CBD for Thyroid Conditions
Over 20 million individuals in the U.S. suffer from a thyroid condition. Furthermore, many people do not know that their thyroid is not functioning optimally and, therefore, are not diagnosed. Thyroid disorders include both over-functioning and under-functioning conditions. In either case, autoimmunity, inflammation, and genetics are typically involved in the development of the disease. But is CBD for thyroid the answer?
Currently, thyroid conditions are managed by replacing thyroid hormones or preventing thyroid hormone output. In both cases, the underlying issue which led to the condition is rarely addressed. People have begun to wonder about CBD for thyroid conditions, given its anti-inflammatory properties through the endocannabinoid system.
Scientists have also begun to research on CBD for thyroid conditions to see if it can help manage thyroid symptoms or even address some of the underlying causes. The information below is what we know so far.
CBD for Thyroid Conditions: Just the Facts
The thyroid controls numerous aspects of our bodily functions. When out of balance, either in hyper or hypo, a person experiences a variety of symptoms, some of which are extremely serious. Treatments aimed at replacing thyroid hormones, or decreasing thyroid function, are the typical course of action. Many causes of thyroid conditions are influenced by autoimmunity and inflammation. Given that CBD stimulates CB1 and CB2 receptors, it is possible that there is a place for CBD in treating thyroid conditions, but it also may be too soon to tell.
What Does the Thyroid Do?
The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland which sits in the front of the throat. It controls several vital functions in the body through its production of thyroid hormones.
The thyroid controls the body’s metabolism and affects numerous systems in the body such as the digestive tract, nervous system, cardiovascular system, hair, skin, and nail growth, as well as weight and appetite. Therefore, an increase or decrease in thyroid functioning can cause a variety of symptoms.
The thyroid is sensitive to nutrient deficiencies such as zinc, iodine, and selenium, as well as environmental pollutants which can cause it to over function (hyperthyroid), or under function (hypothyroid). In addition, the immune system can also begin attacking the thyroid gland, resulting in autoimmune thyroid conditions–Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and Grave’s Disease.
What Causes Thyroid Conditions?
Hyperthyroidism can be caused by a few different circumstances, including autoimmunity where the immune system attacks the thyroid (known as Grave’s Disease), inflammation of the thyroid (Thyroiditis), as well as tumors that secrete excess thyroid hormones.
Risk Factors for Hyperthyroid
Hyperthyroidism is more common in women, and more common in people who have a relative with a previous thyroid condition. For the most part, however, the risk factors are unknown. Given that most of the causes of hyperthyroidism involve an overactive immune system causing inflammation, managing inflammation and sources should be considered when looking at hyperthyroidism causes.
The symptoms of hyperthyroidism are all associated with the increase in metabolic rate that the excess thyroid hormones cause. Common symptoms include:
- Unintentional weight loss (often with increased hunger)
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
- Anxiety and irritability
- Muscle tremors
- Unusual sweating
- Feeling hot
- Changes in menstrual patterns
- Changes in hair, skin, and nails
The most common cause of hypothyroidism is the autoimmune condition, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. Like most autoimmune conditions, the exact causes are unknown, but a combination of environmental factors and genetics are likely at play.
Other causes include treatment for hyperthyroidism which can result in diminished thyroid hormone output. Also, medications like Lithium for mental health conditions can lead to hypothyroidism.
Certain nutrients are needed to make thyroid hormones, such as iodine, selenium, and zinc. A deficiency in any of these can impair proper thyroid hormone synthesis.
Risk Factors for Hypothyroidism
Hypothyroidism is most common in women over 60 years of age, as well as people with a family history of hypothyroidism. Also, people who have had radiation to their neck or have been treated for hyperthyroidism are at increased risk of hypothyroidism.
Hypothyroidism can cause an array of different symptoms. For some, the symptoms are mild and develop slowly, and for others, they are severe and come on more suddenly. Since the symptoms of hypothyroidism can look like symptoms of many other conditions, testing thyroid levels through blood tests are often used by doctors. Common symptoms of hypothyroidism include:
- Fatigue and muscle weakness
- Difficulty losing weight or weight gain
- Water retention
- Brain fog
- Depressed mood
- Heart palpitations and slow heart rate
- Hair loss
- Joint and muscle pain
- High cholesterol
- Sensitivity to cold
- Dry hair and skin
- Hoarse voice
- Heavy or irregular periods
- Enlarged thyroid gland (goiter)
How Do We Treat Thyroid Conditions?
For hyperthyroidism, the treatment plan is not quite so simple. The common drugs used to manage hyperthyroidism include:
- Radioactive iodine, which the thyroid takes up and causes it to shrink.
