A tool to achieve health and wellness naturally
Cannabis, commonly known as marijuana, has emerged as a significant medical treatment option. Historically, misconceptions fueled by media portrayals, a troubled racialized history linked to the “gateway drug” label, and outdated Western drug policies rendered this treatment inaccessible. Today, evidence supports cannabis as an effective therapeutic option for various health issues. Cannabis has proven beneficial in managing symptoms of mental health conditions, notably anxiety and depression. Moreover, conditions like chronic pain, nausea, epilepsy, and symptoms related to cancer respond positively to medical marijuana.
What is medical cannabis (marijuana)?
According to DrugAbuse.gov, medical cannabis is, “the use of the whole, unprocessed marijuana plant or its basic extracts to treat symptoms of illness and other conditions.” It is also important to note that The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not recognized or approved the marijuana plant as medicine as it is still Federally illegal. With that being said, scientific studies have shown that the chemicals in marijuana, known as cannabinoids, are effective at helping patients with a wide range of medical issues.
Medical Conditions Treated by Cannabis
Spasticity (Multiple Sclerosis)
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Modulating the activity of the endocannabinoid system has turned out to hold therapeutic promise in a wide range of disparate diseases and pathological conditions, ranging from mood and anxiety disorders, movement disorders such as Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease, neuropathic pain, multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury, to cancer, atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction, stroke, hypertension, glaucoma, obesity/metabolic syndrome, and osteoporosis, to name just a few.
What is Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)?
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is one of the 113 cannabinoids identified in the flowering plant genus Cannabis. The psychoactive chemical has been shown to reduce nausea and vomiting during chemotherapy, improve appetite in people with HIV/AIDS, and reduce chronic pain and muscle spasms. THC demonstrates its effects through weak partial agonist activity at Cannabinoid-1 (CB1) and Cannabinoid-2 (CB2) receptors, while having a higher affinity for CB1 receptors. In chronic cannabis users, the CB1 receptor can become desensitized and lead to Cannabis Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS). THC is a Schedule I drug of the Controlled Substances Act and remains illegal on the Federal level in the United States.
What is Cannabidiol (CBD)?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a naturally occurring compound found in the resinous flower of cannabis with analgesic, anticonvulsant, muscle relaxant, anxiolytic, neuroprotective, anti-oxidant, and anti-psychotic activity. CBD does not have the psychoactive properties of THC. CBD has little affinity for the two cannabinoid receptors (CB1 & CB2). Instead, it acts as an indirect antagonist of cannabinoid. This means that CBD acts to suppress the CB1 and CB2 activating qualities of a cannabinoid like THC. CBD has also been found to interact with other non-cannabinoid receptors, including 5-HT1A receptors and the vanilloid receptor TRPV-1. CBD is legal in all 50 states. CBD can be obtained online for reduced rates for specific conditions/financial situations.
Indica strains tend to provide a physical effect (“body high”) throughout the body. These strains are commonly used for reducing pain, relieving muscle tension, increasing relaxation, and helping patients rest. Indica strains are often recommended for nighttime use because many patients find them helpful for promoting sleep.
Sativa strains cause a more cerebral effect, aka “head high”, which impacts mood and emotion. These strains are popular for increasing energy levels, improving focus, and ameliorating depression. Sativa strains are often recommended for daytime use because many patients find them helpful for providing symptom relief without interfering with daily activities.
Hybrid strains are varieties that contain similar levels of indica and sativa. These “best of both worlds” strains offer a balance between the benefits of both types.
It’s important to understand that these categories are not set in stone, but rather offer general guidance based on collective experience with the specific strains. The categorization offers a useful reference point for patients seeking a particular experience, but patients often find noticeable differences between strains even within these categories.