How Does Marijuana Turn Around Your Upset Stomach?

Marijuana for Upset Stomach

Have you been suffering from an upset stomach? Learn about how marijuana can be the cure to your stomach problems in more ways than one.

Much of the discussion surrounding the effects of marijuana with on pain relief centers around the serious stuff, like cancer and AIDS, chemotherapy, and chronic pain. Yet, only a small amount of research is focused on everyday ailments like an upset stomach.

Our collective tune on marijuana is changing, and it’s only a matter of time before the mainstream begins to adopt the plant as a natural alternative to our usual over-the-counter remedies from Tylenol to Pepto Bismol.

Have you been suffering from an upset stomach? Learn about how marijuana can be the cure to your stomach problems in more ways than one.

Here a quick look at how marijuana can help settle the stomach and relieve the discomfort caused by nausea.

The Link Between Marijuana and Nausea

Medical marijuana has been prescribed in some capacity since the 1980s for its ability to help cancer patients cope with the pain and nauseating effects of chemotherapy.

At the time, much of the research surrounding marijuana’s stomach soothing potential was considered largely anecdotal. Since then, however, we’ve gained much more insight into how cannabis actually works to combat chemo-related nausea, as well as everyday stomach issues.

Which brings us to THC and the endocannabinoid system.

Let’s take a look at what it is, and how it works:

How does Marijuana Cure an Upset Stomach?

Marijuana contains compounds that have been shown to combat nausea. THC, the primary compound is an effective antiemetic, meaning, it relieves nausea and vomiting.

We all know about THC–its the compound in marijuana that produces the mind-altering effects the plant is known for. But, have you ever wondered how the substance works?

THC affects us because it is similar to a compound that our bodies create on their own., for this reason, THC can tap into something known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS, for short).

The word endocannabinoid was taken from the plant–as we likely would have never learned of its existence without it. Endo is derived from the word, endogenous, meaning “from the body.” While “cannabinoid” is in direct reference to the compounds in marijuana which affect our brain and nervous systems.

Two primary cell receptors make up the ECS, these are known as Cannabinoid Receptor 1 (CB1) and Cannabinoid Receptor 2 (CB2). Both sets of receptors function like the body’s natural supply of THC. As such, the ECS is a biological system that plays a vital role in the nervous, immune, and endocrine systems.

This system controls the secretion of hormones and regulates reproductive functions, and helps the body respond to stress. It’s also responsible for the psychoactive effects of cannabis.

So, what does this all have to do with an upset stomach?

Over the years, the medical community has been studying the effects of cannabis on AIDS patients and those undergoing chemotherapy.

While in most cases, doctors have looked at cannabis in the context of these serious illnesses, it’s worth pointing out that nausea is largely controlled by the brain.

You may have had too much to drink, have been struck down by food poisoning, or you’re taking a medication causing an upset stomach. In all these cases, cannabis stands to make a difference.

Studies–Cannabis’ Effect on Nausea

In a study from 2001, researchers gave volunteers ipecac (a syrup used to induce vomiting), followed by a dose of THC. Volunteers reported reduced feelings of nausea and ceased vomiting.

A 1999 study by the Institutes of Medicine found that pills are not especially effective in severe cases, as they are hard for patients to swallow. For that reason, we’d recommend using pills to combat queasiness, not full-blown vomiting.

The study found that an inhalation method–other than smoking–would be the best way to treat severe nausea caused by chemotherapy.

An earlier study published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) in 1975, confirmed the antiemetic effect of cannabinoids.

More interesting, is, that according to the study, no patients actually vomited once the pills set in. It’s the interim period, where there’s an issue, and patients are better off seeking out a faster method of delivery.

These are just a few of the countless studies documenting the use of medical marijuana for the treatment of nausea.

In cancer patients, smoking just a small amount of marijuana helps relieve symptoms of nausea in short order.

The THC helps patients eat and keep food down, which prevents secondary effects like muscle wasting or weight loss. That said, it’s hard to quantify the power of medical marijuana, as lost appetite and depression often start well before chemotherapy begins.

Additionally, the reduction in nausea helps patients sleep better. Sleep is no longer interrupted by constant vomiting.

Marijuana is also an effective tool for people with the unfortunate ailment of chronic nausea, which is an ongoing anticipation of vomit. Users can expect an increased appetite and the ability to keep food down. So, that same compound that gives you the munchies is a helpful tool for turning around a lack of appetite.

Best Ways to Consume Cannabis for an Upset Stomach

For those users concerned about how their brain function factors into all this, know that one only needs a small amount to reduce nausea.

Most people only need a couple of puffs of smoke or a few hits of a vape pen. If you’re newer to smoking marijuana, you’ll want to refrain from driving or operating machinery. Overall, you should be good to keep working and going about your business.

Based on what we’ve learned about the power of cannabis in recent years, it’s clear that this plant has some major benefits to those feeling a little queasy. Because an upset stomach is incredibly unpleasant, fast relief is one of the most important things to consider when using marijuana medicinally.

Smoking and vaping are going to be the quickest ways to start feeling the effects of the THC. Edibles and capsules, not so much. The latter methods take at least 45 minutes to kick in, which is longer than your average Ibuprofen dose. Simply put, it’s far too long to wait around for sweet relief.

A lot of patients prefer vape pens to smoking from a joint or a pipe–as you’re avoiding smoke, which may be unappealing if you’re laid up with an upset stomach.

That said, if vaping and smoking are out (due to work or respiratory issues) tinctures and pills may be your best line of defense. Tinctures take effect more rapidly than pills and edibles, making them a good middle ground.

Strains for Upset Stomachs

Research into the specifics of which strains work best for an upset stomach is still in its early stages. That said, some strains seem to work better for soothing stomach woes.

Here are some strains that have been known to soothe upset stomachs:

  • Blueberry Diesel: Blueberry Diesel is an indica-dominant hybrid with a relatively low THC content, as compared to others on the list. A moderate strain, this blend is relaxing and features notes of blueberry. It’s also an effective tool for combatting stress, pain, and upset stomach.
  • White Fire OG: White Fire OG is a sativa-dominant hybrid used to treat a range of conditions from chemo side effects to depression and appetite loss. This strain is high in THC, so you’ll definitely feel it.
  • Jack Herer: A popular strain for medical patients and cannabis enthusiasts, Jack Herer provides a clear-headed high, while simultaneously fighting nausea.
  • Blue Dream: Blue Dream is another versatile strain for those suffering from nausea, as well as things like stress and anxiety. Blue Dream is a 50/50 hybrid–so you’ll get a good balance between the focused energy of sativa and the relaxation of indica.

Learn More About this Versatile Plant–Visit the CannabisMD Blog

It’s no secret that we’re still at the tip of the iceberg when it comes to learning about the ins and outs of medical marijuana. However, with greater acceptace of both medical and recreational marijuana, we’re likely to see more discoveries about all this plant can do.

Whether you’re suffering from painful conditions like cancer, AIDS, or multiple sclerosis, or seek an alternative to pain medication and ADD pills we can help.

Check out our blog for more information about using medical marijuana, as well as finding a dispensary in your area. No matter if you’re looking to soothe an upset stomach or explore cannabis in general, let CannabisMD be your guide.

Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
At cannabisMD we aim to provide you with all the information and knowledge you need to take the next step in your personal cannabis journey! Read about our team

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