Menopause comes as the second important phase of a woman’s life. While the first phase signifies fertility and the various challenges surrounding Premenstrual Syndrome – fondly referred to as PMS – the second phase represents the end of a women’s fertility. Menopause comes when a woman’s ovaries stop making eggs and significantly lower their production of estrogen. This time period can come with a host of undesirable symptoms. From hot flashes and insomnia to mood swings and weight gain, menopause causes most women to seek out treatments that will help lower the risks associated these conditions.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of hundreds of chemical substances that occur in the cannabis plant. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), another cannabinoid, CBD does not produce any of the psychoactive or “high” effects that are commonly associated with marijuana consumption. This has made CBD a popular alternative for people looking to avoid the unpleasant side effects that can often come with prescription or over-the-counter drugs. According to BDS Analytics, the leader in cannabis market intelligence and consumer research, nearly 60% of female cannabis consumers reported reduced use of prescription and over-the-counter medications. While cannabis products are being consumed for their numerous recreation and medicinal benefits, women lean towards these products for three main reasons.
The top three reasons for females to use cannabis for self-care include:
When it comes to menopause, let’s take a look at how CBD can either prevent or reduce it’s unpleasant symptoms and health risks.
5 Common Symptoms that CBD can Help With:
- Aches and pains
Many women who have gone through or are currently going through menopause tend to pin their increasingly common bodily aches and pains on age. However, it is the decreasing levels of estrogen that lead to higher levels of inflammatory molecules. This means that symptoms of arthritis typically skyrocket during menopause due to low estrogen levels. CBD has been used widely for the treatment of muscle pain and inflammation, making it an ideal option for women who are going through menopause. CBD is anti-arthritic, meaning that it protects joints from inflammatory damage. Since CBD also works to relieve pain, it’s a natural alternative to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as Aspirin or Advil.
- Mood Swings
Estrogen and progesterone regulate the activity of serotonin and other important neurotransmitters in the brain that directly affect mood. As these hormone levels become plummet, a woman’s neurochemistry begins to change. CBD binds to and activates serotonin receptors which stimulate positive emotions and the necessary chemicals to provide us with feelings of calm and comfort.
- Weight gain
Hormones control our metabolism. Without estrogen, a vital hormone in sexual reproductive development, women’s bodies burn fewer calories and less fat during exercise. CBD can aid in weight loss or the prevention of metabolic disorder by reducing appetite, burning fat, and turning bad fats into good fats. Numerous studies have found that adults who consume cannabis products have lower insulin levels and smaller waist circumferences.
- Hot flashes and night sweats
The decrease in estrogen during menopause is believed to be the main cause of hot flashes. Many doctors and scientists believe that when estrogen levels fall, they alter the neurochemistry in the hypothalamus — our body’s main thermostat control. Although more research is required in relation to CBD or cannabis for relief from hot flashes, its influence on the body’s serotonin system could be one of the reasons many women have adopted CBD into their routines.
Menopausal women typically have trouble getting a good night’s sleep. This could be a result of hot flashes, night sweats, anxiety, or aches. CBD is used by people of all genders and ages o assist in acquiring a more restorative sleep by calming the central nervous system. CBD’s influence on the body’s neurochemistry and anxiety can help improve sleep for women who are experiencing insomnia or night sweats.
While the most common treatment for menopause symptoms is hormone-replacement therapy (HRT), it is only intended for short periods of time. Long-term HRT can lead to increased risks of heart attack, blood clots, stroke, and cancer. Doctors also commonly prescribe anti-depressants and other medications that come with risky side effects. If you are currently going through menopause, adding CBD into a healthy lifestyle can reduce the need for medication and lead to a healthier and happier transition into this new phase your life.