Have you noticed how CBD, in such a short span, has become so famous among the masses? And why not? The compound has shown great potential in treating so many health conditions. Anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain, PTSD, the list can just go on. And owing to this, a lot of people nowadays are giving it a try.
As per the studies to date, CBD is also a very safe substance with very minor side effects, if any. And that too surface only if you are not careful with its usage. But hey, that is the case with every single thing out there. And so, you don’t need to worry much.
However, there is still one big concern here. Marijuana doctors in Fontana say that CBD may interact with some of your prescription drugs. And this may be a problem for your overall health. Experts say that if you are thinking of trying CBD, with being already on some prescription drugs, it’s very important to understand how it may react with the medicines you are taking.
So, let’s dig a little deeper.
What is Drug Interaction?
“Drug interaction” is a term that is used for the drugs that may interact with each other in your body if taken together. This interaction may be in any way. In some cases, one drug may decrease the effects of the other drugs. While in others, it may cause it to overbuild, which may lead to toxicity or some other side effects.
Contrary to a popular belief, this phenomenon of drug interaction may take place with herbal supplements and over-the-counter medicines too, and not just with prescribed drugs. Therefore, while trying out something new, it’s very very important to talk to your doctor about all the medicines you are taking, including supplements and OTCs. The doctors know about how different compounds interact, and thus, may help you find some solutions. They may recommend you to take them at different times of the day, or may adjust the doses in a way that they do not react.
How CBD may Interact with Drugs?
Usually when you take a medicine, it is the work of the liver to break them down. And CBD too breaks down in your liver. So, if you take CBD and prescription drugs together, there is a chance that they interact with each other.
Now, before we talk further, there one thing you need to know. When you take CBD, it acts on many different things inside your body. And one such thing is a family of enzymes called CYP450. The major work of these enzymes is to break down things in your bodies. But CBD can alter the rate by which these enzymes work. And this change in the rate of metabolism may change how the body processes the supplements or medications you are taking.
What is CYP450 and Why is it Important?
CYP450, which is a short for cytochrome P450, is a special type of enzyme family or system that is present in your liver. And this particular enzyme, as discussed in the previous section, is responsible for breaking down several cannabinoids and drugs, including CBD.
Now, if we talk specifically, a very important enzyme of the family is CYP3A4. This particular enzyme is responsible for metabolizing at least 60 percent of medications that we take. But if we consume CBD, it isn’t able to work as effectively while breaking down the medicines you take.
Sometimes, the reverse may also happen. There are many medications that may have an effect on CYP3A4, making it unable to process the CBD effectively.
How to Determine a Potential Drug Interaction?
While the research is still ongoing to identify which drugs may interact with CBD, there is one method that may help consumers keep themselves safe until we have final results. Marijuana Doctors in Fontana say that you must avoid consuming any medication with CBD that carries a grapefruit warning on its label.
The grapefruit warning on a medicine indicates that you should not consume grapefruit or its juice if you are taking that medicine.
As per the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) consuming grapefruit while being on these medicines can increase the drug concentration in your bloodstream. And this may lead to overdosing.
But why to avoid CBD if your medicine has a grapefruit warning?
This is particularly because the chemicals in the grapefruit, just like CBD, also inhibit the work of CYP3A4. And they both slow down the rate of metabolism in your body.
Here are a few types of medicines that usually carry a grapefruit warning:
- Blood thinners
- Prostate medicines
- Pain medicines
- Erectile dysfunction Medicines
- Blood pressure medicines
- Anti-cancer medicines
- Antiepileptic medications
What Does the Research Say?
There are various studies currently going on to determine the interaction of CBD with various drugs. And the research is being done on animals for specific drugs. However, scientists are still not sure how their results will translate to humans.
There have been some small clinical trials on humans too. For instance, there was a study done on 25 kids with chronic epilepsy. Out of these 25 kids, 13 were given CBD along with their regular medication clobazam. And the researchers found that CBD increased the level of clobazam in these kids. Though this rise was not harmful in any way, experts still recommend constant monitoring of medication levels during the treatment.
In another trial, 42 children and 39 adults, who were on anti-epileptic drugs, were given CBD. The researchers increased their CBD dose every two weeks and monitored their serum levels. The results of this trial showed that while in most cases, the serum level remained well in the therapeutic range, for some, it did go above that range.
As we see, the usage of CBD definitely has some effects on the levels of medication in your body. However, the research on the subject is still at a very initial stage. And thus, until we find something more concrete, we cannot be 100 percent sure if CBD is okay for you to take with prescription drugs.
No doubt CBD has taken over the whole health industry in a very little span. And why not? It has so many health benefits to offer us. However, if you are interested in trying out CBD, you should talk to your doctor first. Especially if you are taking some prescription medications. A qualified doctor knows how different medications may interact with each other. And thus, he may help you find the correct dose for you. But if you are on your own for now, marijuana doctors in Fontana recommend you just avoid taking CBD if your medicine has a grapefruit warning.