Research from scientists at Tel Aviv and Hebrew Universities in Israel has shown that cannabidiol (CBD) can strengthen bones and help fractures heal more quickly – even without the help of THC or any other psychoactive cannabinoids. The study was published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

The researchers experimented with rats, inflicting mild femoral fractures. They administered CBD to some of the rats, while the rest of the rats received THC alongside CBD, to compare the outcomes. They compared their healing rates, also to a group of rats who were not given any cannabinoids. Ultimately, researchers found that rats who received only CBD experienced the same benefits to their healing as the rats who received CBD and THC together. 

Researcher Yankel Gabet explained:

“We found CBD alone to be sufficiently effective in enhancing fracture healing. Other studies have shown CBD to be a safe agent, which leads us to believe we should continue this line of study in clinical trials to assess its usefulness in improving human fracture healing.”

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In addition to the cannabinoid receptors in human brains, there are receptors through the human body as well, thought to be responsible for benefits such as bone growth. CBD even worked preventatively to make future injury less likely. “After being treated with CBD, the healed bone will be harder to break in the future,” Gabet added. The findings are part of a recent wave of new research into the medicinal benefits of cannabinoids and other compounds in cannabis, and will likely lead doctors and researchers to look more closely at cannabis for the treatment of osteoporosis and other bone diseases.

A number of benefits have already been established by research, such as the ability to boost appetite, alleviate the side effects of chemotherapy, and an ability to address chronic pain. Other studies suggest that cannabis can also regulate blood sugar, slow the progression of HIV, and can be used to treat multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and epilepsy.

Gabet explained:

“The clinical potential of cannabinoid-related compounds is simply undeniable at this point. While there is still a lot of work to be done to develop appropriate therapies, it is clear that it is possible to detach a clinical therapy objective from the psychoactivity of cannabis. CBD, the principal agent in our study, is primarily anti-inflammatory and has no psychoactivity.”