Marijuana for Health

Welcome to the higher healths show, we are at episode number 6! Thank you for listening in, I am super excited about today's show where today we discuss Marijuana, and I plan on having a few guests on this subject over the year only because of how many waves it's currently creating. Marijuana's significant health effects have turned the pharmaceutical industry a touch, which is enormous whenever a giant industry as big as pharmaceuticals are involved. 

It's been in the shadows, very controversial, regarded only as illegal and harmful to your health for as long as marijuana has been in any conversation.

It's been exclusively set aside for the hippies, the druggies, dopers, Cheech and chongers; it's the gateway drug, nope, now it's for grandma and grandpa, mom and dad, you and I, even the children!

Marijuana for everyone! 

We as a society have focused for a long time on the negative sides of this plant, today not only do we discuss the negative, but we also talk the positive and why it's something that even you, may one day consider if not today. 


As for you listeners out there that do not know me too well yet, this episode has absolutely nothing to do with the business name higher healths. I am not getting high, saying wow, this is gonna be perfect, the company name is higher healths, now I'm high, and were gonna be talking about dope. Thus the name was birthed, higher health's.   

Not at all, and I don't say that to make it seem like marijuana is not my thing, I'm just saying, smoking it most certainly is not my thing. The few times I did it, all I did was eat, non-stop, I laughed a fair bit, so that was quite fun, but ultimately what I really did was just eat. I cooked food while others socialized and then ate, but after that was done, I had to cook more because I needed to eat more. Indeed a vicious cycle for me, perhaps one of the most unproductive people ever while high, unless you count cooking and eating productive. 

However, what I'm trying to say is that this episode has absolutely no bearing on the business name higher health's okay.

Great, now that that's clear we can get on with our topic, Marijuana, which is now taken in much better methods like oil from a pipette on or underneath your tongue, by spray, capsules, or the trendiest way by vapor. So today, we distance ourselves from the standard picture that comes to mind which is people getting high by smoking it. Let's dive in and change our whole outlook on this plant.  


Let's first discuss some of the background and origin of this plant, the cannabis plant. The cannabis plant has several different kinds, 3 to be specific within the genus. The first is Cannabis Sativa L, that's what we call hemp, and to be very clear, while from the same plant hemp and marijuana are very different.  Cannabis sativa L is what the first colonies in Canada and the States grew. Agriculturally hemp was grown throughout these colonies for many purposes, such as making canvas for sails, cloth, sacks, paper, and rope because of the durable fibers and natural defenses against decay. The very word Canvas was derived from the word Cannabis. The British planted seeds everywhere they could to ensure the plant could be found anywhere in case they ever needed it. This was not a plant any of them got stoned off of though, cannabis sativa L has a very low amount of THC. THC or Tetrahydrocannabinol for all of my non weed listeners is the main psychoactive constituent of Cannabis, Approximately one percent from this hemp, so no smoky smoky going on here, just straight up functional hemp use. The next 2 kinds is where miss Mary Jane was born. 


Second up is Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Indica, also used as an industrial fiber, but also for seed oil, food, recreation, and medicine. Each part of the plant is harvested differently depending on the purpose. This species was first classified by fellow stoner Carl Linnaeus in 1753. Just kidding, I don't think he was a stoner... but, you never know. This particular kind is much higher in THC and as the years have gone by the THC has become even stronger. There are several reasons for certain cannabinoids like THC to now be found in more potent concentrations. Cultivators have access to more science and information and have introduced tools such as hydroponic lighting, better nutrients, and cross-breeding for increased potency, which as you can imagine yields much better profits. The plant is known to contain more than 500 compounds, with 113 among those being cannabinoids, however, only two of those stand out while all the others are only produced in trace amounts. The two that stand out are THC, and the other produced in high concentrations by some plants is Cannabidiol or CBD, which is not psychoactive. 

The third cannabis plant is cannabis ruderalis, found in northern regions in particular Russia where the cold temperatures and less than optimal growing conditions have stunted the growth of this plant that has tried to hide from humans and cultivation. Cannabis Ruderalis is a smaller plant than Cannabis Sativa and Indica, and is quite low in THC which is why most Russian people are quite angry by nature. Okay, that last part is not a fact, I'm not sure why they are angry, sorry to my Russian listeners I just love to generalize once in a while, it's a good time.

Anyways, back on track, we have hemp so far with the colonies, no real whacky tobacky quite yet, nothing smoke-able. How the smoke-able weed ended up making it over was from the British to Jamaica, and again from the Portuguese to Brazil. The reason it was brought over and how it was being used at the time was for slavery, yup, slavery. It turns out it was used to bring tranquility and to calm them down, easier to handle when pacified I suppose. 

Well, as you can imagine it didn't take long for this plant to not only 

be for the slaves. So this is where the recreational marijuana story begins, and cultures like the Jamaicans made it well ingrained in their culture as well, thus, many years later we have the birth of the Bob Marley.

