Cannabis is known to be a potent medicinal plant that plays a prominent role in curing many diseases. From treating health hazards like Gout, arthritis and even cancer to being a psychoactive agent that is not entirely legal on a federal level, there are a plethora of facets of cannabis.But has it always been in the good books of the people?
Let’s take a look at how the appreciation for marijuana benefits has changed over decades!
Cannabis- From Being A Treatment During BC Era To A Banned Substance In The AD Era
Did you know that China was the very first country to use cannabis for medicinal purposes? In 2737 BC, the Chinese emperor Shen Nung prescribed marijuana tea for treating various illnesses including malaria, gout, arthritis, poor memory, etc. This was probably the first instance of the recognition of the health benefits of marijuana.
With time, the use of cannabis spread to India and North Africa and then reached Europe in the early Ad 500. In the United States, Marijuana, the common name for cannabis was listed as Pharmacopeia from 1850 to 1942 and was prescribed for several health problems and was also administered to women to deal with the excruciating labor pain.
From the 1850s to 1930, marijuana became infamous for the high it causes to a person, and in 1970, the lawmakers included cannabis in the list of Scheduled I drugs with the introduction of The Controlled Substances Act. With the criminalization of marijuana, the medicinal value of the plant suddenly became a controversial topic.
To put it bluntly, marijuana never actually left the country. People were able to access it illegally making it even worse for the government to enforce anti-marijuana policy in a real sense.
However, things changed when the famous scientist, Mechoulam studied the pharmacology of cannabis and discovered how different cannabinoids, the chemical compounds that form cannabis, are responsible for distinct effects.
A series of studies followed the discovery of CBD and THC which brought the medical benefits of cannabis into focus once again.
People got to know that THC, the psychoactive compound is responsible for the high and not the entire plant. The benefits of another major cannabinoid, CBD, changed the entire cannabis industry. And more importantly, the scientists showed how both the cannabinoids have much more healing capacity when used in appropriate proportion rather than their individual use.
So much so is the increase in the trust value of cannabis’s health benefits that the plant may be all set to become federally legal again.
In 1996, California became the first state to legalize the use of marijuana for medical purposes, and now it is legally possible to use medical cannabis in 31 US States.
8 Major Health Benefits Of Marijuana That Affirms Its Therapeutic Properties
Subdues The Aggressiveness Of Tumors
One of the most popular marijuana benefits include degression of cancerous tumors!
According to a study published in NCB in 2007I, it has been found that Cannabidiol can prevent the cancerous cells from spreading by controlling the gene named Id -1 ultimately subduing the aggressiveness of the tumor.
This particular study focused on how CBD affected the growth of breast cancer but the researcher, Desprez was positive and said, “We started by researching breast cancer. But now we’ve found that Cannabidiol works with many kinds of aggressive cancers–brain, prostate–any kind in which these high levels of ID-1 are present.”.
A year before this study was published, the British Journal of Pharmacology published a significant research study conducted by a team of Spanish scientists and led by Manuel Guzman. This research team was the first one to conduct clinical trial evaluating the anti-tumor activity of THC on human beings.
According to the results published in the journal, there was a significant decrease in tumor cell proliferation in the patients. However, the effect was not statistically significant, and the researchers stressed the need for large-scale clinical trials to produce viable results.
Aids in preventing the onset of Alzheimer’s
THC, the active compound which lends its therapeutic properties to cannabis, can actually slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s. A study led by Kim Janda of Scripps Research Institute in 2006 suggests that THC plays an active role in decelerating the formation of amyloid plaques by blocking the specific enzyme in the brain that creates them.
Amyloid plaques kill off the brain cells, and its increase eventually leads to dementia. A proportionate amalgamation of CBD and THC proved to be a potential therapy for Alzheimer’s in this particular study that had mice as its subjects.
Lowers Intraocular Pressure Aiding Glaucoma Patients
Glaucoma is a medical condition where the pressure on the eyeball increases which leads to the injuring of the optic nerve and ultimately the person becomes blind.
Several studies concluded that Marijuana does have the capability to treat glaucoma because it lowers the pressure on the eyeball thus preventing the vision loss.
Almost all the marijuana-friendly states have included Glaucoma in the list of qualified medical conditions making it evident that the treatment for this disease may have a therapeutic effect on the use of medical marijuana.
