Medical Cannabis for Gastritis

Researchers have known about and have been studying chronic gastritis since the 20th century in earlier decades. However, the condition didn’t receive much attention until 1982 after Warren and Marshall discovered Helicobacter pylori.

Gastritis is a disease caused by inflammation in the stomach lining, causing the mucosa to become inflamed or swollen. Gastritis severely affects digestion because the stomach lining contains glands that produce pepsin and stomach acids, both of which are essential in healthy digestion. Pepsin helps to break down proteins while stomach acid digest food. The stomach lining is protected by thick mucus, which prevents acidic digestive fluids from dissolving stomach tissue.

However, when gastritis occurs, a bacteria called H.Pylori affects this protective barrier. Gastritis usually occurs after consuming too much alcohol, as well as abusing medications and anti-inflammatory drugs. Other cause of gastritis are the excessive consumption of cigarettes, prolonged exposure to stress, medicating with steroids, bacteria and viruses, and spicy food.

You can develop two types of acute and chronic gastritis.

Acute Gastritis

Acute gastritis is a swelling or inflammation of your stomach lining. It may cause nagging and severe pain. It can come on suddenly, but the pain is usually temporary and only lasts for quick bursts at a time.

Several things can cause acute gastritis such as:

  • Bacteria
  • Injury
  • Stress
  • Viruses

It may also occur due to ingesting irritants like:

  • NSAIDs
  • Alcohol
  • Spicy food
  • Steroids

While acute gastritis occurs suddenly and lasts only temporarily, chronic gastritis appears more gradually and lasts longer.

Chronic Gastritis

Chronic gastritis occurs when the lining of your stomach becomes inflamed. Causes of inflammation include:

  • Chronic stress
  • Too much alcohol
  • Certain medications
  • Immune system problems

Your stomach lining can change when this inflammation occurs, and it loses some of its protective cells. Inflammation can also lead to early satiety, which is when your stomach feels full when you’ve only had a few bites of food. Since this type of gastritis occurs over a gradual period, it wears away at the lining of your stomach slowly. It may cause dysplasia or metaplasia. Both are precancerous cell changes potentially leading to cancer if not treated.

With treatment, however, chronic gastritis typically gets better, although you’ll likely need ongoing monitoring.

Some individuals with a damaged stomach lining may develop reactive gastritis.

Reactive gastritis may:

  • Cause erosions
  • Be chronic or acute
  • Cause no or little inflammation
  • Reactive gastropathy is another name for reactive gastritis when it causes no inflammation or very little.

Gastritis may also be either erosive or non-erosive:

  • Erosive gastritis may wear your stomach lining away causing ulcers (deep sores) or erosions (shallow breaks) in your stomach lining.
  • Non-erosive gastritis leads to inflammation in the mucosa, but ulcers or erosions aren’t present with non-erosive gastritis.

Certain irritations, such as chronic vomiting or anti-inflammatory drugs, can cause gastritis. However, there are other causes as well including:

  • Bile reflux: A bile backflow from your bile tract (connects your gallbladder and liver) into your stomach.
  • Helicobacter pylori (H.pylori): A bacteria living in your stomach’s mucous lining. The infection may cause ulcers or stomach cancer without treatment.
  • Infections: Viruses and bacteria can cause infections.
    When you leave gastritis untreated, it may increase your risk of stomach cancer and lead to severe blood loss.

Conventional treatment for gastritis include antibiotics, antacids and proton pump inhibitors, which work by reducing stomach acid. But pharmaceutical medications for gastritis have side effects of their own. If left untreated, gastritis can increase the risk for stomach cancer.

How Cannabis Can Help

There are many traditional ways of treating this serious issue but the drug that’s prescribed for this treatment has long-term side effects. As these drugs act either by removing or neutralizing the digestive acidic juices produced in the stomach, this affects the general health of the individual because the body is unable to properly absorb essential nutrients due to neutralized acidic juices. Since the inception of medical marijuana in the healthcare industry, many of its benefit over conventional treatment option has been recognized without any negative side effects. Here are some of the benefits that will let you know how medical marijuana is effective in treating gastritis.

Humans have cannabinoid receptors in brain and gut, that help gut while healing if it’s damaged. Research shows that medical marijuana helps in healing inflammation of the stomach and slows down gut motility which results in relief of muscle cramp pain.

Medical marijuana has been proven to treat gastritis and control the pain associated with acute gastritis.Cannabis has shown to be promising in the treatment of gastritis naturally and without any side effects. This is because we have cannabinoid receptors in the stomach, and these cannabinoids play an important role in healing various parts and functions of the gut. Cannabis has been used by gastritis patients to help manage the pain and stress caused by this condition, and most importantly, to treat inflammation.

Cannabis can help gastritis patients manage the symptoms of this condition such as:

  • Nausea: One of the most well-known therapeutic benefits of cannabis is its efficacy in treating nausea. Nausea and the urge to vomit is a common symptom among gastritis patients, which can also prevent them from getting the nutrition that they need to heal because of the inability to keep food down.
  • Inflammation: Both THC and CBD are effective in treating inflammation, the root cause of many illnesses including gastritis. Another compound in cannabis called beta-carophyllene is also beneficial in treating gastritis. Using whole-plant medicine is the best way to combat inflammation because of the entourage effect.
  • Appetite loss: Because of the severe abdominal pain and heartburn that may occur after eating meals, gastritis patients may end up losing their appetite. This is another well-researched area that cannabis has been proven to treat. Cannabis tends to induce one’s appetite, making it easier to get the food that you need in your body and heal.
  • Mood disorders: Studies show that gastritis patients are prone to mood disorders such as anxiety, panic attacks, extreme depression, and social phobia. Researchers say that “Our results suggest a significant link between a diagnosis of gastritis and increased likelihood of mood and anxiety disorders.” Cannabis is already widely used around the world for the treatment of mood and anxiety disorders, either alone or caused by other conditions. Gastritis patients can benefit from using specific strains that are known for its therapeutic effects for mood disorders.

Treating Gastritis With Cannabis

Cannabis edibles are the most efficient way of treating gut-related conditions such as gastritis. Because edibles enable the direct interaction of cannabinoids with endocannabinoid receptors in the gut, they offer strong and potent relief for gastritis. But since edibles can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour for its full effects to set in, gastritis patients can also medicate through smoking or vaping for instant relief.

There’s been a noticeable decline in the prevalence of chronic gastritis during the past decades in developed populations. But, it’s still among the most common severe pandemic infections with serious death consequences like gastric cancer and peptic ulcer. Worldwide, on average, over half of individuals could presently have chronic gastritis.

Best Cannabis Strains for Gastritis

The strain of marijuana you pick is just as important, and you should tailor it to your symptoms. For instance, sativa strains are typically thought to give you more energy, increase immunity and not send you to the fridge looking for food. Indica strains, on the other hand, offer more painkilling abilities, and they are also a considerable appetite booster. If you’re looking for all the benefits cannabis provides, try a hybrid strain rich in CBD. For gastritis, strains like Trainwreck, Strawberry Haze and Super Lemon Haze should do the trick.

Nausea

  • Northern Lights (Indica)
  • Super Lemon Haze (Hybrid)

Inflammation

  • CBD Shark (Hybrid)
  • Green Crack (Sativa)

Pain

  • Blackberry Kush (Indica)
  • ACDC (Hybrid)

Appetite

  • Pineapple Express (Hybrid)
  • Orange Kush (Hybrid)

Depression

  • Harlequin (Sativa)
  • Jack Herer (Sativa)

Anxiety

  • White Diesel (Hybrid)
  • Fruit Loops (Hybrid)
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