Medical marijuana is a complex drug. To ingest whatever source available with no consideration for taste/strength/effect is the way of the recreational user. However, those who use marijuana for its medicinal properties in the treatment of a disease or ailment will naturally seek out a deeper understanding of marijuana and its many different strains to better combat their particular ailment. After all, knowledge is power, and power in the realm of recovery/treatment can make all the difference to your health!
In this article, we are going to go through several particularly interesting marijuana strains in relation to the
ailments they are best suited to treat. Though we will only speak of what the scientific literature has proven to have efficacy, we still recommend getting advice from a medical practitioner before picking a specific strain. Then, get yourself an MMJ card online and, without further ado, let’s begin!
Don’t Strain Yourself
Now that MMJ has been legalized in many states, it has gained the attention of modern medicine. Medical practitioners have found a plethora of health benefits of the plant, ranging from the prevention of epileptic seizures (2003 study for the VCU Department of Neurology) to improved lung health (2012 study published in Journal of the American Medical Association). And, in order to isolate the chemical compounds within marijuana responsible for these benefits, they are genetically modifying the plant and using these strands to treat very specific conditions. The positive implications of this advancement in the plant’s use are tremendous.
The choices of MMJ strains are almost inexhaustible, and in each individual case the strain that is most appropriate will vary, so some experimentation is recommended. The strands available – indica, sativa, and hybrids – all contain a whole host of cannabinoids. In fact, there are at least 113 different cannabinoids isolated from cannabis, each responsible for distinct effects in the body. A cannabinoid is a class of chemical compounds that acts on cannabinoid receptors (involved in a variety of physiological processes including appetite, pain, mood, and memory) in cells that alter neurotransmitter release in the brain. THC is the primary psychoactive cannabinoid of cannabis. It’s responsible for the high as well as being anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective (preservation of neuronal integrity so you stay sharp), and antiemetic (prevents vomiting). Cannabidiol (CBD) is another major component of the plant and the one accountable for many of the medicinal properties. Scientists say that CBD modulates electrical and chemical activity, thereby quieting the excessive activity in the brain that causes seizures.
There are two main species of marijuana: sativa and indica. Both come with a unique smell, taste, and strength profile. Sativa has a fruity, sweet aroma while indica tends to have an acrid, stinky odor. But the most important distinction between the plants is the amounts of THC and CBD in them. Plants with high levels of THC are typically considered indica; while plants with high levels of CBD are typically considered sativa.
Therefore, indica strains will be psychoactive making the user more relaxed and sleepy, while providing all the health benefits of THC. Indica is used to treat a larger number of conditions including cancer (chemotherapy), HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, insomnia and glaucoma as it is proven to be highly effective at reducing nausea, stimulating appetite, and reducing intraocular (eye pressure) pain amongst other things. Indica is characterized as giving patients a “body high”.
Sativa, on the other hand, will be far less psychoactive, increasing creativity, energy, and serotonin (a neurotransmitter that is responsible for the maintenance of mood balance and plays a huge role in the prevention of depression). With its high concentration of CBD – hypothesized to be an antipsychotic – it’s used to treat mental and behavioral issues such as depression, bipolar, ADHD, as well as epilepsy. Sativa brings about a cerebral high.
A simple way to remember the above distinctions between sativa and indica in relation to your ailment is to consider where the high takes hold: sativa, induces a cerebral high, and so is intended for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and psychotic conditions; indica induces a body high, therefore, is intended for the treatment of physical conditions.
Below are some quality strains that are worth trying if you’re looking to treat any of the ailments listed above.
Sativa/High CBD Strains
- Charlotte’s Web
- Sour Tsunami
Indica/High THC Strains
- Black Destroyer
- OG Kush
- Pineapple Chunk
That’s it, folks! We hope you’re going away with a great deal more knowledge than you arrived with and that that knowledge informs your usage. Don’t forget, you need an MMJ card in order to take advantage of the many unique health benefits of the different strands and the easiest way to get an MMJ card of your own is to order it online.