CBD for the treatment of tobacco addiction?

Despite the fact that cannabis is considered a “drug of abuse”, from time to time, more and more works are being published in the biomedical literature, which shows that either the plant or some of its compounds, can be useful for the treatment of addictions. For example, a recent review shows the current evidence regarding the involvement of the endocannabinoid system in modulating addictive behavior and includes animal research regarding the possible role of some cannabinoids in the treatment of addiction to psychostimulants. More specifically, there is evidence indicating that CB2 receptor agonist drugs may be useful for the treatment of cocaine addiction 2. Some observational studies have also been published showing how cannabis can be a substitute alternative to more dangerous drugs, including alcohol. Finally, another recent review has compiled current studies focused on the possible anti-addictive properties of CBD (cannabidiol). This article will review the evidence that currently exists to consider cannabis in general, and CBD in particular, as possible aids to quit smoking. Buy CBD cigarettes – regular

Tobacco in figures

According to a 2014 report by the World Health Organization (WHO), tobacco smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals, of which at least 250 are known to be harmful to health, and at least 69 of them are known to cause cancer. According to this same report, among the spectrum of diseases that smoking can cause are the following medical problems: difficulty breathing, exacerbated asthma, respiratory infections, cancer (larynx, oropharynx, esophagus, trachea, bronchi, lung, acute myeloid leukemia, stomach, pancreas, kidney, urethra, colon, cervix, and bladder), coronary heart disease, heart attack, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, osteoporosis, blindness, cataracts, periodontitis, aortic aneurysm, atherosclerotic peripheral vascular disease, fractures of hip, infertility, and impotence.

According to another WHO study, tobacco remains the world’s leading cause of preventable death, killing approximately 6 million people each year and causing economic losses valued at more than half a trillion dollars. The latest report from the Global Tobacco Surveillance System, which collects data from 22 countries representing about 60% of the world population, reflected that there are approximately 1.3 billion smokers in that proportion of the world studied, of which 205 million had made some attempt to quit smoking in the last 12 months. According to the American Cancer Society, only about 4% to 7% of people are able to quit smoking in any given attempt with any non-drug method, and about 25% of drug-using smokers can stay smoke-free. for more than 6 months. Counseling and other types of emotional support can increase success rates more than medications alone. Buy CBD cigarettes – menthol online

Nicotine addiction or smoking?

Although it seems that the accepted theory about drug addiction is that it is a chronic and recurrent disease of the brain, characterized by the compulsive desire to search for and use drugs, causing a deterioration in the control over its use despite the negative consequences it produces on the individual and those around him, the truth is that this vision of addiction as a brain disease is increasingly questioned by numerous experts. In fact, at least two studies have found that the percentage of people who recover from their addiction throughout life exceeds, in almost all cases, 80%. From the results of these studies, it is also found that tobacco addiction has the lowest quitting rates.

One of these reasons may be how internalized it is in our society to attribute tobacco addiction to the pharmacological effects of nicotine. If attributing addiction to the substance used is a problem for understanding drug addiction in general, in the case of tobacco addiction it becomes paradigmatic. The problem of drug addiction in general, and tobacco addiction in particular, is, as just explained, attributing the problem to a brain disease caused by a pharmacological agent, when at the base of all addictive behaviors what is established is a habit. A habit that is established, not so much by the effects of the substance itself, but by the behaviors that are carried out around its search and consumption. And habits, because they are behaviors, it is what they are difficult to correct. In the specific case of nicotine, in fact, in animal models, it is very difficult to train them to become addicted to the substance. Buy CBD flower online

And the rates of tobacco cessation by pharmacological means (including patches, chewing gum, or any other nicotine-based pharmaceutical preparation), as we have seen above, are bleakly low. Then, of all the reasons that tobacco is addictive for so many people, the fact that it contains nicotine is probably the weakest. It is precisely the fact that it is a habit, which is generally established for a long time, lasting in most cases for years, which is why it is so difficult to correct. Human beings establish our daily behaviors through habits and the more established a habit is, the more difficult it is to change. And all the more so as the habit, as in the case of tobacco, is so versatile for an individual who serves it both when he is in a lively conversation, as when he is in a depressed state, or waiting for the bus, and, in short, generalized to almost every aspect of your life, except sleeping.

