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Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that impacts 1 in each and every 10 ladies of childbearing age, from 15 to 44.
Getting such a frequent situation, 1 would assume that there is a remedy for PCOS. Regrettably, up to this day, there hasn’t been any established healthcare breakthrough that can absolutely heal this hormonal imbalance, only remedies that can reduce or (if you are fortunate) do away with the symptoms of PCOS.
In current years, having said that, there has been a lot of hype constructed up about cannabis getting made use of as a remedy for PCOS.
In several research, cannabis has been observed to proficiently treat discomfort and stomach cramps, relieve anxiousness and execute wonders with terrible skin and hair, all of which are frequent symptoms of PCOS. But, can cannabis remedy PCOS?
Let’s hear what science has to say about it.
What’s Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)?
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a healthcare situation that is brought on by an imbalance in female hormone levels.
Females who endure from the situation create higher levels of the male hormone Androgen (steroid hormones that influence the improvement of the male reproductive program) in their ovaries.
The most frequent symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) are:
- Irregular and incredibly painful menstrual periods
- No menstrual periods, which can additional lead to diverse well being complications such as infertility and the improvement of cysts in the ovaries.
- Hirsutism or excessive hair on the chin, cheeks, chest and other physique components exactly where males normally have hair (but ladies do not)
- Serious acne and oily skin
- Thinning hair and hair loss (male pattern balding)
- Boost in physique weight
- Skin tags
The precise bring about of PCOS is nevertheless not completely clear. Some proof suggests it is a genetic illness, so if your mother, sister or close female relatives have PCOS, you are at a larger danger. Moreover, these who are obese stand a great opportunity of building PCOS.
Females suffering from PCOS are at improved danger of building extra severe well being circumstances such as:
- Glucose intolerance or sort two diabetes (extra than 50% of ladies with PCOS create this situation later in life)
- Higher blood stress and higher cholesterol
- Mood issues such as anxiousness and depression
- Sleep apnoea
- Endometrial cancer
How is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome treated?
Despite the fact that there is no remedy for PCOS, it is a treatable situation. The course of remedy largely depends on the extent of the symptoms the lady could have.
If the symptoms are not extreme, for instance, altering unhealthy habits and losing weight can regulate and appropriate the hormonal imbalance of the physique.
For extra extreme circumstances of PCOS, a mixture of a wholesome diet program and medication is required for treating symptoms.
Females who do not want to come to be pregnant can turn to birth handle tablets to restore their hormonal balance and assistance with regulating their menstrual cycle.
If a lady has created insulin resistance, she’ll need to have to appear to employing diverse diabetes medication.
In addition, for ladies who endure from complications related with anxiousness and depression, diverse antidepressants can be prescribed.
On major of that, discomfort killers are a normally made use of medication that can be made use of to assistance alleviate painful menstrual cramps and pelvic discomfort.
What function does cannabis play in PCOS remedy?
In current years, cannabis has attracted big consideration to its healthcare properties. But when it comes to PCOS, can cannabis treat or even remedy this challenging situation? This is what we know so far.
Initial of all, cannabis is a extensively made use of type of medication for discomfort remedy, a symptom that is frequently related with PCOS.
Most ladies who endure from PCOS have incredibly painful menstrual cramps, intense back discomfort for the duration of their menstrual cycle and often abdominal discomfort due to the improvement of cysts in their ovaries.
In the case of depression, which is also a frequent symptom for ladies suffering from PCOS, marijuana can have each helpful and dangerous effects.
Despite the fact that there is no consensus on this subject, the common opinion appears to be that marijuana with a higher dose of THC is going to boost symptoms of depression, although decrease doses of THC and larger doses of CBD look to have the impact of an antidepressant.
So, cannabis can be made use of as a palliative remedy for the several side effects of PCOS. But what we want to know is if cannabis can come to be a prospective healthcare remedy for this unpleasant situation?
The endocannabinoid program and ovarian function
In order to totally realize how cannabis can influence a hormonal disorder such as PCOS, we need to have to realize the biological processes that come about in the female physique and the value of the endocannabinoid program for reproductive well being.
The endocannabinoid program is a signaling network of the physique that consists of:
- Endocannabinoids (molecules designed by our physique that are structurally incredibly equivalent to cannabinoids from cannabis).
- Distinct metabolic enzymes that break down endocannabinoids.
- Endocannabinoid receptors that are situated in the cell membranes and spread all through the physique.
The primary objective of the endocannabinoid program is to keep homeostasis, or in simplified words, to keep the balance of all physiological operations in our physique. This is the explanation why all physiological systems in our physique have cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2).
