Cannabidiol, or CBD, has been gaining popularity in recent years. With a myriad of potential benefits* and forms, CBD products have become more accessible than ever before.
Despite its popularity, studies on CBD and its effects on our body are still relatively new. One particular topic that’s been going around is whether CBD can damage liver health when consumed in high dosages.
So, is CBD bad for your liver? Let’s find out if that’s true and how you can consume CBD safely.
Understanding CBD and Liver Health
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of the many cannabinoids in cannabis plants that can be derived from hemp plants or manufactured in a laboratory. Unlike THC, CBD is considered non-psychoactive and typically doesn’t cause a high when consumed, however this may not be the case for all users, as some may experience it differently*.
You can consume CBD in numerous forms, from CBD oil tinctures to topical products or gummies.
Like many other compounds we consume, cannabidiol will be metabolized by the liver. During this process, there’s a particular concern regarding hepatotoxicity, which can lead to liver toxicity.
There’s also a risk of drug interaction when CBD is taken with other medication, increasing the possibility of side effects. That’s why it’s important to consult a medical professional before you decide to consume CBD.
FDA Warnings and Clinical Studies
The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has recently issued a warning on the consumption of CBD and liver injury, As mentioned on their page, this is due to research on applying a CBD drug called Epidiolex in mice.
It was found that consumption of the drug resulted in increased liver enzyme levels and, consequently, liver injury. However, complications mostly arise from drug interaction when CBD is consumed in high doses or with other medicines.
FDA mentioned that the risk can be managed when CBD is taken under medical supervision, in normal doses, and according to the guidelines of FDA-approved labeling. It is likely you will be safe if you take the appropriate amount of CBD, however, how your body reacts to it may differ from others.
Another study supported this statement, where normal doses of over-the-counter CBD products were shown to be potentially more tolerated without any signs of liver injury.
Research Findings: The Impact of CBD on the Liver
A laboratory study on CBD and hepatotoxicity using mice was done using high doses. The doses used for acute toxicity were 246 mg/kg, 738 mg/kg, and 2460 mg/kg. Ultimately, it was found that the highest dose exhibited hepatotoxicity and increased liver enzymes – ALT and AST.
On the other hand, another study concluded conflicting results. This particular study only used 5 mg/kg body weight, which is far below the concentration used in the previous study. This level of CBD administration was found to potentially assist the mice with their general wellness and support a calming effect on them.
CBD Dosage and Liver Safety
As you can see, when it comes to liver safety in CBD consumption, it’s all about dosage. Studies mentioned have demonstrated that extreme doses may lead to elevated liver enzymes and liver injury, while recommended doses may not have adverse effects.
It’s important to know that the high doses used in the study are almost impossible to reach with the typical use of CBD. For example, let’s say there’s a 10-mL bottle of CBD oil with 1,000 mg of CBD. If you weigh 70 kg, to reach the aforementioned dose of 2460 mg/kg, you’ll need 172,200 mg of CBD. That means you will be consuming over 172 bottles of the 10-mL bottle of CBD oil.
To be safe, follow the instructions provided on the packaging or consult a professional. Studies also show that doses up to 1,500 mg/day are well tolerated, so you might want to aim below that.
Potential Benefits of CBD for Liver Conditions
Extreme doses of CBD may be harmful to your liver, but CBD has potential positive effects on the liver.
By looking at these facts, finding the balance between the potential benefits* and risks of CBD is important. It is recommended you speak to your doctor to determine the appropriate treatment for your condition. Only use the correct dosage of CBD to avoid the potential harmful effects.
The FDA has released a warning regarding CBD consumption and liver injury due to a recent animal study. However, it’s important to note that these detrimental effects were observed in extremely high doses. Other studies have found that CBD may have potential wellness benefits*.
Nevertheless, due to the novel nature of CBD and its usage, further studies are still needed, and you should consult your healthcare providers before consuming any supplements.
The quality of your CBD products should also be a priority. Go for trusted brands such as NuLeaf Naturals that provide premium-grade CBD products in innovative forms. From CBD oil to drink mix and balm, we’re ready to support your overall wellness*.
CBD and the Liver: Frequently Asked Questions
Will CBD cause liver damage?
CBD could potentially cause liver damage when taken in higher doses than recommended without medical supervision. But if you consume CBD within the recommended doses, there’s little evidence that it could disrupt your liver function.
What is the safe dosage of CBD for liver health?
According to studies, high doses of CBD, up to 1,500 mg/day, are well tolerated in humans. To be sure, you can also refer to the recommended dosage on the labeling or consult a medical professional if needed.
Can CBD be used alongside liver medication?
Using CBD with other drugs is not recommended because it can interact and compete or interfere when they’re being broken down by the enzymes in the liver. The medication you’re consuming may not work or have an increased risk of side effects. Consult your physician before taking CBD if you’re currently taking prescribed medications.
Does CBD Oil Increase Liver Enzymes?
CBD may raise your liver enzymes, but it’s not potentially harmful as long as you consume it based on the recommended level. It can be dangerous when you consume high doses of the compound which could potentially lead to issues with your liver. That’s why you need to check the labeling of CBD products or consult a medical professional if unsure.
*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). NuLeaf products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.