CBD For Fibromyalgia: Does it Work?

WRITTEN by Caleb

 | Last revised

Fibromyalgia is a chronic disease that causes fatigue and pain, amongst a host of other debilitating symptoms.

Did you know approximately half the people diagnosed with fibromyalgia also have chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) as well?

Both research and anecdotal evidence point to CBD’s efficacy in relieving symptoms associated with these disorders, wondering how it helps?

Scientists speculate that an endocannabinoid system (ECS) deficiency is the root cause of several medical conditions and disorders, including fibromyalgia.[1]

Therefore toning your ECS with phytocannabinoids such as CBD and THC may offer a novel therapeutic approach to improving symptoms.

CBD oil is not some off-the-books treatment option. CBD treatment for fibromyalgia is steadily growing in popularity because patients are finding relief.

And what is the best CBD oil for fibromyalgia? And how much CBD oil to take for fibromyalgia pain?

All that and more up ahead.

What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is a medical condition characterised by chronic muscle pain, tender points throughout the body, fatigue and brain fog.[2]

Fibromyalgia pain reduces the quality of life and can impede someone’s ability to perform basic tasks, whether driving, working, or even intimacy.

Researchers estimate that 3% to 6% of the world suffers from fibromyalgia [3], so it’s not some fringe disorder.

Yet, despite so many people having it, allopathic doctors still don’t know what causes fibromyalgia.

However, some experts in the functional medicine realm hypothesise that the following may contribute to fibromyalgia symptoms [18]:

  • Gluten intolerance
  • Candida or bacterial overgrowth
  • Vitamin deficiencies
  • SIBO and leaky gut
  • Mycotoxin exposure
  • Genetic mutations
  • Heavy metal toxicity

Many people remain undiagnosed[4], and some don’t respond well to conventional treatments.

Symptoms of fibromyalgia include:

  • Body-wide pain
  • Sore, tender, and tight muscles
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Poor sleep quality
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Cognitive issues, problems with concentration and remembering
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Numbness in the arms and legs
  • Digestive issues

Conventional treatments include anti-seizure medication and antidepressants.[5] Of course, the side effects of these treatments have patients looking for healthier options.

So what about CBD oil for fibromyalgia?

CBD Oil for Fibromyalgia: Why it Works

Researchers suspect fibromyalgia has to do with the endocannabinoid system [6]. An endocannabinoid deficiency may make you more sensitive to pain, sleep, and mood disorders.

An endocannabinoid deficiency may even disrupt your digestion.

CBD works because of its interaction with our endocannabinoid system. CBD is an antagonist to our CB1 and CB2 receptors.

This means instead of binding to the receptors like THC, CBD prevents the overactivation of the receptors[7]. CBD also may prevent our endogenous cannabinoids from breaking down too quickly.

Research shows that CBD affects the CB2 receptor, which is involved in our immune system. CBD can inhibit immune cell migration, meaning it creates an anti-inflammatory response.[8] Pain, inflammation, and muscle tenderness are all symptoms of fibromyalgia, and these are all symptoms helped by CBD.

A secondary symptom of fibromyalgia is anxiety and depression. Patients feel their ability to concentrate and remember is also affected.[9]

Of course, CBD is excellent for alleviating anxiety and depression without any side effects of typical medication.[10]

Best CBD Oil for Fibromyalgia

What is the best CBD for fibromyalgia? Not all CBD products have similar bioavailability. That is the percentage of CBD that will make it into your system.

Inhaling CBD through smoke or vapour is the most direct route to your bloodstream. But not everyone is interested in this method.

Fortunately, on the Australian green market, you can find all kinds of high-quality edibles like gummies and chews, as well as capsules or topical creams and gels.

A topical cream may be more suitable for fibromyalgia patients as it bypasses the digestive system and allows for more excellent absorption rates.[11]

Patients can also apply the CBD cream or gel to a specific area of their body that is in pain, rather than swallowing a capsule and waiting around, hoping for the best. [12]

Nevertheless, the best CBD for fibromyalgia will be non-GMO and either a broad or full-spectrum product.

Because of the anti-inflammatory properties of terpenes, we suggest you steer clear of CBD isolates if you’re looking to treat fibromyalgia.

We also suggest brands transparent about their source of hemp/cannabis and how they extract it.

High-quality CBD products will be tested by third parties and come with certificates of analysis (COA).

