The liver is the largest internal organ. It is also deemed the largest gland due to its production of juices to aid digestion and other body functions. The liver is a large promoter of body homeostasis. Liver disease, also called hepatic disease, is an umbrella term for a myriad of conditions that cause the malfunction of the liver. This could be anything from hepatitis to fibrosis to cancer and the worst, which is liver cancer. For a decrease in liver function to be experienced, the organ has to have been around 75% affected. This means that by the time things start looking all yellow, three quarters of the liver will have been afflicted. It is therefore imperative that one move quickly to remedy the situation.
Threat of Regeneration
Another factor to worry about is regeneration. The liver is very talented at healing itself and regenerating. This is why you can donate a small piece of your liver and live, because it will regenerate into full size within no time. If there are malformed or gross cells in there, the liver will regenerate those. With time, the liver will be all malformed cells.
Why Do You Need the Blob of Red Anyway?
To understand exactly how dire the situation is, you must first understand the functions of the liver. It processes, delivers, and stores glucose for future use. The liver also cleans and detoxifies the blood. Through the liver, vital nutrients are passed from the digestive tract into the blood circulation system. Therefore, if hurt these processes would be interrupted thus the feelings of fatigue and weakness.
Work through the Endocannabinoid System
In a study at the Hebrew University Medical School, it was proven that the endocannabinoid system was deeply involved in important aspects of both acute and chronic liver disease. This refreshed hope that maybe liver disease can be addressed through the receptors. In 2011 another study published in Cell Death and Disease, mice were administered with varying cocktails of cannabinoids for 8 months. The mice had been injected with a lethal concoction meant to induce production hepatic stellate cells. CBD was found to be most effective. Fibrosis is the first stage of liver scarring. At this stage, the hepatic stellate cells activate. CBD brought on cell suicide of the HSC.
General consensus has it that the CB2 receptor activation is beneficial to liver health. Involvement of said receptor protects the liver from ischemia reperfusion through a series of oxidative and nitrative processes. Ischemia is a period of oxygen deficiency in tissue. Reperfusion causes reoxygenation injury thus tissue damage.
How Does Liver Disease Happen?
There are some sure ways in which liver disease can develop. The first is hepatitis, which is basically inflammation. The other is cholestasis, which is partial or complete obstruction of bile production. Bile is integral in digestion especially of fats. The other is steatosis, which is irregular deposit of fats in the liver leading to a fatty liver. Liver disease can also be caused when the blood flow into the liver is compromised or when the organ is infiltrated by abnormal cells. These are the underlying reasons for cirrhosis, liver cancer and a host of other liver diseases. It is best to address them instead of looking at the individual diseases.
There are at least one million deaths from hepatitis every year all over the world. The treatment costs are immense not to mention the losses due absenteeism. This can limit itself or go further and develop into fibrosis and eventually cirrhosis. It is brought on by the hepatitis virus, toxic substances like alcohol and autoimmune diseases. There are several types of hepatitis with B and C being the most dangerous and having the most potential to escalate. Patients are faced with a high risk of drug resistance in addition to the medication being incredibly expensive. Thus, the need for a natural and affordable approach to therapy.
Inflammation is an attempt by the body to heal itself. The inflammatory reaction to injury on the organ is what brings about the condition. It is initiated by the enzyme COX-2. CBD impedes the efforts of the enzyme effectively delaying transmission to start an inflammatory response.
Due to the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD, the liver lives to fight and function another day. The tissue is preserved thus extending durability. CBD has potential to be alone therapy tool against hepatitis.
This condition can be alcoholic or non-alcoholic. The body sends fat into the liver thus making it swell and bringing with it a host of complications including cirrhosis. In fact, 20% of patients with non-alcoholic steatosis develop cirrhosis. Risk factors are obesity, high blood sugar, and inability respond to insulin. Other metabolic syndromes can also bring it on.
In 2013, a study revealed that modulation of the endocannabinoid system could be an avenue for treatment of metabolic syndrome and consequently steatosis. In 2015, a study published in the Journal of Hepatology about research into effect of cannabis on lipid level revealed a lot. The study put an emphasis on hepatosteatosis models. It was found that there was a significant reduction of accumulated lipids in the models. Since the condition also worsens the metabolic syndrome and causes development of insulin resistance, the aim was to find a way out that too. It was found that the cannabis increased sensitivity to insulin.
In 2017, the University of Massachusetts Medical School conducted a large study with 5.8 Million subjects. The criterion was vast with the only common denominator being cannabis use among patients with liver problems. It was found that cannabis users were less likely to develop steatosis or have it escalate.
If the patient is encountering a weight problem, that is usually the first point of attack for a treatment regimen. See, being overweight only increases the amount of fat the body has to synthesize. A body that is already struggling due to steatosis. Cannabis has been found to be very effective as a tool for weight loss. It encourages feelings of satiety and depresses food cravings. This goes a long way in ensuring the weight loss endeavor is successful.
Hepatic artery is the vessel that carries pure oxygenated blood from the heart to the liver. Occlusion could be induced to encourage suicide of cancer cells. However, if it occurs on its own it may bring about a liver disease like hepatic infarction. Hepatic infarction is the presence of dead liver tissue. Remember earlier about regeneration of malformed cells? The most common cause of this condition is emboli. This is an obstruction by either blood clots, fat or gas. CBD encourages the smooth flow of blood therefore slashing the risk for emboli.
CBD Strain for Liver Disease
It is important to the strain of cannabis to use especially for a purpose this serious. One of the most favored strains is Harlequin. This is very high in CBD. It is mild but still very far reaching making it highly favorable for newbies. The strain is effective is very potent against harmful inflammatory reactions. This strain would be great for use by a liver disease patient since liver inflammation seems to be a common denominator in most of the conditions. Doctor Doctor would also be a great choice with its 20% CBD presence and stern action against inflammation. This one will also abate the nausea that comes with liver disease in addition to having the fruity aroma.
While there s still a lot of vehement criticism for cannabis despite the vast benefits, there are doctors who have embraced it and are prescribing CBD for therapy. Most doctors say that it is best to supplement whatever CBD product you are using with inhalation. Since inhalation works so quickly, it will effectively and quickly abate any breakthrough symptoms.
There have been talks about dabbing. CBD dab is not an actual product but rather a method. It makes use of wax, crystals, or any other type of CBD isolate you can get. You will also need a specialized vaporizer or some implement like that. You should ensure to read the packaging so that you do not get a regular vape pen. Dabbing is taking comparatively small doses of a very concentrated and potent CBD product. The isolate is pure and has a high bioavailability. This method is perfect for a liver disease patient because unlike edibles, it does not go through the faulty liver. Unlike oil, the taste will not sit in the mouth and exacerbate nausea. Unlike vaping, you will get enough from a very brief and single burst.
To measure the degree of damage, there are liver inflammation markers. Once tested, these can tell if the situation is escalating, stagnant or slowly fading into nothingness. Patients have reported having lower liver inflammation markers within a few months of using CBD. Some have even reported being taken off the liver transplant list because they were all good with their own liver.
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