cbd in copd effect
Written by Stefan K.

Lung diseases have become a widespread disease in many parts of the world. One of these is COPD. This abbreviation stands for “chronic obstructive pulmonary disease”. COPD is a chronic progressive lung disease. Patients and doctors recognise COPD because the airways are not only inflamed, but also permanently narrowed.

One of the symptoms of COPD is shortness of breath on exertion. During the course of the illness, this can also occur when resting. Coughing up sputum can also be a sign that you have COPD. Smokers are at particular risk of getting COPD. Passive smokers also have a higher chance of getting COPD.

Cannabidiol and COPD

In recent years, many patients have tried CBD for COPD on the advice of different doctors. CBD stands for cannabidiol. This is an ingredient of the hemp plant. CBD has long been considered a promising candidate for the gentle treatment of pain, stress and especially inflammation.

As well as CBD, many people are familiar with THC as the most well-known ingredient of cannabis. Unlike THC, however, CBD does not have a psychoactive effect. All studies and reports based on experience also point out that CBD does not lead to any kind of addiction. Intoxication does not occur when CBD is used.

Causes of COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)

There are several factors that can cause chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. These include air pollution, alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency and smoking.

Smoking is considered by most doctors to be the real main cause of COPD. Both active and passive smoking is a cause. It is now considered certain that 90 percent of people who have COPD are either smokers or ex-smokers. The lungs and especially the bronchi are severely affected by the constant consumption of nicotine. The risk that smokers and ex-smokers carry can be expressed in numbers. According to various experts, the risk of developing COPD is seven times higher for smokers and ex-smokers than for people who have never smoked in their lives. 20 percent of those smokers who have followed their vice for several years will develop COPD during their lifetime. Men are more affected than women. CBD can play a positive role in smoking cessation.

Another cause of COPD is a lack of alpha-1-antitrypsin. This cause of chronic lung disease is a genetic deficiency of the protein alpha-1-antitrypsin, or AAT for short. AAT is a blood protein and is responsible for deactivating proteases. The proteases are enzymes that break down the destroyed tissue in certain inflammatory processes. If there is a lack of AAT, nothing can stop the destruction of tissue. The proteases can then do damage to the lung tissue unhindered. As a result of this destruction, a chronic inflammation forms, including narrowing of the bronchial tubes and thus COPD. Without effective treatment, lung emphysema will develop. AAT deficiency can also cause liver damage, even cirrhosis, and is as common in Europe as type 1 diabetes. CBD is known, among other things, to alleviate the healing process in cases of inflammation.

In addition to the two causes of COPD mentioned above, there are others. Air pollution has already been mentioned briefly. Sulphur dioxide and nitro-gases play a crucial role in this. Studies by various experts have shown that living near busy streets (high levels of particulate matter) increases the risk of developing COPD.

In addition, frequent infections in children can increase the likelihood of developing COPD. One should also consider the risk of COPD when choosing a workplace.

  • Harmful vapours,
  • dust,
  • gases
  • smoke

These facts can also increase the risk of COPD 2.4 times in non-smokers. If this is combined with nicotine addiction, the risk of developing COPD increases 18 times.

The antibody deficiency syndrome should not be ignored. In rare cases this can also be a cause of COPD.

Ultimately, it can be said that COPD is mostly associated with inhaled pollutants. These lead to inflammation in the airways. To protect themselves, the lungs secrete more mucus. This mucus is transported away by the cilia. Smoking destroys these hairs and thus prevents the lungs from cleaning themselves. Further processes cause the wall of the alveoli to become thinner. When you breathe out, the alveoli can collapse. The result is shortness of breath.

Symptoms of COPD

The lung is one of the most important organs in the human body. On average, the organ holds between five and six litres of air in an adult. In a normal resting state, without exertion, everyone breathes in and out around half a litre. It is therefore possible to say that the lungs have considerable reserves of air.