Vaporizing cannabis as an alternative to smoking tobacco

As cannabis users become aware of the health hazards of smoking, some of them try to move from the smoked path (where combustion occurs) to the vaporized path (where it does not). In fact, as is known, the risks of smoking stem precisely from the combustion of what is smoked, not from the products contained in what is smoked. Even so, if the studies based on surveys on the preferred ways of consuming cannabis are consulted, the vast majority (more than 90%) of the users continue to use the smoked route, despite the fact that they also consider vaporization the most effective harm reduction. Even in states like California, which is reputed to have a special cult of health among its citizens, the preferred route to use cannabis in medical marijuana dispensaries is the smoked route (used by 86.1% of those interviewed), very above vaporized (used by 21.8%). It is possible that these results are partly biased because many of the interviewees were previously tobacco users who, later, when they start using cannabis, also do so by smoking it. Buy CBD prerolls online

It is also known that many smoked cannabis users manage to quit not only “joints” but also tobacco when they start vaporizing cannabis. In a recent letter published in the journal Addiction, Hindocha et al. Show a number of examples where cannabis “vaping” is accompanied by reduced tobacco use. According to these researchers: “There could be reasons to be optimistic about the potential of vaping. If vaping can reduce the co-administration of cannabis and tobacco, the result could be a reduction in tobacco use/dependence among cannabis users and a resulting reduction in the harm associated with cannabis. Indeed, if cannabis vaping becomes a common practice in the future, the next generation of cannabis users may never be previously exposed to either nicotine or tobacco. ”.

CBD in the treatment of smoking

CBD is in fashion. If in the 90s seed companies competed for the variety that produced the most THC, now they compete for more narcotic varieties, that is, with high CBD content. We do not know if the reason is that cannabis users have grown tired of so much high (THC concentrations in Dutch marijuana have been decreasing since 2005 to the present at the rate of 0.22% per year), to the marketing campaigns of the industry attributing the medicinal effects of cannabis to CBD, to a simple reflection of the market in which the consumer wants a varied product that provides them with different experiences depending on what they are looking for. each specific moment, a mixture of all this, or even any other reason. One of those other reasons is also the fad of CBD oils, most of which, although they do not put it on the labels, also contain amounts of THC that can cause, for example, a consumer to test positive for a traffic saliva test. Oils, on the other hand, whose legality is more than doubtful for reasons that we will not enter here. Buy marijuana online

CBD has an as yet not entirely known action on the endocannabinoid system. So much so that, depending on where you read, you find different mechanisms of action in which some articles address mechanisms of action that other articles do not include, and vice versa. So I leave it to the reader to find out for himself what the mechanism of action of CBD is. A recent review cited above, on the possible role of CBD as an anti-addiction drug, after reviewing this mechanism of action, concludes that “CBD has been associated with many neural circuits involved in the acquisition of addiction and subsequent search behaviors. the drug, making it an interesting pharmacological candidate for the treatment of substance use disorders. “

There is only one study in which the role of CBD as a treatment for addiction to tobacco smoking has been investigated. In a pilot, clinical study (a pilot study is a study with a small number of subjects to test a working hypothesis before moving on to a larger and therefore more cost-effective sample), double-blind (neither researchers nor patients know who receives what treatment), randomized (patients are randomized to one type of treatment), placebo-controlled (the active drug is compared to an inactive drug), the efficacy of CBD was compared with a placebo in the treatment of tobacco addiction. 24 smokers consuming more than 10 cigarettes a day were recruited and provided with an inhaler to use whenever they felt the need to smoke.