From there the smoke-able pot finally traveled north in the America's because of the Mexican Revolution back in 1910, those looking to flee the war traveled north crossing the border and voila, the weed has arrived at the United States of America. The prime area it would land is the South West of the U.S in particular Texas. The reason this part of the story of Marijuana is important is that this is also where marijuana had its first negative score marked on it.  After having been brought in from the Mexicans it was known well into the 1960's to be the people of color's drug and finally when white college baby boomer kids began to smoke it, it lost all racial connotations. But to help develop the racial stereotype that this was a colored person's drug before the 60's was the fact that it was also being brought up by sailors and immigrants to New Orleans and fled right into the black communities, further driving the stereotype that it was just brown and black people that used cannabis.  

Again, this is a bit of history just to grasp some the origins of when cannabis became used in these different fashions to understand not only where it came from but what it is for us today. So, because it was used by Mexican Americans and Black Americans, it helped to feed into the racist fears and stereotypes that were used to make it illegal in the 1930's. How this ended up happening was because of a fellow named Harry Anslinger who led a federal agency called "The Drug Enforcement Agency", he was now distraught he and his men would be out of a job when confronted with the end of prohibition in 1933. That's where marijuana became the number one selection to crusade against, both to ensure he and his men had a purpose, and for folks to quickly forget about prohibition. 

 That's when he began to lead the campaign against marijuana and deliberately turned it into the new devil. 

So we start out with marijuana travelling up from South America, over from areas of Europe, Portugal, India, and many more. The Mexicans and Black communities used it primarily until it spread from there along with the fears of its dangers and help to generate the mindset of its risks making it illegal. It sure did become illegal, it also became known as a gateway drug to many more dangerous drugs, and all around, the fears of marijuana grew, mostly on made up fear fiction as opposed to reality. 


Alright, there we go, a rough history of marijuana, where it originates, how it's been used, and a bit of how we have been brought up to think of marijuana as it's spent most of the 1900's and right into today 2018 being illegal. Why it was made illegal was for reasons beyond the actual negative issues of marijuana, however, let's discuss some of the actual negatives and downsides of marijuana.


The most prominent negative to marijuana is with those that choose to smoke it. Smoking marijuana irritates the lungs, and those that smoke it can end up with similar breathing issues as tobacco smokers. The problems include daily coughing, phlegm, lung illness, infections, and increased heart rate for up to 3 hours, so for anyone that has any heart problems the risk for heart attack is something to be mindful of, when smoking marijuana of course. 

Other issues include brain function with the youth. Young teens smoking marijuana has shown to impair memory, brain development, and concentration. The other major problem with teens that is linked to any studies around them, however, is the complete disregard for moderation, as teens will do. So, the excessive use remember, is where these issues are exacerbated. 

Not only teens are affected this way, overuse for adult populations can lead to issues with depression and anxiety. So if you already have troubles with depression or anxiety and choose to use marijuana medicinally or recreationally, be mindful of your doses. This however, only comes with marijuana that is predominantly synthetic, or a blend too high in THC and not enough CBD to counteract.   

Another problem with heavy use, especially for men, is the effects on libido. Testosterone and sperm count are lowered with overuse, which also decreases fertility. So ease up on the weed if you are looking to get the right angle on your dangle and perform the full salute.

Long-term use and excessive doses can also lead to a lack of motivation due to the lowered levels of dopamine, a chemical in the brain directly responsible for your motivation. 


So there we have it, a few of the downsides related to marijuana. Take note, many of those are related to overuse and abuse, and a lack of guidance from a physician to direct them on proper dosages and strains specifically for them. Also, these are common issues from unregulated marijuana being smoked, so we don't know the quality of the cannabis, and it's being consumed in the most unhealthy of manners, smoking. Now, let's find out some of the positives this plant has to offer when used in moderation, the right doses, methods of consumption, and blends for specific purposes. 


