Is Cannabis Less Effective During Your Period?

Photo Credit: MassRoots

Photo Credit: MassRoots

Finding the precise dosing regimen that works for your symptoms is key in understanding medical marijuana relief. To find the most effective therapy, there are many factors that come into play for symptom relief, including the amount of cannabis used, the concentration of certain cannabinoids, the frequency of use, and the method of administration. For women, however, there could be another factor to take into account: the time of the month.

A new study from Washington State University found THC is most effective when their estrogen levels peak during their monthly cycles. Female rats are 30% more susceptible to pain relief from cannabis than their male counterparts at the same time. Estrogen breaks down THC into a more potent chemical, making is so that more estrogen coincides with more potent effects of THC. Unfortunately, at a time when women may need cannabis most to relieve cramps, back pain, and headaches during their periods, their estrogen levels are at their lowest. This makes it harder for the body to break down THC and therefore renders cannabis less effective during this time. 

Low levels of estrogen also make CBD less effective. CBD and estrogen work together to block Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase (FAAH) from breaking down our naturally produced cannabinoids Anandamide. Anandamide helps lower levels of anxiety and depression. When estrogen levels are low, however, CBD has to do twice the work in fighting FAAH, making is so that anandamide is more susceptible to breaking down. 

This information has been provided by MassRoots and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.