Freya, the Norse goddess of love, beauty and fertility, was believed by many ancient Europeans to exist inside the cannabis plant. Consuming the flowers was to consume her feminine energy.
The harvesting of cannabis was celebrated with an erotic festival dedicated to Freya and her divine femininity. This gift was meant to help with women with the pains— physical or otherwise—of being a woman. Blame it on government regulation. And, of course, the weight of patriarchal society.
Because of its illegality, much is unknown about just how helpful the plant can be to women, but we do know its effect on the endocannabinoid system can help with anything from premenstrual symptoms, to fertility, to menopause. Thankfully, marijuana has been shown to relieve pain in many parts of the body including the womb. There is no cure for endometriosis, and women are often prescribed high doses or hormones to stop their periods all together, or just left to deal with the pain. The endocannabinoid system consists of a series of receptors that are configured only to accept cannabinoids, like THC and CBD found in cannabis.
Endometriosis is linked to endocannabinoid deficiency ECD. All parts of the endocannabinoid system are present in the human ovary, and women with endometriosis have lower levels of cannabinoid receptors in endometrial tissue. Reduced endocannabinoid system function leads to growth of endometriosis throughout the body and more pain.
We already know about the pain-relieving properties of cannabis, but can the plant heal the root cause of endometriosis? More research needs to done to answer that question, but we know consuming cannabis can help with the symptoms. Topical THC lotions can help with back and pelvic pain, and juicing cannabis can relieve the inflammation caused by endometriosis.
It is a hormonal imbalance caused by small, benign cysts on the ovaries. This causes irregular painful periods, infertility, weight gain, acne, facial hair, and in some cases, diabetes and heart disease.
Cannabis is known to stabilize blood sugar levels as well as lower blood pressure to improve circulation in diabetic PCOS patients. Yet why it is still something women suffer through using treatment methods that have unpleasant, painful, and sometimes deadly side effects? Estrogen Replacement Therapy ERT is the normal protocol when it comes to thwarting the symptoms of menopause such as bone loss and hot flashes.
But this therapy comes with a higher risk of breast cancer, blood clots, stroke, and heart attack. Again, taking a look at the endcannabionoid system is the key to finding a better solution to the symptoms of menopause. Lack of endocannabinoids signaling may be responsible for some of the negative symptoms.
Estrogen levels are linked to endocannabinoid levels, and both peak at ovulation, and this does not occur in a menopausal woman. Also, lowered levels of estrogen during and after menopause means less activation of the endocannabinoid system and poor ability to respond to stress and elevate mood accordingly.
Reactivating the endocannabinoid system with cannabis can be the alternative to ERT that does not have all the life-threatening side effects.
Cannabis can regulate bone loss and boost serotonin signaling and lower body temperature, which can reduce hot flashes and anxiety associated with menopause. Thankfully, cannabis, again, has you covered! The plant can reduce pain during sex, enhance orgasm, and reignite your sex drive.
Infused topical lubricants and medicated vaginal suppositories take away pain and increase pleasure. What more can you ask for? More research must be conducted to build the argument for cannabis as an option for women struggling with reproductive issues.
When it comes to your health — research your options, speak up, and above all — trust what your body is telling you.