Revolution Health Radio debunks mainstream myths on nutrition and health and delivers cutting-edge, yet practical information on how to prevent and reverse disease naturally. This show is brought to you by Chris Kresser, health detective and creator of chriskresser.com.
RHR: Should You Consider Medical Marijuana?
In this episode we discuss:
THC vs CBD
Endocannabinoid receptors in the brain
The challenges of cannabis research
Conditions that may benefit from medical marijuana
The legal landscape
My experience with medical cannabis
[smart_track_player url="http://traffic.libsyn.com/thehealthyskeptic/RHR_-_Should_You_Consider_Medical_Marijuana.mp3" title="RHR: Should You Consider Medical Marijuana?" artist="Chris Kresser" ]
Chris Kresser: Hey, everybody, welcome to Revolution Health Radio. I'm Chris Kresser. Today, we have a question from Kristen. Let's give it a listen.
Kristin: Hi, Chris. My name is Kristin and I have a question about medical marijuana. I know it has a huge stigma attached to it, especially in the US, like in the southern parts of the US. But I know that in California it's legal. Out in Denver it's legal. And so I was just curious as to what your opinions were on it and if you prescribe it to patients, or if you tend to steer away from that. Does it help or hinder autoimmune diseases? Does it help or hinder cardiovascular disease? I mean those are all questions that I have and I just wanted to know if you had any kind of insight on that or just what your opinion was on it. Thanks.
Chris: Thanks for sending that question in, Kristen. This is a fascinating topic for me, and it's one I've done a lot of research on and we have a growing body of experience with because I'm always interested in treatments that are effective but don't cause a lot of side effects and have a lot of long-term risks. Let's start by talking a little bit about some basics—differences between cannabis, CBD, and THC, which a lot of people aren't familiar with if they haven't really looked into this in any detail. Then we'll talk about why medical marijuana is a promising therapeutic application in medicine and for what conditions in particular that it has shown promise for. We'll talk a little bit about the legal and social environment and some of the charges that that provides and then we’ll talk more specifically about my experience and our experience at CCFM using these approaches.
Confused about medical marijuana? Learn the basics here.
THC vs CBD
Okay. The terms “marijuana” and “cannabis” both refer to any of the subspecies of the whole, unprocessed, Cannabis sativa plant and its basic extracts. Within that, cannabidiol, or CBD, and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, are the chemical compounds that are found in cannabis that are our particular medical interest. Now, there are numerous other compounds within cannabis that are still being studied, and some of them have already been shown to have particular effects. But THC and CBD are definitely the ones that we know the most about and have been the most actively studied at this point. This is really important to understand: THC is the psychoacti...