But this evolutionary advantage is also the reason why we humans hardly notice a gradual deterioration in our lung volume over several years. Particular attention should therefore be paid to the first symptoms of COPD. These include in particular a smoker’s cough, especially when it cannot be got rid of. If the smoker’s cough is detected and no other symptoms have been detected, the disease can be detected and treated early. From this point of view, the smoker’s cough as the only symptom is actually a good sign for those affected because it is a warning sign.

If an AAT deficiency is a strain on the body, the smoker’s cough will appear much earlier than without it. You should bear this in mind.

In addition to the smoker’s cough, sputum is also a typical symptom of COPD. This becomes increasingly viscous as the disease progresses. The longer you suffer from COPD, the more persistently you fail to cough up the sputum.

Breathlessness is a particularly frightening result of COPD. It only happens at first when you put a lot of pressure on your body. However, if COPD is advanced, breathing difficulties can also occur at rest. You can tell when you are short of breath by blue lips or blue fingers, for example. These are signs of a lack of oxygen and are the result of the lung capacity deteriorating.

In the specialist literature, COPD is also known as AHA, based on the most common symptoms of shortness of breath, coughing and sputum.

Other symptoms of COPD include bronchial infections and pneumonia. In the later course of the disease, cor pulmonale can also occur. This involves the right half of the heart becoming enlarged. This leads to so-called right heart weakness, as this part loses its functional strength. Other symptoms of COPD include roundish finger ends and arched fingernails. These are caused by a lack of oxygen.

How do conventional treatments for COPD work?

The treatment for COPD is a long-term process. All forms of therapy for COPD depend on the severity of the disease. The approach to COPD therapy can be either drug or non-drug. The therapeutic measures combine the following objectives:

  • The prevention of further complications.
  • The prevention of an acute worsening of the condition.
  • The relief of COPD symptoms.
  • The increase of physical resilience.
  • The improvement of general health.

Since most COPD patients are smokers, the first step in therapy is to give up nicotine completely. Social support and medication can be helpful here. It is important to make smokers aware of the connection between the addiction and the disease.

Quitting smoking can stabilise the lung function in COPD patients – especially when compared to those who continue to be addicted. There are some cases where the lung function in former smokers has increased again. There is so much to gain, especially in young smokers.

COPD training is recommended for many COPD patients. This involves presenting facts, teaching self-control and breathing exercises. An important part of the training is also that you can recognise a so-called exacerbation, i.e. a worsening of the disease, in time.

Medication-based COPD therapies are carried out with bronchodilators (to dilate the bronchi), among other things. These include anticholinergics, beta-2 sympathomimetics and theophylline. Cortisone is also used. This is not intended to dilate the bronchial tubes, but to relieve inflammation of the airways.

CBD for COPD : studies and effects

In the course of a study[1] on the effectiveness of CBD in inflammatory diseases, the researchers found that CBD is effective specifically against intestinal inflammation and generally against other inflammations. The focus of the study was on patients who had ulcerative colitis and other painful bowel inflammations. The researchers found out that CBD has been shown to have a positive influence on the inflammatory environment. The results also suggest that CBD can also have a mitigating effect on the inflammatory symptoms and effects of COPD.

A report[2]  was published in the “Journal of Experimental Medicine” which deals with the effectiveness of CBD in inflammation and neuropathic pain. It shows that CBD interacts with the glycine receptors. These are responsible for telling the brain that the body is in pain. Apart from the pain-relieving effect, it was also shown that CBD can have a alleviating effect especially in chronic inflammation.

Smoking is the best-known trigger of COPD. If you want to quit smoking, CBD can help you, according to a study[3]  from London. This study shows that CBD helps people who want to free themselves from addictions to actually stop smoking. 24 smokers participated in the study. 12 of them received CBD, 12 received a placebo. Cigarette consumption in the CBD group was reduced by 40 percent, while no reduction occurred in the placebo group. The reason given by the researchers was that CBD affects the receptors of the endo-cannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS itself affects certain memory processes that are related to positive memories of smoking. According to the results of the study, CBD thus influences the memory of the reward that smoking triggers in many addicts.

