There are more than a handful of benefits typically associated with hemp and CBD. And although there isn’t enough research to draw any conclusions just yet, patrons and enthusiasts of the hemp herb cling to overwhelming anecdotal evidence to support their use.
One of the emerging advantages of hemp flower is its effect on weight. Some sources claim that the main active compound CBD can work to help you lose the extra pounds, while others allege that CBD might prompt weight gain. So what’s fact and what’s fiction? And does CBD really help with weight management? This article from Plain Jane tells us what we know so far about
CBD and weight management.
Can CBD Help You Lose Weight?
The precise science of how CBD works to support weight loss remains a mystery. But research has uncovered some of the ways that CBD might be able to help you shave off the pounds. These include:
A common concept of CBD is that it works to enhance a person’s appetite. Often referred to as the ‘munchies’, the sudden urge to eat more during the effect of cannabis use actually attributes as a result of THC. That said, the main active compound in legal hemp – CBD – has been found to provide the opposite effect.
Researchers have discovered that CBD helps to reduce a person’s desire to eat. One study in support of these findings used rats injected with CBD. The more CBD the specimen was given, the stronger the effects of appetite suppression. At present, however, there haven’t been any relevant or viable studies exploring the effects of CBD on appetite suppression in humans.
Fat Cell Metabolism
There are two main types of fat cells in the body. The first is called white fat, and this refers to fat cells that are stored in the body for later use as energy. White fat cells are commonly associated with various types of health conditions, like stroke, diabetes, and heart conditions.
On the other hand, there are brown fat cells. These cells are different from white cells in that they generate heat by burning calories. According to studies, individuals who fall within the proper BMI have more brown fat cells than white ones.
Studies have also found that people can convert white to brown by engaging in exercise, watching their diet, getting enough sleep, and even exposing their bodies to higher temperatures. Interestingly, some research into CBD has also found that it might help with the process of converting white fat cells to brown.
If you’re familiar with hemp, then you already know how certain strains give higher levels of energy. These varieties – called sativa strains – are known to produce a more energetic, invigorating, awakening experience than their indica counterparts. The reason for the difference in effect is mainly attributed to minor chemical changes in the herb that result from variations in growing conditions.
By using hemp strains that have more sativa chemistry, users may be able to increase their energy levels to support active movement and exercise. So while this might not directly help you lose weight, it does provide a prerequisite that makes it possible for you to engage in healthy activity to burn extra pounds.
Can CBD Help You Gain Weight?
According to statistics, around 1.5% of US adults over the age of 20 are considered underweight. Of course, most people strive to lose weight in hopes of attaining the desired appearance. But studies also tell us that dangerously low weight can put our health at risk. That’s why there are millions of individuals working to normalize their weight by packing on a few more pounds.
Although some people might say that it’s possible to gain weight by simply eating more, there are individuals who struggle to store fat for various reasons. This makes the process of gaining weight by eating more of a challenge. That’s also why experts have developed various methods to help individuals gain weight, and hemp might be one of them.
Effects on Appetite
Previously, it was discussed how CBD can help suppress your appetite and help you curb cravings and untimely urges. However, studies have found that another compound in hemp – THC – might work to fuel the desire to eat.
Keep in mind though that legal hemp is described as any part of the cannabis plant with 0.3% THC or less. If you want to stay within the bounds of the law while still enjoying the weight gain benefits of THC, then you might consider looking for THC-rich hemp. These varieties push the limits when it comes to THC content, offering as much of the compound as the law will allow.
Interestingly, even this minor increase in the THC compound has been found to have palpable effects on appetite. That said, hemp might be able to help you gain weight, however, you won’t be able to achieve the effect with isolates or broad-spectrum oils.
Effects on Energy
While sativa strains help improve energy levels, sativa strains will sedate. These varieties of the hemp plant give individuals a feeling of sleepiness and tiredness, even going as far as numbness if that particular cultivar is that potent.
Again, it won’t be a direct catalyst for change in your weight. But it will provide a necessary effect that may help you gain weight. Studies have found that individuals who find themselves sleeping more hours throughout the day are more likely to store fat, making it a suitable alternative for those who need to gain weight.
Managing Weight with Hemp
There are countless studies that vouch for hemp as an all-around miracle herb and remedy for various issues – including weight management. And although authorities concerning health have yet to conclude anything about these effects, the astounding anecdotal evidence that supports these claims have made them as good as true for most patrons.
Today, science is leaning towards CBD as a sound solution for weight loss, while other studies have found that THC might have more to do with weight gain. And while we can’t draw any conclusions just yet, there’s no harm in seeing what hemp can do to help you keep your weight in check.
Rossi, F., Punzo, F., Umano, G. R., Argenziano, M., & Miraglia Del Giudice, E. (2018). Role of Cannabinoids in Obesity. International journal of molecular sciences, 19(9), 2690. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms19092690