Robert Bergman

March 5, 2019

Nausea – we’ve all had it at some time, but for some, chronic nausea is a serious problem.

Especially for those with cancer, nausea can be a debilitating condition that makes absorbing nutrients more than challenging. Although a synthetic form of marijuana is commonly used to treat severe nausea, it does not provide the same relief of the actual plant.

This article explains why nausea is a serious condition that should not be ignored, and how marijuana provides a much more holistic solution.

What is Nausea

Nausea is not a disorder or disease on its own. It is an uncomfortable feeling in the stomach, accompanied with an involuntary urge to vomit (or empty out whatever may have been in your stomach). With nausea, people often also lose their desire to eat, as well as the ability to keep down what they may have already eaten.

Nausea is a symptom caused by something else, rather than being an illness in itself. It can be the indicator that you are about to vomit, or sometimes nausea remains only that. If left unchecked and for an extended period of time, nausea can be debilitating.

Even if vomiting isn’t involved, nausea makes a person feel quite a bit of discomfort. It is hard to ignore and can cause a patient to have to stay home from work or school until the symptom subsides. Sometimes outside factors cause it (such as motion sickness), which are easier to deal with because then the activity in question can be avoided. Other causes are not as simple.

What causes Nausea

Nausea is a non-specific symptom that has a wide variety of potential causes. The timing of nausea can indicate what exactly is causing it, as can the age of the patient.

Children, for example, are more likely to experience nausea from certain causes, while adults are more likely to experience it from other causes.

Nausea can be brought on by a number of things, including:

  • Food poisoning
  • Pregnancy/Morning sickness
  • Drinking too much alcohol
  • Gastrointestinal infection
  • Low blood sugar
  • Gross smells
  • Motion (car, boat, etc.) sickness/Vertigo
  • Anxiety

Nausea and vomiting are commonly caused by common treatments for specific serious ailments. These treatments include:

  • Chemotherapy (for cancer); and
  • Antiretroviral treatments (for AIDS/HIV).

A person who has gone through chemotherapy, antiretroviral treatments, or another such treatment regimen may have some uncomfortable side effects even after treatment. Because of the nausea that comes with this treatment, their bodies may have become conditioned to repel food. In other words, nausea becomes a habit, even if the physical cause for it is gone. This can cause significant problems for patients who need their immune system to be working effectively. Without a healthy supply of nutrients (food), they won’t be able to function the best they can.

Stress Is One Of The Cause of Nausea
Stress Is One Of The Cause of NauseaImage powered by Natural-homeremedies.com

Chemical toxins and offensive odors are the most common environmental causes of nausea. These are externally caused, meaning nausea has little to do with an ailment inside your body. Instead, it is responding to outside factors. The same goes for motion sickness or seasickness, which are nausea due to a moving environment.

Other Health Conditions
Nausea doesn’t only have to be caused by external factors or a serious illness. It is commonly found as a symptom of temporary conditions. This type of condition that most often causes nausea include pregnancy and alcohol-induced hangovers. Although they are expected and perceived as less serious health conditions, the patient should be careful to ensure they remain hydrated during the period of nausea, especially if there is vomiting.

What are the symptoms of Nausea

Nausea is a symptom in itself, but other symptoms can also be caused by nausea. For example, vomiting. This can be mild (throwing up once) or more serious (chronic or severe vomiting). Especially when severe, it is important to monitor your body closely and keep a steady intake of fluids (if possible) and electrolytes.

Current treatments for Nausea

There is no shortage of pharmaceutical options to treat nausea. The type of medicine you use is typically based on the cause of your nausea. For example, one type of drug, called an antiemetic, is used most commonly for nausea associated with motion sickness, opioid analgesics, chemotherapy for cancer treatment, and general anesthetics. It is also used sometimes for patients with severe gastroenteritis, particularly when the patient is losing fluids faster than they can be replaced. Its side effects are generally drowsiness and dizziness.

Current Treatments For Nausea
Current Treatments For NauseaImage powered by Choice.com.au

Another treatment, although less common and less thoroughly researched than antiemetics, include topical gels. This is generally a compound of antiemetics in gel form, and can only be acquired through a compounding pharmacy. There are a variety of strengths of this topical gel, generally tailored to the patient’s symptoms and needs.

One natural form of treatment that many people prefer is ginger. It may not work as strongly as some prescription medications, but for “everyday” nausea some people use it consistently. It doesn’t come with the side effects of other treatment options but is less strong for severe cases.

None of these treatment options are perfect in terms of effectiveness or in side effects. One type of therapy that is well-known to curb the feeling of nausea is medical marijuana. This can be more potently effective than ginger, for example, but it also has few health risks that are associated with the pharmaceutical options out there.

CBD and Nausea

CBD and Nausea
CBD and Nausea

Medical Research on Medical Marijuana and Nausea

Current research on marijuana’s effect on nausea began in the 1980s. Every study concluded that marijuana is quite effective in reducing or eliminating nausea. It also helped patients stay hungry for longer, gain weight, and slow down unhealthy weight loss.

