What if a substance existed that could slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, relieve PTSD symptoms, reduce chronic pain and chemotherapy side effects, and even combat certain cancers?
The potential that medical marijuana could cure a range of diseases has piqued the interest of researchers and patients alike.
Medical cannabis refers to the use of the Cannabis sativa plant and its cannabinoids to treat symptoms and diseases. It comes in various forms, including oils, tinctures, pills, topical lotions, and edibles.
The most well-known cannabinoids are THC and CBD, but there are over 100 different cannabinoids in the cannabis plant.
What is medical weed used for?
As more countries or regions legalize medical marijuana, scientists are investigating how its constituents interact with the human body and mind.
Some regard medical cannabis as a harmful drug, while others consider it natural healthcare. It is both mysterious and contentious.
We hope you can put medical marijuana in its correct context as well.
Let’s look at the relationship between medicinal weed and Alzheimer’s, insomnia, depression, and cancer, as well as how the physiological and psychological impacts of the benefits of medical marijuana.
Does Cannabis Help with Alzheimer’s Disease?
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) has emerged as one of humanity’s most difficult health challenges.
This is a less-friendly neurodegenerative disease.
Its main symptoms are poor neuropsychiatric symptoms such as increasing memory loss, cognitive dysfunction, personality abnormalities, and language difficulties are the primary symptoms, all of which have a severe impact on social, occupational, and life activities.
According to the World Health Organization, about 47 million people worldwide are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimer’s disease is on the rise and is estimated to affect 150 million people by 2050. That means that every three seconds, someone in the globe is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
Every day, more than 1,000 elderly people are lost because they can’t remember the location of their homes, which means that more than 1,000 families feel sorrow for the loss of their families.
Medical Marijuana Can Treat Alzheimer’s
Although Alzheimer’s disease cannot be cured, it can be treated.
Yes, medical marijuana offers new hope for Alzheimer’s treatment! It has neuroprotective and therapeutic potential for neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
The new hope is that the cannabidiol (CBD) in cannabis has been shown to neutralize free radicals and may help reduce brain inflammation and antioxidants.
Dementia researchers at University College London have conducted a study on Alzheimer’s disease. According to the research, a key hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease is the buildup of a protein clump called amyloid in the brain.
CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) components of cannabis appear to remove this protein from laboratory-grown nerve cells.
THC and CBD have different but complementary mechanisms of action. Both may provide therapeutic benefits for Alzheimer’s disease by reducing inflammation, slowing disease progression, alleviating behavioral symptoms, and protecting neurons from damage.
The CBD and THC components of marijuana have different effects. THC produces a high feeling but also interacts with the endocannabinoid system.
CBD does not get people high but may help reduce symptoms like pain, anxiety, and inflammation. The optimal THC: CBD ratio depends on the condition being treated.
In this video, we can learn about a family in eastern Massachusetts who found medical marijuana to be very helpful to them.
How Does THC Work?
THC is the main psychoactive compound in cannabis. It stimulates the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the brain and throughout the body.
These receptors play a role in memory, emotion, sleep, and appetite in the brain. In persons with Alzheimer’s disease, this interaction may reduce anxiety, increase mood, promote relaxation and sleep, and reduce agitation.
- THC has anti-inflammatory effects and helps reduce the chronic inflammation in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients that leads to disease progression. It blocks the release of pro-inflammatory signaling molecules.
- THC may stimulate appetite and prompt patients to increase their food cravings. This may help prevent weight loss in Alzheimer’s patients with altered eating habits or loss of appetite.
- THC may slow the formation of beta-amyloid plaques. These plaques build up in the Alzheimer’s brain and disrupt cell communication. THC could help block an enzyme needed to produce beta-amyloid fragments. However, more evidence is needed to confirm this effect.
How Does CBD Work in The Body?
CBD is a non-psychoactive chemical with Alzheimer’s disease medicinal promise.
- Powerful anti-inflammatory effect. Inflammation fuels the development of disease. And CBD reduces inflammation by blocking pro-inflammatory mediators and promoting anti-inflammatory mediators.
