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does cbd make you poop? (constipation, diarrhea, and more)
we’re not afraid of poop over here. everybody poops. or at least we hope they do! anyways, pooping is one of the many things that cbd oil is said to be related to. reports exist of users experiencing the ability to poop more regularly, but they also exist in the opposite manner as well, with effects such as constipation or diarrhea. we figured we’d set the record straight in one place and answer the following question as thoroughly as we could: does cbd make you poop?
yes, cbd does make you poop. cbd is known to regulate gut motility, which brings about digestive action. cbd’s relaxing effects on the nerves can play a role, and the antioxidant properties inside cbd may also contribute to increased and/or more regular bowel movements.
there’s more to it than that, though. diarrhea, constipation, upset stomach, and ibs all have their claims of some interaction with cbd. so what are they, and do they hold any validity?
does cbd cause diarrhea?
diarrhea is a commonly-associated side effect to cbd. there could be a handful of reasons why a person who consumes cbd would get diarrhea, and some of the could be related to cbd while others are likely not. let’s take a look.
dosage size – while cbd is completely safe and you cannot overdose on it, a large dose of cbd may result in an upset stomach and/or loose stool, especially if it is among your first times taking it. if your body is not used to its endocannabinoid system (ecs) becoming activated, diarrhea could be a possible reaction. the truth is, every person has a different body chemistry and we are still at the forefront of learning how our ecs is interrelated with all of the other systems in our body due to the legal status of cannabis over the better part of the last century.
does cannabis help with constipation, or does it cause it?
as you know by now, cbd helps maintain gut motility. however, thc does the opposite, slowing it down. with most people, this does not take place to a noticeable effect; but a large dose of thc, especially to a person whose body is not used to it may result in the user experiencing temporary constipation.
other issues may also cause constipation, and if you find yourself constipated cbd oil could be helpful for a few reasons beyond helping gut motility. cb1 receptors are also present in the brain and central nervous system, and can help relax nerve connections. this is why cbd is helpful in alleviating symptoms of stress and anxiety, but that same calmed state can help your body relax enough to pass a bowel movement when constipated.
we stated earlier that cbd’s antioxidant properties may also play a role in helping bowel movements. prunes, berries, leafy greens, dates, figs, avocados, and lentils are examples of foods that are high in antioxidants, and they are also foods that will help you poop. this is another contributing factor to the greater picture as to why cbd may help with constipation.
lastly, it is important to remember that the body’s natural condition is to have regular bowel movements. constipation is a sign that the body is out of homeostasis, a condition that cbd helps the body maintain. cbd helping with constipation may also be attributed to its overall homeostatic effects.
cbd and bowel issues
if you’ve ever had symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (ibs), you’ll know they’re no fun. pain, gas, diarrhea and/or constipation, and cramping may come from food intolerance, eating too quickly, an infection, or plenty of other reasons. cbd may be helpful in alleviating some of these symptoms due to its pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties.
more on inflammation and bowels, cbd has also been shown to be helpful for people with crohn’s disease, which is an inflammatory bowel disease . it can affect different areas of the gut for different people, and cbd can help with not only the inflammation, but other prominent side effects of such as pain and diarrhea. there is no known cure for people with crohn’s, but cbd can help people manage.
is there anything i can do?
there is always something you can do to better your situation, wherever you find yourself. if you are experiencing any issues related to your bowels, you should consult a medical professional. on that topic, it’s also always good to have regular medical check-ups.
but beyond that, hydration is one of the most important things you can do to help all of your bodily systems function properly. making sure to drink enough water can help flush out toxins from your system, and it can also help bring fluidity to stagnant areas of your body. much the same, make sure you are eating a healthy, well-balanced diet. giving your body proper fuel to run on can also make all the difference in its ability to process nutrients and further create waste as a byproduct.
we aren’t doctors, nor are we qualified to give medical advice. but we want to see you live the best quality of life you possibly can. there is absolutely a place for modern medicine in our world, but we also believe that mother nature has provided us with everything we need to live a healthy life. we believe cannabis is one of those forms of plant medicine, and believe in its ability to work wonders on the human condition. helping with constipation and diarrhea is only one way in which cbd may tap into that magic, and we look forward to the inevitable discoveries as research is conducted that only continues to expand our understanding of this magical plant’s powers.
Here’s What to Do if Your CBD Edibles are Giving You Stomach Issues
There are a multitude of reasons you might be taking CBD, but getting some side effects can easily make it feel like the benefits aren’t worth it. Having stomach issues is one of the more common groups of side effects from CBD products, including edibles but especially with oils. However, there is good news: most of the time, the side effect comes from other ingredients in the product and not the CBD itself. And if it is the CBD, chances are your dosage is too high and this is the cause of the issue.
