So, you think you know all there is to know about marijuana? We’ve all read and heard stories and details about marijuana, which may or may not convince you of its value to society and humanity in general. To be sure, there are compelling arguments for and against marijuana on either side of the issue. However, certain facts are indisputable and have been proven by science. Here are five of the most important facts that you should know about marijuana.
Fact One: The primary active ingredients of marijuana–the cannabinoids THC and CBD–both have some value in cancer treatment and prevention. Although most currently accepted medical applications involve the use of marijuana for the management of cancer and its various symptoms, the plant may actually have some significant value with regard to cancer prevention. Some of the most promising studies have shown that THC attacks cancerous tissues in the brain while leaving healthy cells intact. Other studies have shown that CBD has similar medical value.
Fact Two: Marijuana may triggers neurogenesis. This means that marijuana may actually encourage the development of brain cells. This is in stark contrast to the often-held notion that marijuana destroys brain cells. Many of the traditional theories with regard to the effect of marijuana on brain cells were based on questionable research. More recent and verifiable studies have in fact shown that marijuana has the opposite effect, with a 2005 study showing that cannabinoids may encourage neurogenesis in the hippocampus of the brain in human adults.
Fact Three: The legalization of marijuana has resulted in lower rates of suicide in certain communities. In Colorado–which is one of the 23 states that have legalized marijuana for medical use–suicide rates have dropped significantly following legalization. Studies conducted on a statewide level in Denver showed that the number of suicides fell by almost 5%. The same study also showed an 11% reduction in the suicide rate among males aged 20 to 29, and a 9% reduction among males aged 30 to 39.
Fact Four: There is no significant evidence that marijuana causes damage to the tissues of the lungs.
Although vaporization is largely considered to be the safest way to ingest marijuana, there is no significant evidence to show that smoking it is inherently riskier. Furthermore, studies have shown that not only does marijuana smoke cause no significant damage, it may in fact even provide protection to lung tissue. In a study conducted by Donald Tashkin of the UCLA, it was even found that heavy use does not cause any significant damage to the lungs either.
Fact Five: There are two primary types of marijuana, each with different effects: Sativa and Indica. Sativas are characterized by long, thin leaves and tall branches, Indicas on the other hand have broad leaves produced by short plants. In terms of effects, Sativas tend to produce a more cerebral and energetic mind high better suited for creative work and energy. Indicas produce a more soporific, body high that makes it better suited for relaxation, sleep, and pain relief.