A doctor holding out his hand and a “chronic pain” graphic rising from it

CBD Oil Without THC for Fibromyalgia

As mentioned, if you’re looking at CBD For Fibromyalgia, we suggest full or broad-spectrum products. This means CBD with additional phytocannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids.

A full-spectrum product contains THC, whereas a broad-spectrum does not.

CBD oil without THC for fibromyalgia is effective, but Dr. Ginevra Liptan, a fibromyalgia patient herself, recommends full-spectrum products.[13]

While CBD has painkilling properties, when combined with THC, these effects are increased. [14] This phenomenon is known as the entourage effect.

How Much CBD Oil to Take for Fibromyalgia Pain?

How Much CBD Oil to Take for Fibromyalgia Pain? There is no standard or recommended CBD dosage for fibromyalgia.

However, we can make some loose recommendations based on CBD trial results[15]. (Of course, all will depend on your metabolism, weight, age, and other factors that will be personal to you.)

For chronic pain, researchers suggest up to 20mg CBD daily. Insomnia or sleep disorders can range from 40 to 160mg daily.

If fibromyalgia is causing your anxiety, you may need significantly more CBD, up to 400mg daily.

CBD for Fibromyalgia Australia

Where can you find CBD products in Australia? You could go through the TGA and receive a prescription from a doctor

Or you can purchase through the Australian green market. But please do thorough research before purchasing CBD through this option.

However, if you’re already on medication for fibromyalgia, talk with your health care provider before mixing treatments as there can be some contraindications.

Nevertheless, CBD helps people with anxiety or sleep disorders[16]. CBD cream has been shown effective for arthritis patients[17].

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1. Ethan B. Russo, "Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency Reconsidered: Current Research Supports the Theory in Migraine, Fibromyalgia, Irritable Bowel, and Other Treatment-Resistant Syndromes".
2. Daniel J. Clauw, Lesley M. Arnold, Bill H. McCarberg, "The Science of Fibromyalgia".
Mayo Clinic Proceedings.
3. N/A, "Fibromyalgia Prevalence".
4. Ann Vincent, Brian D. Lahr, Frederick Wolfe, atl el., "Prevalence of Fibromyalgia: A Population‐Based Study in Olmsted County, Minnesota, Utilizing the Rochester Epidemiology Project".
Wiley Online Library.
5. Richard Kwiatek, "Treatment of fibromyalgia".
Australian Prescriber.
6. Ethan B. Russo, "Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency Reconsidered: Current Research Supports the Theory in Migraine, Fibromyalgia, Irritable Bowel, and Other Treatment-Resistant Syndromes".
7. Hazekamp A., "The Trouble with CBD Oil ".
8. R G Pertwee, "The diverse CB1 and CB2 receptor pharmacology of three plant cannabinoids: delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiol and delta9-tetrahydrocannabivarin ".
9. N/A, "Fibro Fog".
Arthritis Foundation.
10. Esther M. Blessing, Maria M. Steenkamp, Jorge Manzanares, Charles R. Marmar, "Cannabidiol as a Potential Treatment for Anxiety Disorders".
SpringerLink .
11. D.C. Hammell,L.P. Zhang,F. Ma, at el., "Transdermal cannabidiol reduces inflammation and pain‐related behaviours in a rat model of arthritis".
Wiley Online Library.
12. Daniel J. Clauw, Lesley M. Arnold, Bill H. McCarberg, "The Science of Fibromyalgia".
Mayo Clinic Proceedings.
13. Ginevra Liptan, "Frequently Asked Questions about CBD".
Dr Liptan.
14. Jaseena Elikottil, Pankaj Gupta, Kalpna Gupta, "The Analgesic Potential of Cannabinoids".
15. Simon Zhornitsky, Stéphane Potvin, "Cannabidiol in humans-the quest for therapeutic targets ".
16. Scott Shannon, Nicole Lewis, Heather Lee, Shannon Hughes, "Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series".
The Permanente Journal.
17. D C Hammell, L P Zhang, F Ma, at el., "Transdermal cannabidiol reduces inflammation and pain-related behaviours in a rat model of arthritis".
18. Amy Myers MD, "A Functional Medicine Approach to Fibromyalgia".
Amy Myers MD.


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Disclaimer. While we strive to relay the most factual education available, this shouldn’t replace official medical or legal consultation and recommendation. This is for educational and entertainment purposes only. Happy days.

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