You may think you know about cannabis, but you’ll be amazed by this list of the top 10 health benefits of cannabis that everyone should know. Find out how this incredible plant is helping to make a difference in peoples’ lives every day. We have produced the top ten list of the best health benefits that weed provides.
Top 10 Health Benefits of Cannabis
When it comes to cannabis, we are only beginning to understand this plant truly. Inside every cannabis plant are hundreds of potent compounds with unique therapeutic potential. There is so much for us to learn from the cannabis plant. Today, we will discover the top 10 health benefits of cannabis as we know them today. This list will only expand in the coming years, and more research illuminates the world of weed.
Let’s get started!
1. Alleviates Stress
Some would say there are few things better in this world for alleviating stress than some good cannabis. You know it is time to relax when the work is done, and your hand-rolled joint is waiting for you. However you choose to spend your time high, cannabis can help to reduce stress and provide your body the break it needs.
There are several studies showing that cannabis can help beat stress. However, cannabis’ stress- and anxiety- busting properties could be most effective when microdosed. Due to cannabinoids’ biphasic effects, compounds like THC can beat anxiety in low doses and promote anxiety in higher doses.
CBD is similarly effective in low- to moderate- doses for anxiety, but there are reports that CBD can be wake-promoting. This wake-promoting effect of CBD may depend upon physiology to some extent, as others report that high doses of CBD induce sleepiness. Also, it is worth noting that, as CBD does not bind directly to CB1 or CB2 receptors, it does not beat stress in the same way as THC. Instead, CBD’s anxiolytic effects seem to be due to its ability to activate the 5HT1A serotonin receptor.
When it comes to sleep problems and insomnia, CBN, small doses of THC, myrcene and linalool may be more useful than CBD on its own. For people with PTSD, cannabis’ (and specifically THC’s) ability to reduce the amount of time spent in REM sleep can help prevent nightmares. In fact, one of the reasons why CBD could help aid sleep for some is because of the range of terpenes present – if it’s linalool, myrcene and humulene, expect more sleepy effects. If it’s limonene, pinene and beta-caryophyllene, then combined with the CBD it could be wake-promoting. THC could work in a similar way and, due to THC’s partial agonism of CB1 receptors, could potentially boost other cannabinoids’ and terpeneoids’ effects. This is more of a theory, though!
2. Melt Away Muscle Tension
Adding to the mental relaxation that cannabis produces, it also helps melt away our physical tensions. Of the cannabinoids inside the cannabis plant, THC is the primary driver of this health benefit. It is well known in the research literature that THC is a muscle relaxant, among its many other benefits.
Are you feeling tight and tense? Enjoying some cannabis is often the perfect way to make it all go away. If you’ve ever tried doing yoga, stretching, or mobility work while high, you know what we’re talking about. The next time you feel tense, try finding a nice quiet spot to sit comfortably while high. Spend some time focusing on your body and your breathing. Notice the tight areas and let the cannabis help you melt away the tension.
3. Promote Relaxation and Recovery
Those who regularly consume cannabis understand now it has the powerful ability to promote rest and recovery. As we saw from the health benefits described above, cannabis helps shift the focus away from stress and toward recovery.
Instead of thinking of cannabis as a drug able to heal us from certain diseases, think of it as a recovery facilitator. Cannabis helps our body do the work of healing by helping it get in the right state of mind. It helps us get out of a fight or flight state and instead into a rest and digest state, as far as our nervous system goes.
4. Anti-Inflammatory Power
While THC gets all the credit, it is one of many amazing compounds inside the cannabis plant. Combined, cannabinoids demonstrate remarkable anti-inflammatory properties. By using cannabis, we can help our body use inflammation the right way, without going overboard and causing more harm than good. The anti-inflammatory effects of cannabis play a substantial role in the recovery state we discovered above. All in all, cannabis shifts your body toward healing and health.
5. Reduce Nausea and Vomiting after Chemotherapy
Numerous studies have demonstrated that cannabinoids can help improve nausea and vomiting that results due from chemotherapy. This is one of those benefits that we all hope never to have to discover for ourselves. That said, it is wonderful to hear that those undergoing chemotherapy can find some relief from cannabis. Especially when these unfortunate symptoms are so resistant to other treatments.
6. Mindfulness and Being in the Moment
Cannabis helps shift your attention and focus to the now. How we use cannabis has a significant impact on the benefits we acquire in those moments. Many consumers use cannabis to promote more present-focused and mindful attention. Whether the activity at hand is watching a movie, eating a meal, or going for a walk in nature. Whatever you’re doing, cannabis can help you focus on the little things that make each moment special.
7. Pain Management
The research on using cannabis for pain management is mixed and generally not as rigorous as is needed. Unfortunately, this has led some to ask whether the mild side effects of cannabis outweigh the pain management benefits?
Well, all you have to do is go around asking medical cannabis patients what they think to get a very different story. People suffering from various persistent pain problems have found the benefits of cannabis to outweigh every other option they’ve tried.
An interesting thought is this: cannabis may not lower pain levels directly, but it appears to alter the emotional reaction to the pain experience. You’ll often see this trend underlying the stories of those who use cannabis to help them function throughout the day despite pain problems.
8. Mental Health Management
In recent years there has been growing interest in studying medical cannabis and mental disorders. Topics have spanned various human conditions, from anxiety and depression to schizophrenia and Alzheimer`s disease. Overall, these studies are too small and too few to make draw conclusions. That said, cannabis has been shown to help alleviate several symptoms associated with mental disorders.
If you are struggling with your mental health, see a doctor to get the help you deserve. For those experiencing general discomfort and concerns, cannabis may provide that mental health boost you need. Combining cannabis with other health activities can compound these benefits even further.
9. Body Weight Management
While this one may sound a bit counter-intuitive, hear us out. Researchers decided to find out whether cannabis consumers eat more (due to the munchies) and thus develop a higher body mass index (BMI). These researchers were shocked to find out that cannabis consumers do eat more calories, but they weigh less. In fact, large population studies demonstrated the consistent finding that cannabis consumers, on average, have a lower BMI than non-consumers.
We do not know precisely why this is the case, but some scientists think cannabis may rev up our cellular metabolism. The result is burning more calories without putting on weight. The critical takeaway is that cannabis can be used as part of a healthy lifestyle to maintain a healthier BMI. Like picking the best food, make sure you go with the best weed for the best outcomes.
10. The Many Benefits of CBD
While THC is a beautiful compound, we think CBD also deserves a bit of time in the spotlight. CBD is a potent cannabinoid capable of some excellent health benefits.
CBD has been shown to be anti-inflammatory, it reduces anxiety, and it even reduces seizures. All of this happens without any euphoria. So there is no high and no impairment when CBD is used by itself.
When used alongside THC, CBD helps balance the effects and takes the edge off by reducing the odds of unpleasant side effects. New consumers of cannabis should strongly consider finding strains that have more rather than less CBD. Balanced strains usually contain about a 1:1 ratio of THC and CBD, making them perfect for novices.