For 12 (6 women) of the participants, the inhaler contained CBD and for the other 12 (6 women) of them a placebo. The treatment lasted a week. During that week, craving (craving) and anxiety scores were evaluated every day, as well as in a follow-up interview 21 days after treatment. After the week of treatment, the CBD group reduced their cigarette consumption by 40%, a difference that was significant compared to the placebo group, but these differences were not maintained at 21 days. Both groups reduced their craving and anxiety scores by the same magnitude during the 7 days that the treatment lasted, but, again, on day 21 they returned to the initial conditions.  Buy real marijuana online

The authors of this study offer in their article a series of explanations, based on the effects of CBD on the Endocannabinoid System, that could be explaining the results found. Among them, the action of CBD on CB1 receptors (as a weak inverse agonist) or its properties as an inhibitor of the enzyme that degrades anandamide (FAAH), which may be actions related to the decrease of the reinforcing properties of nicotine. They also offer psychological speculations, such as the possible action of CBD to reduce attention to the contextual “keys” that may be involved in the maintenance of nicotine consumption.

However, questions remain to be clarified. As previously explained, in this study tobacco craving was reduced equally in the CBD group and in the placebo group, as well as anxiety scores. These scores were collected once a day, but not after the administration of each inhalation due to the desire to smoke a cigarette. In general terms, the placebo may be able to reduce the desire for consumption and anxiety, since in the follow-up evaluation, after 21 days, when no group was using the device anymore, the scores were normalized. Perhaps CBD, working as an anxiolytic, It can be a substitute treatment to gradually stop smoking because the person is not so anxious. The possible anxiolytic effect after inhalations was not evaluated in this study. In any case, this pilot study provides more evidence that tobacco addiction is more of a habit than a pharmacological effect of nicotine. Buy hemp online

If tobacco addiction were a matter of nicotine addiction, after a week, where the desire for consumption has already disappeared and where the number of cigarettes and therefore of nicotine has been considerably reduced, the symptoms would not have to reappear. abstinence inducing subjects to return to smoking tobacco. Finally, as seen in the previous section, many people stop smoking when they start vaporizing. It is therefore possible that cannabis and / or CBD inhaled by a different route than smoked may be useful for people who want to quit smoking. As Morgan et al. Conclude, more studies are necessary in this regard. What seems clear is that smoking, more than an addiction to a drug (nicotine), is a habit, and like any habit, its interruption produces anxiety. In this sense, substituting tobacco for cannabis and / or vaporized CBD can be an interesting substitute measure that needs more evidence before being confirmed.


Cannabis In Memory Processes: Evidence From Experimental Approaches

Cannabis alters different cognitive functions such as memory, perception, attention, understanding, language, orientation, or executive function. These alterations have been described both in situations of consumption, whether for recreational or medicinal reasons, or in experimental situations, either in studies in humans or in experimental animals. These changes can be acute, derived from poisoning, or sustained over time due to prolonged use.

When evaluating the effects of cannabis, it should be considered that the preparations of the Cannabis sativa plant contain around a hundred types of phytocannabinoids, each of them in different proportions. Among them, delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (also known as THC) is the main phytocannabinoid with psychoactive effects, and the focus of attention when studying cognitive disorders related to the consumption of plant derivatives. Genetic, pharmacological, and flexibility studies of nerve transmission, or synaptic plasticity, in brain tissue from animal models, have shown that the cognitive alterations produced by THC are mediated by the main cannabinoid receptor in the body, the type 1 cannabinoid receptor. (CB1), a protein whose expression is elevated in crucial brain regions in memory and learning processes, such as the hippocampus or the cerebral cortex. Buy CBD flower online

In humans, the negative effects of cannabis on memory processes have been described in multiple studies. Even so, it must be taken into account that in controlled studies with human consumers, it is really difficult to weigh the degree of affection of cannabinoids on cognitive function since several factors such as the diversity of cognitive abilities of the subjects must be taken into account. , the variety of consumption, the variety and origin of the substances consumed as well as the proportion that these substances present of the main active components, or their combination in consumption with other substances such as tobacco or alcohol. In all these categories we will find a wide casuistry that makes it difficult to obtain clear conclusions.

