There has been a wide debate on the use of cannabidiol (CBD) for medicinal purposes. A recent study may shed more light on how people responded to using CBD and how it affected their health.

The study titled, "Self-reported Cannabidiol (CBD) Use for Conditions With Proven Therapies," published in JAMA Network Open, analysed comments of Reddit users for several years to determine how effective CBD is on their health and wellness. Researchers from the Qualcomm Institute's Center for Data Driven Health at the University of California San Diego, stated that scientists do not have enough data on why people take CBD, and so they reviewed the testimonials of CBD users. They then found that most of them took CBD due to medical issues like orthopedic, psychiatric, and sleep conditions, which are otherwise diagnosable.

The researchers looked at the 430 million users of Reddit and studied specific groups that were using CBD. The period of analysis of the comments was from January 2014 to February 2019.

After the analysis, the authors noted that 90 percent of the testimonials revealed that users take CBD for medical conditions. These conditions also happen to be treated by doctors using other medically available methods.

Dr David Smith, a co-author of the study and a professor at U.C. San Diego said that the public seems to believe cannabidiol is medicine. He said that who would have predicted that there would be individuals who would think that cannabidiol is a cardiology medication?

Dr Lenny Cohen, a neurologist, narrated in Healthline that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved only one medical use for cannabidiol, and that is for epilepsy. He also said that there are cannabis derivatives, which have been approved to help alleviate nausea in those who were receiving cancer treatment. Cohen then drew the line, and said that official approval on the medical use of CBD stops there.

Caleb Chen, owner of a website that reviews cannabis products, and also a Reddit moderator, noted that the study by the University of California has a valid point. He said that although the study implies that CBD is not as effective in treating medical conditions as the real medicine, what the authors really wanted to convey was their study was proof that there is a need for FDA to regulate the manner by which CBD producers market themselves more.

Cannabinoids for Pain
Cannabinoids for pain and nausea but not as cure. Photo: Pixabay

On the other hand, Carey Clark, PhD, RN, Pacific College of Health and Science's chair of the medical cannabis program stated in 2017 there was detailed evidence evolving around cannabis and various states of illnesses. She also highlighted that cannabinoids like CBD have shown efficacy in managing pain and muscle spasms that were associated with multiple sclerosis, along with nausea and vomiting induced by chemotherapy.