Often devastatingly painful, gout is a condition that can leave sufferers in extreme, recurrent agony. Swollen, tender lumps underneath the skin, intense discomfort at the joints, and increased inflammation across the body are just some of the symptoms those with gout must face; untreated, gout can leave the stricken with arthritis, and even limited movement for life.
As horrible as gout can be, seeking relief is only natural. Though there are medications proven to help with symptoms of gout, many are turning to
What is Gout?
Gout is a form of arthritis and inflammation affecting those with urate crystals in their blood stream. Urate crystals, formed by a higher-than-normal concentration of uric acid, are exactly as the name suggests — microscopic crystals that form inside the body. As our metabolic system breaks down foods we ingest byproducts are occasionally produced; one such substance, known as a “purine,” leads to the production of uric acid when digested by the body.
Purines are found naturally inside the human system, but also come in large quantities from outside sources; organ meats and other types of animal products rich in iron are typically filled with purines, alongside many types of fish and seafood, as well as alcohol. When our bodies produce uric acid, too much or too little production can lead to an internal buildup, often around the joints and surrounding tissue.
Gout is rarely permanent, but can become chronic without medical attention. Gout attacks can last anywhere from three to 10 days, during which the sufferer will experience intense pain at the site of the inflammation (often near the big toe). If left untreated gout can result in hard deposits — called “tophi” — at the sites of the incursion, potentially leading to permanent joint damage.
What Causes Gout?
As mentioned above, gout is primarily related to the levels of uric acid present in someone’s bloodstream. Irregularities in uric acid can be caused by a wide array of factors, including:
- Pre-existing medical conditions: Medical issues such as obesity, heart and kidney troubles, diabetes and others can increase the risk of gout developing.
- Overall diet and weight: Again, red meats, shellfish and alcohol can all increase the levels of uric acid in the body. Obesity likewise plays a large role in overproduction of uric acid, as well as slowing down the elimination of uric acid through the kidneys.
- Medications: Some medications can come with the side effect of increasing uric acid production, particularly those related to hypertension. If experiencing symptoms related to gout, ask your healthcare professional if your current medications carry an increase of risk.
- Family history: Many times gout can be passed down generationally due to inherited genetics. If others in your family before you have developed gout, you are more likely to experience it yourself.
What is CBD?
One of many chemical compounds found in the cannabis plant, cannabidiol (or “CBD”) is a molecule referred to as a “cannabinoid.” The hemp, or cannabis, plant produces a wide
Our human bodies contain a natural cannabinoid processing ability, referred to as the “endocannabinoid system,” which allows us to take cannabinoids — both those created by our own bodies and those created from external sources — and put them to good use.
Cannabinoids in the THC (or tetrahydrocannabinol) family interact with what are known as the CB1 receptors located on our brain; it is the unique chemical makeup and shape of THC that allows it to give us the sensation of being “high” when interacting with our bodies.
CBD primarily interacts with the CB2 receptors located throughout our entire bodies; when antagonizing these receptors the human body tends to enter a state of greater physical relaxation, with inflammation and overall levels of stress notably reduced.
While CBD does effect the body and brain alike it is not a psychoactive compound in the widely understood sense, meaning it cannot and will not get you high like THC can. What CBD can do, however, is be used for a wide variety of medical applications, ranging from depression to fatigue; but can CBD work to fight the pain and soreness associated with gout?
Is CBD Useful for Treating Gout?
As with many topics regarding cannabinoids and medicinal use, research on whether or not CBD can help with the symptoms of gout is fairly slim. Direct studies on CBD’s effects on gout are seemingly non-existent, and while CBD is known for relieving arthritic pains and helping to reduce inflammation, whether or not CBD has an effect on the urate crystals that cause gout is currently unknown.
Studies have shown that CBD
How Can I Take CBD For Gout?
As always a great first step before taking CBD for any medical condition is to speak with your doctor about their recommended regimen. CBD can be administered in a number of ways, though some more immediate for certain situations than others.
For deep pain relief and inflammation, we recommend either ingesting a
If looking for surface-level relief, and to ease aching joints, a CBD-infused lotion or oil might be a preferable option. Gently applying to the effected area two to three times per day should help to relax the muscles and keep joints from feeling so stiff and sore.
Is Taking CBD for Gout Safe?
CBD is generally recognized as a fairly “safe” substance to take, but that doesn’t mean it should be added to your medical routine without the guidance and supervision of a healthcare specialist. Though gout can be difficult to treat, ensuring no
Also important is the
Before purchasing any cannabis product — CBD,
Though it could be easy to see CBD as a natural remedy for the stiff, aching, tender soreness that comes with gout, there is unfortunately very little in the way of scientific evidence to back up the thought. That said, with what we do know about CBD’s natural pain and inflammation fighting properties, it can be worth asking your medical official if CBD can be a right fit for you. Until next time!