Due to its promise across multiple other medical fields, more studies are looking into how HIV symptoms can be managed by CBD. Though the research is still limited, what findings do exist suggest that CBD positively interacts with the endocannabinoid system to undo the damage that the disease — and common drugs used to manage it — cause. The result is increased comfort and better outcomes for people who live with an AIDS diagnosis.
Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, or AIDS, is a chronic and potentially fatal condition for which there is no cure. AIDS is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus, which damages the immune system and drastically hinders the body’s ability to fight off infection until, eventually, the body experiences a drastic loss of cellular immunity. At that point, it becomes nearly impossible for the body to fight off infection, disease or malignancy.
An AIDS diagnosis can be terrifying for both the patient and his or her loved ones. However, it does not have to be the death sentence that it once was. Thanks to advancements in both medicine and science, there are treatments that help to reduce or even stop symptoms, hinder the virus’s spread and increase the life expectancy of infected individuals. One such possible treatment is CBD.
How HIV Symptoms Can Be Managed by CBD
To understand how HIV symptoms can be managed by CBD, it’s important to first understand how HIV/AIDS affects endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system is responsible for several physiological functions, including, at its core, the regulation of appetite, mood, sleep, memory and fertility. It also plays a role in several bodily processes, including inflammation, chronic pain, metabolism, immune function, liver function, muscle formation, bone growth, cardiovascular system function and more. Not only does AIDS itself interfere with cannabinoid receptors’ ability to ensure proper physiological functions but also, so too do the antiretroviral medications designed to manage HIV/AIDS.
Scientists believe that CBD can play a significant role in both the management of the disease and the side effects of common ARV therapy. In fact, findings show that CBD HIV supplements boost immunity, reduce HIV symptoms such as pain, inflammation and anxiety, and support the effectiveness of prescription drugs. In one study, people with HIV who took CBD for immune system health reported experiencing the following:
• Increased appetite
• Reduced nausea
• Decreased muscle and nerve pain
• Reduced depression and anxiety
• Improved sleep
• Soothed tingling in the hands and feetThere is also evidence that CBD can help reduce the risk of inflammation-related brain changes that are common among people with HIV/AIDS, such as mild neurocognitive disorder and HIV-associated cognitive impairment. This is because CBD and THC suppress leukocyte response, which helps to reduce the risk of brain inflammation.