Ultimate Guide: CBD For Seniors and Weight Loss

For many adults, the battle against constant weight gain is something that seems inevitable. With each passing year, New Year’s Eve resolutions, diets and so much more, it seems impossible to stop the steady weight gain. Whether you’re in your 50’s or your 80’s, age-related weight gain is a major concern. Even if a one pound increase per year doesn’t seem like a big deal at 50, doing the math, by the time you reach 80 that will have been 30 pounds that you’ve gained. Studies have shown that from the ages of 29-39 women gain on average seven pounds. Between this same time frame, men gain on average 15 pounds. By the time adults reach their 30’s and 40’s it becomes increasingly more difficult to shave off the weight.

A large factor attributing to age-related weight gain is because of muscle mass changes. It begins around the 30's, the human body naturally begins to lose muscle mass with each decade that passes. That lost muscle mass is then replaced with fat. Regardless of your workout habits, this problem is still going to occur. That is because muscle burns more calories than fat, and because of the loss, it slows down your metabolism. 

Another culprit is hormone changes. Because menopause causes estrogen changes, women tend to gain around 15 pounds. Similarly, men lose testosterone, these changes in the body also lead to less muscle mass and possible weight gain. Once you reach retirement age, it’s easier to find time in your schedule to get in shape. You are no longer tied down to family responsibilities because your children will be adults themselves. But if you still find yourself having difficulty losing weight, CBD for weight loss might be your best friend. CBD uses the cannabinoid system to help treat any problems that might be prohibiting you from a healthier, thinner body.

How Does CBD Work?

The human body was discovered to have a cannabinoid system, which uses natural chemicals produced within our bodies. Among the chemicals accepted by this system, both CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol(THC) make the list. Unlike it’s cousin THC, CBD does not cause that euphoric “high”, instead it aids with problems like stress, pain and anxiety. There are about 113 known cannabinoids in cannabis. THC is a commonly used and well known cannabinoid because it has psychoactive properties, giving the user the feeling of being high. Unlike most cannabinoids, CBD does not have these psychoactive properties. Many consumers who use CBD have found that it helps for insomnia, arthritis and other similar conditions. CBD targets the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the brain to alleviate these different medical problems.

Within recent years, the production and distribution of hemp has become legal by the “Farm Bill”. Hemp is one of the many strains of the cannabis plant, but unlike other strains, it does not have high levels of THC. Instead, it was shown to have higher levels of CBD. Due to this fact, CBD can be legally produced and sold under federal laws. Because of the legality of CBD, researchers are now looking into the different therapeutic effects of CBD.

Currently, research trials have proven successful in treating schizophrenia, autism, alcoholism and skin conditions with use of CBD. There have been more than 150 trials worldwide looking to treat other conditions using CBD. The Food and Drug Administration(FDA) approved a well-known, CBD-based drug which has been proven to treat a type of epilepsy. CBD has been found to aid a number of problems, varying from sleep disorders to pain management.

How Could/May CBD Affect Weight Loss?

Similar to taking on a new diet plan, you need to adjust to a healthier lifestyle when using CBD to combat weight gain. It’s important to eat healthy and work out, not solely relying on CBD to lead you to a healthier body. Researchers discovered that CBD supports weight loss in several different ways. In a 2011 study in Neuroscience Letters, scientists found that the lab rats in which they were testing had a significant drop in weight after being given CBD injections for 14 days straight. The rats received between 2.5-5 milligrams of CBD for every kilogram of body weight. A steady pattern discovered throughout the study uncovered that the rats receiving 5 milligrams were proven to have the most body weight loss. This study leads researchers to believe that there is a strong link between weight and CBD.

CBD supports body weight loss because of how it works within the body. The human body has a natural endocannabinoid system which we were all born with. This system produces different responses using CB1 and CB2 receptors. CB2 exists throughout the body in various locations whereas CB1 receptors are primarily found within the central nervous system and brain. 

For obese people, their distribution is completely different than that of an average weight person. Their CB2 receptors are located throughout the body as they should be, but their CB1 receptors are found to be throughout the body as well which is not where they’re supposed to be. They become especially prevalent in fatty tissue. Due to this discovery, researchers believe there is a significant link between obesity and activation of CB1 receptors.

Observed Benefits of Using CBD for Losing Weight

CBD has the power to inhibit the activity of the key proteins that are involved in the generation of fat cells and lipogenesis. It helps by stimulating the breakdown of body fat, promoting the conversion of white adipose tissue to brown adipose tissue. It also helps boost the activity of mitochondria in the cells to aid the body in burning more calories.

CBD May Help Improve Your Metabolism

Cannabis is often associated with increased food intake, also known as the munchies, but CBD actually helps in reducing food intake. Recent research suggests that it not only can decrease how much you eat, but it can also boost your metabolism. With these two mechanisms, it’ll be significantly easier to lose more weight faster.

CBD Has Been Shown To Reduce Body Weight

During population studies, marijuana was connected to having lower body weight. Researchers studied around 50,000 people and their cannabis intake. People who used cannabis at least 3 days a week showed a 14-17% incidence of obesity. People who abstained from any cannabis in that past year had a significantly higher obesity rate, sitting at 22-25%. Some researchers have suggested that the different cannabinoids in marijuana have a synergistic effect on appetite and metabolism. Due to this fact, some people use full-spectrum products so that they can enjoy the benefits of CBD as well as other cannabinoids.  

CBD Can Alleviate Metabolic Disorders

Research shows that metabolic disorders like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol are all linked to increased obesity rates. A possibility is because of the increased activation of CB receptors in the body. CBD helps block CB1 receptors, which could be what leads to a reduced obesity risk in an individual.

Does THCV Help With Weight Loss?

THCV is another cannabinoid which can also help with obesity. It is a minor cannabinoid, not as massively used as CBD or THC, but it works against CB1 and CB2 receptors. That being said, THCV is safe to use for weight loss. THC increases your appetite, whereas THCV lowers it. In other words, it is a natural appetite suppressant. It can reduce glucose intolerance which is extremely beneficial to those suffering from type 2 diabetes and it can also increase your calorie expenditure.

How Can You Take CBD?

Because CBD research is still ongoing, there is no recommended dosage yet. The right amount varies based on body chemistry, health conditions and what problems you want to target with CBD use. It is smarter to start with the lowest dose possible and gradually increase depending on your needs. As an example, many people begin by taking 25 to 30 milligrams of CBD each day.

Not only is dosage important to take into consideration, but there are also various methods of consumption. The most popular options for CBD are one of the following: Edible products, capsules and pills, oils, vaping liquids and/or topical products. Choosing edibles means that the absorption time of the CBD will take longer, but once absorbed the effects last longer. Whereas, vaping CBD will allow you to feel the effect faster. There are risks associated with inhaling CBD, so many people use edibles, capsules or topical products to be on the safe side.

As with any medication, there is always the risk of side effects. Make sure to keep this in mind before making any selection of drugs. As a whole, CBD is considered safe when compared to other medications. Minor side effects include: drowsiness, dizziness, dry mouth and/or low blood pressure. Before taking CBD, make sure to consult your doctor because it has the potential to interact with other medications you may have prescribed.