There’s no doubt about it. Women are much more challenged when it comes to their health issues than men. For instance, women are four times more likely to have migraines, anxiety issues, Irritable Bowel Disease and Fibromyalgia than men.
But why is this so? Why are women much more vulnerable to a plethora of hormonal and health problems? New research is shedding light on this discrepancy. It turns out that you can blame it on your ‘Endocannabinoid’ System! Research has found that the fairer sex is three times more vulnerable to an Endocannabinoid deficiency than men.
What is the Endocannabinoid System?
A major discovery occurred in the 1990’s that would rewrite our entire understanding of not just human physiology, but also the physiology of the entire animal kingdom, mammals and reptiles, alike!
This revolutionary finding began with the research into the biochemical constituents of the cannabis plant. Unexpectedly, this led to the discovery of an entirely new system of our physiology, called the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). This research unraveled the mystery of the cannabis plant and its myriad of healing benefits.
We have Dr Raphael Mechoulam to thank for this groundbreaking discovery. Dr Mechoulam, an Israeli organic chemist, professor of Medicinal Chemistry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and pioneer in the field of cannabis research, is considered one of the giants of cannabis research. For the past 50 years, he and his team have succeeded in discovering the major plant compounds called cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. Two of the most well known are the psychoactive THC (tetrahydrocannabinol,) and the non-psychoactive cannabidiol, also known as Hemp Extract.
According to Dr Mechoulam, “By using a plant that has been around for thousands of years, we discovered a new physiological system of immense importance. We wouldn’t have been able to get there if we had not looked at the plant.” Why is there such excitement among scientists and health practitioners? It turns out that the ECS is a primordial language that nerves and brain cells use to communicate. From womb to tomb, across countless generations, the ECS guides and protects all vital physiological processes.
What’s the Big Deal About the Endocannabinoid System?
The ECS is possibly the single most important system within our entire body.
There is one biological principle that is essential for maintaining a healthy functioning body. That principle is called homeostasis.
Homeostasis means that biological systems are actively regulated to maintain conditions within a narrow, healthy range. The intelligence of the body insures that critical functions are always in proper balance. For instance, our body doesn’t want its temperature to be too hot or too cold, or blood sugar levels too high or too low. Conditions need to be just right for our cells to be functioning optimally. Without this perfect, rather narrow range of regulation, we would die.
As it turns out, that is exactly the job of the ECS. It is responsible for maintaining your body’s homeostasis. This vital molecular system ensures that cells stay in their “Goldilocks” zone of just right at all times. Without the optimal functioning of the ECS, all the other systems of your body would be seriously dysregulated.
The ECS ensures that the communication between all the biological systems is working perfectly. Some of the processes the ECS controls include: pain perception, gastrointestinal motility, memory, sleep, response to stress, anxiety, depression, bone repair, growth of new brain cells, reduction of excessive inflammation, regulation of hormonal systems, fertility, protection from strokes and other neurodegenerative problems.
The ECS regulates the homeostasis of the following functions:
- Memory and learning
- Immune function
- Neural development
- Cardiovascular function
This is why the ECS is such a big deal! Every important physiological function of our body is regulated and kept in balance by a properly functioning ECS.
Hemp Extract, the Non-Psychoactive Molecule in the Cannabis Plant
Cannabinoids are the chemical molecules that communicate with the ECS. There are two types of cannabinoid molecules. One type is made endogenously and the other kind comes from plants, such as the cannabis plant. Hemp Extract is the non-psychoactive part of the cannabis plant. Hemp Extract exerts an effect on the ECS system by indirectly increasing, or up-regulating, the activity of ECS receptors. This is really good news when it comes to women’s health challenges.
Hemp Extract and Women’s Health While everyone can truly benefit from the use of Hemp Extract, this article is focusing on the natural support for the many health and hormonal issues that particularly affect women. The following are some of the ways that Hemp Extract has proven to be effective in supporting women to address many of these health issues.
