There’s the homeopathic principle that “like cures like” which may loosely describe the surprising connection between the cannabis compound CBD and nicotine addiction relief. Wondering just how CBD and quitting smoking are being analyzed in the world of medical science these days?
It turns out there’s mounting evidence that the non-psychoactive cannabinoid Cannabidiol (CBD) may be useful in treating substance use disorders. These include addiction to opioids, cocaine, cannabis, and yes, nicotine.
How Can CBD Help You Quit Smoking?
A study published in Addictive Behaviors in 2013 demonstrated that CBD could reduce the number of cigarettes consumed by smokers trying to quit by an impressive 40 percent.
These preliminary, but very positive findings are welcome since the nicotine found in tobacco poses a tremendous health risk around the world. In the United States, smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the nation. And according to the CDC, a total of 480,000 people die every year from smoking complications.
CBD and Nicotine Addiction, a Possible Cure for Smokers?
While the study’s researchers don’t know for sure why CBD worked so well, they believe that it could have to do with CBD’s ability to reduce anxiety, thus decreasing the nicotine craving in cigarette addicts.
For the study, 24 cigarette smokers were split into two groups. One group received inhalers containing CBD and the other a placebo. Both groups were told to use the inhalers whenever they felt the urge to smoke during a seven day period.
The study showed that smokers who took the placebo showed no differences in the number of cigarettes they smoked. In contrast, those treated with the CBD saw a significant reduction in the number of cigarettes they smoked (about 40 percent).
These preliminary data, combined with the strong preclinical rationale for use of this compound, suggest CBD to be a potential treatment for nicotine addiction that warrants further exploration.
CBD Helps You Beat Cravings
In addition, the study’s researchers pointed out that participants who used the CBD did not report experiencing increased cravings for nicotine during the week period of the study either.
Why the sudden calm for a nicotine fix? The researchers theorize that the CBD may have weakened the attentional bias of these smokers to a smoking stimuli. When it comes to addiction, attentional bias is said to play a big role in the cycle of craving and relapse. This means that a reduction in salience of smoking cues due to the CBD, could have a significant effect on substance usage.
“This is the first study, as far as we are aware, to demonstrate the impact of CBD on cigarette smoking. These preliminary data, combined with the strong preclinical rationale for use of this compound, suggest CBD to be a potential treatment for nicotine addiction that warrants further exploration,” said the author of the study.
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