The Top Seven Cannabinoids and Their Health Benefits

Cannabinoids, as we’ve discussed in some of our previous blogs, are chemical compounds that are found in the cannabis plant. They are not just ordinary chemical compounds, (there are over 400 chemical compounds in the marijuana plant) but ones that interact with receptors in the body to produce specific effects in your physical, mental and emotional being. How many cannabinoids are there in marijuana? Well, the numbers vary from 80 to over a hundred, depending on which article you read and who is doing the counting.

Since legal medical and scientific research is limited because marijuana is still listed on the dangerous drug schedule of the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) not all of the identified cannabinoids, whether the number is 80 or 110, have been thoroughly analyzed for the health benefits they may provide. Some cannabinoids, however, have been researched much more than others and have been found to contain very practical and remarkable healing properties. We have listed the top seven cannabinoids below, along with their medicinal characteristics in no particular order. We’ve left it for you to decide what order of importance they should be in.

THC Delta 9

 (Tetrahydrocannabinol)

This is the psychoactive cannabinoid in marijuana and it is the element that gets people high. Amazingly, this fundamental component of cannabis is also a real medicinal miracle worker. Some of the benefits and maladies this cannabinoid has been useful for over the last few decades are:

• Pain reliever

• Crohn’s Disease

• PTSD

• Multiple Sclerosis

• Parkinson’s Disease

• Neuropathic pain

• Cancer

• Alzheimer’s Disease

• Appetite stimulator

• Anti-nausea

CBC

(Cannabichromene) 

This cannabinoid is definitely not psychoactive and won’t get anyone high. It is a common element in cannabis and besides showing signs that it can help brain cells grow it has also been shown to be:

• Anti-depressant

• Anti-tumor

• Anti-inflammatory

• Anti-fungal

CBG

(Cannabigerol) 

Even though this non-psychoactive element in marijuana is found in small quantities it is becoming more and more popular with research scientists for its potential medicinal abilities. It has many great qualities and some of them are:

• Anti-fungal

• Anti-microbial

• Pain reliever

• Anti-tumor

• Anti-psoriasis

• Anti-depressant

• Mood stabilizer

THC Delta 8

This cannabinoid is similar to THC Delta (9) but is less psychoactive. Its healing properties include:

• Anti-anxiety

• Neuroprotective abilities

• Appetite stimulant

• Anti-nausea

CBD 

(Cannabidiol)

This cannabinoid is the one that has changed the most minds about marijuana being legalized for medical purposes. It is not psychoactive and can be isolated and refined from the marijuana or the hemp plant and its most famous use is that of stopping and/or greatly reducing epileptic seizures. This is the element in cannabis that influenced Dr. Sanjay Gupta, of CNN News to change his mind about the legalization of medical marijuana. Before he saw clear proof that CBD reduced Gran Mal seizures in a six-year old girl from 300 per week to 3 to 4 a month, Dr. Gupta was absolutely against any kind of marijuana legalization. CBD was hailed as a medical break through by many and now several companies have isolated this cannabinoid and are marketing it as an anti-seizure drug.

Other wonderful medicinal benefits from CBD are:

• Anti-emetic and anti nausea

• Anti-psychotic

• Anti-inflammatory

• Anti-oxidant

• Anti-cancer

• Anti-depressant

• Reduces the effects of the THC high

CBN

(Cannabinol) 

When the marijuana’s dried buds or flowers sit out in the air for a period of time, the THCa breaks down and becomes another cannabinoid altogether: CBN.

This newly transformed cannabinoid has the following medicinal properties:

• Antibiotic

• Appetite stimulant

• Pain reliever

• Anti-asthmatic

• Sedative

• Anti-glaucoma

THCv

(tetrahydrocannabivarin) 

This is another cannabinoid that is similar to THC Delta (9) but it is about 1/5 a psychoactive as its counterpart and namesake THC. It is one of the many cannabinoids that work best when they are paired with other cannabinoids, creating an entourage or synergistic effect. THCv also mitigates some of the more negative effects of THC, which, many times is very useful to the user. This cannabinoid has many healing properties, some of which are:

• Anti-convulsive

• Neuroprotective

• Helps with weight loss

• Promotes Bone Growth

• Reduces symptoms of PTSD

The cannabinoids are obviously very important elements in the medicinal world. More research is opening up even though cannabis is still listed a schedule one drug, and as more research is done on marijuana the more positive benefits will be discovered, which will ultimately be good for all of us.

Photo courtesy of Allie Beckett.

Cannabis and Autism

Catch 22. That simply means that if you want to get a job as a carpenter – you can’t – unless you join the union. But you can’t join the union – unless you have a job. The Urban Dictionary defines Catch 22 as: A requirement that cannot be met until a prerequisite requirement is met, however, the prerequisite cannot be obtained until the original requirement is met.

And that is precisely what’s happening in the world of autism and medical marijuana. Doctors won’t prescribe cannabis to autistic children because there has been no research and no data to support the efficacy of marijuana on autism. The catch 22 here is, that no doctors will research the effects of pot on autistic children because there hasn’t been any research on the effects of pot on autistic kids. Also because they are afraid that the cannabis may be dangerous to them.

However, there is anecdotal evidence that autistic children who are given small doses of CBD (cannabidiol) are moving toward healthier and happier lives. CBD is one of the main healing cannabinoids in cannabis. When Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN witnessed the miraculous recovery of a young girl who tried CBD, he came out in favor of legalizing medical cannabis. The girl, Charlotte Figi, didn’t have autism but she was having 300 Grand Mal seizures every week because of Dravet Syndrome.   After being given small doses of CBD oil her seizures were immediately reduced to two to three times a month.

