As some of you may have seen, I have recently ticked up plenty of frequent flyer points at my local A&E due to totally ruining my stomach lining. This was caused from taking too many pharmaceutical medications for far too many years. I am now in this shitty situation where I can no longer take any NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) and really neeeeeeeeeed help ASAP to feel justified to put any other form of drug in my poor healing body.
As you guys can imagine, this sucks. I rely heavily on my medications to get me through life. Living with Endometriosis truly can be a battle, and to be a reliable employee, good friend and family member, I have to take drugs most days. It’s not good for my body, I know this and I’m sure most of you do too however what other options do we have? A large majority of us are misunderstood by everyone around us and also by medical professionals, so to not have the options to make us “normal functional humans” what the f*** are we meant to do???
Now I am aware this is going to be a huge “un popular opinion” post, however when you find yourself in a situation like I am in now, you of course are going to do your research. Please, please understand that I am not telling you that this is the path for you, I’m simply bringing light to the fact that nature may have the answers so many of us are looking for.
Several studies have shown that there is actually a link between Endometriosis and an Endocannabinoid Deficiency. You can find one here from the US National Library of Medicine. There is also an overwhelming amount of scientific evidence to support the claim that humans produce endocannabinoids naturally.
What are Endocannabinoids? My attempt to put it simply is they help with the communication between the cells in our body. When there is a deficiency within the ECS some health issues can start to appear. They are mostly found in your brain and immune system however can also be found in glands, organs and connective tissues e.g ligaments and bones. These are also known as Endocannabinoid Receptors.
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) has a big role to play with helping us stay healthy and human. Essentially, it is a system that helps control vital happenings within your body like mood, pain, sleep, appetite, immunity, memory, female reproductivity, anxiety and more.
Endocannabinoids are naturally produced with help from fatty acids which can be found in hemp seeds as well as fish like salmon.
Cannabis & the ECS
So, funnily enough because Endocannabinoids were discovered after cannabis, this is where they received their name! The Cannabinoids which are found in Cannabis and are most understood/common are THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (Cannabidiol).
- tetrahydrocannabidinol: the active ingredient in cannabis, giving it its narcotic and psychoactive effects
- cannabidinol: is a major phytocannabinoid (chemical compounds that act on cannabinoid receptors), accounting for up to 40% of the plant’s extract.
- Less the psychoactive effects of THC (does not get you high)
These components interact with both your body and the ECS while actually encouraging them to make more Endocannabinoids than our bodies would otherwise naturally produce.
When CBD enters the body, it enhances the endocannabinoid action because the ECS receptors are stimulated to produce their own cannabinoids.
However when THC enters the body it overwhelms the ECS, it quickly attaches to the cannabinoid receptors throughout the brain and body, giving you a “euphoric” feeling.
To put it bluntly, the two act in a very similar way however THC gets you high and CBD will not.
Cannabis is and can be used to treat a huge array of illness’ including Anorexia, ADHD, Multiple Sclerosis, Depression, Anxiety, Cancer and so much more!
So how does all of this work in with managing your Endometriosis symptoms?
When it comes to specifics with Endometriosis and Cannabis, the interpretation of how it could help you must be clear – THIS IS NOT A CURE. However by consuming the plant that has been used as medicine for thousands of years, you do have the potential to drastically change the way your symptoms affect your body.
There have been studies linking Endocannabinoid Deficiencies and Endometriosis. I found a few articles with headings like “5 signs you have an Endocannabinoid Deficiency” and nodded my head more often that I would have liked to. Dr Ethan Russo found that Endocannabinoid Deficiencies could be responsible for many mis-happenings in the body including chronic pain, mood swings, bad immune system and appetite, sound familiar?
These studies suggest that by controlling the ECS, you have the potential to assist with not only pain management, but various other symptoms. It has also been confirmed that the ECS can intervene with specific systems which are related to pain management, e.g inflammation, and by doing so can reduce the growth of endometrium lesions.
Cannabis can assist with pain management, sleep deprivation, nausea, IBS symptoms, increase your libido, provide inflammation management and so much more! The effects that cannabis can have on an individual who suffers from Endometriosis are truly amazing and I really urge for you to do your own research and have a google of studies performed, read other blogs/articles that contain similar information and basically educate yourselves on the topic if you even have an inkling it may help your situation.
There are other natural paths you can take to help with assisting an Endocannabinoid Deficiency like the ones below –
- Cold exposure (keep eyes peeled for upcoming post on this topic)
- Reduce Stress
- Dark leafy greens
Again, nothing is going to cure you of this disease because so far there isn’t one, however exploring the options of how you can manage your symptoms is something I seriously urge you to do. Think outside of the box, don’t take what the medical professionals say for gospel – strive to learn about all options that may make your life more enjoyable and LIVEABLE!
I hope you all learnt something and are on the path to further learning like I am 🙂
As always, lots of love and light