Hemp Oil Benefits For Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic and progressive inflammatory disease of the central nervous system (CNS), which typically results in disseminated lesions within the brain and spinal cord. 

Multiple Sclerosis

In the course of the disease, there is a synthesis of antibodies directed against myelin sheath proteins that are elements of nerve fibers, and the increased synthesis of proinflammatory cytokines, including interferon-gamma or TNF-alpha. Resulting in the damage of cell membranes within the myelin sheaths and eventually they disappearance.

Until today, the underlying cause of the disease has not been established, although its occurrence may be the result of a joint interaction of many genetic and environmental risk factors.

Cause of Multiple Sclerosis

Since the middle of the previous century, many studies have attempted to link the risk of MS with eating habits. Evidence suggests that the increased consumption of saturated fatty acids increases the risk of multiple sclerosis in predisposed individuals, and in patients already suffering from MS, their dietary supply worsens the severity of EDSS (expanded disability status scale).

Evening Primrose Oil with Hemp Seed Oil

There is evidence that omega-3-polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω3-PUFA) can inhibit IFN-gamma production in patients suffering from multiple sclerosis, while cannabis seed oil and evening primrose oil contain omega-3 fatty acids.

According to Yong et al., The combination of these oils in daily supplementation could have a potential effect on reducing the level of proinflammatory cytokines.

The presence of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) in evening primrose oil can relieve various chronic diseases, which is used to support the treatment of multiple sclerosis in some countries.

Hemp Oil Benefits For Multiple Sclerosis

Hemp seeds: (polyunsaturated fatty acids, tocopherols, terpenes, and phytosterols)

It is worth mentioning that in seed oil of hemp seeds, more than 80% of polyunsaturated fatty acids content is found, and the ratio of omega ω6 / ω3 acids is 2- 3: 1, which is considered optimal for human health.

Cannabis seed oil also contains from 80 to 110 mg / 100 g of tocopherols (α-, β-, δ-, γ-tocopherol) with γ-tocopherol as the main compound (85%).

Tocopherols, are strong antioxidants, that protect polyunsaturated fatty acids from peroxidation (oxidation). In addition, hemp seed oil contains phytosterols and terpenes, which not only show strong antioxidant properties to scavenge free radicals but can also affect specific signaling pathways for regulating inflammatory reactions.

Membrane fluidity

Deficiency of unsaturated fatty acids may affect the fluidity of the cell membrane. For example, the surrounding cellular membranes of neurons, i.e. nerve cells.

In general, the fluidity of the cell membrane depends on its components. For example, increasing the content of unsaturated fatty acids or lowering the level of membrane cholesterol will increase its fluidity. In turn, maintaining an adequate level of membrane fluidity is necessary for the optimal functioning of the cell.

What are the risk factors for multiple sclerosis?

Thus, a shortage of dietary PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acids) may be a risk factor in multiple sclerosis. Research studies have shown reduced levels of both omega ω3 and ω6 acids in the red cell membrane of the red blood cells, plasma and fat tissue of patients diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

In order to check the actual effect of polyunsaturated fatty acids in patients with multiple sclerosis, an experiment was carried out to determine the changes in fatty acid composition in the red blood cell membranes in MS patients.

Possible changes in EDSS progression and levels of proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines were examined at the beginning of the study and after 6 months of oil therapy.

Research study on MS patients

100 people suffering from multiple sclerosis were divided into three groups:

Group A:

Patients received 18-21 g / day (6-7 g, three times daily) of cannabis seed oil and evening primrose oil (in a ratio of 9: 1) with a proper diet.

Group B:

Participants of the study were given 18-21 g / day (6-7 g, three times daily) of olive oil

Group C:

Patients received 18-21 g / day (6-7 g, three times daily) of cannabis seed oil and evening primrose oil (9: 1 ratio).

The result of the study

The results of the study showed that patients from groups A and C, there was an increase in unsaturated fatty acids in the cell membranes of red blood cells, while in group B patients, there was a decrease in unsaturated fatty acids and a simultaneous increase in the level of saturated acids in erythrocyte cell membranes.

Expanded disability status scale improved in groups A and C

What’s more, patients in groups A and C had a significant improvement in EDSS scores, while patients in group B had a reverse trend.

The research also shows that in group A and C there was a tendency to decrease the level of pro-inflammatory cytokine IFN-γ, while the concentration of anti-inflammatory IL-4 increased significantly after 6 months. Again in group B, there were opposite results.

Conclusion

The results of the study have shown that the supply of unsaturated fatty acids in an appropriate ratio may increase the risk of having multiple sclerosis.

Enriching the diet with cannabis oil and evening primrose oil not only allows to increase the level of unsaturated fatty acids but also modulates the concentration of proinflammatory cytokines. Which is one of the factors affecting the exacerbation of multiple sclerosis. Hence, the benefits of hemp oil for multiple sclerosis.

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