CBD Receptors in The Kidney
Posted on November 11th, 2020
CBD oil is widely known as a natural supplement or alternative to typical treatments for several conditions such as anxiety, arthritis, and even cancer. All of CBD’s benefits circle back to cannabidiol’s interactions with receptors in the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
But, how exactly does CBD’s interaction with the ECS affect your kidneys?
Over the last couple of years, CBD’s medicinal and therapeutic benefits have piqued many Americans’ interest. People are increasingly asking more and more about it. As more states throughout the US move towards the legalization of cannabis for medicinal and recreational use, the effects of CBD receptors in the kidney begin to gather interest.
So, can CBD offer any benefits to your kidneys? Or does using CBD oil have any negative repercussions on them?
Learn how CBD receptors work in the kidney to provide benefits for individuals with kidney disease.
The Kidneys – What Are They?
Kidneys play a significant role in cleaning the blood and getting rid of excess fluids like urine. If a person’s kidneys become compromised in their function, severe complications follow. Sadly, according to a survey from the National Kidney Foundation, chronic kidney disease affects about 37 million Americans and causes more deaths than prostate and breast cancer.
Kidney disease, also known as chronic renal failure (CRF) or chronic kidney disease, characteristically restricts and impairs kidneys’ correct functionality. As a result, harmful substances like excess fluid waste can build up in the system damaging the kidneys. Eventually, if left untreated, the kidneys lose their ability to keep the patient healthy.
In the early stages of CRF, most patients don’t experience symptoms. But as the chronic renal disease worsens, it leads to kidney failure (the last stage of CRF). At that point, it means the patient’s kidneys have stopped functioning well enough. This leads to critical bodily failure where patients can’t survive without dialysis or a kidney transplant.
Suffering from kidney disease is definitely not a good thing. Living with CRF is extremely challenging; the only cure would be a kidney transplant, which doesn’t come easily.
In short, people living with kidney disease could use some good news. Studies have examined the use of cannabis in people who suffer from kidney disease. The results show some promising potential benefits. As a result, people living with CRF are understandably curious regarding the impact CBD could have on their condition.
About Chronic Kidney Disease: Causes & Symptoms
It’s important to understand that “kidney disease” is not a single condition; instead, it’s a broad descriptor used to refer to several conditions that affect the kidney and renal function. The different types of kidney disease include:
- Chronic kidney failure
- Interstitial Nephritis
- Vesicoureteral Reflux
Causes of Chronic Kidney Failure
Hypertension and diabetes are the primary causes of chronic kidney disease. Other common causes of CRF include:
- Heart Disease
- Iatrogenic damage
- Excess usage of NSAID medications
- Hepatitis B & C
There’s are many causes of CRF, and since patients don’t experience symptoms during the early stages, the sure way to know if you’re experiencing kidney disease is to consult your physician for a thorough check-up.
Symptoms of Kidney Disease
Patients with chronic kidney disease can experience different symptoms, including:
- Chronic pain
- Sleep problems
- Muscle cramps
- Foamy urine
- Swelling of ankles and feet
- Loss of appetite
- Poor concentration
- Lowered immune function
- Dark-colored urine
In addition to these symptoms, it’s important to note that people with chronic kidney failure are at greater risk for heart failure, neurological disorders, and even death at all stages of chronic renal failure.
The Endocannabinoid System and Kidney Disease
Introducing the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a biological system in the body composed of three main elements, including endocannabinoids. Those are retrograde neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors. Said receptors are present in different parts, tissues, and organs of the body, including the brain.
When CBD interacts with the ECS receptors CB1 and CB2, it regulates several bodily functions. Among them inflammation, pain perception, and mood.
The kidneys have both CB1 and CB2 receptors, suggesting that the ECS might play a significant role in renal function. In fact, according to a study, the ECS does play a role in renal homeostasis.
Since studies on the ECS are relatively new, there’s much to learn about CBD receptors in the kidneys, and the exact benefits of CBD for people with kidney disease are still unknown.
Is CBD Oil Safe for Individuals with Kidney Disease?
Research suggests that the endocannabinoid system could have essential effects on renal function. Today, people living with kidney disease are understandably curious about the potential of using CBD oil.