But why does it happen? How can you tell what’s causing the problem? And what should you do about it?
- CBD can cause diarrhea and gastrointestinal distress, but this isn’t very common and is usually linked to high doses.
- If you get stomach ache from edible gummies, it’s probably another ingredient in the gummies causing the issue.
- MCT or coconut based CBD oils can cause stomach aches too.
- Try another type of CBD product (such as a different edible, vape pen or capsule) and reduce your dose if you’re experiencing problems.
- Drinking chamomile or ginger tea, taking acetaminophen or using Pepto-Bismol can give you immediate relief.
Stomach Issues are a Common Side Effect of CBD
There have been loads of clinical studies on CBD, and – as with all new treatments – side effects are one thing they always consider. A review of the evidence from 2017 went through all of the relevant animal and human data, and generally found that the side effects were minimal and limited, generally being a plus-point for CBD compared to other treatments. However, like all treatments that actually do something, it does have some side effects.
The research covered in the paper identified a few side effects in particular, tiredness, diarrhea and changes in appetite and weight. Generally speaking, CBD is helpful for gastrointestinal issues, but this means it interacts with this area of the body and makes side effects possible, and gastrointestinal distress is often reported.
Note that CBD can also interact with other medications, in the same way as grapefruit, so you should avoid using it if your medication has the “grapefruit warning.”
Is it the CBD or the Edible?
While CBD can cause gastrointestinal issues by itself, it seems to be related to high dosages more than a necessary impact of CBD. This means that if CBD gummies are giving you a stomach ache, there are two major possibilities: either you’re taking too much CBD when you eat some, or it’s something else in the edibles causing your problem.
Assuming you’re taking CBD for some other purpose, the best approach is to try CBD in some other form. For example, you can try a different type of edible, a vape pen, flower, a capsule or even a tincture (although more on that in a minute). If this isn’t an option, you can try a much smaller dose of the edible to see if that still affects your stomach.
If you can find a different form of CBD to try, then you’ll be able to work out what the exact problem is. If you don’t experience the same symptoms with another type of CBD, then you know it was an ingredient in the gummy rather than the CBD. If you can only try a lower dose, if the symptoms aren’t as bad (or don’t appear) then it was probably related to the dosage you were taking.
CBD Oil is Likely Worse than Edibles for Your Stomach
If you’re having issues with edibles, you may be tempted to try the more traditional CBD oil instead, but you need to be cautious of some ingredients. MCT oil, for example, is known to cause stomach issues for some people, and most people who experience problems with stomach aches and CBD are using oil containing it. It’s also possible that CBD oil with coconut oil as a carrier could also cause problems.
There are many other carrier oils you can use with CBD, so it’s worth trying other options if you also have problems when consuming some oils but still want to take CBD in this way. Another potential issue is the minimal regulation for CBD products, so it’s important to buy your oil from reputable sources, ideally with a lab report to confirm purity and the cannabinoid mix in the oil.
How to Avoid Problems in Future
If you’ve been having problems with stomach aches from CBD edibles, the solutions follow directly from the discussion above.
First, try CBD in another form. It’s more likely that it’s something in the gummy other than CBD which is causing your issue. Try a non-MCT or coconut-based oil, vaping or capsules. Even a different type of edible may be much more tolerable. If you find that something else works, it’s worth looking at the specific ingredients in the gummies that caused you problems: you might be able to identify the component that’s giving you issues and even try other gummies not containing it in future.
Secondly, try lowering your dose of CBD. It’s less likely that the CBD itself is causing you issues, but research shows that it is possible, especially with higher doses. It’s likely not ideal to have to reduce the amount of CBD you’re taking to help with whatever the issue is, but if you lower the dose you might be able to find the right balance for relief without unpleasant side effects.
Both of these solutions unfortunately involve a lot of trial and error, but once you’ve worked out the exact problem then you’ll be in a much better position.
How to Soothe Your Stomach
If you’re in pain right now and you want help for that, it’s best to follow standard advice for stomach problems. If it’s cramping related to diarrhea, you can try Pepto-Bismol, and even simple pain relievers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen can help with stomach pains of all types. Alternatively, drink chamomile, peppermint, ginger, fennel or cinnamon tea, do some gentle exercise (such as yoga) and eat anti-inflammatory foods (such as blueberries, leafy greens, tomatoes, cherries and more).
Luckily for people who want to continue using CBD, it’s more likely that another ingredient in the oil or gummy is the cause for your stomach ache. The challenge is identifying what it is or which products don’t cause you issues, so you can easily avoid problems in future. If your dosage of CBD is too high, you may need to reduce it, but it’s unlikely you will have to stop taking CBD altogether for relief from other issues.