Some medical experts believe CBD can help manage the symptoms of the common cold and flu.
As we enter into winter cold and flu season, it’s time to stock up on remedies to help when you’re under the weather. With all the buzz around cannabidiol (CBD), should you consider adding CBD as part of your home remedy cold/flu kit to help relieve symptoms such as a sore throat, stuffy nose, and body pain?
According to Philip Blair, M.D., the answer is unequivocally yes. “Flu causes inflammation throughout the body,” Blair says. “CBD helps control the inflammation and reduce the symptoms we experience. In addition, CBD helps with the aches and pains as well as speeding recovery.” Furthermore, CBD can help you get to sleep and stay asleep, a benefit given how your sleep cycle is often altered when you get sick.
Be mindful that your body may react differently to CBD when you’re ill. For example, if you tend to get fatigue, headaches, dizziness, stomach pain or the chills when using CBD, then odds are these symptoms will be exacerbated when you’re sick. If you haven’t tried CBD before, consider waiting to see how CBD responds to your body once the cold or flu subsides.
How to Best Consume CBD if You’re Sick
So far there isn’t any evidence that smoking CBD while you have a cold, the flu, or a cough is unsafe. But if your lungs and throat are already irritated, smoking may aggravate these symptoms. If you enjoy smoking, consider vaping when you’re sick as vaping does not produce the same throat and lung irritations that one gets from smoking. Be mindful while you’re contagious not to spread your illness by sharing your bong, bowl, preroll, or vape pen.
To be on the safe side, consider taking CBD as capsules or tinctures along with your other cold/flu medication. Topicals can help ease the pain caused by excessive coughing, along with the other aches and pains that accompany a cold or flu.
So far there’s been no serious risk of using CBD with over the counter (OTC) medications. Bear in mind that OTC medications have sedative effects, which can make you drowsy. Other side effects from these medications include blurry vision, loss of balance, dry mouth, and heart rate alterations. There’s a possibility that combining CBD and OTC could increase these side effects more so than if you used these products separately.
Come Back Daily Co-Founder Steven Phan reminds consumers that the evidence that CBD can be an effective cure for winter ailments remains anecdotal.
“Although CBD has been shown to be a very capable antioxidant just like vitamins and can help relieve aches and pains as well as induce more sleep, there are no published studies investigating the effects of CBD as a go-to cure for colds or the flu,” he says.