Fatty liver and CBD

Fatty liver and CBD

Fatty liver, a disease that regularly appears in the headlines of the tabloids, is a real threat to public health and, according to estimates, up to a quarter of Finnish adults suffer from it. It is completely possible to cure fatty liver and in this article we will get to know whether CBD oil could be of any help to restore the situation to its original state. We also look at the functions of the endocannabinoid system in the background of fatty liver and find out what fatty liver actually is!

 

What is fatty liver?

 

Fatty liver is the most common liver disease and occurs especially in the so-called in welfare states. Before, it was diagnosed only in 40-60 year olds and mostly alcoholics, but as overweight becomes more common, it is found in more and younger people, and the cause is no longer alcohol but an unhealthy diet. (1,2)

According to estimates, even one in four Finnish adults has a fatty liver. Fatty liver cases caused by alcohol are only a fraction of this, as approx. 75% percent of fatty liver diagnoses are given due to diet. Fatty liver is very common in diabetics, but it is often caused by factors that are not so easy to influence (1).

In fatty liver, too much fat accumulates inside the liver cells, in the fat cells and in the abdominal cavity. This excess fat is caused by extensive metabolic disorders, the causes of which are diverse and individual. (1,2)

 

Causes of fatty liver

 

Fatty liver is mainly caused by unhealthy lifestyles. Heavy alcohol use and being overweight are the most significant factors, but it’s not always about that, but sometimes genes also predispose the liver to obesity. Very rarely, but sometimes, some medicines can cause fatty liver.

In addition to lifestyle, age and insulin resistance also affect fatty liver. Insulin resistance is a state of the body that contributes to the onset of various diseases, you can read more about it e.g. from here .

 

Symptoms of fatty liver

 

Fatty liver in itself does not cause any clear tangible or visible symptoms, but it contributes to various diseases such as diabetes and onset of hypertension. (1)

Fatty liver diagnosis at the doctor's office.

Fatty liver increases the risk of developing hypertension.

 

Diagnosis

 

Fatty liver is not associated with pain or other sensations, so it can be challenging to detect it before it’s too late. Although the clear indications of the possibility of fatty liver are usually heavy alcohol use and obesity, overweight or alcohol problems do not always occur, and the liver values may also be within the reference values despite the disease.

The diagnosis is confirmed by a blood test and an echocardiography of the liver.

 

Prevention and treatment of fatty liver

 

Healthy lifestyles are the basis of both the prevention and treatment of fatty liver.

There is no medical treatment directly available for fatty liver, but with a lifestyle overhaul, a fatty liver can usually be cured completely.

The most effective way to treat fatty liver is to reduce alcohol consumption and get rid of excess weight. It has been established that even a few percent weight loss can reduce the fat percentage of the liver by up to ten. Reducing alcohol, regular exercise and an optimal diet together is the most effective and fastest way to get rid of fatty liver, but investing in any of them is already a step in the better direction! (1)

You should add fruits, vegetables and berries to your diet instead of slow carbohydrates and use a wider range of different fat sources.

There are many perspectives on the choice of fats, but a general guideline could be to pay attention to versatility and quality. Many foods already contain a lot of fat, such as meat, eggs, avocado, nuts, etc. and there is always no need for additional fat (bread topping, frying fat, etc.) in the meal.

Sugar and hidden sugar should also be avoided in large quantities, especially when treating fatty liver. You should pay attention to the package leaflets, because even yogurts can contain huge amounts of sugar. More than half of regular white sugar contains fructose, which promotes fatty liver.

Fatty liver has long been considered a benign disease that can be completely cured, but if it is not treated in time, it can progress to inflammation, fibrosis or even liver cirrhosis. A scarred liver can no longer be healed, and in Finland the mortality from liver cirrhosis is at the top level in Europe.

 

The endocannabinoid system in the background of fatty liver

 

The endocannabinoid system that maintains the body’s balance is found in all mammals and it monitors all the processes going on in the body. Appetite and weight control have both been regulated by the endocannabinoid system for a long time. Behind these seemingly simple functions are numerous processes and events, which, roughly speaking, all functioning endocannabinoid Thanks to the CB1 receptor activated by 2-AG .