People who want to quit smoking often have to cope with various withdrawal symptoms. By taking CBD, withdrawal symptoms such as stress[4], nervousness and anxiety disorders[5], lack of concentration[6], excessive appetite[7], sleep disorders[8] or trembling[9] can be considerably reduced.

A smoker’s cough and breathing in general can cause severe pain in many COPD sufferers. Relieving this pain is often one of the most important concerns of those sufferering. In a study[10], CBD has shown that when taken in droplet form, it can make a significant contribution to pain reduction.

COPD can also lead to depression and anxiety in patients. This can be seen in listlessness, a depressed mood, brooding and, above all, reduced drive. According to one study[11], CBD has an anxiolytic, i.e. anti-depressive, effect.

CBD in other lung and respiratory diseases

People affected by other lung and respiratory diseases are also increasingly turning to CBD for help. Current studies suggest that CBD can also help reduce the inflammation that is partly the cause of asthma.

According to a study[12] published in the European Journal of Pharmacology in 2012, CBD can also be helpful for lung injuries. The authors of the study concluded that CBD was particularly effective in reducing inflammation in patients with lung injury. They measured a clear reduction in the number of leukocytes as a result of CBD treatment.

CBD products for COPD

CBD can be ingested in a variety of ways in the case of COPD. CBD-liquid can be inhaled through a vaper (e-cigarette) and thus be directly supplied to the lungs. Neither tobacco nor nicotine are contained in CBD liquid. Other possibilities for CBD absorption in the case of COPD are:

  • CBD oils (also hemp oil or cannabis oil),
  • CBD edibles (food products with CBD such as tea or jelly babies),
  • CBD capsules,
  • CBD tablets,
  • CBD creams,
  • CBD ointments

… and many more.

[cip category=”CBD Vape”]

Dosage of CBD for COPD

Once a person has decided to take CBD for COPD, there are several ways of dosing. First, you should always consult your doctor. Secondly, you can also follow the manufacturer’s advice on CBD dosage for COPD.

In general, it should be noted that a low dose of CBD is usually the best way to start when taken for COPD. This dose is gradually increased until the desired CBD effect is achieved. After that, this dosage is simply maintained. If undesired effects occur, the dosage is reduced until only the desired effects are felt.


  • COPD is a disease that mainly affects smokers, former smokers and passive smokers.
  • It gradually reduces the volume of the lungs until it causes smokers to cough, suffer breathlessness and other symptoms.
  • The bronchial tubes are usually dilated with medication.
  • CBD when taken for COPD can help to reduce inflammation, relieve pain, help smokers quit smoking and relieve various forms of depression or anxiety.


  1. Can CBD help with COPD?

    Yes it can! CBD when taken for COPD can help to reduce inflammation, relieve pain, help smokers quit smoking and relieve various forms of depression or anxiety.

  2. How does CBD work for COPD

    CBD acts in the endocannabinoid system and can ease symptoms of COPD such as pain and sleep disorders.

  3. What is the dosage of CBD oil for COPD ?

    It is best to start with a small dose. Our dosage calculator offers you more precise help.

[1] – 05.11.2020

[2] – 05.11.2020

[3] – 05.11.2020

[4] – 05.11.2020

[5] – 05.11.2020

[6] – 05.11.2020

[7] – 05.11.2020

[8] – 05.11.2020

[9] – 05.11.2020

[10] – 05.11.2020

[11] – 05.11.2020

[12] – 05.11.2020

Taking products containing cannabinoids may result in interactions with various medications. If you are already taking medication, the use of CBD and other cannabinoids should be discussed with your doctor beforehand. 

Did you like this article?

Click on a star to rate!

Average rating / 5. Number of ratings:

No rating yet! Give the first vote.

About the author

Stefan K.

Stefan K.

Stefan is not only a valuable part of the CannaTrust magazine but also convinces with his sound knowledge about the effects of cannabinoids. As an author in Austria he gathered valuable experiences when writing for 'Stadtblatt Salzburg'. He got in contact with cannabis through several positive media reports. Nowadays he writes about everything around the most popular cannabinoid these days: CBD.