CBD has been purported to improve other aspects of health, including weight loss. A few of its potential effects are outlined below.
May boost metabolism and reduce food intake
Preliminary research suggests that CBD may reduce food intake and boost metabolism, which could promote weight loss.
For example, animal studies indicate that CBD affects weight by interacting with CB1 and CB2 receptors in lymphoid tissue and the brain. These receptors are thought to play important roles in metabolism and food intake (15Trusted Source, 16Trusted Source).
In a two-week study, rats were injected with CBD daily at doses of 1.1 and 2.3 mg per pound of body weight (2.5 and 5 mg per kg). Both doses produced significant reductions in body weight, with the higher dose having the most pronounced effect (17Trusted Source).
It’s important to note that CBD was injected, not given orally.
In another rat study, CBD led to a significant reduction in food intake compared to other cannabinoids, including cannabigerol and cannabinol (18Trusted Source).
While such results are promising, not enough human studies support these findings, and more research is needed.
May promote ‘browning’ of fat cells
Two types of fat — white and brown — exist in your body.
White fat is the predominant form, responsible for storing and supplying energy while insulating and cushioning your organs (19Trusted Source).
On the other hand, brown fat is responsible for generating heat by burning calories. Individuals with a healthy weight tend to have more brown fat than overweight people (19Trusted Source).
Interestingly, research shows that CBD may aid this process.
A test-tube study found that CBD led to “browning” in white fat cells and enhanced the expression of specific genes and proteins that promote brown fat (24Trusted Source).
However, human research is needed to confirm these effects.
Marijuana use is associated with lower body weight
Although marijuana use is commonly associated with increased food intake, those who use marijuana products tend to weigh less than those who don’t.
For example, a review in over 50,000 people noted an obesity rate of 14–17% among those who used cannabis at least 3 days per week, compared to 22–25% for those reporting no marijuana use in the past 12 months (25Trusted Source).
As CBD is prevalent in marijuana, it’s likely involved in this relationship — although it’s unclear how.
That said, researchers believe that cannabinoids as a whole — including CBD — affect appetite, metabolism, and other weight-related body functions (26Trusted Source).