Preliminary research shows that the use of CBD has benefits for people suffering from diabetes. CBD may prevent certain complications, such as damage to the blood vessels. [1,2]. CBD may also be used in order to prevent diabetes.
Preventive use of CBD
Research has been performed with mice that develop diabetes as a result of a genetic cause. These mice normally develop insulitis after 4-5 weeks, and diabetes after 14 weeks . Insulitis is an inflammation of cells in the pancreas that normally produce insulin. Diabetes is the result of the destruction of these cells. In this study, mice were injected with 10 to 20 injections of CBD between week 6 and 12. 30% of the mice injected with CBD developed diabetes, compared to 86% of mice in the control group, which received no CBD. In addition, the mice injected with CBD who did develop diabetes did this later in time than the mice in the control group. In another study, similar results were observed. The researchers conclude that CBD may possibly play a role in preventing type 1 diabetes (and possibly other autoimmune diseases).
Complications of diabetes
Patients with diabetes are at risk for various eye conditions, including diabetic retinopathy (DR). DR could eventually lead to visual impairment and blindness. The longer someone has diabetes, the more likely it is he or she develops DR. Almost all patients that suffer from type 1 diabetes for twenty years have some form of DR. Half of the patients with type 2 diabetes who are insulin-dependent suffer from DR twenty years after their diagnosis with diabetes.
That CBD may have a beneficial effect on DR has been demonstrated by El Remessy and colleagues . Administrating a dose of CBD to rats (10mg/kg body weight) induces a number of bodily processes that counteract the development of DR. An important feature of DR is that changes occur in the blood vessels of the retina. CBD prevents the occurrence of these changes and thereby inhibits the development of DR. This study was performed on laboratory animals, so far there have been no studies on humans.
Advice for the use of CBD in diabetes
Research on animals suggests that CBD could contribute to the prevention of diabetes. CBD can therefore be used preventively, for example in the form of a Full Spectrum hemp oil. CBD may also help against certain complications that often accompany diabetes, such as DR. The dose which is shown to be effective in experimental animals is high (every other day 10mg/kg of body weight). What could be an effective dose in humans is not yet known. Click here to read more about safe use of cannabinoids.
- Liou, G., El-Remessy, A., Ibrahim, A., et al. (2009). Cannabidiol as a Putative Novel Therapy for Diabetic Retinopathy: A Posulated Mechanism of Action as an Entry Point for Biomarker-Guided Clinical Development. Curr Pharmacogenomics Person Med, 7(30): 215-222.
- Stanley, C.P., Wheal, A.J., Randall, M.D., O’Sullivan, S.E. (2013). Cannabionoids alter endothelial function in het Zucker rat model of type 2 diabetes. Eur J Pharmacol, 720: 376-82.
- Weiss, L., Zeira, M., Reich, S., Har-Noy, M., Mechoulam, et al. (2006). Cannabidiol lowers incidence of diabetes in non-obese diabetic mice. Autoimmunity, 39: 143-51.
- El-Remessy, A.B., Al-Shabrawey, M., Khalifa, Y., et al. (2006). Neuroprotective and blood-retinal barrier-preserving effects of cannabidiol in experimental diabetes. American Journal of Pathology, 168: 235-244