In fact, Nemus Biosciences is actively developing treatments for Glaucoma using cannabinoids. Although cannabis-based Glaucoma treatments have side-effects, in-depth research may change the scenario in a good way.
Provides Comfort To Arthritis Patients
Rheumatoid Arthritis makes the life of the patient a living hell and makes them almost an invalid, but cannabis has a solution for it too.
GW Pharmaceuticals conducted a game-changing study for witnessing the effects of Sativex, a cannabis-based drug as a treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.
The clinical trial involved 58 pre-screened patients who were suffering from arthritis. The subjects were divided into two groups in a randomized manner for placebo and Sativex and were under observation for five weeks.
The patients experienced a significant drop in the pain levels and were also able to sleep better at the end of the trial.
Although arthritis is one of the common qualifying conditions for marijuana, you may be able to acquire only if you are a resident of those 31 states that allow medical marijuana as a treatment.
If you are not, there’s another alternative: CBD oils!
Helps In Controlling Epileptic Seizures
According to a study in 2003, marijuana has been found beneficial in treating epileptic seizures. Robert J DeLorenzo from the Virginia Commonwealth University, administered cannabis-based extract and synthetic marijuana to the epileptic rats and the drug stopped the seizures in almost 10 hours.
According to the results published in the Journal of Pharmacology, THC binds the brain cells responsible for controlling the excitability and helps in the regulation of relaxation.
CBD, the non-psychoactive cannabinoid is also a fantastic alternative used for controlling epileptic seizures. So much so is its popularity and efficacy that recently, FDA approved a CBD-based drug, Epidiolex for treating epilepsy. The makers of this drug, GW Pharmaceuticals are all set to launch their product in a few days.
The approval of this CBD-based drug is a huge victory for cannabis enthusiasts as the benefits of marijuana will have a legit reference that can’t be reversed by the lawmakers.
Reduces The Pain Of Multiple Sclerosis
Jody Cory Bloom studied thirty patients of Multiple Sclerosis who suffered from painful contractions in their muscles and did not respond positively to any other medication. The patients were grouped randomly for placebo and cannabis treatments to study the difference in their condition.
The conclusion of the study conveyed the possibility of marijuana to be an effective treatment of MS. Most of the patients felt lesser pain without cognitive impairment. However, the clinical trials need to be more intense to study if the results remain consistent.
Improves The Motor Skills Of Parkinson’s Patients
Parkinson, a neurodegenerative disorder primarily affects the motor system making rigidity, difficulty in walking, shaking, imbalance, etc. the most common symptoms.
There have been many research studies conducted to evaluate the effects of CBD and THC as a possible treatment for Parkinson’s.
According to a recent survey that asked the patients how cannabis affected their Parkinson’s symptoms via telephonic interviews, there was a significant decrease in pain, depression, tremors, stiffness, and sleep.
If you or anyone you know is going through a rough time due to Parkinson’s, this is the time to experience the benefits of marijuana. Try getting medical marijuana treatment to see how effective it is for you.
Declines The Symptoms Of Dravet Syndrome
Dravet Syndrome is a neurological condition that induces seizures and prolongs the development of the human body and mind significantly. CBD and THC, both the cannabinoids have the potency to decrease the heightened brain activity that causes these seizures.
Benefits of marijuana for Dravet Syndrome are probably the most popular as a high-profile case-study of Charlotte Figi being treated with THC-based CBD oil became the most prominent reference for therapeutic properties of cannabis.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta, a famous neurosurgeon interviewed the Figi family in a documentary that recorded the story of Charlotte Figi, a young girl who was living through the hell of Dravet.
Charlotte’s seizures came down from 300 a week to one per week after receiving the medical marijuana treatment using a high-CBD, low-THC strain. More and more Dravet Syndrome kids are using medical marijuana as a treatment and experiencing positive impacts of cannabinoids.
The health benefits of marijuana are evidently in front of us, but we have a long way to go before we can use it as freely as the prescribed drugs. Cannabis has two major cannabinoids, CBD and THC, whose healing properties are helping hundreds of people, and are redefining the image of marijuana. Although we need more clinical trials to find a dependable way to use cannabis, we are doing quite well with CBD oil and medical marijuana programs.