What Are The Medical Benefits of CBD? - Part 1

Photo Credit: NeedPix (https://bit.ly/2XK0i4H)

Photo Credit: NeedPix (https://bit.ly/2XK0i4H)

As legalization proceeds and barriers to medical marijuana research are knocked down, we are becoming more aware of just how powerful wide-reaching medical marijuana is. One of the cannabinoids getting the most attention is cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that can help a myriad of conditions. In this series, we will discuss some of the many conditions CBD can treat.

Numerous studies have suggested CBD can reduce anxious feelings in those with anxiety disorders, and that it can effectively treated a variety of anxiety disorders, including OCD, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, PTSD, and social anxiety disorder. Studies also suggest CBD could benefit those who suffer from depression. Animal studies have shown CBD acts on the serotonin pathways in the brain, allowing it to act as an antidepressant, and one study found CBD reduces anhedonia, which is a symptom of depression that prevents people from feeling joy or happiness. CBD can also stop nausea and vomiting. One study found CBD effectively helped treat nausea in patients who did not get relief from traditional treatments. CBD may also help those with diabetes, and animal studies have found the cannabinoid slows the progression of diabetes and diabetic inflammations, as well as benefit complications associated with diabetes. CBD may also protect against diabetes, and one study found CBD prevented at-risk mice from developing the condition.

Perhaps the most well-known success story for CBD is its ability to treat epilepsy. CBD has acted as an anticonvulsant in animal models, and GW Pharmaceuticals have been testing their CBD oil Epidiolex with success. In the study, 25 and 50 mg/kg a day lowered seizure frequency by half while producing few mild side effects. Additionally, a 2013 survey of parents of children with treatment-resistant epilepsy found 84% reported reduced seizure frequency with CBD use. Lastly, and contrary to previous beliefs, CBD may treat schizophrenia and mental illnesses related to psychosis. It has been found to be as effective as antipsychotics with fewer side effects, and scientists believe this could be attributed to the stimulation of anandamide production. One study found CBD helped with hallucinations, delusions, lack of emotion, and reduced social functioning. CBD can also benefit those with Parkinson’s disease, and various studies have found CBD can help treat the sleep disturbances and psychosis associated with the disorder without worsening motor symptoms and while improving overall quality of life.

This information has been provided by Leaf Science and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. In tomorrow’s post, we will continue to discuss some of the conditions CBD is able to treat.

What Are The Medical Benefits of Marijuana? - Part 4.

Photo Credits: Leaf Science

Photo Credits: Leaf Science

After having discussed so many way marijuana can be applicable in medicinal instances, it’s time we conclude our discussion.

Many people may be aware of short spurts of anxiety following marijuana use, but what they don’t know is that marijuana could actually improve anxiety long-term. The non-psychoactive cannabinoid CBD, specifically, has been deemed as effective as approved anti-anxiety medications. Studies have found marijuana may manage the overactive immune system associated with lupus. This, as well as marijuana’s inherent anti-inflammatory properties, can help alleviate symptoms of pain and inflammation that coincide with the condition. Many patients have experienced relief from the pain and inflammation associated with arthritis, however these results have proven inconsistent in what studies exist, and while the medication is well tolerated, some patients did not experience any relief at all. More research is desired.

Cannabinoids also help stimulate bone formation, prevent bone resorption, and prevent loss of bone mass making marijuana a potentially powerful player in therapy for osteoporosis. By reducing the side effects associated with Hepatitis C treatment regimens, marijuana use encourages patients to complete their treatments and helps lead patients to remission. Its stimulation of certain receptors may also improve treatment outcomes. Marijuana may also help those who suffer from severe headaches like migraines by reducing their frequency and severity. Lastly, researchers have discovered lower prevalence of diabetes and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in marijuana users. Marijuana users, in general, have lower insulin levels, smaller waists, are less likely to be obese.

This concludes our post on the many ways marijuana can treat a myriad of symptoms. Thanks for following along for the discussion! This information has been provided by Leaf Science and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.

