DRS. OZ AND ROIZEN: Putting the brakes on CBD self-treatments | Features

Pop songs about marijuana have been around for decades. There’s Steppenwolf’s “Don’t Step on the Grass, Sam” from 1968 and Miley Cyrus’ “Dooo It” from 2015. But now that medical and recreational marijuana and CBD (cannabidiol, the active compound in pot) are legal in many states, folks have decided it must be good for health, not just entertainment.

A new study in JAMA looked at a forum on Reddit that has more than 100,000 folks sharing their experiences using CBD. Some claim CBD can treat autism and mental health problems, others tout the chemical for orthopedic discomfort, insomnia and neurological, gastrointestinal, dermatological, oral and ophthalmologic conditions.

There’s scant data on the effectiveness of CBD in treating many of these conditions, so you don’t want to ignore proven medical approaches that can improve, and even save, your life.

Unproven use of CBD can cause liver injury, drug interactions and mood changes. Animal studies show CBD can interfere with the development and function of testes and sperm, decrease testosterone levels and impair sexual behavior in males. A new lab study found when pregnant females are regularly exposed to cannabis, their offspring have long-term cognitive deficiencies, asocial behavior and anxiety in adulthood.

However, studies do indicate some CBD benefits — for pain, insomnia and two rare forms of childhood epilepsy (the only FDA-approved use).

The bottom line: Don’t let CBD fog up your decision-making so that you opt for unhealthy choices for treating serious health issues. Ask your doc if and when it may be appropriate for you.

Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer Emeritus at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit www.sharecare.com.

©2020 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.