Anecdotal evidence suggests that CBD may be able to support a variety of wellness concerns Foremost among these are joint discomfort, normal inflammation, and stress. However, CBD’s detractors cite several side effects that make the compound a less-than-attractive option to many Americans. One major purported side effect involves CBD and weight gain. But does CBD make you gain weight? In this post, we’ll explore the science behind that assertion as we attempt to discover the answer to the question: does CBD cause weight gain?
CBD and Weight Gain: The Connections
In contrast to popular opinion, CBD doesn’t actually appear to trigger weight gain. Instead, CBD (and its cannabinoid cousin THC) appears to have a complex relationship with weight gain and body mass. We’ll discuss the specifics below.
What Does Science Say?
One study, in particular, attempted to discover the connection between CBD and weight gain. The study attempted to assess the supposed side effects of CBD. One of these was weight gain.
In the study, researchers observed 214 patients. They gave patients either CBD or a placebo to determine the compound’s effects. At the end of the study, researchers discovered that 10 participants had lost weight, while 12 gained it.
This data seemed to suggest that CBD had no overall effect on overall weight gain. Researchers concluded that this was because weight gain resulted from a variety of factors. Since it’s difficult to pin down which factors can affect weight gain, this data was considered somewhat inconclusive.
However, researchers concluded that 32 of the study’s participants reported decreased appetite. In contrast to the study’s other results, these seemed conclusive. Since appetite is one of the main factors determining weight gain, this data suggests that CBD could actually help patients reduce their overall weight.
In another experiment (referenced by the same study), researchers discovered that CBD actually has a positive effect on insulin levels. Scientists discovered that CBD actually lowered levels of the hormone resistin. This hormone plays an important role in both obesity and Type 2 diabetes, indicating that CBD may actually lower a user’s chances of becoming obese.
Finally, it may actually help its users lose weight. Some data suggest that CBD can reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.
We’ve all heard about “emotional eating” before. When we feel bad, we eat to cope. But since it may be able to reduce daily stressors, it may help prevent emotional overeating. As a result, the compound could actually result in overall lower weight, albeit in a somewhat roundabout way.
THC and Weight Gain: The Munchies
Well, if it doesn’t cause weight gain, then THC must be the culprit, right? After all, cannabis makes you hungry. We already mentioned that appetite is a core component of body weight. So that means THC must make you gain weight!
Not so fast. It’s true that research does provide a link between THC and increased appetite. But data doesn’t exactly connect the increased appetite from THC with weight gain.
Although THC may boost appetite, it isn’t always associated with weight gain. Studies show that chronic cannabis consumers aren’t statistically heavier than non-users. In other words, cannabis may make you eat more. But it doesn’t increase your body mass.
Researchers have several theories for why this happens. For example, some believe that food and drugs may compete for access to the body’s reward pathways. In contrast, others believe THC may act as a “regulatory agent,” helping underweight individuals gain weight while keeping overweight individuals leaner.
Ultimately, scientists note that we need more research to determine the cause of this phenomenon.
Stock Up on CBD
If you’ve always wanted to try it, but you’re afraid of falling victim to the munchies, relax. Many patients can safely dabble in CBD without causing weight gain. And anecdotal evidence suggests that it may help patients alleviate a variety of severe, chronic symptoms.
Want to take a deep dive into the world CBD? You’re in the right place. Check out this expansive inventory of CBD oils, topicals, and more. With countless items to choose from, you’ll be able to find the perfect product to suit your needs.