- Antioxidant effects. CBD is an antioxidant that protects against oxidative stress. Increased oxidative damage in the Alzheimer’s brain causes cellular damage and death.
- Anxiolytic effect. It stimulates the 5-hydroxytryptamine receptors, which are important in mood and stress. It may help to relieve patients’ anxiety and restlessness.
- Improves sleep. CBD may improve the quality and duration of sleep and help reduce nighttime restlessness in people with Alzheimer’s disease.
- Delaying disease progression. CBD may slow or stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by inhibiting the formation of beta-amyloid plaques and preventing damage to neurons.
In addition to THC and CBD, CBG and CBC are non-psychoactive cannabinoids found in cannabis that may help treat Alzheimer’s disease in several ways.
CBG stimulates the growth of new neural stem cells in the hippocampus, an area of the brain responsible for memory formation and consolidation, which may help protect existing neural pathways and potentially form new connections. It helps to counteract the degeneration of hippocampal cells in Alzheimer’s disease.
CBC works as an antidepressant by boosting the signaling of serotonin receptors in the brain involved in mood regulation and stress response. This could help ease symptoms of depression and improve mood changes often seen in Alzheimer’s patients.
World Needs to Accelerate Research on Medical Marijuana
A recent paper written by Jia Jianping’s team at Xuanwu Hospital, Beijing Medical University, China, is about a 19-year-old boy who was clinically diagnosed as a patient with Alzheimer’s disease.
The patient found it difficult to focus on his studies during his high school years and thereafter began to suffer from significant short-term memory deficits. He was eventually unable to complete his education and had to drop out of school.
Alzheimer’s disease may no longer be limited to the elderly. Young people must likewise be on the lookout.
Taking care of AD patients and preserving their only remaining memories is the choice we can’t wait to make.
However, marijuana laws and regulations vary widely from state to state, and marijuana is still classified as a controlled substance.
As a result, different states have faced regulatory barriers to research on the medical use of cannabis, preventing them from using medical marijuana as a therapeutic option.
Many researchers believe that this classification has hindered medical discovery.
There is a growing movement to reclassify or decriminalize cannabis, and greater standardization would facilitate research and responsible regulation.
Does Cannabis Help You Sleep?
Sleeping problems in the elderly are a common problem that affects about 40% of the population.
Although prescription sleep AIDS and opioids can help people fall asleep, these may also cause a number of negative side effects. Opioid addiction is a growing concern among elderly patients, with many succumbing to its addictive characteristics.
There may be more natural medication options for our elderly. Medical marijuana can improve sleep for the elderly.
Doctors put patients on painkillers, but marijuana saves them from overdoses.
The most beneficial aspect of cannabis-based sleep medications is that they can free older patients from dependence on prescription sleep aids and opioids. Let’s look at how cannabis can help the elderly.
THC and CBD in cannabis have interesting effects on the human endocannabinoid system (ECS), an extensive network of receptors found in the human system. Since cannabinoids bind to these receptors, patients are subject to multiple effects of cannabinoids.
The high tetrahydrocannabinol content of cannabis causes patients to spend less time in REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, which is a cycle of dreaming.
This is beneficial not only for the elderly who have difficulty sleeping but also for young people suffering from chronic pain or post-traumatic stress disorder. Cannabis can help with sleep-related issues.
Cannabis in moderation may have some reasonable sleep-promoting effects, especially in the short term.
While marijuana may make it easier to fall asleep, this may interfere with productivity during the day due to the persistent sedative effects.
However, due to the risks of dependence, tolerance, and side effects, long-term or heavy use of cannabis to promote sleep is not medically recommended.
For chronic insomnia, conventional treatment and following medical advice should be tried first before exploring medical marijuana options and not taking cannabis without permission.
Let’s take a look at the following video about the role of medical cannabis in chronic pain.
Does Cannabis Help Anxiety and Depression?
We talked above about the fact that cannabis is somewhat positive for Alzheimer’s because of its ability to alleviate the symptoms of depression and improve the mood changes that often occur in people with Alzheimer’s.
The CBD in cannabis has been shown to have anxiolytic effects. It may act by affecting the limbic and parietal areas of the brain involved in anxiety regulation.