Study Finds that People Who Use Marijuana Are Less Likely to Develop Diabetes and Obesity

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Photo Credit: https://bit.ly/2vmeeU6

New research coming from the University of Nebraska has determined marijuana may deter obesity and diabetes. In thousands of adults, both those who regularly use cannabis those who abstain, marijuana users did not have a higher body mass index despite consuming around 600 more calories per day. Additionally, when other factors like age, gender, and tobacco use were taken into account, marijuana users had smaller waist circumferences, better regulated insulin levels, and higher levels of good cholesterol. Even occasional marijuana users exhibited better overall health than those who abstained. The researchers were unable to determine the direct causal relationship as to why marijuana produced better health results, but think it could be related to marijuana’s ability to manage inflammation and provide neuroprotective effects and improve the metabolism.

This information has been provided by Civilized and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.

VA Studies Find Medical Marijuana Good for Nerve Pain

Photo Credit: High Times

Photo Credit: High Times

A new research review has determined medical marijuana may be able to reduce chronic nerve pain, or neuropathy, in patients with diabetes. However, in the study, which was commissioned by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, researchers found less evidence that cannabis helps treat other types of pain or PTSD. Dr. Sachin Patel at the Vanderbilt Psychiatric Hospital in Nashville claims, “That doesn’t mean that it’s not, it just means we don’t have that evidence right now.” The authors also call for more substantial studies to better understand the effects of cannabis for pain or PTSD.

This study follows a report from the National Academy of Sciences that claims marijuana effectively treats chronic pain, manages muscle spasms from MS, and reduces nausea from chemotherapy. This information has been provided by High Times and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.

Cannabis May Help Treat Type 1 Diabetes, Colitis and Crohn's Disease

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc.

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc.

Researchers from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine have determined the endocannabinoid system may play a role in maintaining the health of the digestive tract. In the study, mice were given capsaicin, an ingredient found in chili peppers, and found that during ingestion, it binds with the TRPV1 receptor, which stimulates the production of anandamide, an endocannabinoid naturally produced by the body. This resulted in a calmer immune system, which was the same case when mice were given anandamide directly. The anandamide interacted with receptors in the endocannabinoid system inside the digestive tract to stimulate white blood cell production, which elicited an anti-inflammatory response and cured the mice of Type 1 Diabetes. Researchers speculate these effects could be similarly beneficial for colitis, Crohn's disease, and other inflammatory diseases. 

Because some phytocannabinoids are chemically analogous to anandamide, researchers believe cannabis consumption could also provide this therapy. Senior author and Professor of Immunology and Medicine at UConn School of medicine plans to investigate if the prevalence of inflammatory-related stomach diseases in Colorado have dropped since marijuana was legalized. He says, “I’m hoping to work with the public health authority in Colorado to see if there has been an effect on the severity of colitis among regular users of edible weed... If the epidemiological data shows a significant change [since adult use marijuana was legalized in 2012], that would make a testable case that anandamide or other cannabinoids could be used as therapeutic drugs to treat certain disorders of the stomach, pancreas, intestines and colon."

This information has been provided by Medical Marijuana Inc. and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. You can also find full text of the study here

Cannabis Juicing

Photo Credit: Leaf Science

Photo Credit: Leaf Science

There are a wide range of vehicles available to medical marijuana patients, and each method offers its own unique benefits. One such method gaining in popularity among the medical marijuana community is cannabis juicing, which involves juicing the raw form of cannabis in order to extract its cannabinoids without experiencing any psychoactive effects. When consuming the raw form of cannabis, patients can access unique cannabinoids that disappear when the plant is heated, like THCA, CBDA, and CBG, which are known to help immune and cell function. Juicing cannabis only works with fresh leaves and flowers that have not been cured or age, and it can take days to weeks before its benefits can take effect.

