their guidance, rather than rely on CBD alone. Also, tell your doctor that you plan to take CBD, especially if you’re on any medications with which CBD may interact by binding up CYP3A4 – an enzyme that breaks down medications in the body.
- 2.Begin a Daily Routine: It’s always ideal to take CBD daily, as this can offer the most substantial support to the endocannabinoid system which regulates skeletal function. The more consistently you take cannabidiol, the better.
- 3.Take an Effective Amount: Make sure that you’re taking a product with an effective milligram strength of CBD, as potency levels can vary a lot. We recommend taking at least 25mg daily as a beginner, and then working your way up as desired and tolerated.
- 4.Opt for a Reputable Retailer: Lastly, make sure you’re buying your CBD from a reputable retailer, as sadly, there is a lot of low-quality stuff out there. Find a company that does lab-testing, and also has lots of positive reviews.