Liver cells have been shown to produce both known cannabinoids , anandamide and 2-AG, to be produced and the liver is self-sufficient in terms of them. According to animal experiments, 2-AG levels in the liver increase due to alcohol, and anadamide levels increase with fatty food. Both anandamide and 2-AG have been shown to have anti-scarring effects. (3,4,5)

Of the cannabinoid receptors, only CB1 is expressed in a healthy liver. In cases caused by both alcohol and fatty food, increased CB1 receptor levels have been noted, but the CB2 receptor appears in the liver only when the liver has cirrhosis. (5)

 

CBD oil and hemp leaf. For treating fatty liver.

CBD oil may prevent the development of fatty liver by affecting the accumulation of lipids in the tissues.

 

CBD oil for fatty liver

 

The use of the CBD oil the effect on fatty liver has been studied quite a bit as such, but CBD’s anti-inflammatory effects, as well as its antioxidant properties, are properties that may lead to some relief. As fatty liver is a completely curable disease, its primary and most important treatment is definitely reducing alcohol consumption and reducing body weight through diet and exercise, depending on which is the problem in the first place.

CBDhas been found to have an effect on preventing diet-induced liver damage by reducing the accumulation of lipids in tissues. CBD also reduces the activation of inflammation and the presence of inflammatory cytokines (6).

CBD also has antioxidant properties that have been shown to alleviate oxidative stress. Alcohol and high-fat food increase the production of reactive oxygen species and CBDThe antioxidant properties of (6)

 

Finally

Fatty liver is a very common disease that can be cured if it is detected early enough. Depending on the genes, it is very easy to take care of the health of the liver, because the basis of its well-being is mostly healthy lifestyles.

The endocannabinoid system has its own roles in the liver and also in the background of liver health and has been found to be completely self-sufficient in terms of endocannabinoid production. The use of CBD oil to support the treatment of fatty liver is still quite a gray area, but probably in the future, research will be focused on the utilization of cannabinoids due to their versatile therapeutic effects.

 

Attachments

 

  1. Mustajoki P.. 2021. Health Library Duodecim. Fatty liver. https://www.terveyskirjasto.fi/dlk00070. Referred on 11/14/2022.
  2. Mervaala E., Tarnanen K. and Yki-järvinen H.. 2020. Fatty liver disease (Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease). https://www.kaypahoito.fi/khp00132. Referred on 11/14/2022.
  3. Purohit V., Rapaka R. and Shurtleff D.. 2010. Role of Cannabinoids in the Development of Fatty Liver (Steatosis). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2844512/. Referred on 11/14/2022
  4. Alswat KD. 2010. The Role of Endocannabinoids System in Fatty Liver Disease and Therapeutic Potentials. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/?term=Alswat%20KA%5BAuthor%5D. Referred on 11/14/2022.
  5. Tam J., Liu J., Mukhopadhyay S., Cinar R., Godlewski G. and Kunos G.. 2011. Endocannabinoids in Liver Disease. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/?term=Jan %20J% 5BAuthor%5D. Referred on 11/14/2022.
  6. Jiang X., Gu Y., Huang Y., Zhou Y., Pang N., Luo J., Tang Z., Zhang Z., and Yang L.. 2021. Frontiers of pharmacology. CBD Alleviates Liver Injuries in Alcoholics With a High-Fat High-Cholesterol Diet Through Regulating the NLRP3 Inflammasome–Pyroptosis Pathway. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fphar.2021.724747/full. Referred on 11/14/2022.
ADHD and CBD

ADHD and CBD

ADHD is a neurological disorder that causes hyperactivity, especially among children. It becomes common rapidly, and the symptoms do not necessarily subside even in adulthood. In this article, we find out what ADHD is and whether CBD oil could be helpful in alleviating the symptoms.

 

What is ADHD?

 

ADHD is short for attention deficit disorder. Today, almost every tenth child suffers from it. In adults, ADHD occurs in just under five percent, being more common in men and boys compared to the female population. Childhood ADHD sometimes calms down by adulthood, but approx. 70% have some level of symptoms throughout life. (1)

The background of ADHD is a disturbance in the development of the neural networks that regulate the brain’s attention and alertness. It is a partly hereditary syndrome, the origin of which is affected by certain genes, but its onset is not dependent on them (1). It has also been noticed that there is some degree of disturbance in dopamine production.