When mentioning these positives, the main Cannabinoid constituents that we will discuss of course is both THC and CBD, again, with approximately 113 cannabinoids in the plant the most notable ones are THC and CBD, and it's why we discuss marijuana today. Also remember that Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC produces mind-altering effects, while Cannabidiol or CBD is the major non-psychoactive component. Common thought would lead you to believe that THC gets you high, and CBD gets you healthy, but together ultimately they both have their positives beyond the apparent yin and yang effect they portray. Furthermore, from a physiological standpoint, and this is where I think things get really interesting. CBD, unlike pharmaceutical drugs, doesn't address or chase the solo symptom we are experiencing, it acts on our immune system to restore the balance or homeostasis back to the body. It has that ability because we have CBD receptors in our body. How is that? Well, we produce two kinds of CBD naturally, as discovered by Dr. Rafael Mechoulam of the Hebrew University of Israel. The first, Anandamide, is known as the "bliss molecule," we can create it when we meditate, thus the name bliss molecule. The 2nd is called 2AG which is released in mothers milk when a child is breastfeeding, no wonder the baby feels so good and relaxed after. But as if we needed another reason to enjoy breasts right? Another way our body produces CBD naturally is that moment you get runners high. That moment you break through the wall of a difficult, challenging run and all of a sudden experience that second wind, or third wind, this feeling of bliss and energy comes over us, this is the moment our body is secreting CBD. With these two receptors, it forms the most extensive receptor system in our entire body's physiology. Starting with our Central Nervous System, to our Cardiovascular system where immune cells are continually circulating, definitely our Bone Marrow where the cells are manufactured. The receptors are also found in our Immune Organs being the Intestines, the spleen, and the bladder. Lastly our Lymph system. Our bodies are filled with CBD receptors, which is why CBD works so well when taken exogenously and received so well from our body, unlike a completely foreign pharmaceutical drug that only aims to isolate one system, regardless of any concern of it creating an issue in another system. Which is why most individuals on one pharmaceutical drug need to take, in some cases multiple other ones until they are on a pharmaceutical cocktail to handle all of the symptoms that keep popping up. 


THC has antispasmodic (used to relieve muscle spasms), analgesic (relieve pain), anti-tremor, anti-inflammatory, appetite-stimulating and anti-emetic (vomiting) properties. Speaking of every single one of these ailments, they all have incredible stories that you can now find of patients that have experienced amazing recoveries with oils. One of which I speak of often is a gentleman named Ian Frizell, check his video out on YouTube on how the effects of marijuana drastically improve his Parkinson's disease tremors. Absolutely incredible, and there are so many more cases just like it now. 

CBD has anti-inflammatory, anticonvulsant, antipsychotic, antioxidant, neuroprotective and immunomodulatory effects. 

CBD today is being used to reduce the intoxicating effects of THC, so it helps to balance it out. This is huge folks, this means that marijuana is not all about getting high. That conversation has completely changed, and considering that CBD is primarily taken as an oil, this completely changes the dangerous drug mentality that was slapped on it back in the 1930's. 

CBD also counteracts the sleep-inducing effects of THC, and in some cases prevents the anxiety and paranoia effects of THC.

Now check out these other benefits that CBD brings to the table. 

1. Relieves Pain and Inflammation

2. Has Antipsychotic effects

3. Reduces anxiety- Now, where THC has been a concern for some with Anxiety related issues, and so therefore often has been advised against using cannabis because THC can trigger or amplify anxiety and paranoia, a review from Neurotherapeutics suggests that CBD may help to reduce the anxiety felt by people with certain anxiety disorders. Other disorders where researchers have found benefits include:

PTSD- or post-traumatic stress disorder

general anxiety disorder

panic disorder

social anxiety disorder

obsessive-compulsive disorder

4. Helps to Fight Cancer- This is incredible stuff, a review posted to the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology notes that CBD appears to block cancer cells from spreading around the body and invading an area entirely. The analysis indicates that this compound tends to suppress the growth of cancer cells and promote the death of these cells. Researchers note that CBD may help in cancer treatment because of its low toxicity levels. 

Going back to inflammation, with CBD's ability to lower inflammation, a primary concern in cancer, this can be a powerful tool now and perhaps more so in the future as we close in on understanding more. 

5. Relieves Nausea

6. May treat seizures and other neurological disorders- So Parkinson's disease, Schizophrenia, and Alzheimer's to name a few.

7. Lowers incidence of diabetes- Type 1 diabetes is caused by inflammation when the immune system attacks cells in the pancreas. Recent research posted to Clinical Hemorheology and Microcirculation found that CBD may ease the inflammation in the pancreas in type 1 diabetes. 

8. Promotes cardiovascular health

9. Helps to quit smoking and other drug withdrawal symptoms

10. Relieves Multiple Sclerosis symptoms

11. Rheumatoid Arthritis- Inflammation

12. Supports heart health

13. Reduces symptoms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease

14. Promotes Bone Growth

15. Reduces Acne- Acne treatment is another promising use for CBD. The condition is caused, in part, by inflammation and overworked sebaceous glands in the body. A recent study posted to the Journal of Clinical Investigation found that CBD helps to lower the production of sebum that leads to acne, partly because of its anti-inflammatory effect on the body.


Isn't that a crazy long list of entirely scientifically backed results that come from CBD? It's absolutely incredible, and as the Government relaxes, we stop thinking that this is still the stuff that everybody just gets high off of and we open our minds to what this one Cannabis plant can offer us, I believe we will see more benefits come yet from CBD as the research continues. 

These are the benefits we see from CBD right now with little to no side effects, of course, this depends on person to person; however, the fact that no significant issues or side effects have been reported on all the studies that have taken place so far is impressive, to say the least. 

