CBD for Women: How CBD Can Relieve Five Perimenopause Symptoms
Hot flashes, night sweats and mood swings. Women often consider these as changes brought on by menopause, but what most women don’t realize is that these symptoms actually occur in what’s called perimenopause. Officially, menopause takes place when a woman has not had a period for a full 12 months—but the perimenopause symptoms that proceed it can be rough.
Here are five common perimenopause symptoms and the ways in which CBD can provide some much-needed relief:
According to Jennifer Payne, M.D., psychiatrist and director of the Women’s Mood Disorders Center at Johns Hopkins, women experiencing the type of hormonal changes associated with perimenopause are at an increased risk for depression1. Though research on CBD as a therapeutic is limited, what is available shows promise in regard to depression.
One 2014 research study found CBD “exhibited an anti-anxiety and antidepressant effects2.” It’s also believed that CBD positively influences the 5-HT1A neuro-receptor, a brain receptor closely linked to mood2 and the way we feel.
Anxiety-related hot flashes
Hot flashes are one of the most outwardly visible symptoms of perimenopause because these moments of overheating can cause women to sweat and appear flushed. There are many different things believed to trigger a hot flash, but one is anxiety. In fact, one study followed more than 400 premenopausal women for six years and uncovered that women with anxiety were significantly more likely to experience hot flashes (3).
The way CBD addresses anxiety is similar to what it does for depression in that it impacts serotonin levels. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, “CBD has shown therapeutic efficacy in a range of animal models of anxiety and stress, reducing both behavioral and physiological (e.g., heart rate) measures of stress and anxiety.”4
If you read our recent post on the connection between CBD and sleep5, you know why people have turned to CBD to get the best rest possible. But what you may not know is that 39 - 47% of perimenopausal women say they have sleep problems6. There are a multitude of reasons why women undergoing perimenopause struggle with sleep, including experiences with mood swings and hot flashes. However, it’s been demonstrated that CBD may offer assistance since it can reduce levels of cortisol7, the hormone that keeps us awake like a loud internal alarm. Generally speaking, CBD has a soothing and relaxing effect that helps people establish and maintain healthy sleep patterns.
The “middle-age spread” or gaining of weight for women in perimenopause is a common problem that can have cascading physical and emotional concerns. As Harvard Health writes, “…increasing waistlines are linked to greater risks for heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis8.”
To be clear, CBD is not a weight loss product. Yet, it does have some properties that, when working in lockstep with a healthier lifestyle, may help women achieve their weight loss goals. Animal studies found that CBD caused a reduction in food intake when compared to other cannabinoids in rats9 and decreased body weight gain10.
Aches and pains
Estrogen in younger women can reduce inflammation, but with age, estrogen levels decline. Women in perimenopause are more likely to feel pain in joints like the knees, elbows and hands. As we wrote in a Five Reasons Why CBD is Great for Pain Relief, CBD is an excellent remedy for pain relief11
Not only do studies like the one published in Future Medicinal Chemistry indicate that CBD can reduce acute inflammation12, but it’s non-habit-forming and is not associated with abuse potential.
Women on the cusp or in the midst of perimenopause are often racked with fear about the unknown and what their bodies are feeling—but it doesn’t have to be that way. Check out Woven Earth’s line of high-quality, full-spectrum CBD products, including our sleep capsules and daily oil for whole-body relief.
2 de Mello Schier, Alexandre R et al. “Antidepressant-like and anxiolytic-like effects of cannabidiol: a chemical compound of Cannabis sativa.” CNS & neurological disorders drug targets vol. 13,6 (2014): 953-60. doi:10.2174/1871527313666140612114838