Cannabis For Gout
Gout is a painful and debilitating form of arthritis. Gout is caused by a build-up of uric acid in the body, which leads to the development of sharp acid crystal deposits in joints. It’s usually the big toe that is most commonly affected by gout but it can also affect the wrists, fingers, ankles, and elbows. In some cases, the pain from gout is so severe and even something as light as a bed sheet can cause sharp pain that can last for weeks at a time.
More often than not, gout is caused by consuming these foods: kidney, liver, seafood, alcohol, caffeine, sardines, anchovies, fish roes, dried beans, lentils, and meat extracts. This is why changing lifestyles and eating better is often prescribed for those who suffer from gout, although it may take a while for gout to be completely eliminated. To combat the excruciating pain often accompanied by gout flare ups, doctors also prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) although these can cause side effects such as diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, gastric ulcers, fluid retention, bleeding, and damaged kidneys. Gastrointestinal problems are the most common side effects of NSAIDS, and these drugs contribute to over 100,000 hospitalizations a 10,000 deaths a year.
Cannabis Benefits For Gout
Cannabis has been used since antiquity to relieve inflammation and swelling in various parts of the body. There are little studies that have been done analyzing the effects of cannabis for gout sufferers, although the analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of cannabis are already well-known. For those who want to use cannabis to relieve themselves of the pain and inflammation that comes with gout, it should also be accompanied by a proper diet to address the root cause of the condition.
Medical cannabis can provide adequate pain relief so that patients no longer need to rely on addictive painkillers that can be addictive and may have side effects. Medical marijuana can be taken in almost any form to address gout pains: topical ointments and balms, edibles, and the classically inhaled versions all of which can provide significant relief.
Strains that contain high levels of CBD may be particularly useful in treating pain and inflammation from gout. CBD is known to decrease lymphocites in the body, the white cells that contribute to inflammation. A 2008 study conducted on mice that had some form of rheumatoid arthritis revealed that when CBD was given to them, the inflammation was reduced by as much as 50%. Another study, was conducted on humans last year with the intention of determining if cannabis is effective in alleviating arthritic joints and pain. The 3-year study by a researcher at Dalhousie University found that cannabinoids were beneficial in controlling the pain signals that are sent from the affected joints to the brain. In the UK, a study was also conducted by the Royal National Hospital For Rheumatic Disease where they discovered significant improvements in quality of sleep, pain at rest, and movement in patients with rheumatoid arthritis when they were given cannabis-based medicine.
The challenge today is finding CBD-rich strains because these are most useful for treating inflammation. Over the past few decades most strains have been bred to maximize the THC content in order to give people a stronger high instead of focusing on the plant’s therapeutic benefits. Thankfully, CBD-rich strains are slowly but surely making a comeback but it in order to get the most medicinal properties for gout. Your best bet is to try Cannatonic, a popular strain that has 6.5% CBD, which is the same amount of THC.
If you have gout, you may want to try mixing and matching strains until you find one that works for your symptoms. Even if this means a little trial and error on your part, it will still save you from taking expensive trips to the doctor and you won’t ever have to worry about any side effects.
Have you tried using cannabis to treat gout? What was your experience like?
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