Although diet is hardly the sole cause of the onset of ADHD, deficiencies of certain nutrients have been observed in diagnosed children. Zinc, iron, magnesium and vitamin B6 deficiencies and an imbalance in omega fatty acids are typical. (2,3)

The Huminiqum product is a well-researched, high-quality and well-absorbed supplement that, in addition to its versatile vitamin content, contains fulvic and humic acids. You can familiarize yourself with the product and more detailed nutrient content better from here .

 

Symptoms of ADHD

 

The symptoms of ADHD are related to attention, concentration and vivacity. Some find it difficult to focus on lessons, storybooks or games, others do not learn things such as reading, and others have challenges related to an impulsive way of reacting to things. The symptoms can be really strong and really make life difficult for the sufferer. Often there are few of these symptoms in each area and sometimes only some of them occur. The spectrum of symptoms is wide and each ADHD patient is an individual entity. (1)

The child’s challenges often appear in kindergarten or at the latest in school, where one should remain quietly during the lesson, listen to instructions and still act according to them. Non-existent ability to concentrate can be seen in school grades and in the behavior of a restless troublemaker in lessons.

In adults, ADHD manifests as inner restlessness, perhaps a challenge in memory, concentration and planning, not so much as hyperactivity and behavioral disorders as in children. Maarit Virta and Anita Salakari have written a survival guide for adults with ADHD, which according to readers is a useful guide for adults suffering from ADHD symptoms!

 

Side effects

 

In addition to the typical symptoms of ADHD, both adults and children have side symptoms, e.g. insomnia, anxiety and challenges in social relationships. Problematic substance use is typical for adults and young adults.

with CBD oil has researched positive effects on the most common side symptoms of ADHD. CBD’s effect on sleep challenges can read here. You can read about anxiety, depression and the effect of CBD oil on them from here. There is an article on addictions and CBD from here .

 

Making a diagnosis of ADHD with the help of tests and examinations.

ADHD diagnosis is made with the help of various tests and examinations for both adults and children.

 

ADHD test, examination and diagnosis

 

In children, ADHD studies usually start based on the observations of parents or persons involved in education, such as teachers. Adults can take an indicative ADHD test online, and apply to a doctor’s office for further examinations based on the results and symptoms. You can find an ADHD test on the Internet from here (4).

Getting a diagnosis is a lengthy process, which ensures that there are enough symptoms and that they correspond to a large enough extent to the diverse symptom picture of ADHD. Since ADHD does not show up in blood tests or any other physical measure, making a diagnosis is based on various behavioral tests, tasks and conversations with a health history in mind. (1)

 

ADHD treatment and medications

 

According to Valvira, children’s ADHD is always treated non-medically first, and adults are also tried to be helped outside of medicine. The drugs used to treat ADHD are really strong and often cause strong side effects, and therefore they are mainly used to control the most difficult symptoms. (5) ADHD cannot be cured by drugs, but natural treatments such as diet, CBD oil and occupational therapy together, or without drugs, can get the symptoms well under control.

ADHD is therefore also treated with diet. In the case of ADHD, functional nutritional therapy focuses on the well-being of the intestines and digestion and ensuring that the body gets all the fatty and amino acids and nutrients it needs. A healthy, vigorous body is able to heal even difficult diseases by itself, and therefore supporting general well-being for all diseases and syndromes is of primary importance!

 

The endocannabinoid system and ADHD

 

The body of all mammals is balanced by an almost identical system. The endocannabinoid system is an ingenious system that influences the background of all body functions. It controls and monitors individual events with the help of endogenous cannabinoids, i.e. endocannabinoids. These endocannabinoids, as well as exocannabinoids from outside the body, respond to different receptors in the body. This system has its own receptors, the most studied of which are CB1 and CB2, but they also respond to other receptors in the body.

The endocannabinoid system closely interacts with dopamine production, which is one factor behind ADHD (6). Dopamine affects e.g. to the reward system and the feeling of motivation, and the challenges in experiencing these feelings significantly decrease a person’s willingness to do tasks, learn new things, etc., which usually results in feelings of success and pleasure.

