When getting diagnosed with cancer and approaching treatment, the dilemma extends further than the diagnosis. Not only are we dealing with cancer’s symptoms, but we must now deal with side effects from treatment. Common forms of treatment like chemotherapy and radiation can give incredibly undesirable side effects like nausea, weakness, hair loss, loss of appetite, sleep issues, and even sexual issues like vaginal dryness .
Ironically enough, the answer to these side effects tends to be… more medication. Which in turn, more medications can mean more side effects from additional medication: It’s a truly dangerous loop. With more people being health conscious and wanting to avoid taking multiple prescription pills per day, what’s the deal with cannabis and cancer?
Studies show cannabis may actually slow down cancer
"There’s solid evidence supporting the idea that cannabinoids can reduce tumor growth in animal models of cancer. CBD may also enhance uptake or increase the potency of certain drugs used to treat cancer.” an article by Healthline states.In this article, Healthline examines a 2010 study showing the effects of CBD on preclinical models of metastatic breast cancer. Miraculously, the study found that CBD consumption was able to "reduce breast cancer cell proliferation and invasion” .
While this is obviously exciting news, by no means is this a call to ditch modern medicine and rely on only cannabis to treat cancer. What we can rely on, is the proven effectiveness of cannabis, specifically CBD and THC, to ease symptoms of cancer treatment side effects and cancer related pain.
CBD & cancer
CBD is simply one of the cannabinoids in cannabis plants, alongside the famous THC. A key difference is that CBD has no mentally “euphoric” effects, or the “getting high” that’s usually associated with cannabis, or THC. This makes CBD an impeccable option for those looking to naturally medicate with cannabis, and not experience the psychoactive effects of THC .
Looking at cancer treatments like chemotherapy, radiation, surgeries, medication, and more… CBD can be a great, natural addition to soothe side effects. Most commonly, CBD can be used in cancer treatments to alleviate nausea, inflammation, and ease treatment related stress & anxiety. A non-addictive form of medication, it’s often being sought out to lower the dependency rates of medications like painkillers for cancer treatments .
Some states are approved to provide medical marijuana, which can also supply CBD. While there aren’t FDA approved CBD products for those with cancer, it’s safe to supplement it on your own accord. It’s vital to talk to your doctor, and do ample research on brands, quality, and dosing before consumption .
CBD and sexual side effects
Interestingly enough, CBD is also a goldmine for treating treatment related sexual dysfunction. For women, this pain and side effects can translate into sexual issues such as vaginal dryness or pain during intercourse. CBD, when absorbed through the vagina, is shown to reduce inflammation and reduce muscular tension . As John Renko B.S.E, our Co-Founder and CBD scientist educated, CBD interacts with our TRPV1 Receptors:
"TRPV1 receptors have many roles, but are involved with pain perception, inflammation and many other processes. TRPV1 receptors are found throughout the body in the peripheral nervous system’s pain receptive neurons.
The interaction of CBD with these TRPV1 receptors suggests that it has the ability to help mediate pain signaling. The TRPV1 signaling process is designed to protect you from danger but they operate in a non-intuitive way through a process of desensitization; they don’t remove the pain, but rather they reduce the pain signal.” 
Women have been using our GoLove CBD Lube to supplement these side effects. Simply apply 15 minutes before solo or partnered sex, letting the CBD absorb into the blood stream. Each bottle of GoLove CBD Lube is equipped with 200mg of organic CBD, or 2mg per pump.
The famous compound, THC
THC is a compound of cannabis that is equally as powerful as CBD in treating ailments, but gives the euphoric feeling of “being high” . It’s important to note that “getting high” is not the goal for medically using THC products to treat things like pain and ailments. Oftentimes, people using THC products for their conditions won’t feel too much of a psychoactive effect considering the medicinal relief of symptoms comes first.
In treating cancer related side effects, THC has shown its greatest results in:
- Pain management, especially in terminal cancer cases
- Fighting extreme nausea
- Aiding insomnia
- Stimulating appetite
In the US, THC is a highly regulated compound. Depending on which state you live in, it’s available recreationally, medicinally, or not available at all. As always, we recommend speaking with your doctor and getting familiar with regulations to see if THC products are right for you.
Is cannabis right for your journey?
How one experiences treatment and its side effects can greatly differ, making most recommendations tricky. Luckily, cannabis is a very safe avenue for exploring symptom relief with very few side effects. The best way to see if cannabis is right for you is to consult with your doctor, and see your options. In your state, you may actually be a candidate for medical marijuana: this can give a wider range of medicinal options, including access to THC. CBD is legal everywhere in the USA, and you can try on your own accord. For example, you can safely try out our GoLove CBD Lube by simply ordering it online, and experiment with titrating (dosing) until you find your sweet spot.
All facts in, cannabis is a natural and effective method of managing symptoms of related side effects for cancer treatments.