- Anti-thyroid drugs such as methimazole (Tapazole) and propylthiouracil, which stop the thyroid from producing thyroid hormones. What’s scary is these drugs can cause liver failure and death!
- Beta-blockers, to slow down the heart rate while the other drugs begin to take effect.
If the cause of hyperthyroidism is due to a tumor, then surgery is often needed.
Management of hyperthyroidism is essential because, if left untreated, it can cause adverse health outcomes. For instance, the rapid heartbeat caused by hyperthyroidism can lead to life-threatening heart conditions like atrial fibrillation — where the heart cannot contract and relax appropriately — as well as stroke.
After treatment for hyperthyroidism, some thyroid patients become hypothyroid and must take thyroid replacements for the rest of their lives.
The typical treatment for hypothyroidism is thyroid replacement with a medication such as levothyroxine. This medicine supplies the T4 thyroid hormone, which the body must then convert to the active form T3. This conversion is dependent on the mineral selenium.
When left untreated, hypothyroidism can lead to depression, infertility, heart conditions, peripheral neuropathy, and even to a life-threatening condition called myxedema. Myxedema is when low levels of thyroid hormone lead to weakness, cold intolerance, mental and physical slowness, and even death.
To manage their hypothyroidism, people must take this medication for the rest of their lives, in most cases. In short, the medication does not fix the underlying cause of the problem — it just manages it.
In both cases of hyper and hypothyroidism, people are left with very few options for treatment, and many are interested in exploring alternative, more natural, and safe options.
CBD has been a popular topic for many other health conditions, including anxiety and pain. Many positive research studies have prompted further exploration into CBD’s potential use for a variety of conditions. But can CBD be helpful for specifically thyroid conditions?
CBD for Thyroid Conditions
So far, there has not been much research on CBD for thyroid conditions. However, as previously mentioned, many of the causes of thyroid conditions are associated with autoimmunity and inflammation. CBD oil has been researched for its effects on the endocannabinoid system, which has been found to control inflammation.
This sparks interest in the value of CBD for thyroid conditions. Let’s look at what we know so far…
What the Research Says
A clinical study looked at the role of the endocannabinoid system in thyroid tumors. They found an association between CB1 and CB2 receptors and tumor malignancy, meaning how likely a tumor is to spread and become dangerous. The study found that both of these receptors influenced thyroid tumors and believed they could both be a target of future therapies.
Another study found that the CB1 receptors of the endocannabinoid system controls the output of thyroid hormones. Given that CBD stimulates these receptors, it is possible that CBD may influence thyroid conditions through this mechanism. However, more research on human models is needed.
In summary, there has not been a lot of research on CBD for thyroid conditions as of yet. Researchers have just scratched the surface. However, there have not been any studies with negative outcomes on CBD for thyroid conditions; therefore, it is possible that CBD has a place in thyroid health.
Final Thoughts on CBD for Thyroid Conditions
CBD for thyroid conditions is an area that still needs a lot more research. It seems possible that CBD may have an effect on thyroid tumors and thyroid hormone production. However, without more research, is it too soon to say for sure.
If you are interested in trying CBD, always use a reputable source who uses third-party testing to ensure the quality and safety of the product. Never makes changes to your health care regime without the supervision of your trusted health care provider.One of the main organs involved in feeling good and full of energy is the thyroid. Check out this article and see if CBD is useful for those thyroid conditions.
CBD for Thyroid Disorders
In America, approximately 20 million people suffer from some kind of thyroid disorder, and close to 60 percent of the affected don’t know about their condition. According to the American Thyroid Association 1 women are a lot more likely to experience thyroid problems than men. Doctors usually prescribe traditional medicines to people with thyroid problems. However, the medicines may not always work. In fact, they could end up presenting quite a few side effects. People are, therefore, seeking refuge in alternative medicines. Many studies indicate CBD can be effective at treating an array of thyroid-related issues.
Found in the endocrine system, your thyroid gland is a vital organ. It’s a butterfly-shaped, small gland located below your voice box and in front of your neck. The gland produces and gives out two important hormones – T4 (tetraiodothyronine) and T3 (triiodothyronine) – that control your body’s metabolism and determine how your cells utilize energy. Also, the gland manages the pace of several processes, which include heart rate and body temperature. Generally, body metabolism management is critical for regulating weight, mood, and physical and mental energy levels.
Moreover, the thyroid gland converts the food you ingest into energy so that your body keeps functioning properly. Several thyroid problems are due to an atypical secretion of thyroid hormones. However, all kinds of thyroid disorder/disease have unique causes, risks, and diagnoses. It’s worth noting that many studies are pointing at how CBD could be potentially beneficial in treating thyroid diseases.