The endocannabinoid system also plays a significant role in stress reactions, nervous system function , learning and memory.

 

Endocannabinoids

 

Endocannabinoids are produced in the body as needed and are everywhere in the body. Endocannabinoids are special in that they can be too little in one part of the body and too much in another. In the case of ADHD, the anandamide concentration in the blood is high compared to a healthy person, but in the brain, where dopamine production takes place, there is too little anandamide (6).

Anandamide is another of the most well-known endocannabinoids and one of its functions is to release dopamine and enhance its production. The underlying cause of the dysfunction of the dopamine system is thought to be too low anandamide concentration in the brain. Certain phytocannabinoids obtained from plants such as CBD increase the production of anandamide and prevent their breakdown.

A clinical dysfunction of the endocannabinoid system, which is thought to be at the root of all diseases, can be a system disorder just like this, where the body’s internal cannabinoid concentrations are out of balance.

 

Receptors

 

CB receptors have been found in every corner of the body, but they have their own specific areas of action. The CB1 receptor is mainly found in the brain and nervous system, and thus it is also largely involved in the functions underlying ADHD.

 

Does CBD help those diagnosed with ADHD?

 

There are still many opinions on the matter without consensus. It seems that there are effects associated with cannabinoids that can make symptoms worse for some. On the other hand, CBD oil soothes and is especially effective in controlling side symptoms.

Hemp has a huge number of different active substances. More than 120 different types of cannabinoids are known, and there are more than 450 active compounds in total. The effect of hemp is based on synergy, i.e. when all the effective active ingredients of hemp are used, the benefit is more complete than using only an isolate, i.e. using one or a few isolated cannabinoids. More about joint effects, i.e. the so-called The Entourage effect can read here .

In the case of ADHD, it has been noticed that the positive effect of CBD oil on the symptoms is a result of the action of several cannabinoids. Hemp terpenes have also been found to have an effect on alleviating ADHD symptoms. CBD (cannabidiol), CBN (cannabinol) and CBG (cannabigerol) affect the production of dopamine and CBD in turn helps the production of serotonin. (6,7)

Part of CBD oil’s effectiveness in treating ADHD is related to balancing the nervous system. The sympathetic nervous system is responsible for e.g. from the emergence of a stress reaction, while the parasympathetic nervous system restores the body to balance after a stress reaction. CBD balances these two nervous systems, reducing hyperactivity and sympathetic overstimulation by calming and alleviating impulsivity.

According to user experiences, CBD oil is used with good results to manage the side symptoms of ADHD, such as insomnia, substance addictions and depression.

Peanuts, which contain Biochanin A, which can help with ADHD symptoms.

Disturbances in dopamine production have been observed in ADHD patients. Getting Biochanin A flavone from food can optimize dopamine production and help with ADHD symptoms. The flavone in question is found especially in peanuts, chickpeas and soybeans.

 

Other health balancing treatment

 

Since ADHD is a neurological challenge, its symptoms can and should be alleviated with ordinary health-supporting means. Both adults and parents of ADHD children have noticed that minimizing screen time alleviates symptoms. Computer games and violent programs seem to increase problematic behavior, while exercise, staying in the forest and a good long night’s sleep improve concentration and calm a restless mind.

The diet takes care of the condition of the intestines and digestion and improves nutrient levels in the body so that the body can function as optimally as possible. Biochan’s isoflavone A is a natural FAAH inhibitor, which in turn is a molecule that breaks down the endocannabinoid anandamide. Adding this flavone to the diet may improve dopamine production by preventing the breakdown of anandamide. Biochanin A is especially found in peanuts, chickpeas, red clover and alfalfa sprouts (8).

At home, you should get rid of all harmful chemicals such as laundry detergents, detergents and cosmetics and replace them with natural, non-toxic alternatives. The substances in chemicals are harmful to both people and the environment, and their negative effects on health have been studied for a long time.

 

In summary

 

ADHD is a growing syndrome for which there is currently no cure. The symptoms continue well into adulthood, and when drug treatment is the last resort, or at least that’s what is recommended, along with drug treatment, usual health-supporting measures such as diet, outdoor activities and minimizing screen time have been recommended. More research is still needed on the use of CBD oil for ADHD symptoms, but according to the current information, CBD oil can be effective in treating at least some of the underlying causes of ADHD, such as enhancing dopamine production and balancing the nervous system.