Medical Marijuana & Nausea
Medical Marijuana & NauseaImage powered by Denalihealthcaremi.com

In response to these studies, Marinol was created. It is a synthetic version of THC, the cannabinoid found in marijuana. Nonetheless, patients found that the “medicine” from the natural plant (which has many cannabinoids) had better results than this one synthetic compound (which has only THC).

One study from 2017 looks at the effects of marijuana in response to digestive disorders. Titled, The Role of Cannabis in Digestive Disorders, it looked at the effect of marijuana on diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and secretion and motility-related disorders. The results were unclear, but it did shed some light on the working of marijuana in the gut, liver, and pancreas.

Of course, like anything else, medical marijuana should be used in moderation. Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome, a term coined in 2004, is the feeling of nausea that can come from too much marijuana. Luckily, a hot bath or shower can relieve the feeling immediately — and lowering the intake of marijuana, of course.

Medical Research on CBD and Nausea

Cannabinoids have been found powerfully effective in lessening nausea and vomiting that’s been caused by or is associated with, chemotherapy.

These studies looked at the cannabinoids in marijuana and how they interact with certain conditions:

Cannabinoids and Cancer Study
This study looked at cannabinoids (THC and CBD) and how they affect symptoms from cancer treatment. It points out that THC and CBD reduce pain, while synthetics made from THC (dronabinol and nabilone) work as antiemetics for nausea and vomiting resulting from chemotherapy. Ultimately, it shows us that medical marijuana can be extremely useful in treating these conditions.

Cannabinoid therapies in oncology Use Guide
This study concluded that cannabinoid therapies (or therapies that involve CBD or THC, among others) could be effective in improving their quality of life. They could even help modify malignancy (cancer) and improve treatments such as radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Indeed, medical marijuana does wonders for improving nausea caused by chemotherapy and other treatments, but it also does much more.

Marinol vs. THC

Marinol is the pharmaceutical industry’s response to marijuana’s medicinal properties. It is essentially a pill that contains synthetic THC as the only cannabinoid contained in Marinol. This drug is an FDA-approved drug that contains a synthetic cannabinoid. Although it is marketed as a legal version of medical marijuana, it ultimately is considered to not be as effective in the treatment of various ailments and symptoms as actual medical marijuana.


In tests conducted in research studies, Marinol did not perform as well as the whole plant did because:

  • Marinol takes several hours to go into effect, whereas ingested THC has felt effects within minutes. It also causes dizziness.
  • Cannabis provides anti-anxiety benefit, as well as many other medical benefits.

How to Take Medical Marijuana for Nausea

Using cannabis for relief from nausea is the longest-standing use of medical marijuana. It is incredibly effective at restoring lost appetite and eliminating the symptoms of nausea and vomiting.

Patients may have their cannabis in a variety of forms, including edibles, pills, tinctures and transdermal applications. These medicinal preparations are made with cannabis oil and can be prepared in an almost unlimited array of delicious recipes and creative dishes. Let your imagination run wild! Eating can again be an enjoyable time.

CBD Oil for Nausea

CBD oil can be used very effectively for the treatment of nausea and vomiting. CBD oil naturally contains anti-nausea elements that help reduce the feeling of nausea not only in humans but in animals as well. If you are not pregnant and are experiencing unexplainable nausea, CBD oil could be the solution for you.

Of course, if you have a temporary illness such as the stomach flu or another cause of your nausea, it is better to try prioritizing the healing of that ailment instead of only treating the symptoms of your problem.

Growing Your Own Anti-Nauseant Medication

Medical studies have shown that the cannabinoids found in Cannabis, can help patients find comfort in less pain, regained mobility, better rest and better mood. By growing their own plants, patients have access to medication whenever needed. They can always find the relief they deserve.

Cannabis comes in a wide variety of medical strains. The following strains provide the most relief from nausea and vomiting: Ak-47, Gold Leaf, Green Crack and Northern Lights. Be an informed and empowered part of your digestive system’s health, and your overall health! Order your seeds today, and grow your natural relief from nausea!

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The founder of I Love Growing Marijuana, Robert Bergman, is a marijuana growing expert that enjoys sharing his knowledge with the world. He combines years of experience, ranging from small-scale grows to massive operations, with a passion for growing. His articles include tutorials on growing... [read more]


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  1. By Jesse Ducharme

    ,25 Nov 2014
    Hi, my name is Jesse. I've been using marijuana, since I was thirteen for my depression, lost of appetite, anxiety and sleep disorder. Usually I can't stand the smell of curtain foods, or looking at food. Even when I'm really […]Read More
    1. By Art

      ,19 Sep 2015
      Jesse, For my sleep disorder,(pain in legs wakes me 10 or more times per night) I use cannabis clippings turned into keif. I add 6 grams of keif to a box of Betty Crocker cookie mix. Make approx. 100 cookies,(roll […]Read More
      1. By Jennifer ILGM

        ,22 Sep 2015
        Thanks so much for sharing, I'm sure this will be really helpful to someone experiencing the same.
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