CBD and Turmeric: What Are the Benefits?

Rising awareness of natural remedies and treatments has led to CBD oil and turmeric is an increasingly popular area of discussion.

Turmeric has long been known for its anti-inflammatory properties and has been used medicinally for years. On the other hand, CBD and research about its possible benefits are just emerging.

Products in the market are now selling a combination of the two. Read on to learn more about its possible benefits.

Turmeric

Turmeric is a root-derived from the Curcuma Longa plant, native to the Indian subcontinent. It has a long history of both culinary and medicinal uses. In its natural form, it has an earthy taste and is a deep golden color. There are over 100 different compounds present in turmeric, these are known as curcuminoids. The most notable curcuminoid of these is curcumin.

Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric, responsible for its anti-inflammatory effects. As the bioavailability of curcumin (the rate your body absorbs it) is fairly low, some recommend black pepper to increase absorption. According to one clinical trial, black pepper might be able to increase absorption by 2000%.

Turmeric has connections to both traditional Ayurvedic medicine as well as some healing traditions in many other Asian countries. Turmeric is one of the best-studied natural remedies, in fact, it has over 3000 publications to date. In combination with CBD, turmeric might also be able to help with issues such as pain, anxiety and stress.

CBD

CBD (also known as cannabidiol) is a naturally occurring compound. It is derived from the cannabis plant and makes up one of over 60 unique cannabinoid compounds. CBD and THC (another cannabinoid) have gained widespread popularity for both recreational and medicinal use. While research looks promising for both, there is still much discovery to be made about its interactions.

Cannabinoids like CBD and THC act on our endocannabinoid system, or ECS for short. Every mammal has an ECS, which is composed of both endocannabinoid and cannabinoid receptors. CB1 and CB2 receptors located in various regions of the body interact with endocannabinoids (produced by the body) to modulate our reactions to stress and inflammation. Interactions with these receptors are thought to be why CBD and THC cannabinoids produce therapeutic effects, though more research is needed to understand this interaction.

There is a common misconception that CBD is the same as THC. The two are very different. THC has often been associated with psychoactive effects, and as a result, higher risks of psychosis. On the other hand, CBD does not produce any psychoactive effects and is mostly associated with research looking into possible medicinal uses.

What does the research say?

The use of turmeric and CBD oil combined products are not heavily studied, however, the two have very similar benefits.

Anti-inflammation

One thing CBD and turmeric have in common is their possible effects on inflammation. Inflammation within the body is a necessary function, however, chronic inflammation can cause pain, swelling and is linked to other chronic conditions. Inflammation has been associated with long-term problems, such as diabetes, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s.

According to a research journal published in 2020, CBD oil may have anti-inflammatory properties. By acting on CB1 and CB2 receptors in the ECS, CBD is said to reduce the activity of immune cells known for causing swelling and inflammation. Research in this area is lacking, however, and the connection is not yet clear.

There is plenty of research about turmeric and its anti-inflammatory effects. One review published in 2017 noted that the use of curcumin could help alleviate symptoms in patients with rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis. According to the review, curcumin may also be helpful for individuals with metabolic syndrome; a cluster of conditions that occur together.

Both may have anti-inflammation properties, however, more research on how they interact with each other is needed to know for sure.

Anxiety

One of the most common reasons why people use CBD is for the alleviation of anxiety. Studies show that CBD might be able to reduce symptoms of anxiety. In a randomized control trial, 24 volunteers rated their anxiety while doing a simulated public speaking task. In individuals given CBD, they had significantly lower anxiety, cognitive impairment and discomfort in comparison to the control group. CBD may help alleviate anxiety, but more research regarding this interaction is necessary.

Turmeric is not usually associated with anxiety relief; however, recent studies show that it may be beneficial. A randomized control trial in 2015 looked at the effects of curcumin on depression and anxiety in 30 individuals. Participants who were given 1g/day of curcumin had significantly reduced anxiety scores. They also noted that there was no significant impact on depression scores. Turmeric may have anxiety-relieving properties, but this connection needs more research to be clear.

CBD and turmeric

The benefits of curcumin are one of the most studied. On the other hand, CBD is a cannabinoid that is fairly new to the clinical world and while there have been some studies bolstering the benefits of CBD, it is still in its early stages and more investigation is needed.

Currently, there is no research regarding CBD’s interaction with turmeric. While there is some research on possible anti-inflammatory effects, how they work with each other is not known. Many compounds can have blunting effects on one another. So, while we can make speculations about how they may work, the effects of CBD and turmeric may be more or less effective when taken together.

Turmeric CBD oil may be a beneficial treatment in a range of areas and hopefully, there will be more research looking into their interactions in the future.

Selecting quality turmeric CBD oil

It is important to carefully research before buying any products, as low-quality CBD oil may do more harm than good.

Some things to think about before making a selection:

COA

COA stands for Certificate of Analysis (COA), which will indicate that it has no more than 0.3% THC. Trustworthy companies will usually have this certification, though this is just one example. A COA is important as it indicates how the hemp was grown and the lab quality checks. Preferably, lab checks are done by a third party rather than in-house, as results are more trustworthy.

Free of contaminants

Cannabis is a well-known bio-accumulator. This means that it will easily absorb any chemicals or heavy metals in its environment while it’s grown. It’s best to be sure that there are no pesticides or chemicals used while growing their hemp for this reason. Standard and trusted quality checks such as a COA from a third party are the best way to go.

Company reputation

As well as the production end, a company should have a clean slate as far as its reputation goes. FDA warning letters and lawsuits are a big red flag, so only purchase from companies that are up-to-date and compliant with the law. A quality company will also be transparent about where and how their hemp is grown.

How to use turmeric CBD oil

Turmeric CBD oil can be taken sublingually, similarly to that of CBD tinctures. According to one systematic review, when taken sublingually (under the tongue), CBD delivery was one of the fastest absorbed compared to other methods (pharmacokinetics). This is due to compounds being absorbed by sublingual veins, whereas CBD capsules are often limited by digestion and metabolism by the liver before they can be absorbed. The bioavailability of CBD and turmeric is very low, meaning that it takes longer for the body to absorb. Both CBD and curcumin are lipophilic and a fat-rich meal may help increase their absorption.

Shake the bottle before you use your turmeric CBD oil to ensure that the contents are mixed well and that the consistency is ideal. For maximum absorption, it is recommended to hold the turmeric CBD oil under your tongue for 30 seconds to a few minutes before swallowing. When taken sublingually you can feel the effects of CBD oil within 15 minutes, though this will vary from person to person.

Safety and side effects

According to the World Health Organization, CBD is generally “well tolerated with a good safety profile,” but some may experience the following side effects.

  • Fatigue
  • Diarrhea
  • Changes in appetite
  • Changes in weight
  • Nausea

People who take too much curcumin may also experience the following.

  • Diarrhea
  • Rash
  • Headache
  • Nausea

Many of the side effects mentioned may be due to interactions between CBD and various medications. If you are currently taking any prescription medication, it is always recommended to speak to your doctor before trying CBD.

The bottom line

Turmeric is a long-standing and trusted anti-inflammatory that has been used for centuries. CBD and turmeric may have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects when used together, however, research on the interaction between turmeric and CBD is limited.

The use of CBD turmeric oil is still in its early stages, so it’s important to shop from reputable and trustworthy stores.

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