 

Sources

 

  1. Huttunen M. and Socada L.. 2019. Duodecim health library. ADHD (activity and attention deficit disorder). https://www.terveyskirjasto.fi/dlk00353. Referred on 9/8/2022.
  2. Riikka Torniainen and Noora Holopainen. 2014. Jam. Thesis. Consideration of nutrition in the occupational therapy of children with ADHD symptoms. https://www.theseus.fi/bitstream/handle/10024/79515/Holopainen_Noora%20Torniainen_Riina.pdf;jsessionid=2F2CB6A7E31F41925E6E9A6199C34623?sequence=1. Referred on 9/8/2022
  3. https://suomenravintoterapia.fi/adhdn-paras-vaihtoehtoinen-hoito-ravitsemus/. Referred on 9/8/2022
  4. Klaus Karkia. ADHD test. http://karkia.me/adhd/. Referred on 9/8/2022
  5. Valvira. Health care. ADHD and drug prescribing. https://www.valvira.fi/terveydenhuolto/hyva-ammatinharjoittaminen/laakehoidon-erityistilanteita/adhd-ja-laakkeiden-maaraaminen. Referred on 9/8/2022
  6. Dawson D. and Persad C.. Targeting the Endocannabinoid System in the Treatment of ADHD. https://scivisionpub.com/pdfs/targeting-the-endocannabinoid-system-in-the-treatment-of-adhd-1604.pdf. Referred on 9/8/2022
  7. Hergenrather JY, Aviram J., Vyotski Y., Campisi-pinto S., Lewitus GM and Meiri D.. 2020. Rambam Maimonides Medical Journal. Cannabinoid and Terpenoid Doses are Associated with Adult ADHD Status of Medical Cannabis Patients. https://www.rmmj.org.il/userimages/1036/1/PublishFiles/1038Article.pdf. Referred on 9/8/2022
  8. Manach C. 2018. FoodComex. Biochanin A (PC001057). https://foodcomex.org/foodcomex_compounds/PC001057. Referred on 28/08/2022
Autism and CBD

Autism and CBD

Autism and the autism spectrum are associated with a number of different neurological disorders, which usually complicate the life of the sufferer. The spectrum of autism includes various factors affecting the ability to function, which can vary individually with large differences. Even perfectly healthy people are very different in many ways, and the same applies to autistic people. Everyone has their own individual traits and ways of experiencing the world.

Some of those diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder are able to live independently, while some need help to survive in everyday life throughout their lives. An autistic person’s need for help can vary, e.g. depending on life situation, age and support measures. (1)

The word spectrum refers to the variation and intensity of symptoms arising from disorders. Autism spectrum disorder is recognized much more often in men than in women. Out of the entire population in Finland, less than one percent (0.7%) of the population suffers from autism. It is not yet known exactly what causes the differences in prevalence, but it is thought to be related to biological differences between the sexes. (2)

 

Traits of autism

 

Autism affects a person’s way of experiencing and sensing the environment. Most of the time, the interaction and communication of an autistic person differs from “normal”, so to speak.

Common features for autistics are e.g. difficulties in controlling one’s own activities, difficulties in social situations (communication), a different way of interpreting and sensing situations, and sensitivity to nervous system overload and stress. However, the features vary from case to case. (1)

Autism features also include areas that can manifest as exceptional talent, such as the ability to pay attention to details and solve even difficult puzzles. In addition to them, autistic people can have excellent concentration and a clear understanding of right and wrong. (1)

 

The characteristics of the spectrum of mild autism in a child can be determined with the help of research.

Common features for autistic people are difficulties in controlling their own activities, communication difficulties, and sensitivity to nervous system overload and stress.

 

Autism spectrum disorders

 

Autism spectrum disorders (Autism Spectrum Disorders, i.e. ASD) and related brain development disorders become apparent at an early stage. The characteristics and challenges in functioning of autistic people can vary significantly.

