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Evidence suggests that cannabis may ease symptoms of Lou Gehrig’s Disease (ALS).

The condition earned its popular name after former Yankees baseball star Henry Louis “Lou” Gehrig, who retired from the sport in 1939 after he began having difficulty tieing his shoelaces and playing at top of his game.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a group of rare neurological diseases that mainly involve the nerve cells (neurons) responsible for controlling voluntary muscle movement. Voluntary muscles produce movements like chewing, walking, and talking. The disease is progressive, which means that the symptoms get worse over time. Currently, there is no cure for ALS and no effective treatment to halt or reverse, the progression of the disease.

ALS belongs to a wider group of disorders known as motor neuron diseases, which are caused by gradual deterioration (degeneration) and death of motor neurons. Motor neurons are nerve cells that extend from the brain to the spinal cord and to muscles throughout the body. These motor neurons initiate and provide vital communication links between the brain and the voluntary muscles.

Early symptoms of ALS usually include muscle weakness or stiffness. Gradually all muscles under voluntary control are affected, and individuals lose their strength and the ability to speak, eat, move, and even breathe.

Cannabis has a history of potential in neurological disorders, including epilepsy, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s disease. Now, ALS is a much-awaited target for future research.

Published in the American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Care, authors cite preclinical data suggesting that Cannabis has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and neuroprotective effects.

CBD has been known to ease severe pains and can bring some relief to the following symptoms of ALS:

  • Analgesic properties
  • Saliva reduction
  • Appetite stimulation
  • Inducing sleep
  • Muscle relaxation
  • Bronchodilation

ALS is a qualifying condition for medical marijuana programs in Delaware, Washington, D.C., Georgia, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, and New York and more.

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