Twitter is buzzing with debate over use of Marijuana after Uday Chopra tweet on 13th Sept.
“I feel India should legalize marijuana. Firstly, It’s part of our culture. Secondly, I think if legalized and taxed it can be a huge revenue source. Not to mention it will remove the criminal element associated with it. Plus and most importantly it has a lot of medical benefits!”
Mumbai police responded to it by tweeting
“Sir, as citizen of India, you are privileged to express your view on a public platform. Be mindful, as of now, consumption, possession and transportation of marijuana, invites harsh punishment as per provisions of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985. Spread the Word”
Here we have summarised few beneficial effects of Marijuana or cannabinoids on health
Role in pain relief:
Cannabinoids have shown beneficial effects in rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, systemic sclerosis and fibromyalgia. The potential medicinal effects of cannabis could be attributable to its influence on the immune system through its effect on T cells, B cells and macrophages.
Cannabinoids have also shown beneficial effect in postoperative and cancer pain and pain associated with spinal cord injury.
Role in diseases affecting brain:
Cannabinoids show a potent neuroprotective effect in Parkinsonism through their inhibitory action on reactive oxygen species and glutamate (excitatory neurotransmitter). Their administration in animal model has also shown to alleviate tremor and spasticity in multiple sclerosis.
Glaucoma is a second leading cause of blindness worldwide after cataract and affects more than 60 million people. On presentation patients usually have difficulty in visualizing side objects. One of the causes for it is higher than normal pressure inside eye which damages the optic nerve over time. On eventual progression it can lead to complete loss of sight. Marijuana reduces intraocular pressure (IOP) and the effect of single dose of marijuana or cannabinoids is maintained for three to four hours.
Cannabis smoking produces an increase in FVC (forced vital capacity). The exact mechanism for this is unknown but potential explanation for the absence of chronic airflow obstruction with cannabis smoking may relate to the well-documented anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effect.
Supplementation of 20 mg/kg/day Cannabidiol to pre-existing AED treatment is superior to placebo in reducing the frequency of seizures in patients with Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. As cannabis products causes fewer adverse effects compared with traditional AEDs, there use have become popular among patients and their caregivers.
Cannabidiol prevents cell growth and induces cell death in cervical cancer cell lines. Cannabinoids elicit effects at different levels of cancer progression such as inhibition of cell proliferation, new blood vessel formation, spread and resistance to chemotherapy, initiation of programmed cell death and as well as enhancement of tumour immune surveillance.
Role in anxiety:
The administration of cannabinoids in anxiety and mood disorder needs individualised approaches as short term administration of low doses of it results in anxiolytic effects while excessive activation receptors causes anxiety.
Appetite stimulant and antiemetic:
Administration of chemotherapy causes nausea, vomiting and reduces appetite in cancer patients. Cannabinoids are used as an antiemetic agent in chemotherapy-induced emesis and has been used successfully for increasing appetite.