CBD and depression, can cannabidiol help sufferers?

More and more scientific evidence confirms the effectiveness of cannabidiol (CBD) in alleviating the symptoms of depression.

Cannabidiol (CBD) intake may have benefits in treating depression. The main non-psychoactive active ingredient of the cannabis plant, in fact, is able to exert a positive effect on serotonin receptors, helping to stabilize serotonin levels.

According to Istat data for 2018, some form of depression affects a good 2.8 million people. Furthermore, a particular incidence of depression in elderly people has been recorded every year. This is a considerable problem, a mental illness that many individuals struggle against every day.

There are many drugs that are used to treat depression; however, recently, many prefer to use CBD-based products to avoid the side effects of certain drugs. It has been shown by various scientific studies, in fact, that the action of cannabidiol on the endocannabinoid system of the human body has a positive effect.

Depression, cannabidiol (CBD) and myths to debunk

Over the years it has become common to associate serotonin deficiency as the only phenomenon responsible for the onset of the depressive syndrome. In the same way, we tend to simplify and call "depression" what is a set of extremely varied manifestations and symptoms that vary from person to person.

In this context, it has been observed, over the years, that cannabidiol and its "regulatory" function of the endocannabinoid system could play an important role as a therapeutic agent for those people suffering from depression.

In 2018, scientists at the University of Washington published a study of 1,400 patients who were given various types of cannabis (with different percentages of CBD and THC) and then recorded their effects on particular symptoms, including those typical of depression. The results were surprising. More than 50% of the volunteers perceived a decrease in depression. In particular, it was cannabis with a high cannabidiol content (CBD greater than 9%) and low THC (less than 5.5%) to obtain the best results.

CBD and depression

 

Scientific research on Depression and CBD

For many years, researchers at various universities are increasingly investigating the potential of cannabis in intervening on those people suffering from depression. In the study published in 2014 by researchers at the Institute of Psychiatry of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, it emerged that cannabidiol (CBD) has almost always demonstrated its efficacy on animal models to reduce the symptoms of anxiety and depression. The psychotherapeutic potential of cannabidiol is enormous, just think that CBD is able to dilute the most acute psychotropic effects of THC, the other famous active ingredient of the cannabis plant.

Even in recent times, the experiments carried out on animal models clearly indicate how promising the cannabidiol is to intervene on depression. There is still a long way to go and much research still needs to be done to shed light on the therapeutic potential of the cannabis plant.

December 16, 2019 — Chiara Lanza