The THC in cannabis may also raise dopamine levels, temporarily elevating mood and relieving negative feelings. Short-term, low-dose treatment may be helpful for some people.
A veteran named Tom suffers from PTSD and insomnia from his time in combat. He has found that cannabis, specifically high-CBD strains, helps ease his anxiety and allows him to sleep through the night without nightmares. THC-rich strains tend to exacerbate his anxiety and symptoms, so he avoids those.
A young woman named Natalie was diagnosed with social anxiety disorder and depression in her teens. She did not find relief from conventional antidepressants. Now in her 20s, she uses medical cannabis as an alternative treatment and has found it very effective for both her anxiety and mood. A balanced THC/CBD oil is what she uses, and it helps her feel calmer and more positive with minimal side effects.
An elderly woman named Alice was dealing with the grief of losing her husband of 50 years. She struggled with loss of appetite, depression, and insomnia and her doctor was concerned about her health declining. At her doctor’s suggestion, Alice tried medical cannabis. She found that it helped stimulate her appetite, improved her mood, and allowed her to sleep better at night. The cannabis gave her relief and helped her cope with the mourning process. Her health stabilized as a result.
These are just a few of the many real-life cases. Marijuana weed has provided hope and relief for some people when traditional treatments don’t work or cause too many side effects.
High doses of THC can cause worsening anxiety and mood symptoms. And CBD may help offset these negative effects. However, for anxiety and depression, high THC, and low CBD strains of cannabis should generally be avoided.
Does Cannabis Cure Cancer?
Some studies have suggested that certain cannabinoids may have anti-tumor effects. THC and CBD have been shown to induce apoptosis (programmed cell death) in certain types of cancer cells. This implies that they may have antitumor effects.
Cannabinoids may have anti-angiogenic effects, which means they inhibit the formation of new blood vessels needed for tumor growth. This could potentially slow or prevent the growth of cancer.
For the time being, there is no conclusive evidence that cannabis can cure cancer. However, it can help cancer patients fight cancer better.
Reduce nausea from chemotherapy. Chemotherapy can often cause severe nausea and vomiting. THC-rich strains of medical marijuana have anti-nausea properties.
A Florida man named Rob was undergoing chemo for lung cancer. Anti-nausea drugs did not help him and he lost 20 pounds. Once he started medical marijuana, his nausea went away, he regained the weight, and was able to complete chemo.
Improved appetite. Cancer treatment often leads to loss of appetite and muscle atrophy. Medical marijuana can stimulate appetite and prevent dramatic weight loss.
A woman named Maria from Texas had breast cancer and dropped from 120 to 90 lbs during chemo due to no appetite. With medical marijuana, her appetite returned to normal and she maintained a healthy weight, helping her tolerate and complete treatment.
Reduces cancer-related pain. Medical marijuana can help relieve chronic pain from cancer itself, and nerve pain from surgery or other treatments are also indicated.
A man from California named Tim had prostate cancer that spread to his bones, causing extreme pain. Opioids did not work and gave him side effects. Medical marijuana edibles helped reduce his cancer pain by about 60% and gave him relief so he could sleep through the night again.
For many cancer patients struggling with the effects of cancer and its harsh treatments, medical marijuana can provide relief and improved quality of life in a safe and natural way.
Some studies have shown that medical marijuana can enhance the effectiveness of chemotherapy and radiation therapy for certain cancers. However, more rigorous studies on humans are urgently needed.
Medical marijuana offers hope. With the support of doctors, it is worth considering as a compassionate treatment option for cancer patients.
The endocannabinoid system acts as a bridge between the body and the mind, and cannabinoids from cannabis influence this system.
Medical marijuana has been a positive contributor to Alzheimer’s disease, depression, cancer treatment, and Parkinson’s, and it can be tried in other areas as well.
Research at Nationwide Children’s Hospital shows that cannabis extracts may be extremely effective for epilepsy. Medical marijuana can also bring smiles back to children with autism.
The future looks promising and the possibilities for medical marijuana are endless. But we must proceed with caution, and proper medical guidance is the key to treatment.