CBD and the Endocannabinoid System and Their Direct Impact on the Thyroid Hormone Release
The human body’s ECS (endocannabinoid system) exerts its strong influence in different ways. For instance, it regulates poise within various processes, such as thyroid function. According to an article published by National Institute of Health (NIH) 2 , scientists have discovered that the thyroid gland’s cells have cannabinoid receptors on them.
Multiple regulations and restrictions have made it quite difficult for researchers to learn more about cannabinoids and what role they play in the treatment of a thyroid disorder. Even though human-based research on the matter isn’t extensive yet, a study 3 was carried out on animals in 2002. It discovered that CB1 receptors control thyroid hormone release. Also, it was found cannabinoids administration had a say in thyroid hormonal activity. In 2015, another 2 was carried out by the NIH, which discovered cannabinoid receptors can theoretically be therapeutic targets for benign and malignant thyroid lesions.
Furthermore, a research study 4 carried out by the Journal of Endocrinology exhibited that endocannabinoid receptors are situated within the sections of the brain. The receptors transmit signals to the gland. This shows the likelihood of cannabinoids, such as CBD, influencing the thyroid gland’s performance and overall health.
Different thyroid disorders
A thyroid disorder is a condition that impacts the thyroid gland. Different kinds of thyroid disorders either affect the gland’s function or its structure. A disorder is usually linked to the glands either releasing excessive thyroid hormones (hyperthyroidism) or too little hormones (hypothyroidism). Other specific thyroid disorders are:
What is hyperthyroidism
Hyperthyroidism is a thyroid condition that indicates denotes an overactive thyroid gland. One out of every 100 women 5 could be suffering from this condition. It’s not common in men, however. Several conditions could cause hyperthyroidism, which includes excess iodine consumption, thyroid inflammation, tumors of the testes or ovaries, benign pituitary or thyroid gland tumors, and large quantities of tetraiodothyronine administered through medication or dietary supplements.
Grave’s disease is among the major causes of hyperthyroidism, found in approximately 70 percent of people with a hyperactive thyroid. It induces antibodies to push the thyroid into secreting too much hormone. Thyroid nodules could also cause the thyroid gland to produce its hormones in excess. This condition is called multinodular goiter or toxic nodular goiter. Increased thyroid hormone production could present the following symptoms:
- racing heart
- increased sweating
- trouble sleeping
- brittle nails and hair
- thin skin
- weight loss
- muscle weakness
- bulging eyes
How CBD can help treat hyperthyroidism
Patients with hyperthyroidism usually report major or minor relief from negative symptoms of their disease. Regularly using CBD oil for thyroid helps individuals normalize their body weight, by putting an end to diarrhea issues and reestablishing their appetite. CBD for thyroid disorder gets rid of irritability and anxiety-related sleep disorders. Moreover, CBD for thyroid disorder helps with heart function regulation, the trembling of fingers and hands, and muscular aches, if any.
Does CBD affect thyroid medication?
There has been no clinical evidence showing interactions between CBD and thyroid medication such as Levothyroxine. A good way to get an idea if CBD will interact with your thyroid medication is to look for the “grapefruit warning” on the label.
More than 85 drugs 6 interact with grapefruit, however no thyroid medications are present on that list.
Nonetheless, we always recommend you read the label of your medication carefully and always consult with a doctor before taking CBD in combination with any medication.
What is hypothyroidism
Hypothyroidism is the reverse of hyperthyroidism. In this case, the thyroid gland is unable to produce enough hormones or is underactive. This disorder usually follows Hashimoto’s disease, the damage inflicted by radiation treatment, or thyroid gland removal surgery. While not all individuals with Hashimoto’s exhibit hypothyroid signs, thyroid antibodies could be the marker for thyroid diseases in the future. Most hypothyroidism cases are mild, with the symptoms being:
- memory problems
- dry skin
- heightened sensitivity to cold
- weight gain
- decreased sweating
- loss of libido
- slow heart rate
How CBD oil can help treat hypothyroidism
People with hypothyroidism issues would notice alleviation or total elimination of distressing headaches, and pain in the joints and muscles when using CBD oil. CBD lets restore the restful sleeping tendencies of the patient. Moreover, it helps increase concentration levels and eliminates depression and arduous tension.
