Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or IBS, affects 10% of the population worldwide and 15% of the population in the Western Hemisphere. In 2022, that would bring the estimate of the IBS-affected to 780+ million people. (That’s a lot of people!) And yet, the treatment for it is highly under-researched and under-optimized.
As the demand for effective, individualized treatment increases, hemp products are rising up as a beneficial supplement to IBS diet plans. But, how do cannabinoids relieve IBS? And how can we incorporate it into our IBS diets? India Hemp Organics is here to bring you the answers. Before we get to it, first, we need to know whatIBS is all about.
What is IBS?
Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a digestive tract disorder with symptoms such as abdominal pain and cramping, nausea, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation. In the past, drugs like antidepressants and opioids were used for therapy. These days, doctors recommend lifestyle changes, dietary changes, and even cognitive behavioral therapy.
The gastrointestinal or GI tract is significantly linked to our natural endocannabinoid system or EDS. For this reason, (among others) recent studies are bringing out the advantages of using hemp products to relieve IBS symptoms.
How Hemp Can Help
Hemp extracts contain cannabidiol, or CBD, which interacts with the EDS that is instrumental to many parts of the digestive system. It acts on the movement of the GI tract as well as its secretion and inflammation. These, along with the microbial colonies in our gut contribute to IBS. By modulating the way in which the endocannabinoid system works, hemp offers several benefits for irritable bowel syndrome.
One of the most frequent symptoms of IBS is abdominal pain and inflammation of the GI tract. Hemp is chock-a-block with CBD, which is known to relieve pain and reduce inflammation. Besides this, hemp is also rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, or “healthy fats”, which ease inflammation in the digestive tract.
What the hemp extract does is that it controls the hypersensitivity to a certain substance that may be triggering the IBS. And it does so, largely in part, with the help of the gut-brain connection.
Did you know that microbes (bacteria and stuff.) in our guts have nervous systems of their own – which can affect ours? It’s true that the importance of our gut bacteria is highly underrated. These guys impact the way we absorb nutrition from our food and the way we react to it.
Hemp seeds have been found to contain important prebiotics (such as maintain a healthy ecosystem in the gut. In case you were wondering, prebiotics is food for the bacteria, which keeps them at the top of their game. When the gut is healthy, it supports healthy digestion, as well as a healthy immune system.
Experts have noticed a connection between IBS and mental wellbeing. When it comes to which causes which, we arrive at a classic ‘chicken and egg problem’. The point is that they affect each other - and therefore, controlling stress and anxiety can reduce the awful symptoms of IBS.
Gut bacteria also affect mood through their link to the brain. This is what is called the gut-brain axis, which is like a line of communication between the two. When your gut is out of whack, your brain is far from its best too. Hemp extracts like oils reduce stress and anxiety by interacting with the receptors in the EDS.
Hemp extracts, such as CBD, bind to receptors in the EDS to change the way movement occurs in the gut. This relieves the IBS symptoms of diarrhea. In fact, the use of cannabis for cholera-induced diarrhea dates back to the 19th century.
How To Use Hemp For IBS
Irritable bowel syndrome manifests itself in different ways for different people. Along with the doctor’s suggestions of exercise, and determining the trigger foods for the condition, hemp can also be incorporated into an IBS treatment.
For hemp oils, such as the Cannabis Oil from India Hemp Organics, you will need to consult with an in-house doctor to ascertain the exact dosage that is suited to your body. Upon doing so, you can use just a few drops on your tongue as often as is prescribed.
Another way to get your hemp nutrients is to add hemp protein to your IBS diet. India Hemp Organics’ Hemp Protein and Hemp Seed Oil can be added as a topping to your salads, or blended into shakes and smoothies.
We always recommend talking to your physician before making drastic changes to your diet, especially if your IBS condition is severe. The benefits of hemp as a dietary additive are still being explored – and new information is popping up every day. What we do know is that hemp is one of the safer solutions to a complicated problem like IBS. With the empowerment of the hemp industry, we will be able to combat these problems, in combination with a healthy physical and mental lifestyle.