There’s a lot of interest around CBD oil and it’s perceived health benefits and some say it works well as a hangover cure.
At the time of writing, only one CBD product is medically licensed by the FDA to treat two rare forms of epilepsy.(1)
Additionally in the UK, it’s licensed for the treatment of nausea caused by chemotherapy.(2)
That said, you’ll find countless CBD oil products marketed for a myriad of different health conditions that are, until now, unproven.
In this article, we’re going to take a closer look at whether CBD oil has any benefits for a hangover.
Hangover symptoms and causes
Hangovers are caused by drinking too much. Or in other words, more alcohol than your body can handle.
Ultimately, this results in the following common symptoms:
- Nausea and vomiting
- lack of energy and focus
- muscle aches
- Agitation and anxiety
Now that we’ve got the basics out the way, let’s take a closer look at whether CBD can help any of these hangover symptoms.
CBD or Cannabidol is one of over 100 compounds extracted from the marijuana plant. But CBD has no “psychoactive” properties and doesn’t get you “high”.(3)
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the main psychoactive cannabinoid found in the marijuana plant and causes the sensation of getting “high”. And CBD oil does not contain any THC.
CBD is gaining momentum in the health and wellness sector because some research papers have shown that it can reduce pain, settle nausea and help with anxiety.
As mentioned above, some of these symptoms are synonymous with a hangover.
Pain and inflammation
CBDs works on your body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is involved in regulating a variety of functions including sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response.
Your body naturally produces endocannabinoids, which are neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors in your nervous system.
Studies have shown that CBD may help reduce chronic pain by impacting endocannabinoid receptor activity, reducing inflammation and interacting with neurotransmitters.This has been studied in conditions like multiple sclerosis and arthritis.(4)
The NHS mention that although there is some evidence, it is not strong enough to recommend it for pain releif(2)
CBD has been researched extensively for its use as an anti-sickness remedy. It’s thought to work by indirectly acting on the 5-HT (serotonin) system in the brain as well as directly on CB1 (cannabinoid receptor) in the gut.(3)
Currently, it’s only licensed for use in chemotherapy-induced nausea if first-line drugs haven’t worked.
CBD use in anxiety disorders is another area of interest for researchers and has shown promise in studies.
For example, one recent study in 72 individuals found improved anxiety and sleep scores after CBD use.(4)
That said, the current research around this topic is not robust and review articles by scientists mention that a lot more research needs to be done to further elucidate CBD’s role in anxiety.(5)
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Is CBD a hangover cure?
Before we start this section, it’s important to mention that a true “hangover cure” doesn’t exist and the only reliable way to achieve this is to not drink in the first place.
At the time of writing, there are no studies that look into CBD oil as a hangover cure directly. CBD’s potential anti-sickness and pain-reducing properties could have benefits when hungover. However, any evidence is currently anecdotal and not backed by research.
You could always try CBD oil and see if it helps, but it’s important to be aware of side-effects which we will cover next.
Are there any side effects?
The problem is, CBD oil is produced around the world with varying levels of quality and purity. As a customer, it can be hard to tell whether the CBD oil you’re purchasing has passed the necessary quality standards.
The only products which have truly gone through the rigorous tests required are the ones licensed by regulatory bodies like the FDA or NHS. And unfortunately, these products are only available on prescription for the conditions mentioned earlier in this article.
There are some other common side effects from using CBD oil which could exacerbate hangover symptoms:
- feeling sick
- greater weakness
- feeling tired
CBD oil can also interact with medications and you should discuss taking it with your doctor before using it.
Wrapping things up
That brings us to the end of our look into CBD as a hangover cure.
CBD is one of many active ingredients extracted from cannabis and has been shown to have medicinal properties. Generally speaking, it’s still in its early days and a lot more research needs to be done to ensure its safety and effectiveness.
Hangovers are a sign from your body that you’ve probably been drinking more than your body can handle. Reducing the amount you drink, keeping well hydrated and having a meal before going out will do the trick for most.