Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that impacts 1 in just about every 10 girls of childbearing age, from 15 to 44.
Getting such a typical situation, one particular would assume that there is a remedy for PCOS. Sadly, up to this day, there hasn’t been any confirmed healthcare breakthrough that can entirely heal this hormonal imbalance, only treatment options that can lower or (if you are fortunate) do away with the symptoms of PCOS.
In current years, even so, there has been a lot of hype constructed up about cannabis getting utilized as a remedy for PCOS.
In a lot of research, cannabis has been noticed to correctly treat discomfort and stomach cramps, relieve anxiousness and carry out wonders with negative skin and hair, all of which are typical 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 generate higher levels of the male hormone Androgen (steroid hormones that influence the improvement of the male reproductive method) in their ovaries.
The most typical symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) are:
- Irregular and incredibly painful menstrual periods
- No menstrual periods, which can additional lead to distinctive wellness 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 guys normally have hair (but girls do not)
- Serious acne and oily skin
- Thinning hair and hair loss (male pattern balding)
- Improve in physique weight
- Skin tags
The precise lead to of PCOS is nonetheless 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 greater threat. Moreover, these who are obese stand a great possibility of building PCOS.
Females suffering from PCOS are at improved threat of building much more really serious wellness circumstances such as:
- Glucose intolerance or variety two diabetes (much more than 50% of girls 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?
While 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 may possibly have.
If the symptoms are not serious, for instance, altering unhealthy habits and losing weight can regulate and right the hormonal imbalance of the physique.
For much more serious circumstances of PCOS, a mixture of a wholesome diet program and medication is needed for treating symptoms.
Females who do not want to come to be pregnant can turn to birth manage tablets to restore their hormonal balance and aid with regulating their menstrual cycle.
If a lady has created insulin resistance, she’ll have to have to appear to working with distinctive diabetes medication.
In addition, for girls who endure from issues related with anxiousness and depression, distinctive antidepressants can be prescribed.
On best of that, discomfort killers are a normally utilized medication that can be utilized to aid alleviate painful menstrual cramps and pelvic discomfort.
What part does cannabis play in PCOS remedy?
In current years, cannabis has attracted large 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 broadly utilized type of medication for discomfort remedy, a symptom that is usually related with PCOS.
Most girls who endure from PCOS have incredibly painful menstrual cramps, intense back discomfort throughout their menstrual cycle and in some cases abdominal discomfort due to the improvement of cysts in their ovaries.
In the case of depression, which is also a typical symptom for girls suffering from PCOS, marijuana can have each advantageous and dangerous effects.
While there is no consensus on this subject, the well-liked opinion appears to be that marijuana with a higher dose of THC is going to increase symptoms of depression, whilst reduce doses of THC and greater doses of CBD appear to have the impact of an antidepressant.
So, cannabis can be utilized as a palliative remedy for the a lot of side effects of PCOS. But what we want to know is if cannabis can come to be a possible healthcare remedy for this unpleasant situation?
The endocannabinoid method and ovarian function
In order to completely recognize how cannabis can influence a hormonal disorder such as PCOS, we have to have to recognize the biological processes that occur in the female physique and the significance of the endocannabinoid method for reproductive wellness.
The endocannabinoid method is a signaling network of the physique that consists of:
- Endocannabinoids (molecules developed by our physique that are structurally incredibly equivalent to cannabinoids from cannabis).
- Diverse metabolic enzymes that break down endocannabinoids.
- Endocannabinoid receptors that are positioned in the cell membranes and spread all through the physique.
The major objective of the endocannabinoid method is to sustain homeostasis, or in simplified words, to sustain 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 positioned inside the central nervous method and CB2 receptors are predominantly identified inside cells of the immune method.
On the other hand, each of these receptors are also present in female sex organs and play a crucial part in the regulation of reproductive wellness.
Ovaries are the female reproductive organs that generate reproductive cells (gametes) for fertilization and reproductive hormones, namely estrogen, testosterone, inhibin, and progesterone. These play a critical function in the menstrual cycle and fertility.
For the duration of the menstrual cycle, the ovaries undergo 3 series of alterations: the follicular phase, ovulation, phase, and luteal phase.
For the duration of 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 means of the blood to a woman’s ovaries exactly where they generate 15-20 eggs in the ovarian follicles.
Estrogen is then synthesized in important amounts from the preovulatory follicle to lower the levels of LH and FSH.
Reduce levels of these hormones will lead to the death of most of the developed follicles, and only one particular, dominant follicle will entirely mature to release the egg. This phase is named ovulation.
Then comes the luteal phase when ovaries make a hormone named progesterone, which assists thicken the lining of the uterus in preparation for a feasible 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 appear to have in this all-natural method.
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 developed.
What this signifies is that a higher level of endocannabinoids (developed 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.
Yet another study, published in 2009, was the 1st to learn the presence of an whole endocannabinoid method in the human ovary. It was also found that CB2 is concentrated at a a lot greater level in the ovarian follicle than CB1.
This obtaining could recommend that the endocannabinoid method has a incredibly crucial immunological part in ovarian function, but this hypothesis has not been confirmed so far.
The endocannabinoid method (ECS) and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
When it comes to a direct connection involving ECS and PCOS, one particular current study has identified that some of the most hazardous qualities of PCOS (insulin resistance and obesity) may possibly be related with ECS activation.
This signifies 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 threat issue for insulin resistance in girls that endure from PCOS.
Primarily based on this study, one particular wouldn’t recommend working with cannabis as a remedy for PCOS, as it could potentially lead to the progression of PCOS.
On the other hand, a distinctive study identified proof of improved C-reactive protein (CRP) levels, inflammatory cytokines and leucocyte count in girls with PCOS.
In other words, PCOS could be an inflammatory method. And, we all know that cannabis is confirmed to be a terrific anti-inflammatory.
On the other hand, there haven’t been any research to come across a direct connection involving cannabis smoking and PCOS.
While the majority of research on the impact of cannabinoids on ovarian function have been performed in vitro, on animals, or on a modest sample, it is been implied that PCOS could be tied to a dysfunction in the endocannabinoid method.
Cannabis-derived cannabinoids may possibly distort the delicate connection involving the ECS and the homeostatic mechanism in the female’s reproductive method.
As such, it is not advised to use marijuana as a possible remedy for PCOS or any other female reproduction-connected issues.
Possessing stated that, there haven’t been sufficient human research to prove a damaging linkage involving cannabis consumption and female reproductive wellness either.
All we know so far is that ECS plays a crucial part in maintaining our reproductive wellness in balance, and exogenous cannabinoids in cannabis are absolutely playing a important part in maintaining or disturbing that equilibrium.
- Walker OS, Holloway AC, Raha S. The part of the endocannabinoid method 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 Technique and the Female Reproductive Technique. Yale J Biol Med. 201689(two):175–191. Published 2016