While we’re still learning about new research on cannabidiol (CBD), what we know so far is promising.
Below, we take a look at the research on CBD and nausea. We also include a list of our top CBD picks for nausea and some pointers on how to shop for this kind of CBD product.
While CBD may play a part in reducing nausea, researchers conclude that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive component of cannabis, does more of the heavy lifting when it comes to helping with nausea and vomiting.
Human studies also show that a combination of CBD and THC may provide relief from nausea in people going through chemotherapy.
The American Cancer Society includes cannabinoids on its list of drugs for managing nausea and vomiting at home. It explains that they’re helpful in cases where regular anti-nausea and vomiting drugs don’t work.
Chemotherapy can also affect your appetite, and cannabinoids can help with this, too.
Currently, there are two synthetic cannabis-derived drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting. They are Nabilone and Dronabinol.
Because the research shows that THC is probably more effective at reducing nausea than CBD, full-spectrum CBD products are your best CBD option for quelling queasiness.
Full-spectrum CBD has all the beneficial, naturally occurring cannabinoids from the cannabis plant, including teeny tiny amounts of THC — up to 0.3 percent in federally legal products.
When choosing a CBD product, you’ll want to select a form of CBD that appeals to you. If you’re feeling nauseous, you won’t want to take something that makes you want to gag.
We chose these products based on criteria we think are good indicators of safety, quality, and transparency. Each product in this article:
- is made by a company that provides proof of third-party testing by an ISO 17025-compliant lab
- is made with U.S.-grown hemp
- contains no more than 0.3 percent THC, according to the certificate of analysis (COA)
- passes tests for pesticides, heavy metals, and molds, according to the COA
As a part of our selection process, we also considered:
- the company’s certifications and manufacturing processes
- product potency
- overall ingredients, including products containing other ingredients, like peppermint or ginger, that may help with nausea
- indicators of user trust and brand reputation, such as:
- customer reviews
- whether the company has been subject to an FDA warning letter
- whether the company makes any unsupported health claims
- full-spectrum CBD products, whenever possible, because of what the research says about THC’s ability to relieve nausea
- $ = under $50
- $$ = $50–$75
- $$$ = over $75
- CBD type: Full-spectrum
- CBD potency: 900 mg per 30-mL bottle or 450 mg per 15-mL bottle
Each bottle of this CBD oil includes a measured dropper, making dosing easy. It comes in two flavors, but the lemongrass ginger variety may be a bit more palatable than the natural flavor if you’re dealing with nausea.
Papa & Barkley sources its hemp from Colorado, Oregon, and Vermont farms. The company offers customers a 30-day, money-back guarantee. You can access the COA directly from the product page.
- CBD type: Full-spectrum
- CBD potency: 1,500 mg per 30-mL bottle
Each full dropper of Lion X’s CBD oil delivers 50 milligrams of CBD. Lion X uses organic hemp extract to make its products.
In addition to full-spectrum CBD, the oil is also naturally flavored with peppermint. You can take it directly by mouth or drop it into beverages.
To access the COA, check the product page. One thing to note is that the final product is only tested for potency and the cannabinoid profile.
The crude CBD oil is tested for contaminants, but that COA is only available upon request. Since contaminants can be introduced during the manufacturing process, those that are immunocompromised may want to choose a product from another company that tests its final product.
- CBD type: Full-spectrum
- CBD potency: 25 mg per capsule
- Count: 30 capsules per bottle
Some people don’t like the taste of oils. If you can keep food down and prefer to take a capsule, you might want to try these gel capsules from Lion X. Lion X recommends that you take one soft gel per day.
Like the oil, you can find the cannabinoid and potency COA on the product page. If you want to review the contaminant COA from the raw CBD oil, you’ll have to email the company. Since contaminants can be introduced during manufacturing, if you’re immunocompromised it’s best to buy from a brand that does comprehensive testing on its final products.
- CBD type: Full-spectrum
- CBD potency: 180 mg per bottle, 2 mg per spray
This refreshing peppermint-flavored spray is easy to administer. Each spray provides 2 milligrams of CBD. PureKana recommends taking three to four sprays at a time up to three times a day.
You can access the COA for this spray via the product page.
- CBD type: Broad-spectrum
- CBD potency: 250, 500, 1,000 or 2,000 mg per 30-mL bottle
We understand that you may not want to take a CBD product that contains THC — even in trace amounts — which is why we included this broad-spectrum, peppermint-flavored tincture on our list. You can take it under your tongue as you would any other tincture.
GoGreen Hemp uses organic hemp grown in Colorado and has a 14-day return policy. The COA is available on the product page.
There are so many CBD products out there that shopping for them is enough to give anyone a headache. Weed out the good from the bad by keeping these things in mind:
- Potency. If you’re dealing with severe nausea, small amounts of CBD may not cut it. Look for products with more than a few milligrams of CBD per serving.
- CBD source. CBD isolate is an excellent option if you want to stay away from THC. However, stripping away terpenes and other cannabinoids may reduce the anti-nausea effects of a CBD product. Opt for full-spectrum products over isolates. If you’re set on staying away from THC, opt for broad-spectrum CBD, which contains most cannabis plant cannabinoids but no THC.
- Third-party testing. Look for products with a COA so you have confirmation that the CBD is free of contaminants (including heavy metals, pesticides, and molds) and is actually as potent as the company claims.
- Ingredients. Choose CBD products made with organic, U.S.-grown hemp whenever possible. When buying CBD specifically for nausea, you might like a product with added peppermint or ginger flavorings to help reduce queasiness and improve the taste.
This depends a bit on the form of CBD you’ve chosen.
You can take tinctures and oils by mouth using a dropper. Just place them under your tongue and hold it there for a few seconds before swallowing. Swallow capsules whole as you would any other pill, or chew on gummies.
Most companies give you an idea of how much or how often to take their CBD product. If you’re new to taking CBD, though, it’s best to start with the smallest dose.
Need more guidance on how much CBD to take? Check out our guide on dosage.
Research finds that most people will have no trouble when taking CBD, but there is a chance you may experience side effects, including:
- weight changes
- appetite changes
Taking CBD alongside a high-fat meal may increase the risk of side effects, according to some research.
Before you take CBD for nausea, talk to your healthcare provider. CBD can interact with certain medications, so it’s a good idea to be open and honest with your physician.
It’s also worth having a chat with your doctor if you’re interested in trying CBD for nausea and vomiting due to chemotherapy. There may be other medications or strategies you can try first.
There’s some evidence that CBD might help with nausea, but the current research is limited. THC may be more helpful.
That said, some people use CBD to successfully manage nausea.
If you’ve tried other treatments, haven’t found relief for your nausea, and want to try CBD, opt for full-spectrum products made with organic U.S.-grown hemp that have been tested by a third-party lab.
Is CBD Legal? Hemp-derived CBD products (with less than 0.3 percent THC) are legal on the federal level, but are still illegal under some state laws. Marijuana-derived CBD products are illegal on the federal level, but are legal under some state laws. Check your state’s laws and those of anywhere you travel. Keep in mind that nonprescription CBD products are not FDA-approved, and may be inaccurately labeled.
Steph Coelho is a freelance writer with chronic migraine who has a particular interest in health and wellness. When she’s not click-clacking away on her keyboard, she’s probably nose-deep in a good book.