Marijuana is the most popular recreational drug, because it’s used in a daily basis by over 5 million Americans. But marijuana is not just another drug, because it has important benefits for health. We will review the most important ones in this article, which is about to show you the brightest side of marijuana, because it could even save your life.
THC and CBD
First we have to talk about two chemicals: THC and CBD. The first one is the chemical which gets consumers high. But science is now interested in the former known as CBD, because apart from being non-psychoactive, it seems to offer a wide array of medical benefits, which includes the treatment of cancer. CBD and THC are present in marijuana in high concentrations, and this represents a problem. If you are interested in knowing how long THC stays in your system, check out this article. However, some breeders have found a way to create varieties of marijuana which have a high concentration of CBD and next to nothing of THC.
Cancer is one of the most terrible diseases for mankind. Fortunately there are studies which prove that Cannabis has the ability to combat and even annihilate cancer from your body.
As we have seen in the first part, the compound known as CBD offers medical benefits. And in this concrete case CBD has the capacity of stopping the advance of cancer, thanks to a unique ability: it can turn off Id-1 gene. Why is it relevant? We will explain this in the following sub-section.
The Id-1 Gene:
This gene belongs to the helix-loop-helix protein family. This gene serves a vital purpose in our organism, which is regulating cellular differentiation of the muscle cells. But it has also been proven that this gene allows the cancer to grow at alarming rates. That’s why it’s important to turn off this gene, and the CBD serves this purpose perfectly.
We can say with confidence that marijuana seems to hold a lot of potential for treating cancer. However, CBD is still illegal in many countries. In the USA, for example, CBD is considered a Schedule I drug.
Marijuana and Glaucoma:
Glaucoma is the name given to a condition which causes loss of vision because of the great damage it causes to optic nerve, due to the high pressure it exerts in the eyeball. According to statistics, around 3 million Americans suffer of glaucoma, but only 1.5 million know they have it. If glaucoma remains untreated, it can cause blindness. Fortunately studies seem to indicate that marijuana can offer excellent benefits for the treatment of glaucoma.
A Brief History:
It’s known that around 1970 there were studies which confirmed that people who smoke marijuana reduced the intraocular pressure, abbreviated as IOP. Several studies took place at that time, but none of them could confirm that marijuana could do better at lowering IOP than other drugs available in the market.
The pharmacologist Professor West along with the ophthalmologist Dr. Albert Lockhart developed eye-drops which used cannabis as a main compound. This was thanks to an extensive work which began in Jamaican communities, where they investigated how these communities used cannabis for traditional medical treatments. Their product, known as Canasol, was accepted in the Jamaican
market in 1987. This was one of the first attempts for creating a commercial cannabis-based drug for treating glaucoma.
However, these studies in the 1970s could confirm something important: marijuana can be used for glaucoma treatment. And recent studies have found that cannabis can serve as an analgesic, because even though most glaucoma patients report glaucoma to be painless, there are some cases where glaucoma can inflict pain.
#3: Marijuana and Epilepsy
Even though CBD remains as a Schedule I drug, there is a medicament called Epidiolex, which has been approved by the FDA for trail in peculiar cases of epilepsy in children.
There are many studies which seem to confirm the benefits of marijuana for epilepsy patients. However, there’s a study conducted by the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus which his gaining a lot of attention lately. The researchers will study the effects of a kind of medical marijuana known as Charlotte’s Web. This study has a goal: determine why only some patients see positive results from consuming this kind of medical marijuana. In order to accomplish this researches will study a particular gene which is present in patients with Dravet Syndrome, a special type of epilepsy. This study is currently recruiting participants, so we have to wait for the results.
Marijuana seems to be the answer for many people who are looking for a cure. Because even though only 1% of America population suffers of epilepsy, there are patients whose epilepsy can’t be stopped with medication. That’s why many people, especially parents, look untiringly for a cure and as we have seen, marijuana seems to be the answer.
These are three of the most important health benefits provided by cannabis, which remains us that marijuana is not only a recreational drug, but an effective treatment for many diseases.