It is believed cannabis juice may be able to treat depression, anxiety, dementia, stroke, insomnia, fatigue, cancer, pain, diabetes, and immune system disorders. It is also a powerful dietary supplement. Because cannabis juice is non-psychoactive, patients can ingest more of it without feeling unwanted side effects, and can therefore ingest higher amounts of cannabinoids and terpenes. Cannabis juice contains cannabinoids in their acidic forms, and while research is still lacking, what does exist suggests there may be a wide array of therapeutic benefits. THCA has shown promise in treating pain and inflammation, nausea and appetite loss, acting as an anti-proliferative against prostate cancer, and protecting against nerve degeneration. CBDA may also treat nausea and fight the growth of cancerous tumors. 

Cannabis juicing may not be for those diagnosed with kidney or gallbladder disorders, and it can interfere with certain medications. For more information about cannabis juice and for recipes or instructions, visit Leaf Science. This information has been approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

Study: Marijuana Compound Is Crucial for Stomach Health

Researchers from the University of Connecticut Health School have found the chemical compound capsaicin, which can be found in chili peppers, produces a chemical compound called anandamide that is comparable to the compounds found in marijuana. These compounds have proven effective in reducing stomach inflammation. In the study, researchers gave capsaicin to mice with type 1 diabetes and found that it targets and binds to a receptor in the gastrointestinal tracts called TRPV1. This resulted in the creation of anandamide and the stimulation of anti-inflammatory white blood cells, which in turn calmed the gut inflammation. Because anandamide is chemically similar to cannabis compounds that bind to cannabinoid receptors in the brain, researchers believe edible marijuana could have similar effects and reduce gut inflammation.

Co-author of the study Pramod Srivastava suggests their findings have implications for treating type 1 diabetes and colitis, and this discovery regarding anandamide points to the interplay that occurs among the immune system, stomach, and brain. Srivastava hopes to further study cannabis' effects on gut inflammation in the future. He says, “I’m hoping to work with the public health authority in Colorado to see if there has been an effect on the severity of colitis among regular users of edible weed... If the epidemiological data shows a significant change [since marijuana legalization in 2012], that would make a testable case that anandamide or other cannabinoids could be used as therapeutic drugs to treat certain disorders of the stomach, pancreas, intestines and colon.”

This information has been provided by High Times Magazine and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

For Weight Loss, Stick to THCV-potent Cannabis Strains

Photo Credit: MassRoots

Photo Credit: MassRoots

Researchers have found the cannabinoid tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) can act as a dietary compound that suppresses appetite and provides energy. The cannabinoid also reduces insulin resistance, making it beneficial for patients who suffer from Diabetes. One study from 2013 coming from the University of Buckingham found oral doses of THCV, when given to groups of genetically obese and dietary-induced mice, improved insulin signaling and sensitivity.

THCV is non-psychoactive at small doses, and while it does stimulate the brain in similar ways to THC in high doses, the effects do not last long. Steep Hill, a cannabis science and technology firm, suggests THCV can aid in panic attacks, anxiety, and stress without affecting one's emotions, something that could be beneficial for patients with PTSD. Patients with Parkinson's disease may also benefit from THCV's effects on motor control. Scientists believe THCV may also stimulate bone growth, which could help those with osteoporosis. Lastly, like CBD, THCV produces anti-inflammatory effects. 

To learn more about this cannabinoid and where you can find THCV-potent strains, read the full article on MassRoots. This information has been approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

Cannabis Pain Patches For Fibromyalgia And Nerve Pain

Photo Credit: HERB

Photo Credit: HERB

Cannabis patches are now being used to treat fibromyalgia and reduce diabetic nerve pain. Fibromyalgia and diabetes often produce painful tingling sensations, and in a 2014 survey from the National Pain Foundation, cannabis was reported as the most effective analgesic for fibromyalgia patients who were willing to try medical cannabis. The patients who tried medical marijuana reported it as being more effective than traditional medications like Savella, Cymbalta, and Lyrica. A human trial involving 16 diabetic patients with foot neuropathy found medical marijuana provided dose-dependent relief for pain. Similar results have been noticed with in those who suffer from multiple sclerosis.

