If you’re anything like me, you’d find this an irksome question.
Why not ask—can vodka-infused sawdust treat COVID?
Can a squirrel’s guts treat COVID?
Can praying treat COVID?
What’s the foundation of this question? What sparked this flame? You’ll find the answers, in the next 5 minutes.
The Latest Research Fuelling The ‘CBD For COVID’ Hype
A team of researchers from the University of Chicago wondered how CBD would act on SARS-CoV-2 in a lab dish.
They checked and found that:
1. CBD prevents SARS-CoV-2 from infecting cells.
2. CBD didn’t block the virus from entering human epithelial cells.
3. However, CBD curtailed the pathogen’s ability to make copies of itself.
4. CBD inhibited SARS-CoV-2 replication in mice.
5. Among 1,212 patients who had received CBD (100mg/mL) prescriptions to treat severe epileptic
seizures, the COVID infection rate was 6.2%.
6. In a comparison group (of people who had not consumed CBD), the infection rate was 8.9%.
7. This difference is significant.
The findings were published in Science Advances on 20 Jan 2022.
Can I simplify the chemistry for you? I’m afraid I can’t; I barely understood 20% of the science myself.
What I can do is, answer these questions:
- What’s the scientific significance of this laboratory observation?
- Have any other studies resulted in similar observations?
- CBD curtailed the infectious nature of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. CBD is good for your health. Then, should you consume CBD as COVID preventive self-medication?
- Should you trust a CBD product that claims to prevent or treat COVID?
- Can CBD boost your immunity, and fortify your body to resist infections?
What’s the scientific significance of this laboratory observation?
Remember the pandemonium about hydroxychloroquine? World leaders twisted arms to procure enough doses, anticipating its acceptance as a reliable COVID cure. It’s the same story now.
The study in question was done in a laboratory setting. That’s the thumbnail view. For any national medical body to endorse CBD as a cure for COVID, these findings will need to be verified in clinical trials. That’s the billboard view.
Who will fund this research?
Who will fund the trials?
Half the world’s population is already fully vaccinated; do we even need this research?
That’s me, being brutally honest. The hemp advocate in me hopes the reality will be different.
Perhaps an American hemp corporation will shake hands with a research consortium and fund this research.
Perhaps the clinical trials will establish CBD’s efficacy in curtailing the infection caused by SARS-CoV-2.
Perhaps world governments will legalize CBD, even if that’s a knee-jerk response. Perhaps…
Have any other studies made similar observations?
Researchers at Israel’s Rabin Medical Center are trying to test CBD’s effects in critically ill patients.
Researchers at Sheba Medical Center in Israel are testing CBD in patients with mild COVID; results are awaited.
Researchers in Brazil, in October 2021, tested CBD on COVID patients but didn’t observe any apparent positive effects.
Researchers at Oregon State University and Oregon Health & Science University found that two cannabinoids found in cannabis—CBGA and CBDA—could bind to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein in lab dishes. This curtails infections.
Results from all these studies are either unclear, inconsequential, or in want of clinical corroboration.
All we can say is that with adequate funding, we’d want to explore further, hoping to answer whether CBD can prevent and cure COVID.
Should you consume CBD as preventive self-medication?
Marsha Rosner is the senior author of the main study I explained earlier. I’m reproducing her words because she’s answered our question unequivocally.
“The last thing we would like to see is for someone to say, ‘I’m going to go out and take CBD,’ and say, ‘I’m not going to get vaccinated, I’m not going to get boosted, I’m going to take off my mask.’”
The short answer: No, you can’t consume CBD as preventive self-medication against COVID.
Should you trust a CBD product that claims to prevent or treat COVID?
Before this, some facts:
- In all countries, including the USA, laws around CBD use are evolving, and extremely complicated.
- Pharma companies can’t claim that a product is effective in preventing or treating COVID-19, without FDA approval, in the USA.
- Central health authorities of nations forbid private companies from making similar vague or false claims.
This doesn’t mean that you won’t encounter a product claiming to be a COVID cure based on a CBD formula. Pharma companies are infamous for tiptoeing around legal restrictions and selling millions worth of medicines before the FDA can enforce a restriction.
Cannabis industry commentators have expressed concerns that big pharma may leverage such research studies to shove ineffective CBD-based COVID-19 cures in the market. The FDA has already issued 13 warning letters to companies, demanding they stop selling their CBD products as COVID treatments.
Can CBD boost your immunity, and fortify your body to resist infections?
I can guarantee you: It does.
And, I could shovel research studies on you to prove this. Won’t do that, of course. Some fascinating facts, here. In clinical trial after clinical trial, researchers have observed that CBD:
Increases cells that kill viruses
CBD has been proven as an effective supporter of the human body’s natural killer (NK) cells, and natural killer T cells. For you, this means a stronger immune system.
Enhances the body’s healthy inflammatory response
CBD improves lung functions in animals and humans. For you, this means healthier lungs and a healthier overall respiratory system.
Maintains the health of gut microbiota
CBD enhances your body’s intestinal inflammatory response. Healthy intestines are instrumental for robust overall immunity.
I didn’t even scratch the surface. Really, CBD is godsent for your immunity.
Am I suggesting that CBD will prevent COVID-19? No.
Am I suggesting that CBD will bolster your immunity? Yes.
Perhaps, it’s useful to sever COVID-19 and CBD, even though this post is meant to be my considered opinion on the latest hype.
You didn’t stop praying, or meditating, or chanting mantras, or hoping for the best, only because these don’t work on coronavirus.
So, you’d not want to leave the scientifically proven health potential of CBD untapped.
Enhance your understanding of CBD.
Don’t fall for cunningly marketed COVID cure products.
Stay safe. Stay curious.
Feel free to share your feedback.