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Osteoporosis & CBD Oil: Best Products & Research on Building Bone Density 

Osteoporosis is a medical condition in which bone loss exceeds the creation of new bone. Literally translated as, “porous bones,” the bones of people with osteoporosis become increasingly brittle and fragile as density decreases. All of this puts osteoporosis suffers at an increased risk of bone fractures, but CBD oil may be able to help.

Bone is not a static system, but is continually undergoing change. Under the influence of hormones and stressors, new bone is continually laid down while old bone is lost, or resorbed.

In a healthy individual, the rate of bone turnover is equal, meaning that there is not a net gain or loss of bone tissue. In osteoporosis, there is a net loss of bone tissue, leaving bones brittle and susceptible to fracturing.

There is plenty of research that is ongoing but the information that we have so far points to a number of ways in which using CBD oil for osteoporosis could be beneficial.

Benefits of Using CBD Oil for Osteoporosis

Bisphosphonates is the class of medication most commonly prescribed for people with osteoporosis. Bisphosphonates do an excellent job of slowing or even preventing bone loss, though unfortunately, these results come with some less than pleasant side effects. Many who are prescribed bisphosphonates complain of nausea, abnormal heartbeat, dizziness, and pain. Although bisphosphonates are generally thought of as the gold standard in the treatment of osteoporosis, they are not always very effective and sometimes bone loss does still occur after a few years of taking them.

If you’re taking bisphosphonates and are considering adding CBD oil to your wellness regimen, first speak to your doctor, and keep this chart handy.

Common Osteoporosis Medication Potential Side Effects Potential Side Effects of combining CBD Oil w/ Osteoporosis Medication Potential Benefits of Using CBD Oil
Alendronate (Fosamax) Chest pain; new or worsening heartburn; difficulty swallowing; new pain in thigh or hip; burning sensation under the ribs. There are no known interactions between CBD oil and Alendronate but that does not mean they don’t exist.   Always talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. CBD oil has been shown to decrease bone loss.
Risedronate (Actonel) Chest pain; new or worsening heartburn; difficulty swallowing; new pain in thigh or hip; burning sensation under the ribs. There are no known interactions between CBD oil and Risedronate but that does not mean they don’t exist.  Always talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. CBD oil has been shown to reduce bone loss.
Ibandronate (Boniva) Back pain; headache; redness or swelling in eyes; diarrhea; nausea; upset stomach; pain in arms and legs. Reduction in nausea is a positive interaction between Boniva and CBD. Always talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. CBD oil has been shown to reduce pain; inflammation; bone loss; and nausea.
Zoledronic acid (Reclast) Nausea; fever; fatigue; anemia; vomiting; constipation; flu-like symptoms. There are no known interactions between CBD oil and Zoledronic acid but that does not mean they don’t exist.  Always talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. CBD oil has been shown to reduce bone loss.
Raloxifene (Evista) Potential for blood clots (pulmonary embolism and DVT) and stroke There are no known interactions between CBD oil and Raloxifene but that does not mean they don’t exist.   Always talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. CBD oil has been shown to reduce bone loss.
Denosumab (Prolia; Xgeva) Low calcium levels; weakness; constipation; back pain; anemia; diarrhea; pain in arms and legs. There are no known interactions between CBD oil and Denosumab but that does not mean they don’t exist.  Always talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. CBD oil has been shown to reduce bone loss.
Teriparatide (Forteo) Constipation; diarrhea; weakness; joint pain; muscle spasm. Maximum usage is 2 years. There are no known interactions between CBD oil and Teriparatide but that does not mean they don’t exist.   Always talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. CBD oil has been shown to reduce bone loss.
Abaloparatide (Tymlos) Dizziness; nausea; headache; fatigue; palpitations; vertigo; upper abdominal pain. Maximum usage is 2 years. There are no known interactions between CBD oil and Abaloparatide but that does not mean they don’t exist.   Always talk to your doctor before using CBD oil. CBD oil has been shown to reduce bone loss.

For those looking for a relatively worry-free alternative to bisphosphonates, and some of the other prescribed medications, cannabidiol (CBD) is an excellent option. CBD has very few side effects and is non-habit-forming. Additionally, research exists that supports using CBD oil as a way to slow, or even stop, the bone loss associated with osteoporosis.

Effectiveness of Using CBD Oil for Osteoporosis

To get an idea for how CBD may benefit those dealing with osteoporosis, it is helpful to understand what plays a part in bone density. Two different types of cells affect bone density: osteoclasts, which degrade bone, and osteoblasts, which help produce bone. It is the balance between these two cell types that maintains homeostasis in bone density.

Research has identified a cell receptor on osteoclasts that, when stimulated, speeds up bone degeneration. This receptor, called GPR55, was found to increase the rate of bone loss when artificially stimulated in studies.