Patients already have access to cannabis pharmaceuticals, topical creams, and oral options, but now companies like Cannabis Science, Inc. are developing pain patches to deliver transdermal therapy that enters the bloodstream through the skin. They are currently creating different patches targeting both diabetic neuropathy and fibromyalgia. Mary's Medicinals also offer patches containing variations in cannabinoids. 

This information has been provided by Herb and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

Clinical Trial: THCV Lowers Blood Sugar Levels In Type 2 Diabetics

Photo Credit: The Daily Chronic

Photo Credit: The Daily Chronic

Data published in the journal Diabetes Care suggests THCV is positively associated with glycemic control in type 2 diabetes. In the randomized and placebo-controlled study, investigators from the University of Nottingham, School of Medicine administered placebo or different cannabinoids, like CBD, THCV, or a combination of the two, twice a day over the course of 13 weeks to 62 non-insulin dependent participants with Type 2 diabetes. THCV alone decreased fasting plasma glucose levels and improved pancreatic cell function. Other treatments offered undistinguishable metabolic effects. The study concluded, “THCV could represent a new therapeutic agent in glycemic control in subjects with type 2 diabetes.”

This information has been brought to you by the Daily Chronic and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

Does Marijuana Actually Help Relieve Pain?

Photo Credit: Medicinal Marijuana Association

Photo Credit: Medicinal Marijuana Association

Medical marijuana is being touted as a powerful analgesic that is as effective as traditional pharmaceuticals and opioids but with a much higher safety profile. Marijuana is effective in treating both acute and chronic pain, and it is a good alternative to traditional treatment options for those who are looking for a long-term solution and new pain management option. Pain is often a symptom of other conditions, so medical marijuana could be helpful for those who are looking to treat pain as a result of MS, migraines, diabetes, and epilepsy. Medical marijuana can change one's perception of pain, affecting how the brain interprets it and how the body reacts to painful stimuli. 

Medical marijuana is able to provide these therapeutic benefits thanks to its chemical properties like cannabinoids and terpenes. The chemical makeup and composition of specific medical marijuana strains determine the effects of the medication, which can range from stimulating bone growth, killing cancer cells, controlling muscle spasms, increasing appetite, and reducing nausea. 

This information has been provided by the Medicinal Marijuana Association and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

10 Little-Known Uses for CBD - Pt. 1

Photo Credit: High Times Magazine

Photo Credit: High Times Magazine

CBD is constantly hailed as a miracle cannabinoid as research comes out pointing to its medicinal benefits. Here are some medicinal uses you may or may not know about CBD. 

One study found CBD may be able to combat cigarette addiction. In the double-blind study, 24 smokers received either an inhaler of CBD or placebo, and were asked to inhale every time they felt the urge to smoke a cigarette. Those who received CBD experienced a 40% drop in cigarette intake and no increase in nicotine cravings, while those who received placebo experienced no change. Another study from the Journal of Clinical Investigation and the National Institute of Health found cannabis-derived CBD on human sebaceous glands is an effective sebostatic and anti-inflammatory agent that inhibits lipid synthesis, thereby treating acne.

Another study found CBD prevented the development of diabetes in non-obese diabetic mice through the prevention of IL-12 production by splenocytes, a cytokine that plays a role in human autoimmune diseases. In 2011, a study looked at CBD for the treatment of fibromyalgia. Out of 56 patients, half used CBD while the other half used traditional treatment regimens. Those who used cannabis witnessed a reduction in symptoms and pain, while those who used continued using traditional methods saw little improvement. Lastly, a study from the Journal of Neuroscience in 2007 found CBD can halt the proteins prions, something that would be beneficial in preventing neurodegenerative diseases like Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and mad cow disease. 

This information has been provided by High Times Magazine. Stay tuned for tomorrow's post to discover more about CBD's uses. This information has been approved by our Chief medical officer. 

