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The Connection Between Cannabis Use and Constipation


Cannabis has been used for thousands of years by many different cultures to treat gut-related problems; one of the earliest documented uses was in China, circa 2700 BCE. Science is currently researching the potential therapeutic uses of cannabis at full speed. Let’s examine the data pertaining to the connection between cannabis use and constipation. 

We suggest speaking with a medical marijuana doctor if you wish to use medicinal marijuana to treat constipation while residing in San Jose. A physician will inform you about the state’s cannabis laws and provide guidance on how to use marijuana safely. 

What Exactly is Constipation?

When you have difficult or infrequent bowel movements, you are constipated. It is common and typically not serious, affecting people of all ages for a variety of reasons. Some people go to the bathroom three times a day, while others may only do so a few times a week. But it’s usually too long if you go more than three days without one. Your stools become more difficult to pass after that.

Constipation vs Diarrhea

In case you have been fortunate enough to stay away from either ailment thus far, here is the distinction between constipation and diarrhea. There is a slight similarity between the two—they are both issues with bowel movements that can result in bloating, flatulence, and stomach aches. When your bowel movements are significantly more frequent than usual, you have diarrhea. They’ll be watery and loose as well. Conversely, constipation is defined as having fewer than three hard, dry bowel movements per week.

Short bursts of diarrhea or constipation are common and typically not life-threatening. Chronic episodes, on the other hand, typically indicate a more serious issue with the digestive system or other body parts.

Why Constipation Occurs?

Food absorbs water as it passes through the large intestine, resulting in waste products. Afterwards, the waste is moved toward the rectum by muscle contractions. Most of the water has been absorbed into the large intestine by the time it reaches the rectum, leaving behind a semi-solid stool.

The result of the colon absorbing too much water is constipation. In other words, more water is absorbed than is ideal. Dry, hard bowel movements that take a long time to pass are the result of this. Numerous factors can lead to constipation, such as:

  • Not drinking enough fluids, especially water
  • Ignoring the urge to go
  • Not having enough fiber in the diet
  • Laxative abuse
  • Lifestyle
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or other issues with intestinal function
  • Changes in habits or lifestyle, such as pregnancy, travel, and old age

Cannabis and Bowel Function

Cannabis has been used for digestive problems quite a bit, both in clinical and non-clinical settings. Though research is still in its early stages, studies have so far pitted THC against diarrheal frequency and symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease. The effect of CBD on the rate at which waste moves through the intestines has also been studied.

Cannabis is also being researched for its ability to subtly treat stomach problems brought on by using other kinds of drugs. Constipation is a known side effect of opioids, which are frequently prescribed for pain management. Medical marijuana is presently undergoing trials to see whether it can help lower the usage of opioids, which may limit the latter’s ability to cause negative side effects like constipation.

Cannabis’s capacity to induce relaxation is another well-liked effect. It’s easier for someone to respond to nature’s call when they’re at ease.

Nonetheless, conflicting reports continue to surface. A self-reported study found that long-term cannabis users experienced more constipation when their consumption of the drug increased.

However, there are problems with this report. Most people who claimed that using cannabis had caused constipation also had irritable bowel syndrome. Since constipation is frequently a side effect of IBS, these findings do not necessarily mean that cannabis causes constipation.

In the end, the majority of the data supporting the use of cannabis to treat constipation is preliminary or anecdotal. Further research in science is required. However, some research has been done on the connection between the endocannabinoid system and the gut, which could eventually help us find the definitive answers to some more questions.

The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) and Gut Health

Many scientists think the ECS facilitates communication between the brain and the gut. There are numerous important ways in which the endocannabinoid system is related to gut health. While CB2 receptors are more common throughout the gastrointestinal tract, CB1 receptors are abundant in the central nervous system. Gut function can be affected by alterations in the brain brought on by stress or pain. Furthermore, alterations in the gut brought on by infection or inflammation are relayed back to the brain. This connection is critical to intestinal health and may have an impact on conditions like irritable bowel syndrome.

In the gut, the ECS is essential for reducing inflammation. Certain endocannabinoids have the ability to act on CB1 and CB2 receptors, which helps to reduce inflammatory responses. It is also essential for digestion. Food can pass through the digestive system and nutrients are absorbed when the muscles in the gastrointestinal tract contract. Some cannabinoids have the ability to bind to CB1 receptors, which may help to lessen stomach acid production, delay stomach emptying, and lessen nausea. Even the sensation of hunger known as “the munchies” can be induced by strong stimulation of the CB1 receptor.

Does Cannabis Have Laxative Effects?

If you gaze Many anecdotal reports of recreational marijuana use having a laxative effect can be found online, but what does the research say? A 2019 study reports that recreational cannabis users have a 30% lower chance of constipation. It might just be the case that using cannabis to unwind causes your body and muscles to physically relax, which increases the likelihood that you will use the restroom.

Does CBD Contribute to Constipation?

There are hardly any studies on the impact of CBD on constipation. Together with diarrhea, it is noted as an unusual side effect of CBD oil. This might be because of the CBD per se, but it might also be because of the carrier oil and other components that CBD products contain.

If you intend to use cannabis for medical purposes while residing in San Jose, you will need to obtain a medical marijuana card in order to legally obtain medical marijuana. To obtain your medical marijuana card online, just complete the form available on our website. 

Prospects for Cannabis and Constipation Treatment

Despite the paucity of research, a number of studies have now established a connection between the endocannabinoid system, the gut microbiota, and cannabis. Medical science will undoubtedly continue to investigate and elucidate this connection as it progresses, hopefully identifying new insights that could potentially aid in the treatment and prevention of gastrointestinal disorders like Crohn’s disease and IBS.

Not marijuana, but rather underlying medical conditions are more likely to be the cause of severe constipation problems. Try stool softeners, alter your diet and way of life, and consult a doctor to solve the issue.

Nevertheless, we can’t discount the apparent connection between cannabis and our stomach. If you think that using cannabis is the cause of your bowel problems, try switching up your strains, increasing your water intake, altering your diet, or taking a break from cannabis. See your doctor as soon as possible if you have serious concerns.