Another factor that can influence the effects of cannabis on cognitive function is the age of onset of use. It is important to note that until 21-25 years the human brain is subject to maturation processes of various brain connections. These maturation processes are highly susceptible to environmental stimuli, and the endocannabinoid system, where the phytocannabinoids act, is involved in the proper development of the brain. In this way, cannabis use at ages when the brain is still maturing can have a negative impact on its development and, consequently, on cognitive functions. Buy CBD prerolls online

Cannabis use during school-age correlates with various indicators, including increased risk of addiction or dependence on cannabis, an increased risk of mental illness, worse school performance, and deficits at the level of cognitive development. This data is very relevant since, according to the report of the Spanish Observatory on Drugs and Drug Addiction, cannabis is the illegal drug most consumed by young people between 14 and 18 years of age, and the average age of starting consumption is before 15 years.

Regarding experimental observations, where the cognitive capacities and levels of studies of the subject groups can be counterbalanced, and where the administration of well-defined doses is done in a standardized way and with exhaustive time control, the conclusions of the cognitive disturbances by cannabis derivatives leave no room for doubt. Acute administration of the psychoactive compound in cannabis, THC, has adverse effects on learning and memory. There are different studies that show how chronic cannabis use affects cognitive processes, mainly verbal learning and memory studied using word list learning tasks. Buy marijuana online

These deficits have been observed in both adolescent and adult populations and a correlation has been found between the degree of performance on the tests and the frequency, quantity, duration, and year of initiation of cannabis use. In this sense, worse results were found in those subjects who had been consuming more years or in those who consumed the preparations with higher amounts of THC. Another type of memory that can be affected by cannabis use is working memory, a type of transient memory that allows the temporary manipulation of information to carry out complex cognitive tasks. Since working memory is a broad term that encompasses a diverse number of tasks (verbal, numerical, spatial, among others), there are studies with evidence in different directions. Even so,

It has also been experimentally evaluated whether the effects of cannabis on cognitive tasks are cumulative or, conversely, whether prolonged exposure produces some degree of tolerance in cognitive deficits, as occurs in the case of other pharmacological effects of cannabis such as analgesia. or hypothermia. In this context of repeated exposure, the use of functional magnetic resonance imaging techniques allowed us to observe that although the regular cannabis user could show certain preserved cognitive capacities compared to healthy controls, generating the response to the specific cognitive task required the mobilization of more brain resources than non-cannabis controls.  Buy real marijuana online

These data point to the relevance of the endocannabinoid system as a neurobiological substrate prominently involved in learning and memory. Animal model studies reveal a curious role for cannabinoid receptors. When these receptors, mainly those most expressed in the central nervous system (CB1 receptors) are removed from the body, animals without CB1 receptors have trouble forgetting. This curious observation is in line with the fact that our brain is designed to store information that may be relevant to the body, while it does not consolidate memories that may be unnecessary overtime.

In this sense, the increase of the endocannabinoids themselves, lipids of our own organism that interact with the cannabinoid receptors to activate them, it is also capable of modulating memory processes. Thus, enzyme inhibiting compounds that degrade the endocannabinoids themselves, cause these endocannabinoids to accumulate. In animal models, it has been observed that said accumulation at the cerebral level interferes in the consolidation of memories, producing an effect similar to that observed by the action of THC.

More recently, using mice as an animal model, a series of paradoxical phenomena have been described in relation to the cognitive effects of cannabinoid compounds, which has opened a new niche for research and possible medical applications. On the one hand, it has been observed that in model mice of Alzheimer’s disease, compounds with properties similar to THC reduce brain inflammation and produce cognitive improvements. On the other hand, repeated administration of THC at intermediate doses has been observed in healthy long-lived animals to produce cognitive improvements mediated by cannabinoid CB1 receptors. That same THC administration regimen, on the other hand, was very negative at the cognitive level in young adult animals. Buy CBD cigarettes – menthol online

From this latest evidences, in contrast to the other studies presented, it follows that much remains to be understood about the way to take advantage of the endocannabinoid system as a therapeutic target, and of the cognitive benefits and harms of the consumption of cannabis derivatives in pathological situations. , as well as in the different stages of life. These benefits and risks should be weighed in those cases where it is a question of using cannabis derivatives as therapy. The fact that various countries are beginning to consider, or have taken steps towards the legalization of cannabis derivatives, generates a momentum in which experimental advances should guide the use and exploitation of this natural resource.