There’s a lot of anecdotal evidence on the benefits of marijuana, but what does the science say? Turns out, science says quite a lot of good things about marijuana benefits. Research has been limited, but the little bit that has been done shows marijuana as a promising treatment in the management of many conditions. Below, we’ll take a look at 5 areas in which marijuana benefits have been discovered.
5 Science-Backed Marijuana Benefits
- Pain Relief. One of the most common reasons people request medical marijuana is to help them manage chronic pain. A report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine provides evidence of the effectiveness of marijuana in helping manage pain. The study credits the cannabinoids found in the marijuana plant with providing pain relief. It’s not only chronic pain that can be treated with marijuana. Weed also provides pain relief from multiple sclerosis, arthritis, and inflammatory bowel disease.
- Eye Health. Glaucoma is an eye disease that increases pressure in the eyeball. This damages the optic nerve and causes vision loss. Somehow, marijuana is able to decrease pressure inside the eyeball. For now, the effects are temporary, but with time, a long-term glaucoma treatment may be developed.
- Epileptic Seizures. There has been quite a bit of interest in using marijuana to manage treatment-resistant epilepsy. Studies are sparse but the few that have been done show CBD to be effective at controlling seizures. The potential for marijuana to help the millions of people suffering from epilepsy is too strong to ignore and more research is being done.
- Cancer. Marijuana has long been prescribed to help cancer patients control nausea they may experience from chemotherapy, but new research has shown marijuana to stop cancer cells from spreading – at least in a lab environment. The implications for this are enormous as cancer affects millions of people every year. Similar results have found marijuana to reduce the size and slow the growth of brain tumors. These exciting results provide the impetus for more research.
- Alzheimer’s. Studies have shown THC to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s by blocking the brain enzyme that makes the amyloid plaques responsible for killing brain cells. These plaques are associated with the development of Alzheimer’s. Other research found that a combination of CBD and THC helped to preserve memory in mice and a THC-derived medication reduced behavioral changes in patients with dementia.
THC, CBD And More
Although THC and CBD are the two components of marijuana that we are most familiar with and are the most often studied, there are over 400 different compounds in marijuana. If THC and CBD can provide such strong benefits, we can’t help but wonder, “What about the other compounds? What benefits can they provide?” There is so much we still don’t know about marijuana but thanks to the discoveries that have already been made and consumer demand, research continues and we can’t wait to see what is discovered!