It’s October and it’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Everyone wears pink to show support, but what can we do to directly help those who suffer with, or who have suffered from, breast cancer? With a mother who is a breast cancer survivor, this topic is of particular interest to me and I hope you can share this information with those who may benefit.
One intervention that is very promising for those with all forms of cancer is CBD, or Cannabidiol. It is derived from Industrial Hemp and it’s one of 113 cannabinoids (plant based chemical compounds that influence our neurological system) derived from the plant. The great thing about CBD is that does not produce any psychoactive effect like its sister cannabinoid, THC. We usually associate THC with marijuana and this is the active ingredient that gets you ‘high’. Although the THC has great effects on the CB1 receptor (this receptor primarily resides in the brain, central nervous system, and your organs), it does have side effects along with about a 9% addiction rate. This is not usually desirable for most people.
On the other hand, CBD does not have any addictive components and it has no true side effects. It does not hit the CB1 receptor directly but rather works to reduce two ‘nasty’ enzymes that our body produces, called FAAH and MAGL. These enzymes eat away at two essential endocannabinoids, called Anandamide (works with the CB1 receptor) and 2-AG (works with the CB2 receptor). Unlike cannabinoids, which come from plants, endocannabinoids are produced by our body and work like neurotransmitters.
CBD degrades the FAAH and MAGL enzymes, and by doing so, Anandamide and 2-AG successfully interact with the CB1 and CB2 receptors (CB2 receptors are mostly found in the immune system and they modulate pain and inflammation). This is a self-regulating system and this is why there is no psychoactive effect. In addition, CBD does not convert to THC. We get amazing benefits from CBD without side effects and also without the deleterious effects from THC.
All this information is great, but how does CBD play in directly for those with breast cancer, which is the topic of this blog? Well, a great study by Almed Sultan et al, titled ‘Novel Mechanism of Cannabidiol-induced Apoptosis in Breast Cancer Cell Lines‘, published in the journal The Breast, June 2018, addresses this connection.
Their study references the antineoplastic effect of CBD along with its anti-tumor effects. They looked at two different cancer cell lines (ER-positive, well differentiated, T-47D and the triple negative, poor differentiated, MDA -MB-231 cells).
With both of these cell lines, CBD was found to inhibit cancer cell survival and induce cancer cell death. They looked at this a few different ways. This information is very important as it appears with at least a couple of defined breast cancer cell lines that CBD can be a huge help with treatment of the condition.
The study does not exclude CBD’s potential help with other cell lines or other cancers, and it follows the line of research that is starting to clearly demonstrate that CBD is a viable option to help those with many forms of cancer. In this case, it helps people with breast cancer. As is the case with any cancer diagnosis, please discuss this or any other intervention with the attending physician. Please share this blog with him/her, if necessary.
Thank you for living the NN lifestyle and again, we hope this information can help you or someone you care about.