That being said, look how many side effects come from the use of pharmaceutical drugs. I know it will still take a lot of time, and truthfully, this is because of how pharmaceuticals operate, they stand to lose out on the money here, they likely won't have much positive to say about THC or CBD with a financial hit at stake, so we can't expect all of the doctors to give it a thumbs up either. If we take a look at something like pain for example, typically what would happen after you see your doctor you might be placed on one or several pharmaceutical pain killers like Ibuprofen, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydromorphone, Lyrica, Vicodin, Naproxen, and the list goes on. These drugs react differently to everyone as well, they also contraindicate with each other, and the list of side effects is nauseating. If you have ever, ever seen an add for any one of these you know exactly what I'm talking about. As a refresher, I pulled one for antipsychotic medicine that is currently used to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder called Abilify. The add about the benefits is 10 seconds long and then the fast talk about all of the side effects is another 3 minutes long. Here it is, and I quote "call your doctor if your depression worsens or you have changes in behaviour, or thoughts of suicide. Anti-depressants can increase these in children, teens, and young adults, elderly dementia patients taking Abilify have an increased risk of death or stroke, call your doctor if you have high fever, stiff muscles, and confusion to address a possible life-threatening condition, or if you have uncontrollable muscle movements as these could become permanent. High blood sugar has been reported with Abilify and medicines like it. In some cases, high blood sugar can lead to coma or death. Other risks include decreases in white blood cells, which can be serious, dizziness upon standing, seizures, trouble swallowing, and impaired judgement or motor skills" and at the end, the person makes sure to close with, "Adding Abilify has made a difference for me." 

Yes, I'm sure it has, it seems like a life changer just listening to all the possible ways your life can take a curveball. Does anyone else find it strange that this is still the first option for your health? To be placed on a pharmaceutical drug with no idea how it will react with you, and a solid guarantee of side effects you won't enjoy, that won't be good for your health short-term or long-term, and that may have irreversible consequences. However, here we are, still afraid of what the cannabis plant might do to us. That's just how powerful the propaganda has been folks. Hands down, if you are currently taking these pharmaceutical options, or if you have a doctor presently trying to get you onto one of those options, please, go check out another much better option that is CBD in this case.

How do you get more information? and the right information on what the options are out there? and how do you legally obtain it if you are going to consider Cannabis as an option? Head online, a couple of websites that I know of to offer you help, that have physicians ready to go by appointment, and that are 100% free to deliver the information you need to make an educated decision are found at Natural Health Services in a bunch of cities in Canada, and also at I'm sure that if you pull a search in whatever city you live in you will be able to track one down, and go get the required information. 


Due diligence is absolutely necessary as well, getting your cannabis from the black market or your local street dealer is usually not the best way to go. Sorry to any of my listeners who are dealers, I'm sure your stuff is good, but, we need to make sure we get the real good stuff. Major reason being, number one, we want pure THC and CBD cannabinoids, not laced with anything else, especially dangerous things that it can be nowadays. Also, synthetic THC varieties called Dronabinol does not contain CBD, a colossal ripoff to anyone looking to get all the benefits that come from natural cannabis preparations. So stay away from fake strains or growing methods that incorporate synthetic blends, it's a guarantee you won't get the benefits, and you put yourself at risk if the sources don't care about a repeat customer.  Furthermore, when you are sourcing your medical marijuana from a certified clinic, they will have what they call hybrid blends. This way depending on what exactly you are looking for they can educate you and make recommendations on precisely how much THC to CBD ratios you would want to consider. 


Well, there you have it, folks! There is a lot of information on Cannabis out there; I encourage you to read up on it more if you are interested, I realize I may have made it sound like a miracle cure-all towards the end, I didn't mean to do that, and I don't believe it's for everyone either. Don't buy into the whole superfood idea where this is all you need, keep focused on a healthy diet, great sleep, and some exercise. However, I hope you enjoyed the information, and whether or not cannabis is for you, is determined by what you're hoping to achieve, in Canada, you can always call the client care department of any medical marijuana licensed producer and get your questions answered right away. For those of you currently on pharmaceutical drugs, I highly recommend looking into this option if possible to eliminate side effects if you can. Nothing ventured nothing gained, as they say, try it out, if it's not for you no problem, you can always go right back to your other docs orders if you like. You probably won't, but you always can. For many of my clients, not all of them, we have made a switch to CBD, and we are incredibly excited to see how many are getting their lives back because they can now get off of prescribed pharmaceutical drugs that have life-altering side effects. 


I hope you enjoyed this episode of the higher healths show! If you did, remember at the end to rate the show, like it, subscribe, and share! I want to see if we can grow from 2 listeners to 8. Thanks, Mom and other random person listening, you are so appreciated. Take care you guys! Chat with you again soon. 

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