Not all Marijuana is created equal. In fact, that is by design. The marijuana my mother and stepfather grew, harvested, smoked and sold on the streets is not the marijuana of today. Marijuana has become a designer drug. Each plant strain has been bred to enhance or dehance certain factors. If you think the only reason growers don’t want you around their crops is the street value, think again. They take pride in their hybrid creations and keep their secrets secret.
But I am not here to talk to you about growing marijuana. I want to educate you about the difference between the stuff you buy from your cousin’s friend versus the stuff your physician prescribes, medical marijuana. And no, I am not a user despite being bipolar, suffering from epilepsy as well as a host of other chronic pains and ailments which could get me a prescription.
Okay, so let’s get started.
Marijuana is made up of over 60 compounds. Don’t freak out; an apple, for example, has been found to contain 351 elements and compounds combined. Marijuana’s two most significant compounds are Tetrahydrocannabinal (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD).
The THC which even non-pot smokers have heard of is the compound that creates the mind-altering high that recreational drug users are looking for. Different strains of plants have varying degrees of THC (which remains in the body for up to a month after you’ve taken a toke on the joint passed around at your cousin’s 21st birthday celebration.)
And I’d like to mention that although marijuana has the reputation of causing lethargy and junk food cravings, there are more effects than just those depicted on That 70s Show; one of the most serious of which (as I see it) for individuals with mental health issues is Paranoia. Yep, marijuana causes some people to become paranoid. Now, imagine your uncle who suffers from Paranoid Schizophrenia taking drags of the same marijuana joint that is being passed around at your cousin’s party, the pot that your cousin’s friend sells on the street? Super-cranked paranoia and a big party disaster to follow! It could happen. It might not, but it’s a possibility.
And this is where CBD comes in. CBD is a compound in marijuana that counteracts the mind-altering effects created by THC. The plants my mother and stepfather grew, harvested, smoked and sold in the 70s are long gone. The Mary Jane’s being smoked today have been selectively bred to increase THC and decrease CBD. Medical Marijuana however has also been selectively bred however in its case the CBD is increased and the THC decreased to as little as zero in some strains.
CBD will not get you high. But what it can do is:
Reduce nausea and vomiting
Suppress seizure activity
Combat psychosis disorders
Combat inflammation disorders
Combat neurodegenerative disorders
Combat tumors and cancer cells
The study of CBD continues. My point is:if you decide you want to give marijuana a try for what ails you do not take the joint that is being handed off to you instead invest in the marijuana that may be able to help you, not just any strain because chances are that if you’re getting it from someone you know, it’s the recreational stuff, high in THC and low in CBD. Recreational pot will only exacerbate your problems in the long run.
Know your stuff before you Puff!
A great resource is Leaf Science.
As many of you know I live in a state where marijuana has been legalized for recreational use in adults over 21 and is available to minors with a prescription for medical marijuana. This does not mean however that puffing on a joint won’t get you in jail in Seattle. It’s legal to smoke it it is however illegal to drive with it in your system. And, as I mentioned above, THC can stay in the body for up to a month.