Although there are over 100 known cannabinoids, THC and CBD are the two of main interest to the medical community.
Those seeking a psychoactive effect, or looking to feel “high,” will be drawn toward THC, but CBD has proven to have more use medically, than recreationally. CBD works to reduce inflammation, as a pain reliever, as treatment for mental illness, and even used in an FDA approved medication called Epidolex® for the treatment of two types of epileptic seizures in children.
The National Institute of Health (NIH) funds some of the many researchers exploring the possibility of medical benefits from THC, CBD, and many of the other cannabinoids.
Evidence has been found in recent animal studies that shows certain extracts from marijuana plants kill some types of cancer cells and can reduce the size in others. One study had success with slowing the growth of one of the most serious types of brain tumors in rodents using whole-plant cannabinoid extracts. With the aid of purified THC and CBD, radiation treatment proved more effective at killing cancer in mice.
Scientists are currently conducting many trials, both clinical and preclinical, using marijuana and marijuana extracts to treat symptoms of various illnesses and other conditions, including:
- diseases that affect the immune system, including:
- multiple sclerosis (MS), which causes gradual loss of muscle control
- substance use disorders
- mental disorders
The psychoactive and medicinal properties of marijuana are the effects of powerful chemical compounds in the plant called cannabinoids. We all have receptors in our bodies that are for the express purpose of processing cannabinoids- these are part of our endocannabinoid system.
All plants contain something called terpenes, cannabis too! Terpenes give each plant it’s unique flavor and aroma. They not only offer aromatherapeutic benefits, but they also work in conjunction with cannabinoids to provide distinct effects.