Humanity has been indulging in cannabis for its necessities like clothing, utensils, medicine, etc. for thousands of years. Yet, cannabis for medicine is still a worldwide trend today; for centuries, cannabis was a principal focus of medicinal value. Many Asian cultures administered cannabis derivatives for pain, rheumatism, malaria, and gout, etc.
The various health benefits of these plants are due to the presence of bioactive cannabinoids. There are hundreds of cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant; CBD and THC are very well known. The functions of cannabinoids are known to have therapeutic effects on the body. On that note, here are 10 health benefits of cannabis that everyone should know.
Cannabis for Chronic Pain
Journal Health Affairs published research revealing that the number of people using cannabis for chronic pain stood highest. The list concluded that 62.2 percent of people were using medical marijuana to treat their persisting pain. The peripheral nerves that detect pain are receptors for cannabinoids.
Cannabinoids can block peripheral nerve pain and also help to suppress pain. THC has a significant role in alleviating pain due to its analgesic property. A systematic review found that the use of cannabis for treating pain has decreased opioid dependency. If the person is going through chronic pain, you can start from growing some of your trusted source of premium marijuana seeds in the backyard.
Cannabis for Diabetes
American Alliance for Medical Cannabis published a report suggesting the health benefits of cannabis for people with diabetes. The report mentioned that cannabis could stabilize blood sugars, alleviate arterial inflammation, reduce the pain of neuropathy, improves blood circulation, and lowers blood pressure in diabetic patients.
Another study published in the American Journal of Medicine revealed cannabis indeed controls sugars, has a lower body mass index, and higher levels of good cholesterol in regular cannabis users.
Cannabis for Depression
Cannabis has a remarkable antidepressant property. However, this property is very much understudied. Few studies have revealed that cannabis stimulates brain chemicals called endocannabinoids, which are linked to a person’s overall well-being.
After animal studies, the researchers concluded that the production of endocannabinoids could lower symptoms of depression. Research printed in the Journal of Affective Disorders found that smoking cannabis significantly reduced depression in the short-term.
Cannabis for Epilepsy
A paper published in Epilepsia suggested that cannabis was used to treat epilepsy in ancient China dated back to 2,700 BC. The use of cannabis for epilepsy treatment has been a subject of hot debate. Yet, recently FDA approved a CBD derived medicine under the title of Epidiolex to treat epileptic seizures.
The same medicine has also been approved to treat two epilepsy syndromes – Dravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndromes. Cannabinoid, CBD has a major role in treating seizures and the prevalence of seizures in epilepsy.
Cannabis for Cancer
There is tons of evidence that claims cannabis benefits cancer patients in several ways. Smoking cannabis has helped cancer patients with ongoing chemotherapy in suppressing vomiting, alleviating nausea, and increasing appetite, lowering anxiety, and relieving pain. FDA has approved two drugs made from THC compounds, namely Dronabinol and Nabilone, for treating adverse effects of chemotherapy in cancer patients.
Few studies state that cannabinoids slow growth and kill cancer cells in the lab environment. Animal studies suggest that cannabis may have reduced the spread of cancer cells in some forms of cancer.
Cannabis for Neurodegenerative Diseases
American Academy of Neurology published a systematic review of the effects of cannabis smoking on neurodegenerative diseases.
The review examined the effectiveness of marijuana for –
- Symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis
- Tics in Tourette syndrome
- Uncontrolled movements in Parkinson’s
- Motor symptoms in Huntington diseases
- Cervical dystonia
- Epileptic Seizures
Some studies have found that THC blocks and fights brain inflammation that leads to Alzheimer’s disease. Cannabis also slows the progression of Alzheimer’s by restricting plaque formation in the brain.
Cannabis for Glaucoma
Glaucoma is an eye ailment that causes damage to the optic nerve due to high eye pressure. This condition often leads to permanent eye damage and vision loss. Glaucoma is frequently linked together with medical cannabis, as the federal government had once approved cannabis to treat glaucoma symptoms.
Early research in the 1970s found that THC reduces the high eye pressure that significantly contributes to glaucoma. Cannabis can indeed be a viable cure to glaucoma, but since the 70s, the studies and researches on cannabis and glaucoma are simply non-existent. The primary reason for disuse was their drawbacks outweigh benefits.
Cannabis for Arthritis
Cannabis has been part of arthritis treatment for nearly 3,000 years. The anti-inflammatory property of cannabinoids is effective as aspirin in reducing inflammation. Cannabinoid CBD plays an essential role in regulating inflammation and slowing the progression of inflammatory diseases.
A large scale study in Canada found that long term use of cannabis in the treatment of arthritis pain showed little to no adverse effects. There was a significant improvement in pain, mood, distress, and quality of life. There few anecdotal reports suggest a substantial reduction in opioid painkillers’ use in patients with rheumatoid arthritis after substituting it with cannabis.
Cannabis for Metabolism
A review of surveys about “smoking weed for weight loss” found that cannabis smokers had lower fat mass, body mass index, and insulin fasting levels. A recent analysis of cannabis and body mass index revealed that cannabis users have lower obesity rates and body mass index even after increased calorie intake.
However, the reason behind this phenomenon is still not known. Scientists state that it has to do something with the brain receptors that regulate metabolism. It is the same driving mechanism that controls sugar in a diabetic person.
Cannabis for Anxiety
The therapeutic benefits of cannabis on anxiety are well-known and recorded throughout medical history. Cannabis gives a sense of calm, bliss, and relaxation. However, some factors affect anxiety. CBD in lower to higher doses is the best option for anxiety disorders. Whereas THC in lower doses gives calming effects, but in higher doses, it increases panic attacks and anxiety.
Therefore, CBD is widely used to treat anxiety disorders. These few studies suggest that CBD helps relieve social anxiety disorders, generalized anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorders, and obsessive-compulsive disorders. The sedative nature of cannabis also helps to lower anxiety and aid in sleep.
The benefits of cannabis for health are not limited to the list of 10. There is a wide range of benefits of a single plant that has traveled with humans for thousands of years. In the present, legalization and approval for cannabis have opened new pathways to understand this wonderful plant. In the future, cannabis might be able to solve many human health problems.