What You Need To Know About CBD

Photo Credit: Civilized

Photo Credit: Civilized

Cannabis has always been known for its psychoactive compound, THC, but as more and more research comes out surrounding the medicinal properties of cannabis, another cannabinoid is getting more time in the spotlight. CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that has been widely used to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, convulsions and brain and breast cancer cell proliferation, provide neuroprotective benefits, and treat conditions like epilepsy, diabetes, Alzheimer's, and arthritis. When used together, CBD and THC help supplement and enhance the other's benefits, and stimulate neurogenesis. A patient has a variety of options for CBD consumption, including vaporizing, applying topicals, or taking capsules, all of which will not expose the lungs to harmful smoke from combustion.

This information has been adapted from Civilized and approved by our Chief Medical Officer.  

Marijuana Use Lowers Obesity and Diabetes Risk

Photo Credit: Marijuana Health Wellness

Photo Credit: Marijuana Health Wellness

Researchers from the Conference of Quebec University Health Centers have discovered marijuana may be able to lower the risk of both obesity and diabetes. The study published in the journal Obesity cross-referenced cannabis use with body mass indexes of 786 aboriginal partipants between 18 and 74 years of age. Participants who had used marijuana within the year had less insulin resistance and lower fasting insulin, a lower percent of fat mass, and a lower BMI. On average, users had between 26.8, while non-users had a median index of 28.6. Those who used cannabis but did not currently use tobacco, or had never used tobacco, had the lowest BMI. Relevant factors like gender and age had been controlled.

These results support the findings of other studies, like one from 2012 that was published in the British Journal of Medicine and found lower instances of type-2 diabetes among marijuana users and a lower risk of developing the disease than in those who abstained. Additionally, a study found in the American Journal of Epidemiology from 2011 found lower risk of obesity in marijuana users.

This information has been brought to you by Marijuana Health Wellness and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

MMJ for Diabetes

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc.

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc.

Diabetes milletus results the hormone insulin causing too much glucose build up in the blood stream. Diabetes is subcategorized into Type 1 or insulin-dependent diabetes, and Type 2 diabetes which is the most common form. The overabundance of glucose can lead to cardiovascular disease, nerve damage, kidney damage, eye damage, foot damage, skin conditions, and hearing impairment. Symptoms include increased thirst and urination, unexplained weight loss, fatigue, extreme hunger, irritability, blurred vision, ketones in urine, dry and itchy skin, and infections. Medical cannabis can help diabetes patients in a variety of ways because it not only may prevent the disease, but it also helps treat the disease and helps manage its pain symptoms. 

In human and animal studies, those who use cannabis also have a lower incidence of diabetes. In non-obese mice, CBD reduced pro-inflammatory cytokines in the bloodstream as well as the incidence of diabetes. These researchers then followed up with rodents with latent diabetes stage or initial diabetes symptoms and found CBD curtailed the manifestation of the disease. Another animal trial found CBD provided protection from diabetic retinopathy. THC also reduced the risk of diabetes in obese mice, and reduced glucose intolerance while increasing insulin sensitivity. A human study found cannabis users experienced lower fasting insulin levels and insulin resistance, and another found similar results as well the suggestion that cannabis consumers possessed lower body mass index in comparison to non-users. For those who are at higher risk for diabetes, like HIV-HCV patients, cannabis was associated with a lowered insulin resistance risk.

This information is brought to you by Medical Marijuana Inc. and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

Understanding Cannabidiol (CBD) - Part 3

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc. 

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc. 

Today we will continue our discussion of the therapeutic effects of CBD on a multitude of specific conditions.

CBD relieves cardiovascular diseases by reducing myocardial dysfunction, cardiac fibrosis, oxidative-nitrative stress, inflammation, cell death, and interrelated signaling pathways. It also reduces infarct size and myocardial inflammation when administered directly after a heart attack, making it a potential treatment for myocardial ischemia. CBD may fight the progression of cirrhosis by aiding hepatic stellate cell (HSC) death, thereby proliferating and producing excess collagen which allows for the accumulation of scarring on the liver. It also restored liver function in mice with liver failure and it provided protection against ischemia reperfusion, the pivotal mechanism of tissue damage in cirrhosis. Patients who suffer from depression can benefit from CBD's antidepressant and anti-anxiety properties.

