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CBD for Nausea: What Does the Science Say?


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When you’re nauseous, you can’t really think about anything else but the sweet, sweet relief that will come once that queasiness settles. The big question is whether or not CBD (cannabidiol) can help with nausea. Many seem to think so, and it’s been used in ancient Ayurvedic medicine for this very reason [1].  

There’s research examining the relationship between CBD and chemotherapy-induced nausea, finding a positive relationship between consuming CBD and reducing reported nausea after consumption. In fact, 83% of participants preferred cannabis to the placebo [2]. This positive correlation allows us to explore the possibilities of CBD for nausea outside of its use with chemotherapy.  

We want to be clear that the FDA hasn’t approved using CBD as a primary treatment for nausea and vomiting. However, scientific evidence and personal testimonies have demonstrated positive feedback on CBD for nausea. This article is for research purposes only, and we’re not recommending CBD products as a solution for nausea and vomiting. 

CBD for Nausea

A woman sit on her bed holding her chest with a face of nausea

According to researchers, CBD can help nausea, but isn’t one of the adverse side effects of CBD potential nausea? 

Technically, yes. And we’ll get into that. So, let’s dig deeper into the mechanisms of CBD and nausea.

Does CBD Help with Nausea?

Studies demonstrate  a positive relationship between consuming cannabis-derived products and reducing nausea [3]. 

Nausea relief can be a desirable effect for many people who experience nausea due to pain, food intolerances, anxiousness, motion sickness, infections, and medications. So, how does CBD do this? CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in psychological functions, which include nausea and vomiting. 

This endocannabinoid system interaction, coupled with the calming effects of CBD due to their targeting of serotonin receptors, may provide some relief

Can CBD Cause Nausea?

Wait, we just talked about how CBD may potentially help nausea, so how can CBD cause nausea? 

CBD dosage and CBD ratio play an important factor in this potential bummer of a side effect. Think of CBD like a nice chocolate cake. One slice is great! Two slices may even be a rewarding treat. Once you start to overeat, your body may not like it so much. 

High dosages of CBD may cause nausea, but this can depend on individual sensitivity. 

CBD products always have a dosage recommendation, and it's important to follow it —even if you think you have a higher tolerance, start low and monitor your body’s response to the dose. 

CBD Dosage for Nausea

As we mentioned, CBD dosage is crucial when approaching using CBD for nausea and vomiting. While dosage does vary from person to person and is dependent on several factors, such as weight, tolerance, and metabolism, we can still recommend a general guide to follow when taking CBD for nausea. 

We recommended starting low and gradually increasing, especially if you are new to CBD. Because nausea and vomiting are sensitive conditions and potentially worsened by the things you consume, approach your dosing carefully. When we say low, most people start around 5-10 mg of CBD

If you’re not new to CBD, then you may be aware that 5-10 mg is on the low end and may not be strong enough for you. Many of the products we recommend today offer 20-30 mg of CBD per serving, which is a moderate dose and more fitting for experienced CBD users.  

Although it would be nice if there were a once-size-fits-all dose, unfortunately, there isn’t. Determining the right dose depends on factors like your body weight, metabolism, the severity of nausea, and the concentration of the CBD product. 

CBD Ratio for Nausea

A lot of current studies that examine CBD’s effectiveness in reducing nausea include a combination of CBD and THC [3]. This ratio is important because too much CBD or too much THC may worsen nauseous symptoms rather than help them. 

Because THC and CBD interact, we recommend CBD products that contain both. This allows you to experience the entourage effect, which enhances the effects you can experience from each cannabinoid. 

If you live in a state where medical or recreational marijuana is legal, then you might benefit from a balanced ratio of 1:1 of CBD to THC to be more effective for severe nausea. The THC dose has psychoactive effects, which might also help distract you from the discomfort of nausea. However, many CBD products with balanced CBD and THC ratios are not accessible to everyone due to their legal status in many states. 

If you don’t live in a legal state, you can still benefit from a CBD product with a higher CBD to THC ratio as long as the THC content is less than 0.3% of the total concentration. This can also be an ideal ratio for someone who is feeling nauseous during the daytime when they need to be more clearheaded. 

Best CBD Products for Nausea

Neurogan CBD Tincture

A bottle of Neurogan CBD Tincture

Full spectrum CBD formulas can be great to consider when your body could benefit from calming effects. Many studies on CBD’s effect on nausea include THC, so most of our research promotes the combination of CBD and THC[3]. That’s why our CBD oil tincture uses full spectrum CBD extract, so you and your nausea can experience the entourage effect. 

If you are suffering from severe nausea, you may be seeking quick relief. Since not all CBD products have the same onset time, it’s important to choose one with a quicker onset time, like a tincture. A few drops of our highly potent CBD oil, and you can anticipate feeling the effects of up to 200 mg of CBD as soon as fifteen minutes.  

