Medical Cannabis and the Thyroid Gland

Medical Cannabis and the Thyroid Gland. Presented by MediCann‘s Dr. Mark Rabe.

Endocannabinoid receptors are located throughout the body, including in the thyroid gland.  The body’s natural endocannabinoid system helps to regulate the body’s activities and maintain homeostasis, or balance.  Interestingly, endocannabinoid type molecules have been found to have anti-cancer effects on thyroid tumors in laboratory and animal studies.  Much more research is needed in this area.

In addition, endocannabinoid receptors are located in regions of the brain that send signals to the thyroid gland.  2009 research reported in the journal Endocrinology showed that CB1 receptors are abundantly present on nerves in the brain that are involved in the regulation of the “hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid” axis.  The hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis controls the production of thyroid hormones by the thyroid gland.  The distribution of CB1 receptors in the brain suggests that they may influence both excitatory and inhibitory inputs on this system.

It is unclear how medical cannabis might directly impact conditions such as an under-active thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) or an overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism).  However, many patients report that medical cannabis is quite effective in treating some of the clinical symptoms that are commonly associated with these diseases.  Such symptoms may include anxiety/depression, irritability, headaches, insomnia, joint and muscle aches, and others.

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27 Responses to Medical Cannabis and the Thyroid Gland

  1. I’ve been on a thyroid suppression therapy since a total thyroidectomy, they told me to expect the hurthle cell carcinoma to return, then they said it had; they did a lymphnode dissection and removed 21 lymphnodes they were startled when pathology reported NO CANCER, NO HURTHLE CELL CARCINOMA, 2 years later, still not back… I use medical marijuana smoking a small amount evenings but begin my day with one egg basted in cannabis olive oil, 2 teaspoons.. works for me in many ways until late afternoon.

  2. raw cannabis says:

    interesting that cannabis appears to help however it’s best to eat it raw always surely. What i’m curious about is how it works when cannabis raises the metabolism….. By stimulating appetite. I would presume that cannabis helps every cell, but i find when it increases my appetite, my thyroid is in pain until i eat, and that’s eating it raw, but it’s still dried bud, which is not the same as dried leaf, but that’s all i have available. Has anyone else got experience of healing thyroid using cannabis?

    • joe says:

      If your going to juice or consume cannabis in the raw form, the best is to use it fresh from the plant. Cannabis is not very effective when dried and eaten raw. This may be why your experiencing unusual side effects, however it does effect everyone differently.

  3. pam22 says:

    I am a patient of hyperthyroidism from the last 1 year… i was under medicaton since then… but 1 month prior to my blood test, i had marijuana of certain measurement everyday and after the test results, it came down 2 3 from a high range that is 18… to confirm that i stopped my medicines for 3 months and after that did my tests to see the tsh value… but it was completely normal… now i dont take anymore medicine and depend completely on marijuana and do regular check ups and i am completely fine and normal.

    • mike says:

      that is very inspiring to hear,considering i don’t like taking meds myself do to all the side effects… Is it still helping you…and how much do you know to smoke??

    • Karen says:

      Yes this is inspiring. Does the smoke from cannabis have any detrimental effect if diagnosed with Graves Disease?

  4. Q_10 says:

    I have hashimoto’s(underactive thyroid plus high antibodies) …any experience of healing hashimoto’s with cannabis oil??and getting off the medication?

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  7. taylor says:

    I was diagnosed with hashimotos when I was 13 years old, was on synthroid until I was about 19 was very sick all the time. Missed a ton of schooling due to it. Had muscle spasms pain constantly fighting ilness(ect). I finally just stopped taking my medicine and self medicating with weed. I started feeling soooo much better! Now when I have my thyroid tested everything comes back completely normal. I still have to take vitamins for my hair and stay away from gluten ect. But it regulated my levels and helps with the pain insomnia ect that my thyroid causes. Truely incredible.

  8. Trish says:

    Wow!! I have Hashimoto’s also. Symptoms are exhausting to say the least. I am sensitive to marijuana from what i remember,so i was wondering in what dosage & what kind has helped you? Thank you for any info that you can give………………..Trish

  9. Laurie says:

    I have been dealing with an enlarged thyroid for 30 years. I am not on any thyroid medication and have never have been. I have all the symptoms of hyperthyroidism but my thyroid tests – twice a year – still show within “normal” range. I have gained over 90 lbs and have developed borderline diabetes. Mobility is difficult due to the weight gain. I am tired of feeling sick all the time and nothing I do seems to help with the weight loss. I am unable to smoke cannabis due to it causing asthma attacks. However, everything I have read points to cannabis helping with reversal of both of my conditions but does not say anything about how much or how often to accomplish this. Any suggestions?

    • KL says:

      Your problem sounds more like HYPOthyroidism rather than HYPER, especially the weight gain which is almost uneard of in hyperthyroidism. But if your results come back normal, maybe its time to ask the doctor about other causes. Marijuana will not help in this, you need a medical diagnosis and testing.

    • J says:

      “I have all the symptoms of hyperthyroidism but my thyroid tests – twice a year – still show within “normal” range. I have gained over 90 lbs and have developed borderline diabetes.” I suffered from a very similar experience at the age of 19. I saw a thyroid specialist that ran multiple tests and finally decided to try a small dose of thyroid medication to see if my levels increased… they did not. Each time my doctor increased my dosage, the levels did not increase. We decided to stop increasing the dosage when my symptoms began to subside, but I never did see relief of all the symptoms. After taking five different forms of levothyroxine, armor thyroid, etc.. I settled on tyrosint, that seemed to be most effective. After taking these prescribed medications for 8 years, I began smoking marijuana as well as concentrated oils… Within 6 months I began to gain my energy back, I lost over 50 pounds (no exaggeration, this is in 6 months), my hair, nails, and skin all were healthier… I am not saying that this will work for everyone, but the research does point to similar results in testing. It may be worth trying for you.