CBD's anti-inflammatory properties and ability to control the pro-inflammatory response in the digestive tract make it a potential treatment option for crohn's diseases and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Those who suffer from diabetes benefit from CBD's ability to reduce pro-inflammatory cytokines in the blood stream. CBD treatments provide significant protection from diabetic retinopathy. CBD is probably most well known for its effects on epilepsy and seizure disorders because it reduces or eliminates seizures, even in severe pediatric variations like Dravet syndrome, Doose, syndrome, and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. The cannabinoid also improves sleep, alertness, and mood in epileptic children. CBD's analgesic properties allow it to lower pain levels in a variety of conditions, including headaches and migraines, spasticity, sickle cell anemia, and other acute pain and chronic pain conditions.

This concludes part 3 of our CBD series, and we will continue the in depth discussion of conditions that can benefit from its use in the next post. This information has been provided by Medical Marijuana Inc. and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

Understanding Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) - Part 3

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc. 

Photo Credit: Medical Marijuana Inc. 

In today's post, we will continue our discussion of THC in the treatment of various conditions and diseases.

THC has proven effective in stimulating appetite and stabilizing body weight in AIDS/HIV patients and cancer patients suffering from cachexia. THC further helps cancer patients by reducing tumor sizes, reducing conditioned rejection and chemotherapy-induce nausea, increasing comfort throughout the treatment process, and working alongside CBD to reduce pain levels. THC can help those who suffer from Crohn's disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome through its anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to reduce abdominal pain, nausea, and diarrhea. It has even helped some attain complete remission. THC reduces the brain's response to negative stimuli, so it may be able to help treat depression. THC also reduces the risk of diabetes by reducing glucose intolerance, improving glucose tolerance, and increasing insulin sensitivity. 

THC not only induces apoptosis of leukemia cells, but it also can enhance the power of other cytotoxic agents to increase leukemia cell death. THC's anti-inflammatory properties make it a potential treatment for lupus and other inflammatory disorders. THC can inhibit the pain response from migraines. It can also reduce pain and decrease muscle spasticity for multiple sclerosis patients. THC also manages pain levels from nail-patella syndrome, as well as lowering the risk and the progression of glaucoma and kidney disease. While THC has the ability to stimulate appetite and weight gain in some, it is, quite surprisingly, also associated with a lower rate of obesity than those who do not consume the cannabinoid.

We will continue our discussion of THC in relation to various conditions in the following post. This information has been brought to you by Medical Marijuana Inc. and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

An In Depth Look at the Medicinal Value of Cannabinol (CBN)

Cannabinol (CBN) results from the break down of THC after its long exposure to oxygen and heat. CBN is mildly psychoactive, but not like its predecessor THC. CBN's anti-inflammatory properties make it a potential therapeutic agent for multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, allergic asthma, and Crohn's disease. By stimulating appetite, it can help treat cachexia, anorexia, and help those suffering from cancer or HIV/AIDS. CBN is also antibacterial, and when applied topically, it is effective in combatting MRSA. The topical application of CBN lowers ocular tension so it can reduce the risk and progression of glaucoma.

Out of all other cannabinoids, CBN is the most sedative, making it the most powerful cannabinoid for those who suffer from insomnia, sleep apnea, or other sleep disorders. CBN releases calcitonin and gene-related peptides from sensory nerves without impacting the CB1 or CB2 receptors. This means that it can reduce sensitivity to pain on its own, but that it can also work alongside CBD for enhanced pain relief. Research has shown CBN prolongs seizure latency in mice, making it a potential treatment for epilepsy and other seizure disorders. Lastly, CBN is an agonist of CB1 and CB2 receptors, so it is among the cannabinoids that stimulate bone growth, promote bone health, and help patients with bone diseases like osteoporosis.

