The use of cannabidiol (CBD) health and wellness supplements is on the rise due to its therapeutic and medical benefits. It is found to be effective in the treatment of a wide variety of common ailments and is a better option than over the counter medications. As a result of this increased demand, manufacturers are bringing out newer cannabidiol products into the market and it can be quite confusing for a first time buyer. However, one of the common doubts among its users is about cannabidiol’s drug interaction and this article will attempt to clarify this doubt.
CBD’s Interaction With Medication And Drugs
Before delving into the details of CBD’s drug interactions, it is important to be aware of the fact that almost every substance including cannabidiol interacts with other substances in our body. They can be either the substances that we consume or those that are naturally produced by our body like hormones, neurotransmitters etc. So, even though it provides health benefits upon consumption, there are chances that it will interact with medicines or drugs and may produce adverse side effects.
When you consume cannabidiol (CBD) products for medical purposes it enters the bloodstream through the digestive system. It is then carried to the liver where it is metabolized by the group of enzymes Cytochrome P450 or CYP450. The useful metabolites become available for the endocannabinoid system (ECS). CBD is also known to inhibit the activity of CYP450 that is also responsible for the metabolism of other pharmaceutical drugs. This in turn can alter their effectiveness and might result in adverse side effects.
CBD Drug Interaction And Increased Risk Of Bleeding
It has been found that cannabidiol (CBD) increases the risk of bleeding when consumed along with medicines that are used for blood thinning or drugs that have the risk of blood thinning. This is because, as CBD reduces the effectiveness of the CYP450 liver enzyme, it prolongs the presence of these drugs in the body and their effects last longer than necessary. As a result, the blood thinning effect is exacerbated, increasing the potential risk of bleeding. So, you must consult with your physician before consuming CBD if you are using such types of medicines.
Interaction Of CBD With Sedatives
Most of the cannabinoids like THC and CBD interact with the neurotransmitters of the central and peripheral nervous system. This is the reason for their psychoactive and psychotropic effects. However, cannabidiol (CBD) induces alertness and calming effect. It has been found that when consumed along with sedatives, cannabinoids have an additive effect i.e. increases the sedation. So, you must keep this point in mind if you are already consuming medicine that has potential sedation as a side effect.
Interaction Of CBD With Anti Seizure Medicines
One of the major CBD health benefits is its anti-seizure properties and this happens at high concentrations of cannabidiol; low doses do not produce this effect. But under certain conditions, it is found to produce adverse side effects when used along with anti-seizure medications. Because cannabidiol reduces the activity of CYP450 metabolic liver enzymes, it prolongs the presence of clobazam and its active metabolite norclobazam. This will result in more aggressive seizures as a side effect. So, if you are consuming any anti seizure medications, you must consult with your doctor before consuming any type of CBD products.
Interaction Of CBD With Chemotherapy Drugs
According to research, cannabidiol (CBD) has good anticancer effects and is thought to prevent the development of oncogenesis if consumed daily. It is also useful for managing chronic pain that is usually experienced by these patients. Apart from this, CBD helps to alleviate the discomforts, improve appetite, manage weight loss and thereby improve overall health when consumed by chemotherapy patients. However, even here CBD reduces the effectiveness of CYP450 metabolic enzymes and this can affect chemotherapy drugs.
Chemotherapy treatment is specifically formulated for each individual, depending on the time for each drug to be metabolised. It is very fine-tuned such that anything that interacts with the metabolism will undo the effectiveness of the treatment. So, when you use CBD, it can result in these drugs remaining far longer in the body and may cause undesirable side effects. Therefore, you must consult with the oncologist before using CBD for its therapeutic, as well as anti-cancer benefits.
Drugs That Can Possibly Interact With Cannabidiol (CBD)
Alprazolam, Amiodarone, Atorvastatin, Carbamazepine, Cilostazol, Clarithromycin, Colchicine, Dronedarone, Erythromycin, Felodipine, Fentanyl, Fentanyl transdermal system, Fexofenadine, Indinavir, Loratadine and Losartan are some of the drugs that can interact with CBD. These are not the only drugs that can interact with CBD but are some of the most commonly prescribed ones. So if you are using any of these drugs, you are to avoid consuming CBD.
On a final note, before consuming cannabidiol (CBD) for any ailment, it is important to consult with your physician to know about the possible side effects and drug interactions of CBD.