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Cannabidiol’s effect on tumors and cancer cells in vitro and animal tests have led to some exciting headlines about CBD’s potential to prevent and fight cancer. A growing number of studies have shown how certain cannabinoids can help contribute to the death of cancer cells without posing harm to healthy tissue. These early findings could provide a foundation for the future development of cancer drugs and therapies, which may be both effective and far less compromising to one’s overall quality of life. While these are good reasons to be hopeful, it’s important to remember that these findings are preliminary and larger human-based studies examining CBD’s effect on cancer in the body are yet to be completed.

But even today, CBD may still help with complications of various types of cancer as well as the side effects of certain drugs and treatments. Benefits that include pain reduction, promotion of better sleep, regulation of appetite, mitigation of stress and anxiety, and an improved sense of wellness can benefit people living with a range of chronic diseases and conditions.

When you read about specific CBD oil benefits in cancer treatment, there is much possibility but no solidly proven promises for its reliability in curing or preventing diseases—not yet; more research simply needs to be done.

It’s also important to remember that CBD’s potential to fight and cure cancer can depend very much on the type of cancer being studied. In general, cancer describes the proliferation of abnormal cells within the body that subsequently destroy healthy tissue. This can happen in different systems and organs, and the progression and treatment of the disease can vary based on the specific area or system of the body that’s affected.

One of the more unique types of cancer is leukemia, which is sometimes called blood cancer or cancer of the blood. Leukemia can be categorized in different ways, including acute myeloid (AML), chronic myeloid (CML), acute lymphocytic (ALL), hairy cell (HCL) and chronic lymphocytic (CLL).

These types vary based on their progression, the origin of the malignant cells, and how they spread. Overall, the major differentiating factor that sets leukemia apart from other cancers is that it typically does not cause the formation of solid tumors. Instead, leukemia manifests itself in the malignancy of blood cells, platelets, bone marrow, and other lymphocytes, and then spreads to other parts of the body.

Cell line and animal studies have found that cannabinoids can help to trigger a process known as apoptosis, which is the body’s natural mechanism for a controlled killing of cells, including cancer cells. So far, most of the studies that test cannabinoids’ effect on leukemia cells involve THC, a combination of CBD and THC, or other cannabis compounds. It’s not especially clear whether CBD alone can provide a significant positive outcome for different types of leukemia.

It may be some time before scientists can truly answer whether cannabidiol can effectively contribute to the fight against specific types of leukemia in humans, but depending on the case, CBD may have the potential to provide therapeutic benefits for people affected.

Symptoms of slower moving forms of leukemia, such as HCL, CML and CLL—and complications occurring from treatment—may be eased through the properties of medically-guided cannabidiol use. For example, using CBD oil for CLL could help ease the side effects of treatments like chemotherapy or radiation therapy.

Could CBD also help with issues of reduced immunity, loss of appetite, or abdominal swelling that sometimes occurs with the progression of CLL? Researchers don’t yet know, but as cannabidiol is explored more and more, they are finding that these are possibilities worth pursuing through larger studies.

If you are interested in using CBD in conjunction with cancer treatment, only a doctor can assess whether it will be a benign complementary therapy and sensible addition to your program.