Despite the lack of legalization for cannabis in Canada, there is no question that this is a miracle plant! The two main cannabinoid compounds found in cannabis are known as THC and CBD. Both separately and together, these cannabinoids have incredible benefits to the human body. But wait! What is a cannabinoid?
Every mammal on the planet has what are known as “cannabinoid” receptors in the body. It is these receptors that allow the cannabis plant to influence the human body upon consumption.
Benefits of THC
Tetrahydrocannabinol - aka THC - is the most sought-after cannabinoid in the cannabis plant. This is due to the fact that THC is the psychoactive component that produces the “high” that many cannabis users seek. Many growers and breeders are continually trying to produce strains with a higher percentage of THC. Moderate strains range from 14-18% while more potent strains can range up to 28% THC, which packs quite a punch!
- Release neurotransmitters including dopamine and serotonin to balance mood and manage anxiety and stress.
- Reduces pain and inflammation by managing the body's inflammatory response.
- Can reduce oxidative stress in the cells and improve cellular regeneration.
- Stimulates release of the hunger hormone to promote appetite.
- Protects the brain against Alzheimer's by reducing negative proteins.
Benefits of CBD
Cannabidiol - aka CBD - is the second most commonly found cannabinoid after THC. This cannabinoid has a lot of similar abilities to THC, but is considered to be more medically relevant as it is a non-psychoactive component. While still not as popular as it’s cousin, it provides many of the same benefits as THC, it does so without producing a “high”. As it grows in popularity, there will be more high-CBD strains available but they can be a bit harder to find currently.
Some of the benefits of CBD include:
- Regulate release of neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin by manipulating the naturally occuring cannabinoid, anandamide, found in the human body.
- Reduces anxiety by lessening activity within the hypothalamus.
- Combats schizophrenia by managing anandamide; higher amounts of which are linked to a decrease in psychosis-related symptoms.
- Can counteract the effects of THC by preventing other compounds to bind to the cannabinoid receptors.
- Combats seizures by reducing excitement of brain cells - this is one of the most common uses for CBD oil currently.
- Reduces depression by managing the endocannabinoid system and the release of neurotransmitters.
- Communicates with C2 receptors throughout the body to block pain signals and reduce inflammation in the cells.
- Suppresses appetite for individuals battling overactive thyroid conditions or other weight-related diseases.
- Can regulate fear and anxiety throughout the body and brain to help manage PTSD
Other Hidden Benefits of Cannabis
It is hard to imagine that this plant would be capable of even MORE benefits, but there are a few hidden benefits to cannabis that have been discovered over the years.
However, in addition to the more commonly known effects, cannabis can also:
- Regulate metabolism, resulting in 16% lower fasting insulin.
- Manage asthma by dilating the bronchioles within the lungs and also reduce pain and inflammation.
- Regulate blood pressure by relaxing blood vessels and reducing inflammation, allowing blood to move more freely throughout the body.