- Eases Premenstrual Symptoms
Hemp Extract is able to lessen or alleviate all the major PMS symptoms including reducing inflammation that contributes to headaches/migraines, menstrual cramps, upset stomachs, and physical sensitivities. Hemp Extract naturally elevates mood, balancing mood swings and reducing depression and anxiety. It also enhances deep sleep.
- Enhances Fertility
The ECS plays a crucial role in regulating a broad range of physiological processes including reproductive fertility.
- Eases Perimenopausal and Menopausal Symptoms
The ECS regulates the endocrine system. Symptoms associated with perimenopause and menopause are related to an Endocannabinoid deficiency. Estrogen levels are linked to endocannabinoid levels. Since the ECS also regulates body temperature, it helps with hot flashes and night sweats. It also supports other symptoms associated with perimenopause and menopause, such as moods, sleep, pain, cognitive impairment and low energy. Hemp Extract can help to balance hormonal levels, including oestrogen, by restoring proper ECS tone. The ECS also helps to regulate bone loss seen after menopause. The CB2 cannabinoid receptor is found in bone cells and when there are fewer coded CB2 receptors after menopause, it leads to osteoporosis.
- Helps Prevent Osteoporosis and Builds Bone
Hemp Extract activates the cannabinoid receptor that balances the bone remodeling process. It can help prevent bone loss. The ECS heals fractures and promotes the development of new bone tissues.
- Helps to Prevent Breast Cancer and Reduce Treatment Symptoms
Research has shown evidence that CBD may kill breast cancer cells while sparing healthy cells. Studies show that Hemp Extract may support apoptosis (programmed cell death) that rids the body of old and damaged cells. Hemp Extract has also been proven to minimise the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation. It increases appetite, decreases nausea, and promotes restful sleep, all of which supports healing.
- Reduces Autoimmune Diseases
Women comprise 75% of patients diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder. Fortunately, new research suggests that Hemp Extract may be an effective treatment for the symptoms of autoimmune disorders. It also helps to calm an overactive immune system, limiting the production of the pro-inflammatory molecules.
- Provides Relief for Anxiety and Depression
Women are twice as likely to suffer from anxiety disorders. One recent study showed that Hemp Extract lessened anxiety and distress when taken just before an anxiety-provoking public speaking performance. While Hemp Extract has been proven to combat social anxiety disorder, it can also help to quickly alleviate general anxiety symptoms. Research also suggests that Hemp Extract can help to treat depression.
- Helps with Chronic Pelvic Pain
Hemp Extract reduces chronic pain by lowering inflammation. Conditions such as endometriosis are also considered to be an autoimmune condition, which is helped with Hemp Extract.
9. Enhances Sleep
Hemp Extract has been shown to reduce anxiety, which can be helpful in reducing sleep difficulties and improving sleep quality. Hemp Extract increases overall sleep time and improves insomnia. It has also been shown to reduce insomnia in people who suffer from chronic pain. Hemp Extract not only makes falling asleep easier; it also influences the sleep cycle. Sleep is divided into multiple cycles with different phases. Hemp Extract increases the third phase, which is the phase of deep sleep. In addition, Hemp Extract decreases the duration of the REM sleep, which is a phase of light sleep in which dreaming occurs. By reducing the REM sleep, people dream less, memory is improved, and symptoms of depression are decreased.
Hemp Extract – A Woman’s New Best Friend The understanding that women are vulnerable to an endocannabinoid deficiency opens up an entirely new possibility for healing by using Hemp Extract. Due to stress, excessive stimulation of the nervous system from Wifi devices, nutritional deficiencies and toxicity, our ECS is under continual duress.
In our stress-filled twenty-fist century world, Hemp Extract is nature’s gift to help you to restore a fully functioning Endocannabinoid System.
Thanks to the research that has once again revealed what the ancient cultures have known for millennia, the safe and effective benefits of Hemp Extract are offering a healing balm for women’s many health issues.
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Current Psychiatry Reports April 2017, 19:23| Cannabis, Cannabinoids, and Sleep: a Review of the Literature