Cannabis is a highly consumed herb that still to this day raises a multitude of questions. However, as science develops and laws change, it’s that the unknown and uncertainties regarding its effects, benefits, and history needs to be addressed. Today I have highlighted the top five questions I am asked about cannabis and the study of it that science has yet to give a clear answer on.
Cannabis and cancer: Beneficial or Not?
Cannabis has many different effects on the human body – some positive, some not so. Most of which are determined by aspects like dosage and the user’s specific condition. An ongoing and never-ending debate is about the link between cannabis and cancer. There have been studies that show THC is useful in combating cancer, as it inhibits cancer cell growth. However, I have also read reports that say that long exposure to THC increases the risk of testicular cancer. This claim was made because it interferes with the endocannabinoid system, which is also involved in the synthesis of sex hormones.
I am sure that we will see more clinical data demonstrating the effectiveness of cannabis in stopping cancer spread. The world is revolutionizing its take on cannabis and its benefits. The list of known benefits includes, pain reduction in chronic pain and terminal patients, symptomatic relief from autoinflammatory and some dementia-related diseases, as well as from arthritis and Parkinson’s, reduction of chemotherapy side effects and studies are showing great results in treating pathological anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Does it affect the heart?
Scientist and critics still to this day debate over how and why cannabis affects cancer cells. However, this is not the only long-running debate that scientist and doctors alike have had. Another health concern that has caused some discussion is the effect of cannabis on cardiac health. I’ve read articles done on studies whereby cannabis use, especially when smoked Increased the risk of suffering episodes of high blood pressure. However, that being said, others have found the exact opposite.
In my experience, with the right strain, I have found that the plant to lower blood pressure. Some of the studies I looked into suggested the plant could have a vasodilatory effect on blood vessels. This is the dilatation of blood vessels, which in turn would decrease blood pressure? My opinion with the right strain and dose, cannabis use could certainly have a positive effect on your heart.
Cannabis and man’s best friend?
Okay so this one is close to my heart; my pets are extremely important to me. It’s important to note that our beloved pets are not immune to THC. They feel it too, in fact, any inhaled cannabis smoke has a far greater effect on dogs than on humans. The cases of hash poisoning, that end up with an emergency vet visit are far from rare. It has happened, they are a lot more receptive to the plant’s medicine. Symptoms to look out for in the case of cannabis poisoning in dogs whether ingested or inhaled include dilated pupils and involuntary muscle movements.
However, from what I have experienced – cannabis and pets can be a really wonderful combination. In the sense that it has proven to be a marvelous healer, especially in the cases of topical cancer treatment. Now without contesting the risk of poisoning and noting that they too have an endocannabinoid system. They are researchers that suggest cannabis is, in fact, beneficial to pets. That they too could benefit from the plant in the same way as humans. In fact, there are many pet owners who treat their pets with CBD when conventional treatments are ineffective.
Cannabis effects on men and women?
Does cannabis affect men and women equally… There is no conclusive study that has yet been published on this matter. Further research is necessary in order to give a clear and solid answer. However, there are some indications that the effect can actually vary according to gender.
In 2014 researchers at Washington State University did a study on rats. They found that females are more sensitive than males to the pain-relieving effect of THC. They also noted that the females develop a tolerance to the THC compound much quicker. This would mean that over time they required a larger dose to produce the same effect. The reason for this appears to be the primary female sex hormone, estrogen. While there is no definite indication that these findings are transferable to humans, it may very well be the case. Again, this will be up to science and intuition to solve this one.
Cannabis on a day to day has become quite a hot topic. Expos, coffee shops, and dispensaries are slowly starting to take South Africa by a storm. It won’t be long until it’s the next norm, well at least in my opinion. Now that the laws are changing and the topic is becoming less of a taboo, we are sure to see more concrete and informative research done.
Cannabis has been the most popular drug in the world for hundreds of years. It has a multitude of effects and a rich history that spans back to the oldest civilizations. It’s been around for so long. There are a lot of myths, misconceptions, and all-out falsehoods that everyone should be aware of.
If you have any further topics or more elaboration on any of these topics, please feel free to comment. Let’s shed light on this magical plant, its time everyone sees its great properties. This as well as being more informed on how to use and does the plant correctly.
Written by Mary-Jane, April 2019