The disease causes damage to the inner lining of the large intestine, which may lead to frequent bowel movements. Ulcerative colitis commonly affects adults aged thirty to forty years old and generates up to $15 billion in government spendings on healthcare in the United States (1).
Some CBD supplements are formulated with herbs such as Aloe Vera, Boswellia serrata, and turmeric. You can also mix different herbal remedies on your own, but we first recommend consulting a doctor knowledgeable about complementary medicine before you start your first trials.
Causes & Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis
Current treatments for inflammatory bowel diseases are expensive and may have dangerous side effects when taken regularly. For this reason, many people have started to seek out alternative methods of treatment, with CBD standing at the forefront.
According to the National Institute of Health, CBD has both analgesic (pain-relieving) and anti-inflammatory effects on the gastrointestinal tract without causing intoxication.
Now that we’ve established CBD can help with ulcerative colitis, you’re probably wondering if it can have similar effects on Crohn’s disease. After all, this condition, too, belongs to the IBD group.
The effects of cannabis and cannabis oil on ulcerative colitis are uncertain, thus no firm conclusions regarding the effectiveness and safety of cannabis or cannabis oil in adults with active ulcerative colitis can be drawn. There is no evidence for cannabis or cannabis oil use for maintenance of remission in ulcerative colitis. Further studies with a larger number of participants are required to assess the effects of cannabis in people with active and inactive ulcerative colitis. Different doses of cannabis and routes of administration should be investigated. Lastly, follow-up is needed to assess the long term safety outcomes of frequent cannabis use.
The researchers evaluated whether cannabis or cannabis oil (cannabidiol) was better than placebo (e.g. fake drug) for treating adults with active ulcerative colitis or ulcerative colitis that is in remission. The researchers searched the medical literature extensively up to 2 January 2018.
To assess the efficacy and safety of cannabis and cannabinoids for the treatment of patients with UC.
The effects of cannabis and cannabidiol on UC are uncertain, thus no firm conclusions regarding the efficacy and safety of cannabis or cannabidiol in adults with active UC can be drawn.There is no evidence for cannabis or cannabinoid use for maintenance of remission in UC. Further studies with a larger number of patients are required to assess the effects of cannabis in UC patients with active and quiescent disease. Different doses of cannabis and routes of administration should be investigated. Lastly, follow-up is needed to assess the long term safety outcomes of frequent cannabis use.
Kinnucan says it’s possible that cannabis could help some patients with UC and not others. For those with UC that’s controlled by medication, she says there’s no reason to think adding cannabis would help. It’s never a good idea to replace approved medicines with cannabis. There’s a risk that cannabis could hide symptoms and encourage people to stop needed treatments.
Kinnucan says more doctors and patients should talk about cannabis, including how and why patients might be using it on their own. But for now, it’s difficult for doctors to know how to advise people with UC about how they might use cannabis safely. Studies of cannabis for inflammatory bowel diseases including UC are ongoing, so more data is coming.
There’s some evidence in mice suggesting that cannabis could help with inflammation. This has to do with certain receptors that respond to other cannabinoids our bodies make naturally. Cannabis also may slow the digestive tract. But it isn’t clear that smoking cannabis or taking it in a capsule fights the underlying inflammation in people with UC.
Mayo Clinic: “ Medical marijuana,” “Ulcerative Colitis,” “What are the benefits of CBD — and is it safe to use?”
In addition to whether it works, doctors and patients also have legal issues to consider when it comes to cannabis. CBD is federally legal as long as it contains only very low levels of THC, although the rules in particular states could change.