    • Greg says:

      Hi Laurie, it seems more like hypo by your symptoms, and the reason for the weight gain is your metabolism has slowed down, and I’ll bet your calorific needs are about 1100-1200 calories a day, just as mine is. Hence the RDA Guideline of 2000-2500 calories is way off base, with hypothyroid issues and weight, I had to drop down to 1000 calories a day to lose weight. And have lost over 110 pounds that way, whereas before I couldn’t lose any. And this is quite a common problem. If you think of doing this, then make sure you take good quality supplements to get your nutrients while doing it… Good luck and hope this helps answer some questions…

  10. Tenille says:

    Hi everyone, I found out that I had hashimoto’s about 8 months ago and I tell you it has been one helluva ride. Luckily I found a doctor that can analyze DNA and it appears that my weight gain (10kg/22lbs), panic attacks, short breathing, anxiety, jitters, insomnia etc are actually caused by something called a genetic methylation defect. I am one of the first people in South Africa to receive treatment but if you are in the states you should be able to find a homeopath who can do the DNA testing for you. Essentially, this problem means that your body doesn’t process sulfur correctly and your liver only performs one of its metabolic pathways. High sulphur foods like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, dairy, egg yolk and trigger foods like casein, whey and other supplements cannot be properly broken down and as a result your adrenals, thyroid, liver and hormones go way out of whack. I am on about 15 different homeopathic supplements – huge amounts of D3, molybdenum, magnesium citrate etc etc and I have started to lose body fat again finally! I was so scared to smoke weed but my boyfriend does and I tried it last night – feel so much better today, like my body is relaxed for the first time in ages. I wouldn’t do it or recommend it every day but once a week should be fine.

    • Elaine says:

      Tenille please tell me who is treating you, I have the same condition but no one has told me about high sulpur foods! I thought eating eggs was good for me! I have high homocysteine but no one has made the link I would love to chat to you please email me xx

      • Hypo mthfr says:

        Elaine, you can pay 23andme $99 to get your DNA. You take their raw data and run it through Genetic Genie and they will tell you which mutations you may have that cause methylation issues. has toms of info. I not only have mthfr, but others as well and now know what I need to supplement and what I should avoid. I do see a homeopath also, but if you don’t have one you can hire someone who specializes in these issues via Skype on the page, and ther are others.

    • Michele says:

      Hi Tenille
      I am a South African, and battling with Hashimotos and trying to lose a weight gain of 15 kilos. I have tried everything. Please can you email me the name of your homeopath. I am at the end of my tether.

  11. Sameea says:

    I have thyroid. Some symptoms refer to hyperthyroidism while the others make it seem more like hyperthyroidism.
    However, I need info about cannabis oil.
    1. In what form do I need to take it?
    2. How much do I need to take daily?
    3. Where can I find it? (I live in Pakistan)

    Thank you.

  12. summer says:

    I was diagnosed with Graves Disease at 20. After a few months I stopped taking meds because they always had I’ll effects and started smoking marijuana regularly for a year and half. I seemed just fine. I then stopped for roughly six months and went into thyroid storm. I spent 3 days in ICU. I started back on meds but it did nothing and my thyroid got so big the doc didn’t know what to do. I then had to also start taking heart medication due to my thyroid attacking my liver then heart. I started smoking marijuana again and stopped taking all medication and in a year my thyroid shrunk down and I started feeling just fine. It’s now been 3 years since I went through thyroid storm. I only smoke once or twice a week and I now have a normal neck and the rest of my body is fine. The disease is almost unnoticeable. I wanted to share my experience to hopefully help with someone else. But of course everyone is different.

  13. Corina says:

    i was diagnosed with papillary thyroid cancer i got a thyroidectomy don’t want radiation what should i do

    • Cory says:

      I too was diagnosed with papillary thyroid cancer back in 2008. They took my whole thyroid out and is all i did was tool 2 I131 (radioactive iodine) tables and was told that it cured the papillary cancer. But i 2012 was diagnosed with hurtle cell carcinoma stage IV, which there is no cure for,was wondering if anyone has had hurtle cell and has tried cannibis or hemp oil. Corina if i was you i would do the radioactive iodine cause it has a success rate of 95 %, and there are no side effect to the I131 tablets. All yopu have to do is just drink alot of water to flush it out of your body. Plus it includes a stay in the hospital over night.

  14. JC says:

    I was just diagnosed with hyperthyroidism and can understand the nightmare you all have lived in. My symptoms go back years and a year ago I started smoking weed to keep my sanity. It does keep you leveled out. My question is, will weed mess up the thyroid or heart meds I just started taking? I use very sparingly, maybe half joint a day. Any feedback would be appreciated.. Blessings!!!

  15. sara says:

    I’m seventeen years old and I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism about a year ago. I have constant muscle spasms and migraines but the most unbearable is the night terrors. Every single night I get less than four hours of sleep. I wake up screaming, crying, heart pounding from a night terror in which I was half awake half asleep, couldn’t talk or move. A few months ago it started to get worst with noises and voices and I legitimately thought I was going crazy. About a month and a half ago I started smoking weed almost every day. Because of work I do not smoke everyday but the days that I do, I have the best sleep of my life. Of course my mother wouldn’t approve of my new self medication but it’s the only thing I’ve found that helps me sleep. Before I started smoking I was honestly afraid to go to sleep and didn’t enjoy it at all because there was always that fear in the back of my head as i drifted off to sleep that this was going to be a night terror. I highly recommend smoking marijuana if you’re having trouble sleeping especially if it’s due to a thyroid disorder;

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