The use of hemp derivatives such as the cannabinoids tetrahydrocannabinol or cannabidiol in the treatment of Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative diseases looks promising according to recent studies published in neurology journals Frontiers In Integrative Neuroscience and the Journal of Neurochemistry.
Currently, there are very few treatment options for patients with neuropathological conditions outside of some potential symptomatic relief.
Some studies even report an increase in mortality in dementia patients who were treated with antipsychotics, anxiolytics, and antidepressants. Contrary to this, hemp inclusive treatments appear to be a promising, more gentle, and more natural option due to fewer if any side effects and no potential for abuse. Although further studies will be necessary for conclusive results.
Current scientific evidence suggests the symptoms associated with neurological conditions such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and chronic traumatic encephalopathy, are not treatable or reversible. However, the incorporation of phytocannabinoids preventatively and to current medical treatments may enhance the effects of treatment, especially when diagnosed in the disease’s early stages. Studies are beginning to show that hemp-based medical treatment could be a new therapeutic approach capable of combating a variety of symptoms including the inflammation responsible for the progressive nature of neurodegeneration.
Some studies have reported that cannabidiol (CBD) and Δ9-THC (tetrahydrocannabinol, THC) have anxiolytic, antidepressant, and with cannabidiol, antipsychotic properties. These hemp derivatives have also shown important neuroprotective qualities, especially when combined with other natural products such as melatonin and curcumin. Hemp extract has been shown to have antioxidant properties and may have an effect on some of the causes of neuron loss, which underlies the subsequent decline in cognitive, motor, behavioral, and emotional functions seen in patients with these diagnoses. With all this potential, the use of hemp-derived compounds may very well be a promising therapeutic option for treating neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's.