If you’ve landed here, you are probably wondering, is CBD oil good for MS?
While we will try to tackle this subject today, it’s important to begin by stating that CBD oil is not a medicine, nor is it a recognised treatment for multiple sclerosis.
So why are people recommending CBD oil for MS?
Cannabis oil is very rarely prescribed in the UK.
However, it may be prescribed as a treatment for rare forms of epilepsy or to help manage the side effects of cancer treatment, including nausea and vomiting.
In exploring treatment for multiple sclerosis, cannabinoids have been found to be helpful for treating muscle pain and spasms.
This might lead many to wonder, can hemp oil help with MS?
But there is a crucial distinction between medical cannabis and CBD available to purchase.
CBD oil is derived from the cannabis plant, but it does not contain the same compounds as cannabis oil. Crucially, CBD oil must be low in THC for it to be sold legally in the UK.
Prescription cannabis oil is not restricted in the same way.
So, why do people suffering from MS turn to CBD oil?
Quite simply, it is similar to taking a multivitamin supplement to support your health. If you are interested in supporting your health with cannabinoids, CBD oil may help.
What's in this Guide?
What is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is extracted from industrial hemp plants, which are naturally low in THC. It is one of more than 100 cannabis-derived cannabinoids that have been identified so far.
CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, which is a system of neurotransmitters and receptors found in the central and peripheral nervous systems.
We don’t yet fully understand how the endocannabinoid system works, but it is thought to play a role in maintaining homeostasis.
Since individuals can use cannabis oil to treat the symptoms of MS, some CBD retailers are keen to cash in on the association. However, it’s important to remember that even cannabis oil isn’t a cure for MS, and CBD oil is not the same as cannabis oil.
Anyone selling CBD oil as a treatment for MS is breaking the law and should be avoided.
However, CBD does have its place and can support a healthy lifestyle alongside traditional MS medication.
What Is Multiple Sclerosis (MS)?
Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease.
This means that the body’s immune system is overactive and attacks itself. When the immune system attacks the nervous system, it causes damage to a protective layer called the myelin sheath.
When the myelin sheath is damaged, it leaves scarring, which interrupts messages travelling along the nerves.
This can lead to a wide range of symptoms affecting vision, speech, movement, sensation and balance.
MS is a lifelong condition that is more common in men than women. It is usually diagnosed in your 20s and 30s, although it can develop at any stage in life.
Symptoms of MS include:
- Difficulty walking
- Vision problems
- Numbness and tingling
- Bladder control issues
- Muscle stiffness and spasms
- Balance and coordination problems
- Brain fog
MS doesn’t affect everyone in the same way.
Symptoms can progress in one of two ways. With relapsing-remitting MS, symptoms come and go with gradual progression. With primary progressive MS, the symptoms gradually worsen.
What Treatments Are Available For MS?
There is currently no cure for MS, but there are treatments available to help manage the symptoms.
Treatments could include:
- Steroid medicine to speed up recovery following a relapse
- Treatments to reduce the number of relapses
- Disease-modifying medicines to slow or reduce the condition
In addition to these treatments, it’s essential for those living with MS to take care of their health. Those living with MS may find they get exhausted quickly, so self-care is very important.
It’s against the law to recommend CBD oil for primary progressive MS or relapsing-remitting MS either as a treatment or cure. Be wary of any CBD retailers offering a miracle ‘cure’ for all your symptoms.
How Can CBD Oil Help with MS?
CBD oil is not a treatment for MS, but it can help maintain a sense of wellness. CBD oil is a popular form of self-care and may be useful alongside a healthy diet and regular exercise to help lessen the symptoms of MS.
Since CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, this could pave the way for research into the role of homeostasis and immune response with MS.
People living with MS are often advised to take a multivitamin that includes the following vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamin C to bolster the immune system
- Vitamin B6 to help maintain energy levels
- Calcium to help synthesise vitamin D
- Vitamin B12 to help maintain energy levels
- Selenium and zinc, which may be low in MS sufferers
The best way to think about CBD is as an extra daily supplement to help those living with MS maintain a healthy lifestyle.
CBD often contains other beneficial compounds, including terpenes and flavonoids.
These are compounds found in many fruits, vegetables and plants. They offer a range of benefits, including anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
Is CBD Oil Safe?
CBD oil is safe for most people. According to the World Health Organisation, “CBD is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile.”
However, if you are taking other medication for MS, it’s worth checking if this will interact with CBD.
A good rule of thumb is to look for the “grapefruit warning”. If your medication advises against drinking grapefruit juice before or after, there is a good chance it will interact with CBD.
If you’re wondering about using CBD oil for MS, dosage guidelines are not very easy to find. Since CBD is not a recognised treatment for MS, there have been no trials into the optimum CBD oil dosage for MS.
The FSA recommends that individuals do not exceed more than 70mg of CBD per day. Therefore, we recommend starting with a low-dose CBD oil and slowly building up your dosage while never exceeding the FSA’s daily recommended amount.
Is CBD Oil Legal?
Yes, CBD oil is legal, provided it contains no THC.
A reputable CBD seller will be transparent about the origins and contents of their products so you can shop with confidence. Ask to see the certificate of analysis if you have your doubts.
Anyone selling CBD as a cure for MS or offering to sell you medical cannabis is breaking the law. They could be lying about the contents, or they could be selling you an illegal product.
If you plan to travel overseas, always check that CBD is legal in the destination country and any countries you will pass through during your travels. And if in doubt, leave your CBD at home.