Cannabis for colds - Can CBD or THC help?

Cannabis bei Erkältung - Kann CBD oder THC helfen?
Bea Goldmann CBD specialist author

Bea Goldman

Specialist author with a master’s degree in naturopathy and complementary medicine


The cold season often brings annoying colds and flu. During this time, many people are looking for natural ways to relieve the associated discomfort. A question that keeps coming up: can cannabis, especially the active ingredients CBD and THC, actually help relieve cold symptoms?

The causes of colds and flu: what's behind them?

Over 200 different viruses can cause cold symptoms. Although some believe that cold plays a role, as your mother may have assumed when you played outside as a child, it is actually the numerous microbes you later encounter on the playground or in the office that cause a cold.

Infection usually occurs through inhalation of viral particles, especially when being near a sick person who spreads viruses through coughing, sneezing, or even just breathing. An infection can also occur by touching a virus-contaminated surface and then touching your face, mouth, or nose.

The importance of the immune system

How does the immune system work?

The immune system is a complex network of cells, tissues and organs that protects our body from pathogens such as viruses, bacteria and parasites. It works by detecting and fighting these pathogens to maintain our health. The immune system is made up of various components, including white blood cells (leukocytes), antibodies and lymphatic tissue. These work together to fight infections and keep the body healthy. When pathogens enter the body, the immune system recognizes them based on specific characteristics and activates defense mechanisms to eliminate them. This complex process protects us from disease and helps maintain our health.

The role of CBD and THC in the immune system

CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are two of the main cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. These compounds can interact with the immune system by affecting special receptors distributed throughout the body. CBD has anti-inflammatory properties and can modulate the immune system without causing the psychoactive effects of THC. THC, on the other hand, can influence the immune system by inhibiting the release of inflammatory mediators. These interactions can impact the body's response to infection and inflammation, raising the question of whether they might play a role in relieving cold symptoms.

Cannabis and cold symptoms

CBD oil and its potential benefits for colds

CBD oil has received a lot of attention recently, particularly for its benefits in relieving cold symptoms. Some people report positive experiences when taking CBD oil during a cold. This could be due to CBD's anti-inflammatory properties, which could help reduce the intensity of symptoms such as cough and nasal congestion and promote mucus clearance.

CBD helps reduce stress and anxiety. High levels of stress can weaken the immune system and so CBD can help support the immune system by reducing stress.

Inhaling steam can help with nasal congestion and coughs. You can add a few drops of CBD oil to hot water and inhale the steam that rises. CBD oil may have anti-inflammatory properties that could help relieve respiratory problems.

CBD-infused herbal teas could have a calming effect and help reduce inflammation. Drinking warm teas can also ease the symptoms of a cold.

If you experience joint or muscle pain associated with cold symptoms, topical application of CBD oil or ointments containing CBD may provide relief.

Smoking weed for colds

Smoking weed while having a cold is a controversial topic. While some people believe it can help relieve cold symptoms, there are also concerns about possible negative effects. Inhaling smoke, regardless of the source, can irritate the respiratory tract and cause coughing, which could worsen cold symptoms. Additionally, smoking cannabis can have psychoactive effects that could affect your physical condition. It is important to be cautious and carefully weigh the pros and cons before deciding to consume cannabis during a cold.

Our tip:

Avoid smoking, especially if you have a sore throat

Although we've previously mentioned the potential benefits of cannabis in treating colds or flu due to its anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving, and sleep-inducing properties, that doesn't mean it's advisable to light up a joint or bong if you're suffering from a severe sore throat. On the contrary, it is especially important to avoid smoking any substance, be it tobacco or marijuana, when you have a painful sore throat. Inhaling smoke, even when you are not sick, can be harmful to your lungs and respiratory system in general.

Home remedies for colds

If you've already caught a cold, it's understandable that you want to get well again quickly. In such moments, many people look for natural remedies that can help relieve cold symptoms and speed recovery. These natural approaches can help ease unpleasant cold symptoms and allow you to recover more quickly.

home remedies


Hot teas

Herbal teas such as chamomile or peppermint can have a calming effect and help relieve symptoms.

Steam inhalation

Inhaling steam over hot water with essential oils or herbs to open stuffy noses.

Ginger and honey

Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties while honey can soothe the throat.

Warm chicken soups

Chicken soup can ease symptoms.

Gargle with salt water

Gargling with salt water can relieve a sore throat and soothe mucous membranes.

Rest and hydration

Getting enough rest and drinking water or clear liquids are crucial for recovery.

Inhaling CBD oil

Some people use CBD oil to relieve respiratory problems associated with cold symptoms.

Ethical use of cannabis for colds

Ethical use of cannabis for colds requires a careful and informed approach. This means that people considering cannabis to relieve cold symptoms should educate themselves about the potential benefits and drawbacks.

Advice from qualified professionals such as doctors is always advisable.

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Bea Goldmann,

Bea Goldmann, our experienced specialist author with a master's degree in naturopathy and complementary medicine. Bea is the heart of our content because she not only brings in-depth knowledge, but also a passion for holistic health solutions.

Thanks to Bea's deep understanding of the power of nature and the science behind CBD, we can offer you content that not only informs, but also inspires. With every article she writes for CBD Shinygram, you will not only get insights into the benefits and uses of CBD, but also practical tips on how you can integrate CBD into your everyday life.

Find out more about Bea Goldmann