Some other doctors are also opening their minds and their ears and are paying attention to marijuana, the new medicine. “Anecdotes should not be dismissed,” said Dr. Daniele Piomelli, one of the world’s top neuroscientists and endocannabinoid researchers. The University of California-Irvine faculty member won’t consider prescribing cannabis at this time, but is aware of the growing clamor for it. “An anecdote is a pointer. It’s something that suggests something needs to be either proven or disproven.”

There are even some medical professionals out there who are taking action since the mainstream medical researchers and labs are sitting on their hands. Dr. Giovanni Martinez, a clinical psychologist in Puerto Rico, is researching CBD and how it affects kids with autism. He tells how a young non-verbal child, after receiving two small doses of CBD, began to develop language skills. Martinez says, “It’s incredible to see a child go from being non-communicative to achieving a significant improvement in quality of life—for both the child and his family.”

There are many other success stories regarding autism and marijuana’s CBD oil. Hopefully, more doctors and researchers in the medical world will start listening to them and be willing to do what they were trained to do: heal the sick, no matter what the source of the medicine is.

Source:  https://www.leafly.com/news/health/how-does-cannabis-consumption-affect-autism/

 

Photo courtesy of Allie Beckett.

The Benefits of Cannabis

There are so many naysayers out there regarding marijuana that we thought we’d brighten up your day a bit and pass on some interesting, informative and good news to you. There are some obvious and very well documented health benefits from ingesting cannabis, such as pain relief, reduction of epileptic seizures and the decrease in eye pressure for those suffering from glaucoma, but we wanted to give you a few more that might surprise you.

Weight loss is probably not the first thing that comes to people’s minds when they think of marijuana. There have been several studies at major universities (Harvard and University of Nebraska) that have found that people who use marijuana are skinnier than their friends who don’t use it. Apparently, the pot friendly people had smaller waists than non-users even though the munchies caused them to eat up to 600 more calories a day than usual. Go figure.

Lung capacity increase for people who smoke marijuana was reported by the National Health and Nutrition Examinations Survey. It also found that lungs were not affected negatively by cannabis smoke.

Depression was found in much lower levels in those who smoked cannabis occasionally or daily compared to people who never used marijuana. This was found in studies done by USC and SUNY Albany.

ADHD and anxiety symptoms were found to be relieved with small doses of cannabis. This was also found in the same studies done by USC and SUNY Albany.

Cancer cells have been killed in patients with leukemia who smoked pot. That was in the journal Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, which basically said that cannabis turns off the cancer gene and stops the cancer from spreading.

Arthritis pain has been successfully reduced in many patients who ingest marijuana. The THC stifles the chronic pain that accompanies arthritis. Patients generally reduce pain, get more sleep and their inflammation is also greatly diminished.

Opiate addiction has been decreased when addicts substitute marijuana for the opiates they have been using.

Multiple Sclerosis pain has been shown to significantly decrease when patients use marijuana.

There are many more benefits to those who use cannabis; we just wanted to share a few with our readers. Don’t forget that pot can bring out your creativity also. Many artists and aspiring artists say that their creative doors magically opened up and worlds that they never imagined previously were now theirs to explore. Go explore and be happy!

Cannabinoids Prove Themselves Yet Again…

If you keep up with marijuana news or if you’re just around people who are always up to speed about what’s happening in the world of cannabis, then you know that many of the cannabinoids in marijuana are extremely beneficial on a medicinal level. Well, now one of the nation’s leading and most highly respected mainstream magazines has recently published a story touting the scientific effectiveness of marijuana and its potential role in preventing and slowing Alzheimer’s disease.

We’ve talked about Alzheimer’s previously and we are always thrilled when a cure or a preventive measure is tied to cannabis. This time, however, we are totally thrilled by the source of the news: Forbes Magazine. Yes, this magazine that reports on who the richest people on the planet are and what your portfolio should really look like is sharing the story of scientific researchers who have made major breakthroughs using marijuana as their focus.

The venerable Salk Institute in San Diego, California, has been seriously looking into THC (terahydrocannabinol) and other marijuana constituents, and how they can remove the amyloid beta proteins from their lab-grown neurons. Now, that didn’t make any sense to me either – at first, because I’m not a scientist. However, I am a human being and the further I read, the more I understood that what that meant was Alzheimer’s patients accumulate the toxic protein named amyloid in their brain. And they’ve been doing it for decades. THC was shown to remove amyloid along with decreasing cellular inflammation, both of which contribute to the development of Alzheimer’s.

Professor David Schubert, senior author of the study, said, “We believe our study is the first to demonstrate that cannabinoids affect both inflammation and amyloid beta accumulation in nerve cells.” This study is an important step forward in understanding some of the underlying causes of Alzheimer’s and perhaps some of the ways to prevent the disease also.

Taking precautionary steps when one is young in order to remove amyloid beta and protecting the nerve cells from inflammation is one key thing to do. Although the study points to THC and other active compounds in cannabis that might be able to assist in removing amyloid beta from nerve cells, the researchers stop short of recommending the use of marijuana to Alzheimer’s prone people. Their next step is going to be clinical trials and they want everyone to know that this marijuana study was “promising but not actionable.” That, of course, is shorthand for “Go to you dispensary now! Do not stop at GO, do not collect $200. We think that’s a grand idea – thanks to Forbes Magazine.

Source:  http://www.forbes.com/sites/daviddisalvo/2016/07/05/marijuana-compounds-show-promise-in-protecting-brain-cells-from-alzheimers/#5996be4375ab