CBD has gained popularity for its potential to ease symptoms of insomnia,anxiety, depression, chronic pain, and many other health conditions. Studies on the efficacy of CBD are ongoing, and people from all around the world are trying CBD as an alternative to standard medications.
Until now, research suggests CBD is generally safe and has a few (if any) mild side effects. But there’s a warning: CBD may interact with other medications or supplements you are taking. The concern is connected to how the body metabolizes certain substances.Furthermore, before trying CBD, make sure you talk to your physician about the medications, supplements, over-the-counter drugs you are taking.
After taking medication or any other substances, your body breaks it down which is also known as metabolism. It happens throughout the body like in the guts and liver.
CYP450 (Cytochrome P450) is an enzyme that converts the foreign substances so that they can easily be filtered out from the body.
But certain medications or substances impact the function of CYP450 either by speeding up or slowing down the drug metabolism. Such change in metabolism rate can change the way your body processes the medications or supplements you take, consequently drug interaction.
Research shows CYP3A4 which is an important enzyme within the CYP450 family of enzymes is responsible for metabolizing various cannabinoids, including CBD. Moreover, cannabidiol also interferes with CYP3A4 during the process.
The CYP3A4 enzyme is responsible for breaking down about sixty percent of clinically prescribed medications. However, if CBD restrains CYP3A4, metabolism is hampered.As a result, your body fails to effectively break down the medications in your system.
If your body is breaking down a medication slowly, possibly you have more medication at one time in your system. Increased level of medications in the system may cause unwanted or harmful side effects.
Also the opposite may happen. Certain substances can make the metabolism work faster. This can happen if your system doesn’t have enough of the medication at one time to treat your health issue.
If you are about to try CBD as an add-on therapy to treat certain health conditions, consult with your doctor first. Your physician will help determine the right CBD oil product, dosage, and schedule that is safe with other medications you are taking. Don’t stop taking your prescribed medications to try CBD products, unless your doctor suggests it’s necessary to do so.
Although more studies are required to determine the potential interactions between CBD and other drugs, consumers can follow the grapefruit warning on the label of the medications they are taking. If your medications have this warning, avoid taking CBD.
According to the FDA, consuming grapefruit or grapefruit juice while taking such drugs may cause higher concentration of the medication in the bloodstream and potential adverse side effects.
More than 85 drugs interact with grapefruit, that is because chemicals in grapefruit restrain CYP3A4 enzyme, in a similar fashion as cannabidiol. This results in slowed metabolism.
Here is a list of medications that have a grapefruit warning:
Researchers are working to find out the potential interactions between cannabidiol and other medications. Most of the studies done are on animals. Scientists are still trying to figure out how those results translate to humans.
In one study with 25 children suffering from epilepsy, 13 of the subjects were given both clobazam and cannabidiol. Researchers found an increased level of clobazam in these children. They concluded that taking CBD and clobazam together is safe but monitoring medications level is important.
Even if you are taking prescribed dosage, CBD can mess with medication levels in your system. But still more research is required to discover the severity of CBD interactions with other medications.
If you are taking CBD with other medications, it’s important for you to closely look if there are any potential changes in how the medication affects you. Watch out for the side effects mentioned below:
To conclude, If you would like to use CBD and if you are on other medications at the same time, consult with your doctor first. Don’t stop taking your prescribed medications to try cannabidiol. Medications that come with grapefruit warning may interact with CBD. Furthermore, your doctor will formulate a plan and schedule that works for you.