CB1 receptors are primarily situated inside the central nervous program and CB2 receptors are predominantly discovered inside cells of the immune program.
Nevertheless, each of these receptors are also present in female sex organs and play a very important function in the regulation of reproductive well being.
Ovaries are the female reproductive organs that create reproductive cells (gametes) for fertilization and reproductive hormones, namely estrogen, testosterone, inhibin, and progesterone. These play a vital function in the menstrual cycle and fertility.
Throughout the menstrual cycle, the ovaries undergo 3 series of modifications: the follicular phase, ovulation, phase, and luteal phase.
Throughout the follicular phase, a woman’s brain (the hypothalamus) releases the Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) that stimulates the secretion of two hormones in the anterior pituitary gland: follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH).
These hormones travel by way of the blood to a woman’s ovaries exactly where they create 15-20 eggs in the ovarian follicles.
Estrogen is then synthesized in important amounts from the preovulatory follicle to reduce the levels of LH and FSH.
Reduce levels of these hormones will lead to the death of most of the created follicles, and only 1, dominant follicle will absolutely mature to release the egg. This phase is referred to as ovulation.
Then comes the luteal phase when ovaries make a hormone referred to as progesterone, which aids thicken the lining of the uterus in preparation for a achievable pregnancy.
The explanation why I’m explaining all the phases of the ovarian cycle is not that I want you to recall study material from 10th-grade biology classes, but to clarify the effects that cannabinoids look to have in this all-natural approach.
The impact of cannabinoids on female hormones
Science has found so far that CB1 receptors are localized in the hypothalamus, the brain regions exactly where the GnRH is created.
What this suggests is that a higher level of endocannabinoids (created in our physique) and exogenous cannabinoids (from cannabis intake) restrain the release of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), which additional suppresses the production of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) in the anterior pituitary gland.
Consequently, this harms the female gonadal function and decreases estrogen and progesterone production.
To place it just, chronic cannabis consumption can lead to the following:
- Lower in the concentration of the sex hormones.
- Disruption of the menstrual cycle.
- Delay in sexual maturation.
- Depression of the ovarian follicular maturation.
- Decline in female fertility.
A further study, published in 2009, was the initially to learn the presence of an whole endocannabinoid program in the human ovary. It was also found that CB2 is concentrated at a substantially larger level in the ovarian follicle than CB1.
This acquiring could recommend that the endocannabinoid program has a incredibly critical immunological function in ovarian function, but this hypothesis has not been established so far.
The endocannabinoid program (ECS) and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
When it comes to a direct connection among ECS and PCOS, 1 current study has discovered that some of the most unsafe qualities of PCOS (insulin resistance and obesity) could be related with ECS activation.
This suggests that an improved level of endocannabinoids in your physique and higher stimulation of the CB1 receptors (each of which happen by consuming cannabis) can be a danger element for insulin resistance in ladies that endure from PCOS.
Primarily based on this study, 1 wouldn’t recommend employing cannabis as a remedy for PCOS, as it could potentially lead to the progression of PCOS.
On the other hand, a diverse study discovered proof of improved C-reactive protein (CRP) levels, inflammatory cytokines and leucocyte count in ladies with PCOS.
In other words, PCOS could be an inflammatory approach. And, we all know that cannabis is established to be a wonderful anti-inflammatory.
Nevertheless, there haven’t been any research to locate a direct connection among cannabis smoking and PCOS.
Despite the fact that the majority of research on the impact of cannabinoids on ovarian function have been carried out in vitro, on animals, or on a compact sample, it is been implied that PCOS could be tied to a dysfunction in the endocannabinoid program.
Cannabis-derived cannabinoids could distort the delicate connection among the ECS and the homeostatic mechanism in the female’s reproductive approach.
As such, it is not suggested to use marijuana as a prospective remedy for PCOS or any other female reproduction-associated issues.
Obtaining stated that, there haven’t been sufficient human research to prove a unfavorable linkage among cannabis consumption and female reproductive well being either.
All we know so far is that ECS plays a very important function in maintaining our reproductive well being in balance, and exogenous cannabinoids in cannabis are absolutely playing a important function in maintaining or disturbing that equilibrium.
- Walker OS, Holloway AC, Raha S. The function of the endocannabinoid program in female reproductive tissues. J Ovarian Res. 201912(1):three. Published 2019
- Gammon, C. M., Freeman, G. M., Xie, W., Petersen, S. L., & Wetsel, W. C. (2005). Regulation of Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Secretion by Cannabinoids. Endocrinology, 146(10)
- Brents LK. Marijuana, the Endocannabinoid Program and the Female Reproductive Program. Yale J Biol Med. 201689(two):175–191. Published 2016