List of autism spectrum disorders:

  • Autism
  • Asperger syndrome
  • Pervasive developmental disorder (atypical autism)
  • Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Specified (PDD-NOS)
  • Rett syndrome
  • Disintegrative developmental disorder (Heller’s disease)

 

There is not only one clear cause behind the disorders, but several biological factors influence it. Although the exact causes have not yet been identified, in any case, hereditary factors influence the prevalence of the disorder. According to current data, 65-90 percent of autism spectrum disorders are inherited. (2)

In the entire population, the autism spectrum is observed in about 1 percent of people. In developed countries, the number is higher (1.5%) and has almost doubled in 10 years. (3)

 

Asperger syndrome

 

Autism-related diagnoses have become more specific. Once thought of as a rare childhood disorder, Asperger’s syndrome is now classified as a lifelong illness. The syndrome in question was named after the Austrian pediatrician Hans Asperger and was introduced in Finland in the 1990s.

Asperger’s syndrome and autism are now classified as part of the autism spectrum disorder and those terms have been removed from the classification (ICD-11 and DSM-5). The autism spectrum is defined on a case-by-case basis from mild to severe. (3)

 

Symptoms of Autism

 

Autism-related symptoms usually appear already during early childhood, within the first three years of age. Sometimes the symptoms are only noticed in preschool or later. An autistic child usually has difficulty understanding verbal and non-verbal communication. Often, maintaining eye contact has also proven to be challenging. (2)

The symptoms related to autism are therefore especially manifested in social situations and interactions with others. The disorder may include certain repetitive behaviors and special interests that an autistic person easily becomes immersed in. Each person suffering from autism spectrum disorders has their own characteristics, and some may live very independently, while others may have a great need for help with everyday tasks. (2)

 

The most common symptoms related to autism spectrum disorder

 

  • Difficulty understanding the feelings and thinking of others
  • The challenges of starting and maintaining a conversation
  • The difficulty of working in a group
  • Difficulty accepting new situations and changes
  • Avoiding eye contact
  • Little use of sign language and facial expressions
  • Difficulty forming lasting friendships. (4)

 

It is also possible that the symptoms are not noticed until later in life, when the pressures of working life or postgraduate studies increase. Potential disorders should also be diagnosed by adults, so that work, study and the necessary measures related to rehabilitation can be planned in the necessary way and the risk of being marginalized can be prevented. (3)

 

Autism is diagnosed and tested using various tests for both children and adults.

Getting a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder is a multi-step process that is done together with the help of an expert doctor. Various tests, examinations and interviews are needed for diagnosis.

 

Autism test

 

Although the symptoms of autism spectrum disorder usually become apparent at an early stage, no specific age limit has been set for its definition. It is possible to make the diagnosis even for an adult, and for that there are tests that support the definition of autism. (5)

If you suspect an autism spectrum disorder in yourself or someone close to you, the general recommendation is to seek a doctor’s consultation and prepare for the appointment by thinking about and writing down all the observed features classified as autism spectrum that occur in everyday life. The doctor has the option of separately requesting an appointment with a neuropsychologist, where the matter can be examined in more detail with the help of various examinations. (5)

Getting an official diagnosis is a multi-step process and is usually done with the help of a doctor familiar with the subject through various examinations and interviews. In addition, the diagnosis often also requires interviewing close people, seeing a psychologist and therapist. In the studies, special attention is paid to functional ability, communication, interaction skills and interests throughout life. School certificates, birth records and other documents related to growth and development should be included to make the process easier, as comprehensive examinations to make a diagnosis often require a lot of time. (5)

 

Screening

 

There are various tests and screening tools to support the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder. Filling out the form can make the doctor’s work easier and speed up the diagnosis.

In the links below, you can find screening forms to support the definition of autism in children and adults.


Digital CHAT evaluation form (in Finnish)

 

Digital M-CHAT-R extended evaluation form , (in Finnish)

 

The AQ-10 screening form intended for adults may be helpful at the doctor’s office when assessing the need for additional tests to make a possible diagnosis in an adult who does not have major learning difficulties.

AQ-10 evaluation form for identifying the autism spectrum in adults

 

The ASSQ screening form, designed for parents of children, can clarify and be helpful in the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders.

ASSQ assessment form for parents

 

The GQ-ASC screening form below is designed to identify autism-related behaviors and abilities in cis and trans women.

