Cannabidiol, known as CBD, may help opioid addicts kick their habits. Many people are enthusiastic about this compound derived from Cannabis. It is showing up in all kinds of products, mostly without much scientific basis for its use. That’s why scientists are paying attention to a recent placebo-controlled study (American Journal of Psychiatry, May 21, 2019).
What the Scientists Did:
The investigators recruited 42 volunteers who had been addicted to heroin, though they weren’t actively using the drug. The participants were split into three groups to get different medications: 800 mg of CBD, 400 mg of CBD and placebo. Each person got the test medication for three days and then participated in tests over the next two weeks. They viewed scenes of nature juxtaposed to scenes of drug paraphernalia. The scientists measured their levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, and had them rate their anxiety and cravings. Those who had taken CBD had significantly lower levels of craving and anxiety. Their cortisol levels were also significantly lower.
Will CBD Help People Kick Their Habits?
The researchers used Epidiolex, an FDA approved medication, for this research because they could control the dose closely. Scientists around the country are paying attention to these very interesting findings. They will need to conduct more research to learn just how best to use this compound. Clearly, CBD is not a magical solution to the opioid epidemic. However, it may help some people to kick their habits.