At the moment, no evidence indicates CBD oil or other CBD products have any adverse effects on patients with kidney disease. Nor that they are, for that matter, harmful to the kidneys.
Relieving Kidney Disease Symptoms: How Can CBD Help?
So, if CBD can’t hurt your kidneys or worsen kidney disease symptoms, could it be that it’s actually helpful? Below are ways in which CBD might help alleviate the symptoms of kidney disease.
1. Reduction in Inflammation
Several forms of kidney disease, such as nephrotoxicity, renal reperfusion injury, and pyelonephritis, are inflammatory in nature.
A study printed in the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics revealed that CBD might reduce inflammation, oxidative stress, and cell death caused by nephrotoxicity.
Other studies demonstrated the potential benefits of CBD in preventing renal reperfusion injury by promoting anti-inflammatory responses.
2. Pain Management
There’s no doubt that the symptoms of kidney disease can be painful. Taking CBD makes it possible for you to tap into your body’s natural healing. The often-reported analgesic effect that CBD triggers might also give you some relief from the chronic pain of CRF.
When you take CBD, it interacts with your body’s endocannabinoid system, enhancing its function. CBD inhibits FAAH, fatty acid involved in anandamide’s breakdown. This helps you retain more anandamide all over your body, including in the kidneys. As a result, more anandamide will bind with CBD receptors in the kidneys and help control the body’s pain response.
3. Nausea & Lack of Appetite
The symptoms of kidney disease include nausea and a lack of appetite. This often leads to unhealthy weight loss or, inversely, very dangerous weight gains.
During several animal tests, CBD has demonstrated the ability to help regulate appetite. Based on these findings, people with kidney disease might benefit from using CBD to stimulate their appetite.
Numerous studies have shown CBD’s interaction with serotonin receptors, which stimulate hormones that alleviate nausea. Kidney disease patients experiencing a lack of appetite and nausea may benefit from CBD oil as a stimulant for appetite and an anti-nausea agent.
4. Sleep Problems
Another common symptom of kidney disease is insomnia. Also, the side effects of CRF medications, equipment, and home dialysis process can lead to developing sleep problems. When kidney disease causes elevated high blood pressure, CBD helps to lower it. As a result, it lessens the stress on your heart.
CBD can interact with cannabinoid receptors in the kidneys to manipulate your sleep-wake cycle and offer a good night’s sleep. Something that can go a long way in improving the quality of life for CRF patients.
5. Mood Management
Battling chronic kidney disease is no small feat and can take a toll on the patient’s mental health. It adds much fatigue and additional stress to the mix, something you could always use less of.
When cannabinoid activates CBD receptors in the kidney, it regulates bodily functions, including mood. When kidney disease causes pain, the ECS release anandamide as a defense mechanism to regulate said pain. However, anandamide also plays a role in mood regulation.
CBD and chronic renal failure could be a match made in heaven. This thanks to cannabinoid’s potential to improve how patients cope with symptoms and deal with the treatments.
What’s the Best Dosage of CBD Oil for Kidney Disease?
Again, kidney disease is a severe disease. For this reason, you should first consult your physician before undergoing any potential treatment option. Kidney disease could quickly leave in dire straits if not managed correctly.
Keep in mind that there isn’t an exact dose of CBD for patients with kidney disease. However, typically, CBD’s dose is dependent on the patient’s tolerance level and delivery method.
When using CBD for kidney disease for the first time, consider starting small. Then, build up gradually until you find the right dose where your body begins to feel the effects.
CBD Receptors in The Kidney – The Takeaway
Every day, new research and studies discover more of CBD’s health benefits. Patients with kidney disease have very limited treatment options. Thus, there’s an increasing demand for alternative therapeutic treatments that could effectively make their lives a bit easier.
In summary, most experts agree that CBD has no detrimental effects on people with CRF. CBD is not a replacement for prescribed medication to treat kidney disease nor for dialysis. Instead, it offers a measure of relief from CRF symptoms.
Remember, research is still ongoing. So, before using CBD to treat kidneys disease, consult with a physician to see if the treatment might be viable for you.