UFC Fighter Nate Diaz Investigated For Vaping CBD

The United States Anti-Doping Association (USADA) is investigating Nate Diaz for allegedly vaping cannabidiol after his loss to Conor McGregor at UFC 202.

Nate Diaz UFC
Nate Diaz UFC

Nate Diaz vs. USADA

After losing to Conor McGregor at UFC 202, MMA fighter Nate Diaz was seen vaping during the post-fight press-conference. His vape pen allegedly contained CBD (cannabidiol). While hardly a performance-enhancing drug, cannabinoids are on the World Anti-Doping Association’s list of prohibited substances (PDF link). The list is used by the United States Anti-Doping Association, which administers UFC’s drug testing.

This wouldn’t be the first time a Diaz brother got into trouble over cannabis. Nate Diaz’s older brother, MMA fighter Nick Diaz, has been suspended and fined multiple times for marijauana use. A Diaz brother using a cannabis-related product is hardly surprising. That said, the fighter had a completely reasonable explanation for vaping CBD.

It helps with the healing process and inflammation, stuff like that. So you want to get these for before and after the fights, training. It’ll make your life a better place.

Should Athletes Be Allowed to Use CBD?

Koi CBD Benefits

Let me preface this entire section by saying that I’m not a doctor (though I have played one on the Internet and cable television). Okay, that’s out of the way. Let’s move onto something more substantive regarding Nate Diaz and his alleged vaping of CBD.

While I have no doubt that Nate Diaz will be fined and/or suspended if CBD is found in his blood work by USADA, I question the wisdom of a fine or suspension. If he broke a rule then he’ll be punished for it, but the rule is stupid. MMA fighters go through arduous training. Their bodies are basically tortured, so that they can fight at a world-class level. Pain is simply part of the fight game. Fighters need a way to manage the pain. Personally, I believe that CBD is exponentially less harmful to people than the narcotics that some athletes abuse.

I’ve known a few MMA fighters and pro-wrestlers. What these guys do to their bodies is unreasonable. CBD seems like a perfectly reasonable method of coping with unreasonable pain. What do you think? Should athletes be allowed to use CBD? Will Nate Diaz be suspended and fined for vaping CBD? Please share your thoughts in the comments section.


Raymond Padilla
Raymond Padilla is a level 26 Pokemon Go trainer, a longtime journalist, and an accomplished verbal entertainer. Kindly visit him at his personal website "RPadTV" (linked above) or his various social media accounts (linked below).
  • scotwith1t

    I agree with everything except for one thing. According to the Diaz quote: “So you want to get these before and after the fights, traning”.

    If that means that he’s using it before a fight, then I don’t agree with that because if he was unable to feel much pain then it kind of gives him an unfair advantage in a fight, don’t you think? CBD Eliquid (pure CBD, no THC) doesn’t even get you high, it’s more of a body effect than a brain one. Therefore his fighting performance would not be altered, he would just feel less pain. Sounds pretty unfair to me.

    But if they’re busting him just because they found it in his system then yeah that’s pretty lame. I’d understand if it were like, performance enhancing drugs, but CBD? Come on.

    • I don’t think that the pain reduction is significant enough to give a fighter a significant edge. From my limited understanding, CBD is more effective with the peripheral nervous system, while opiates are more effective with the central nervous system. I’d also say that it’s less effective at giving a fighter an edge than lidocaine shots to the hand (think boxers with chronic hand troubles). That’s all conjecture though. Thanks for a great comment!

    • Cosmia

      I don’t think cannabis would have any pain relieving effect at all against the punches, and kicks of UFC caliber. That would be similar to; Take these two aspirins as a pain reliever while I amputate your leg with a hacksaw. It’s really not going be much help.

  • Michael Abrams

    For those of us watching, one of the big draws of CBD is that it isn’t supposed to be detectable in normal pre- employment drug tests, unless used very often and in large quantities. If that’s no longer the case, some of us need to be aware. Do we know how this was detected?

    • WADA-based testing is much more expansive than drug tests that a typical employer does. In this particular case, nothing has been reported on his USADA tests, yet. He was openly vaping at a UFC press conference.

  • Dean Dodds

    I smoke skunk marijuana for 28 years and Cbd has helped me kick the habit. I was spending around £300 per week on marijuana this has been reduced to £50 p.w. For Cbd Vaping oils. In my personal opinion this oil has saved my life

    • That’s fantastic! Thanks for sharing you experience with CBD. Stay tuned for more CBD coverage soon.

      • Dean Dodds

        No problem, glad to pass my own experience on to fellow readers. I would just like to say that since starting with CBD, my need for cannabis has completely disapated. I’m so happy. I intend to quit smoking this vaping device and CBD by xmas this year. And I will achieve this. As CBD is legal both here and the states I think UFC should leave him alone. Would the investigate another fighter if they say, had ten pints before or after a fight? Probably not. Hence no case to answer. Keep your head up Nate and thanks for taking time to reply Raymond 👍🏻