GQ-ASC assessment form (cis and trans women)

 

An autistic child is playing on the floor. A person with an autism spectrum disorder can get help from CBD oil.

An autistic child easily drifts into playing only his own games. In the behavior of an autistic child, deficiencies are also often observed in relation to language development and making eye contact.

 

An autistic child

 

Some autistic children manage well independently, while others may need daily support. At worst, an autistic child can also significantly challenge the lives of the child’s loved ones. (1)

In addition to genetics, there are also physiological factors involved in the manifestation of autism. Upbringing has not been found to have a connection with the prevalence of autism. (1)

Autism may appear in a child very early, before the age of 1 year. In general, deficiencies are noticed in the behavior of autistic children, e.g. in eye contact, language development and the way they play with other children. The child may also have a different way of answering questions and expressing emotions. An autistic child may get irritated easily and drift off to play only his own games. The importance of familiar and repeated routines is emphasized in an autistic child. (6)

 

Autism treatment

 

Autism spectrum disorders are congenital, and no curative treatment has yet been invented.

In the revised disease classification, autism is not currently separated into separate diagnoses and e.g. Asperger’s syndrome, a mild form of autism, is now considered part of the autism spectrum disorder.

Although there is no known cure for autism spectrum disorders, its symptoms can be alleviated and individual development can be supported with, for example, occupational therapy and speech therapy. In addition, it is important for an autistic child and his parents to accept the prevailing situation and learn to live with the personality traits that are associated with it. (7)

If the symptoms significantly challenge everyday life, it is worth discussing the matter together with an expert neuropsychologist, with whom the treatment of the situation and the need for different forms of support can be planned in an appropriate way. Usually, support and rehabilitation takes place in cooperation with kindergarten, healthcare or school. (7)

The control of one’s own actions and the development of the brain continue until at least the age of 25. The symptoms related to the autism spectrum may decrease after reaching adulthood, if the child receives the necessary support along the way and participates in a rehabilitation program. In some cases, with the help of successful rehabilitation and support, the symptoms can decrease so much that the previous diagnosis no longer matches the picture of the symptoms. (7)

 

Autism spectrum treatment with CBD

 

Symptoms of the autism spectrum are currently also treated with CBD products such as CBD oil and CBD capsules. This alternative and natural form of treatment has spread worldwide in popularity, when several doctors and parents of autistic children have publicly shared their positive experiences and results related to autism treatment.

Some studies have shown that cannabinoid products reduced the number and/or intensity of symptoms associated with the autism spectrum, including hyperactivity, self-harm, sleep disturbances , feelings of anger, anxiety , irritability, restlessness , psychomotor agitation, aggression, and depression .. In addition, they observed improvement in cognition, sensory sensitivity, attention, social interaction and language. The most common side effects were sleep disturbances, restlessness, nervousness and changes in appetite. (8)

Especially for minors, the safety of using CBD should always be evaluated on a case-by-case basis together with an expert doctor.

CBD is hardly a panacea that cures the disorder completely, but for many it seems to be a significant help in everyday functioning and in alleviating the symptoms. Read more in the next paragraph about how the endocannabinoid system and autism are connected.

 

The role of the endocannabinoid system in autism

 

The vital functions of almost every animal are controlled and balanced by an internal cannabinoid system. It is absent only in insects and protozoa. Complicated endocannabinoid system consists of a network of receptors covering the entire body, which are affected by neurotransmitters. It is known to influence and regulate e.g. brain, kidney, liver and immune system function. (9)

Based on new evidence, people with autism spectrum disorder have anandamide the amount found to be lower than in a healthy control group. Anandamide is an endocannabinoid, also known as the happiness molecule, or internal cannabinoid, and based on this research result, the internal cannabinoid system and the imbalance of cannabinoids can have an effect on the manifestation of the disorder. (10)

Autism-related disorder has also been linked to the amount of oxytocin in the body. Oxytocin, also known as the love hormone, is a neuropeptide consisting of amino acids that is expressed in mammals and acts as a messenger and hormone. Oxytocin is produced in the brain’s hypothalamus, from where it passes through the pituitary gland into the bloodstream. Today it is known that oxytocin plays a significant role in e.g. in the formation and maintenance of the attachment relationship between the child and its parents. In addition to that, oxytocin is also associated with social, emotional, cognitive functions. Since the production of oxytin is also regulated by the internal cannabinoid system, you can from CBD and some others of cannabinoids be useful in connection with its normal production. (11)

Researchers think that the interaction between anandamide and oxytocin and the correction of their deficiency states related to autism could provide relief in treating the symptoms (11).