Researchers then went on to attempt to find a chemical or compound which could block the GRP55 receptor, and one such compound that proved effective was CBD. Researchers found that CBD effectively blocked the GPR55 receptor, resulting in a significant reduction in bone degradation.

Further research confirms CBD’s role in affecting the balance between osteoclasts and osteoblasts in the bones. Supplementing with CBD appears to tip the balance towards osteoblast, or bone-building, activity, resulting in increased bone density!

In another study, CBD was found to increase the rate of bone healing in rats with fractured femurs. CBD did so by encoding enzymes that increased collagen cross-linking, which is associated with overall bone strength. The study concludes with, “Taken together, these data show that CBD leads to improvement in fracture healing and demonstrate the critical mechanical role of collagen crosslinking enzymes.”

As the research into CBD oil for osteoporosis continues, we will reach a greater understanding of all the ways CBD oil may be able to help. With the evidence available now, CBD oil appears to be a safe and natural way to prevent or reverse osteoporosis without the side effects of traditional treatments.

How to Take CBD Oil for Osteoporosis

The first step to using CBD oil for osteoporosis is speaking with your doctor. While CBD oil is generally considered safe, it can interact with certain prescription medications, yielding unwanted effects.

Once your doctor has cleared you for safe use, you’ll need to choose how you’d like to take your CBD. If you’re interested in trying CBD oil for osteoporosis, there are plenty of great options available. CBD is available in a variety of different preparations such as:

For osteoporosis, any of the above options should be effective. CBD topicals, like lotions or salves, will provide targeted, external relief for hours at a time. However, because they do not penetrate past the skin, you may want to supplement with a CBD inhalant, edible, or drops to up your bone density by targeting osteoclasts and osteoblasts in your bones. It will take some experimenting to find which CBD delivery method(s) are most comfortable and effective for your needs.

Note from the Medical Editor: As mentioned before, unless there are fractures present, osteoporosis doesn't really cause pain on its own. I think the best method would be edibles or drops to ensure consistent levels of CBD acting on osteoblasts/clasts.

While you’re trying out different CBD products, it is important to understand that different delivery formats will have different onsets and each will have a different duration.

For example, CBD vape oils and CBD flower can go to work in a matter of minutes but their effects are often gone within an hour. Whereas a CBD edible or CBD oil capsule can be slow to take effect, typically about an hour to start feeling effects, but can last for up to 6 hours.

CBD oil tinctures and drops are a good middle-of-the-road option, typically taking about 30 minutes to show effects and lasting for 2 to 4 hours. CBD oil drops and tinctures offer the best dosage control, making it easier to increase or decrease your dose as needed.

You may find that it takes more than one product to achieve desired effect. It may be best to supplement daily with a CBD oil capsule or tincture and apply CBD cream to areas with constant osteoporosis pain. You can use a CBD vape to address sudden aches when they pop up.

Given CBD oil’s safety profile, you can experiment without too much fear that something will go wrong.

CBD Oil Dosage for Osteoporosis

When it comes to selecting a proper CBD oil dosage, unless your doctor has advised otherwise, it is recommended that you start slowly with the lowest recommended dose listed on your CBD oil product.

If you’re having trouble finding a good starting dose, at CBD Oil Review, we have analyzed hundreds of products and come up with the following:

The CBD Oil Review Serving Standard is 25 mg of CBD taken twice daily.

This dose should be effective for most people, though individual results may vary. If you’re not seeing the effects you desire, increase your dosage by 25 mg every 3-4 weeks until you’re seeing results.

For more information on CBD dosing, consider reading through our dosing guide here, or speak with a naturopathic doctor for the most personalized action plan for using CBD oil to manage osteoporosis.

+ 6 sources

Sources:

  1. Matthew T. Drake et al. (2009) Bisphosphonates: Mechanism of Action and Role in Clinical Practice - National Center for Biotechnology Information https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2667901/
  2. Side Effects of Bisphosphonates (Alendronate, Ibandronate, Risedronate and Zoledronic Acid) - NOF https://www.nof.org/patients/treatment/medicationadherence/side-effects-of-bisphosphonates-alendronate-ibandronate-risedronate-and-zoledronic-acid/
  3. Beom-Jun Kim et al. (2018) Coupling factors involved in preserving bone balance - National Library of Medicine https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30515522/
  4. Lauren S Whyte et al. (2009) The putative cannabinoid receptor GPR55 affects osteoclast function in vitro and bone mass in vivo - National Library of Medicine https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19805329/
  5. Aymen I Idris Cannabinoid receptors as target for treatment of osteoporosis: a tale of two therapies - National Library of Medicine https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21358974/
  6. Natalya M Kogan et al. (2015) Cannabidiol, a Major Non-Psychotropic Cannabis Constituent Enhances Fracture Healing and Stimulates Lysyl Hydroxylase Activity in Osteoblasts - National Library of Medicine https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25801536/

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