This information has been provided by Medical Marijuana Inc. and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. 

Study: Marijuana Consumers Less Likely to Suffer from Metabolic Syndrome

Photo Credit: The Daily Chronic

Photo Credit: The Daily Chronic

According to new findings published in The American Journal of Medicine, people who consume cannabis are 50% less likely to suffer from metabolic syndrome than those who have never used the substance. Metabolic syndrome consists of a group of risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high blood sugar, unhealthy cholesterol levels, and abdominal fat, all of which increase the risk of heart disease and/or type 2 diabetes.

Investigators at the University of Miami's School of Medicine analyzed the link between cannabis use and metabolic syndrome in 8,500 participants ages 20-59 involved in the 2005-2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys. The participants were classified as to whether or not they suffered from metabolic syndrome based on various factors, and among the subjects with no history of cannabis use, 19.5% met criteria for metabolic syndrome. When it comes to former users, 17.5% met the criteria, and only 13.8% of current users met the criteria. Investigators reported, "Among emerging adults, current marijuana users were 54 percent less likely than never users to present with metabolic syndrome." Because the nation currently faces multiple epidemics of obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes, the findings of this study are quite promising.

This Information has been provided by The Daily Chronic and approved by our Chief Medical Officer. You can also find a full abstract of the study here

Cannabis for the Treatment of Diabetes

Photo Credit: Whaxy

Photo Credit: Whaxy

Those who suffer from diabetes constantly have to watch what they eat and check their blood sugar levels. This is because diabetes, also known as hyperglycemia, is a disease in which the body cannot process food into energy use properly, so blood glucose levels rise higher than normal. Whaxy lists the symptoms of diabetes as "chronic fatigue, frequent urination, excessive thirst, unexplained weight loss, extremem hunger, sudden vision changes, tingling or numbness in hands or feet, very dry skin, sores that are slow to heal, and more infections than usual." When diabetes advances, it can precede heart disease, blindness, kidney failure, and lower-extremity amputations. Diabetes can also be fatal, and approximately 76,000 Americans die from diabetes annually, making it the seventh leading cause of death in the United States.

Diabetes is categorized as either Type 1 or Type 2. Type 1 diabetes is only responsible for 5% of all cases of diabetes, and only afflicts children and young adults. Type 2 diabetes is much more common, and those who develop Type 2 diabetes suffer from insulin resistance in which they cannot use insulin properly. Metabolic syndrome is a variety of Type 2 diabetes resulting from the combination of obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes. This syndrome increases risks of developing heart disease or undergoing a stroke.

In 2005, the American Alliance for Medical Cannabis published a research paper detailing the ways in which cannabis can help diabetic patients. Some of the benefits include cannabis' ability to "stabilize blood sugars, act as an anti-inflammatory, act as a vasodilator, lower blood pressure, relieve neuropathic pain and tingling, relieve restless leg syndrome, and improve sleep." Some diabetics develop something called diabetic retinopathy which can result in blindness. It is believed cannabis can significantly decrease eye pressure, and therefore relieve the symptoms of this condition. In addition, cannabis' anti-inflammatory properties can relieve arterial inflammation found in many diabetics.

Research published by GW Pharmaceuticals in England in 2012 revealed the cannabinoid THCV was able to increase sensitivity to insulin and protect cells that make insulin in animals. In addition, THCV and CBD were able to boost the animals' metabolism in order to reduce fat in their livers and cholesterol. Both of these effects would be highly beneficial in for diabetics who need to regulate their insulin and maintain healthy body weight. 

While many conventional pharmaceuticals adequately relieve the symptoms of diabetes, many also pose the risk of negative side effects like suppression of the immune system, or liver and kidney damage. Because cannabis offers symptom relief to diabetics without these negative side effects, the plant is worth further investigating. Read more about cannabis for the treatment of diabetes on Whaxy