Diverticulosis is a condition in which pouches form and protrude in the lining of the digestive system. These pouches are the result of the inner layer of the intestine pushing outwards through weak spots in the lining. These pouches (about the size of marbles) are called diverticula and are generally found in the colon, the lower part of the large intestine.
Diverticulosis is a prevalent condition in Western society most common in people after the age of 40. A Government study found that as many as 50 percent of people aged 60 and older have diverticula.
The same Government study asserts that 10 to 25 percent of people over the age of 60 with diverticulosis will go on to develop diverticulitis. Diverticulitis describes the condition when the diverticula becomes infected, inflamed and painful.
The National Institute of Health reported that digestive diseases cost annually upwards of $141 Billion a year in the United States.
Evidence of diverticulitis includes constant and persistent abdominal pain especially on the lower left side of the abdomen; the pain in the abdomen may increase after one eats or uses the restroom, fever, nausea, vomiting, a change in bowel movements and constipation.
The cause of diverticulitis is debated and the reason the pouches start to protrude and become infected requires more research however, many in the medical community agree that a diet low in fiber is largely responsible for diverticulitis. In addition to a low fiber diet, the medical community thinks the following have an impact on the development of diverticulitis: Obesity, cigarette smoking, excessive intake of anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen or naproxen, lack of exercise, a diet high in fat and red meat consumption. Interesting to note, that in Africa and Asia where a diet high in fiber is common, there are few cases of diverticulitis.
Treatment for diverticulitis includes antibiotics and in extreme cases, surgery. Most of the diverticulitis cases can be self-treated with rest and diet. Initially, a doctor may recommend a broth diet for a few days to give the digestive system a rest. Staying hydrated and a diet high in fiber is a must for anyone that has suffered from any digestive issues.
CBD and Diverticulitis
Diverticulitis is a condition that must be managed lifelong with rest and diet, at minimum. The question is, can taking CBD assist with the management of diverticulitis?
The gastrointestinal tract is a host to many endocannabinoid receptors – both CB1 and CB2 receptors. The exact nature of the endocannabinoid system and its role in the gut is still under study however, there is evidence in regards to inflammation management via immune response between the gut and the brain. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, taking CBD oil can possibly assist in reducing inflammation and promoting homeostasis in the digestive tract. In fact, a 2008 Government review suggests that in a distressed gut, CB2 receptors actually increase which can result in CBD oil being more effective in the gut for reducing inflammation.
The bottom line: Eat fiber, take CBD oil and eat your fruits and vegetables!