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Could CBD Help Vapers Kick Nicotine Habit?

Among the many possible applications for medical cannabis is it potentially playing a role addressing nicotine addiction.

Despite numerous efforts to limit nicotine use, it’s estimated more than 8 million adults in the United States continue to use e-cigarettes – many of which contain this addictive substance. A large portion of these “vapers” reportedly express the desire to quit, but there is a lack of research into effective intervention efforts for this group.

But a recently released study indicates cannabidiol (CBD), a non-intoxicating compound found in cannabis, may help e-cigarette users overcome nicotine addiction by lessening the intensity of withdrawal symptoms  such as cravings, irritability, anxiety, and difficulty concentrating when a person attempts to quit. The nature of withdrawals often creates a substantial barrier to successful cessation attempts.

The research involving an open-label, crossover design with 20 participants tested whether administering 320 mg of CBD orally – quite a high level – could mitigate the severity of nicotine withdrawal after abstaining from e-cigarettes for a four-hour period. This was compared to the levels of withdrawal and anxiety experienced after a similar period of abstinence without cannabidiol.

The researchers, taking into account participants’ positive expectations about CBD, found the results were in line with their hypothesis. CBD did appear to lessen both the severity of withdrawal symptoms and anxiety levels during the abstinence period.

These promising initial findings could pave the way for more in-depth studies into the potential of CBD as an aid in e-cigarette cessation efforts. The study was published in the journal Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research.

While quitting smoking is a great thing, the ongoing use of nicotine poses numerous health risks; potentially leading to damage to the heart, lungs, and blood vessels. It’s also associated with a higher risk of developing respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.

E-cigarettes have also been under increasing scrutiny for their potential role in introducing non-smokers to nicotine addiction, and the safety of other ingredients used in vaping fluids (eliquids) is of concern.

As such, the search for effective cessation aids remains an important public health endeavor. If the benefits of CBD in nicotine cessation can be confirmed through further research, it may become an essential tool in the fight against nicotine addiction.

Gillian Jalimnson
Gillian Jalimnson is one of Hemp Gazette's staff writers and has been with us since we kicked off in 2015. Gillian sees massive potential for cannabis in areas of health, energy, building and personal care products and is intrigued by the potential for cannabidiol (CBD) as an alternative to conventional treatments. You can contact Gillian here.

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