FOCL Full Spectrum Drops

A jar of FOCL Full Spectrum Drops

FOCL’s Daily Calm Full Spectrum Drops include an additional element that can make this a good addition to your nausea toolkit, mint. Mint essential oils have been shown to have anti-nausea effects [4]. 

They offer two different dosages, one at a moderate dose of 33 mg of CBD per dropper and the other with 100 mg of CBD per dropper. This can be great for a wide range of customers to choose what is best for their tolerance.

Alchemy Naturals Broad Spectrum CBD Gummies

A pouch of Alchemy Naturals Broad Spectrum CBD Gummies

CBD gummies can be a good option for acute and anticipatory nausea. 

For example, if I know that I’m going to be riding in a car for a long time, then I can try to prevent motion sickness ahead of time. Since it may take an hour for you to feel its effects, it won't be the best option if you are trying to reduce nausea quickly. 

Alchemy Naturals broad spectrum CBD gummies are great for exactly that. Also, it’s important to us that we provide a recommendation that doesn’t include THC since not everyone wants to consume it.

Neurogan CBD Gummies

A bottle of Neurogan CBD Gummies

Our CBD gummy squares offer high potency with the option to order our bottle with 120 mg of CBD per square. We also have a variation with 45 mg per square. The great thing about gummies is that you can always eat half of a gummy if you want to reduce the dosage. 

But with our full spectrum blend, you can really enhance your CBD experience with the robust effects that come with stronger doses of CBD, which you may want when feeling severe nausea. Plus, full spectrum CBD offers other potential benefits too for discomfort, which may indirectly help with nausea if pain is causing your nausea.

Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil Capsules

A box and bottle of Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil Capsules

CBD capsules have a similar onset time to gummies, so they’re a good option for anticipatory nausea, whether that be a car ride, rollercoaster ride, or any other nausea-inducing task. 

Charlotte’s Web CBD oil capsules offer 25 mg of full spectrum hemp extract. If you think 25 mg per capsule is too strong for you, they also have an option for 15 mg of CBD per capsule. Capsules can also be convenient to carry with you, although you’ll have to wait some time to feel the effects. 

CBDistillery Full Spectrum Softgel

A bottle of CBDistillery Full Spectrum Softgel

CBDistillery full spectrum softgels provide 30 mg of CBD per softgel. CBDistillery is another trusted brand in the space with a reputation for quality products. Sometimes one brand doesn’t have the exact mg dose you’re looking for, so you might want to research between brands to see what they carry. This is another great option. 

The Takeaway: CBD for Nausea

The cannabis plant has been used to support health in many cultures for a long time. 

While we’re now starting to evaluate its role in modern healthcare, many people who like to approach their health with a holistic approach may be able to benefit from the benefits CBD products have to offer. 

Remember that nausea and vomiting can be a sign of something more serious going on, so it’s important to monitor your symptoms and discuss your condition with a healthcare professional. Toxin-induced nausea should especially be observed closely. 

Discuss dosages and tailored advice with a healthcare provider to determine what is best for you in your approach to nausea management.

References:

  1. Crocq, M. A. (2020). History of cannabis and the endocannabinoid system. Dialogues in clinical neuroscience, 22(3), 223-228.
  2. Grimison, P., Mersiades, A., Kirby, A., Lintzeris, N., Morton, R., Haber, P., ... & Stockler, M. (2020). Oral THC: CBD cannabis extract for refractory chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting: a randomised, placebo-controlled, phase II crossover trial. Annals of Oncology, 31(11), 1553-1560.
  3. Stith, S. S., Li, X., Orozco, J., Lopez, V., Brockelman, F., Keeling, K., ... & Vigil, J. M. (2022). The effectiveness of common cannabis products for treatment of nausea. Journal of clinical gastroenterology, 56(4), 331-338.
  4. Parker, L. A., Rock, E. M., & Limebeer, C. L. (2011). Regulation of nausea and vomiting by cannabinoids. British journal of pharmacology, 163(7), 1411-1422.
  5. Tayarani-Najaran, Z., Talasaz-Firoozi, E., Nasiri, R., Jalali, N., & Hassanzadeh, M. (2013). Antiemetic activity of volatile oil from Mentha spicata and Mentha × piperita in chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Ecancermedicalscience, 7, 290. https://doi.org/10.3332/ecancer.2013.290
BY
Dr. James Hook

Chiropractic Degree, Life Chiropractic College West Dr. James graduated Magna Cum Laude with a doctorate of Chiropractic degree from Life Chiropractic College West. James grew up in Bozeman, Montana, where he started playing sports at a young age, which sparked his interest in human anatomy and ...


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