CBD 'Minish' our Post-Lockdown Poundage

As the CBD spotlight gets brighter and further information regarding CBD is brought to centre stage; there could now be another string to CBD’s ever lengthening piece of archery equipment - weight loss may be entering the fray.

Any preconceptions of CBD giving you the ‘munchies’ and the fear that you’ll have a sudden urge to gorge yourself can and should be swiftly forgotten; the culprit responsible for the sudden need to feed is THC, the main active compound found in the Cannabis plant. If anything, this is the main point I’d like you to take away from this blog post, that the CBD oil we use within our candles has zero percent THC, meaning you won’t get any unwanted high and your local Chinese definitely won’t have to worry about you ordering that extra portion of prawn toast. In fact, it may be the opposite of this scenario…

This blog takes a look at two specific studies, the first a study on mice in 2011. Within this study, researchers considered the importance of the endogenous cannabinoid system to the regulation of food intake and energy balance and studied the effects of repeated CBD administration on body weight gains in rats. Male Wistar rats (260 ± 20 g at start of study) received intraperitoneal injections of CBD at doses of 2.5 and 5 mg/kg/day for 14 consecutive days and body weight gains were monitored. Stupidly, I googled what these guys looked like; I have not stopped searching for a slender Stuart Little to start promoting our CBD Candles since.

After treatment with CBD the mice in question, along with Stu, showed a decrease in body weight and large reductions in appetite, conversely to that of THC’s affects. Both doses of CBD produced significant decrease in body weight gain, with the effect produced by 5 mg/kg being more pronounced. The CB2 receptor selective antagonist, AM630, blocked the decrease in body weight gain. AM630 alone did not affect body weight gain. The results suggest that CBD can alter body weight gain, possibly via the CB2 receptor. In summary, a potential suppression or decrease in appetite via the use of CBD can lead to a potential decrease in weight, resulting in weight loss. Stay off the Ratatouille, Ratatouille! (Bogna Ignatowska-Jankowskaa & H.Swiergielab, 2011).

Secondly, a study in 2016  suggested that when looking at CBD for weight loss that it can in fact convert white, or “bad,” fat into brown fat. It might sound pretty grim, but brown fat breaks down blood sugar (glucose) and fat molecules to create heat and help maintain body temperature. Cold temperatures activate brown fat, which leads to various metabolic changes in the body.

The definition of metabolize is when an organism undergoes an organic or chemical process that is necessary for life. An example of metabolize is for the body to use up the calories in foods. Because brown fat burns calories to generate heat, it is often referred to as the “good” fat. One group of investigators, for example, recently found that a certain protein in brown fat appears to enhance the metabolism of white fat. When they studied a strain of experimental mice who were lacking this protein, the mice expended less energy, gained weight, and developed diabetes.

Our levels of brown fat decrease as we become adults and as we begin to bounce less when we fall over. Adults with comparatively more brown fat tend to be younger and slender and have normal blood sugar levels, hats off to the Bendy Wendy’s out there!

We could therefore be looking at a two-pronged attack to help us shift that post-lockdown poundage; now, that does not mean to say you take a swift trip to the North Pole in order to take advantage of its climate, Shackleton tried that… There’s no point either way, Santa definitely won’t be there – he’s self-isolating due to his BMI. Perhaps we’ll send a candle instead of a cookie?

For the likes of Mr Claus, when too much white fat builds up, that’s when issues can begin to occur. White fat may increase the risk of many chronic conditions, such as heart disease and diabetes, whilst also contributing to the UK’s frightening obesity statistic. The Health Survey for England in 2019 estimated that 28.0% of adults in England are obese and a further 36.2% are overweight.

Research from the US National Library of Medicine in 2018 helps explain how CBD might break down fats in the body. In the study, CBD helped convert white fat cells into brown fat cells. It also stimulated the body to break down fats more efficiently (Parray, 2016). The conversion of white in beige adipose tissue, or fat, is a potential new therapeutic target for obesity. Cannabinoid receptors (CB) regulate thermogenesis (the creation of heat), food intake and inflammation. CB1 ablation or inhibition helps in reducing body weight and food intake. Stimulation of CB2 limits inflammation and promotes anti-obesity effects by reducing food intake and weight gain. Its genetic ablation results in adiposity development. CB receptors are also responsible for transforming white adipose tissue towards beige or brown adipocytes; therefore, their modulation can be considered potential anti-obesity targets also (Francesca Rossi & Giuseppina Rosaria Umano, 2018).

Now that may be quite a lot to digest, but ultimately, it’s looking as though CBD potentially can help deal with obesity and weight loss via a whole plethora of means within our Endocannabinoid system. The researchers note that CBD may be a promising therapy for preventing obesity, but it goes without saying, more studies within humans are necessary - prior to saying CBD can turn Augustus Gloops' into young Leonardo DeCaprios’. Thankfully for the likes of me, there are more papers being released daily...