Quitting Cigarettes with the help of Cannabis? Study says Yes!
Great news for tobacco addicts who wish to quit - research coming out of the UK has shown that the cannabinoid CBD significantly reduces tobacco smokers’ desire for cigarettes.
CBD is a non-psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant. Various studies have already shown CBD to have a number of astonishing health benefits, especially for those suffering from serious medical conditions. While the role of the endocannabinoid system is still not very well understood, evidence shows that it plays a large role in nicotine addiction, something that has only recently become acknowledged within the scientific community.
The study, which was conducted by researchers from the University College London, set out to perform a double blind experiment to uncover how those who desire to give up smoking would be effected by the ad-hoc use of CBD. The study was conducted using 24 participants, all of whom wanted to give up smoking. They were split into two random groups and given inhalers. One group’s inhalers contained CBD and the others was given a placebo. The participants were instructed to take a hit from the inhaler whenever they felt the urge to smoke.
The treatment was conducted over one week. Not surprisingly, the results showed that the placebo group showed no significant reduction in the amount of cigarettes they smoked. Incredibly, during the same time the CBD group showed a 40% reduction of cigarettes consumed. Follow ups to the experiment also showed that the CBD had had a long lasting effect on the participants, who continued to smoke less. These results strongly suggest that CBD can play a large part in the process of giving up smoking tobacco.
The research team had the following to say about the results: “This is the first study, as far as we are aware, to demonstrate the impact of CBD on cigarette smoking [...] These preliminary data, combined with the strong preclinical rationale for use of this compound, suggest CBD to be a potential treatment for nicotine addiction that warrants further exploration”.
This is a certainly a very encouraging study. However, bear in mind that this is not conclusive evidence. As the researchers state, more studies are required. The scope of the study was way too small to have significant weight, as it only used 24 participants and conducted over a short period of time. We are certainly very interested in seeing follow up studies!