The internal cannabinoid system also seems to play an important role in relation to social interaction skills and emotions, which CBD and certain cannabinoids can activate. By affecting the receptors of this body system, it may also have an effect on alleviating the symptoms of autism.

 

THC and autism

 

Although research is still ongoing, there are indications that THC-cannabinoid may reduce internal anandamide concentrations in the body. The concentrations of anandamide are already low in people with autism, so it should be avoided the continuous use of THC. Anxiety is also a common symptom associated with autism, and THC and THCV may make it worse for some. However, the experiments were done on rats and with strong THC-containing cannabis products, so how it affects humans is not yet fully understood.

Generally, in CBD oils, the traces of THC are minimal enough to be detrimental to anandamide levels. Understanding the issue is also complicated by the fact that, according to studies, full-spectrum CBD products are prone to side effects (see entourage effect) are therefore more effective for many diseases and imbalances in the body than isolated cannabinoids (isolates). Full spectrum means that the final product also contains THC, although often only in very small amounts.

If you are considering CBD products for the treatment of an autism spectrum disorder and want products containing as little THC as possible, you should consider CBD products activated by heating, because their THC concentrations are usually significantly lower. See more about how heating works decarboxylation affects the final product.

Sources

 

  1. Autism Association. 2022. Basic information about autism. https://autismiliitto.fi/autismi/perustietoa-autismista/. Referred on 12/09/2022
  2. Health house. Autism and autism spectrum disorders. https://www.terveystalo.com/fi/tietopaketit/autimi-ja-autismikirjon-hairiot/#Mit %c3% a4 %20on% 20autismin%20kirjo . Referred on 12/09/2022
  3. Hanna Raaska & Raija Vanhala. 2020. Medical journal. Why and how do the diagnostic criteria for autism change? https://www.laakarilehti.fi/tieteessa/katsausartikkeli/miksi-ja-miten-autismin-diagnostiset-kritierit-muuutuvatt/?public=7fcf41d96a001eee7da91094299e5b86 . Referred on 08/12/2022
  4. Mielenterveystalo.fi. Autism spectrum disorders (ASD). https://www.mielenterveystalo.fi/lapset/ammattilaisille/hairiot/autismikirjon_hairiot/Pages/autisimikirjon_hairiot_ASD.aspx. Referred on 13/09/2022
  5. Autism Association. 2022. Diagnosing the autism spectrum. https://autismiliitto.fi/autismi/diagnosointi/. Referred on 13/09/2022
  6. Autism Association. 2022. Autism in different stages of life. https://autismiliitto.fi/autismi/autismikirjo-eri-elamanvaiheissa/. Referred on 09/04/2022.
  7. Pekka Räisänen & Ulla Boshkov. Autism in a child. https://www.mehilainen.fi/lasten-mehilainen/autismi-ja-autismikirjo. Referred on 13/09/2022
  8. Estácio Amaro da Silva Jr. and others 2022. Trends Psychiatry Psychother. Cannabis and cannabinoid use in Autism Spectrum disorder: a systematic review. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34043900/. Referred on 15/09/2022
  9. Ethan Russo. 2015. Phytecs. Introduction to the Endocannabinoid System . https://www.phytecs.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Russo-Introduction-to-the-Endocannabinoid-System-corr-January-2015.pdf . Referred on 14.09.2022
  10. Debra S. Karhson et al. 2018. Molecular Autism. Plasma anandamide concentrations are lower in children with autism spectrum disorder.https://molecularautism.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13229-018-0203-y. Referred on 15/09/2022
  11. Don Wei et al. 2015. Pnas. Endocannabinoid signaling mediates oxytocin-driven social reward. https://www.pnas.org/doi/full/10.1073/pnas.1509795112 . Referred on 15/09/2022
0
    0
    Your Shopping Cart
    Cart is empty.Back to the shop