What is Hashimoto’s disease
Also called chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis, Hashimoto’s disease is one of the most common hypothyroidism causes. It could affect a person at any age, but middle-aged women are most likely to be affected. The disorder manifests when your immune system erroneously attacks and slowly annihilates the thyroid gland, along with its ability to make hormones. Some individuals with minor instances of this disease may not show obvious signs. In fact, the disease could stay stable for several years, with the symptoms often being subtle. Also, the symptoms aren’t specific. In other words, they share symptoms of several other conditions, which include:
- mild weight gain
- dry, thinning hair
- dry skin
- irregular and heavy menstruation
- puffy, pale face
- intolerance to cold
- goiter or enlarged thyroid
How to use CBD oil for Hashimoto’s
Hashimoto’s disease is literally a condition affecting the body, mind, and spirit. CBD oil for Hashimoto’s responds well to the innate cannabinoid substances of your body. CBD oil and Hashimoto’s are usually talked about in the same sentence because CBD sustains and balances the homeostasis of your body, and Hashimoto’s disease like other thyroid diseases is due to an imbalance in your body’s normal functioning. Anecdotal reports about efficient and successful treatment with CBD oil and Hashimoto’s involved corroborate these claims.
What is Thyroiditis
Thyroiditis is composed of multiple disorders that lead to thyroidal inflammation, which could either cause abnormally low or high thyroid hormone levels in the blood. Thyroiditis is usually caused when the thyroid is attacked, leading to thyroid cell damage and inflammation. The disease is typically considered as an immune system malfunction. The cause could be bacteria- or virus-induced infection. Moreover, some drugs could trigger thyroiditis due to their tendency to damage thyroid glands.
The different kinds of thyroiditis are Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (a very common hypothyroidism cause), postpartum thyroiditis (typically triggered after delivering a child), silent thyroiditis, subacute thyroiditis, radiation-induced thyroiditis, drug-induced thyroiditis, Riedel’s thyroiditis, and acute thyroiditis. Each of these thyroiditis types has its unique causes, risks, and diagnoses.
There are multiple symptoms and signs of thyroiditis, due to the various types. These could comprise:
- weight gain
- cold intolerance
- muscle cramps
- dry hair and skin
- decreased concentration
- leg swelling
- puffy eyes
When the condition becomes severe, the symptoms include low body temperature, slow heart rate, coma, and heart failure.
How CBD can help treat thyroiditis
Due to thyroiditis’ immunomodulatory traits, CBD ushers in positivity by not just alleviating thyroiditis symptoms, but also by coming down hard on the hampering inflammatory process. Though these assumptions haven’t been confirmed scientifically, they certainly help us view the conceivable inhibition of thyroid cells’ destruction courtesy cannabidiol’s positive attributes and action.
CBD oil Dosage for Thyroid Disorders
While there are more than a handful of ways to use CBD for treating thyroid disorders, high-quality CBD oil is the most effective and potent method. Oils, by nature, are molecular carriers, which means they can carry a lot more cannabinoid molecules than any other type of CBD product. Moreover, CBD oil can be ingested easily and absorbed quite efficiently when the drops are directed below the tongue and kept there for some 30 to 90 seconds prior to swallowing.
If you are just getting started, it’s recommended you administer the drops no more than three times a day.
Determining the correct CBD dose for a thyroid disorder will depend on the severity of your symptoms. Since everyone’s reaction to CBD is different, it is important to listen to your body and regulate the dose while looking for signs of improvement.
We recommend following the step up approach established by Leonard Leinow and Juliana Birnbaum in their book “CBD: A Patient’s Guide to Medicinal Cannabis” 7
You can read about the step-up approach and calculate what CBD dose is right for you in our post on CBD dosage.
The most impressive thing about CBD oil treatment for thyroid disease is the single medication approach. It can be used for treating virtually every and any kind of thyroid malfunction – be it hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, thyroiditis, or goiter. Several anecdotal pieces of evidence pertaining to CBD’s efficiency and efficacy in treating thyroid disorders have been documented. Moreover, multiple scientific studies have showcased the therapeutic regulatory effects of cannabinoid on the thyroid gland. Though not a lot of specific clinical trials have been carried out on CBD oil for thyroid diseases, the growing understanding of how CBD works with the internal endocannabinoid system is enough material to give life to the notion that CB receptors could play a major part in homeostatic thyroid regulation, along with correct cell-to-cell interaction between the brain, thyroid, and the body’s system of organ structures.
If you wonder why there is the mention of only CBD and not its family members, marijuana or THC, for treating thyroid disorders, it is because CBD constitutes the plant’s non-psychotropic cannabinoid. In other words, it won’t give you the feeling of “high” by itself. Not to mention, most people wanting to use cannabis for its medical traits are usually least interested in the drug’s mind-altering effects.There are several different Thyroid Disorders which could all benefit from the healing properties of CBD Oil. Read more about the effects of CBD on Thyroids ]]>