The Cannabis Effect – How THC Affects Your Brain and Body

By | November 9, 2022

The Cannabis Effect – How THC Affects Your Brain and Body

Does taking enough time to relax matter if your brain is fried from years of cannabis exposure? How about if the only thing that can help you relax are cannabis-infused edibles? According to recent research, the answer is yes. In fact, the research shows that the primary effect of cannabis is on the brain. This article will explore the many ways in which cannabis affects your body and your brain, as well as why it’s considered a “psychoactive” (i.e. affects the mind and emotions) plant.

Do you feel more alert and focused when you’re high or more sedated and pain-focused when you’re high? The effects of marijuana can be highly subjective, which is why many people wonder if the high from the plant is equivalent to that from alcohol or other psychoactive drugs like opioids.

A 2009 study conducted at the University of New York at Albany found that the ratio of THC to CBN in cannabis is a strong indicator of its high potency. The ratio of THC to CBD in cannabis has been steadily declining over the past few decades, which is likely the result of changes in marijuana policy.

The study also found that potency seems to change over time, with more potent strains having more THC and less CBD. This article explains how THC affects your body and your brain, as well as why legalizing cannabis is unlikely to cause people to go “high”.

The Cannabis Effect – How THC Affects Your Brain and Body

Recent studies have shown that cannabis has powerful effects on the human body and the mind. It can help patients with serious medical conditions; reduce the negative effects of stress, anxiety, and other factors that contribute to mood disorders; and even help people who use it in moderation (meaning, only occasionally) to reduce the potential negative effects of their use.
With so much research continuing to suggest so many positive reasons to legalize cannabis, you’d think the federal government would get on board and begin allowing states to set their own rules on the use of the drug.
After all, it is the plant that has been widely acknowledged as having medicinal value for thousands of years, and yet across the country, marijuana continues to be classified as a Schedule I drug—meaning that it has high potential for abuse, no medicinal benefits, and a high potential for causing harm. So, why is the government still playing games with America’s top natural medicine? Let’s explore the factors that are making them do so.

The Cannabis Effect

We’ve known for quite some time that cannabis can help with a variety of conditions, but recent studies suggest that it is much more than that—it can help with complex mental health issues as well. Dr. Philip Landrigan, director of thelemental drug prevention center at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, explains that in order to understand the potential benefits of cannabis, you have to look at the plant from a biochemistry perspective.
“Cannabinoids are compounds that are produced in the body that have anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory, anti-nociceptive, anxiolytic, and sedative properties,” he says. “The endocannabinoid system is responsible for a huge array of functions in the body, including pain and pleasure regulation, memory formation and storage, immune system function, and even metabolic tasks.”

Stigma

Stigma is the negative belief people have about people who use marijuana that makes it difficult for them to get help. “Stigma is a term used to describe negative beliefs about people who use drugs that are based on these perceptions,” explains Landrigan. “For example, people think that people who use marijuana are poor, have a poor work ethic, are criminals, and have bad values.” People with these negative beliefs also have a harder time accepting that people who use cannabis have a condition that can be helped by using it.

The War on Drugs

As mentioned above, one of the main reasons why marijuana remains in Schedule I of the U.S. Pharmacopeia is because of the government’s war on drugs. While the war on drugs has been a largely unwinnable one, thanks to factors like decriminalization and medical marijuana, the situation is changing. In the last decade and a half, there have been several moves to reclassify marijuana as a Schedule II drug—meaning that it has a higher potential for abuse, no medical benefits, and a high potential for causing harm.

Federalism

As previously mentioned, there are currently three separate federal marijuana laws in the U.S. That means there are three separate regulatory systems for the plant: one for the state, one for the local level, and one for the federal level.
According to Wardle, “the main reason for this is threefold: ties with the sovereign nation state, concerns about federalism, and the desire to focus more on the health and overall wellbeing of the individual than preventative interventions.”

Decriminalization

Decriminalization is a process by which a drug is removed from the list of scheduled substances. For example, in the state of Washington, marijuana is no longer a Schedule I drug. Currently, there are 16 U.S. states and the District of Columbia that have fully legalized marijuana.
It should be noted that several states have passed laws that only allow for medicinal use of the drug, which still remains under Schedule I. While decriminalization and full legalization of marijuana doesn’t seem likely in the near future, it is worth mentioning that these processes can change the way that events like the 2016 presidential election are perceived.

The Future of Marijuana Policy

As previously mentioned, the federal government has recently issued a report that evaluates the potential ofies of cannabis and its cannabinoids to reduce pain, inflammation, and anxiety. While it is highly unlikely that the report will be used to justify the status quo, it is worth noting that the report includes recommendations that would make cannabis Schedule II.

Bottom line

Cannabis has been widely acknowledged as having medicinal value for thousands of years. Recent studies suggest that it has powerful effects on the body and the mind.
It can help with serious medical conditions; reduce the negative effects of stress, anxiety, and other factors that contribute to mood disorders; and even help people who use it in moderation (meaning, only occasionally) to reduce the potential negative effects of their use.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *