Because the ECS plays a role in pain management, it’s not far off to assume that hemp cannabinoids, including CBD, can impact joint comfort. Unfortunately, research on the link between hemp CBD and pain is still in the early stages—luckily what has been uncovered seems promising.

A 2017 study6 in rats found that a localized injection of hemp CBD could help with joint comfort. Another preclinical animal study using topical application of hemp CBD7 had similar findings, showing it could help reduce joint swelling and discomfort. Just remember: Both studies use rodent models, not people (so more to come!).

As interest in hemp CBD continues to grow, several universities have even developed research programs dedicated to increasing the study of cannabis, including hemp varietals—including UC Davis.

Professor and chief of pain medicine at UC Davis, David Copenhaver, M.D., M.P.H, says ongoing research has created a “new understanding of what’s called the immune inflammatory response.” This research suggests specific types of CBD support a healthy inflammatory response by altering the immune response; as a result, Copenhaver says “CBD has a role when used in prudent fashion for joint pain.”*

Just remember CBD products from industrial hemp (i.e., contains less than 0.3% THC by legal definition) are not pharmaceuticals (nor are they marijuana or medical cannabis), and it’s important to consult with your medical care provider before starting any supplement routine.

Again, hemp CBD affects each person differently. For a baseline reference, here’s how we categorize hemp CBD potency here at mindbodygreen:

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