What I've learned from legal marijuana in my state.Submitted by ptpete25 on Wed, 04/09/2014 - 02:21
Hey guys, this article "3 studies that show cannabis grows brain cells" set me on a writing tangent that I thought I should share.
Everything in this post has been learned by me in the past 3 months while the stores have been open. It takes a scientific outlook on the new things we are learning now that research can be legally conducted.
The endocannabinoid system is a system that acts upon literally every other system in your body. It regulates homeostasis of the bodily functions, in other words, it keeps every system in your body within certain parameters necessary for proper function. When cells get low on fuel, they send signals to the brain telling them the body needs an intake of food. The brain then releases a small amount of anandamide (endocannabinoid), and you literally give yourself the munchies. That happens every time you get hungry.
Phytocannabinoids, phyto meaning from the plant, endo meaning produced inside the body. There are scores of phytocannabinoids found in cannabis that act on your cannabinoid system with every one of them seeming to promote health and healing disease. Right now is one of the most exciting times for this research since the Bush/Clinton crime syndicate no longer has such a death grip on our laws. Families are uprooting their lives to move to Colorado and give this medicine to their children. This is criminal, no person should have to compromise anything in order to use a plant from the ground. Arguments to the contrary are an example of cognitive dissonance.
At the bottom of this post, I will give tips on preparing cannabinoids to be absorbed into the body to gain the benefits. EATING RAW CANNABIS WILL NOT GET YOU HIGH, AND WILL NOT ALLOW FOR MAXIMUM MEDICINAL BENEFITS. As most of the cannabinoids will simply pass through without absorption... It's a waste of weed.
Not much definitive research has been done because of CRIMINALS preventing free people from possessing an herb from God. This cult of statism has caused countless suffering and death by denial of a healing plant. As well as countless addictions and deaths occurring from unnecessary, harmful products produced by the pharmaceutical companies, enriching the Bush/Clinton syndicate.
Here's a look at some of the better known cannabinoids:
THCA: tetrahydrocannbinolic acid. This is the most abundant phytocannabinoid found in cannabis. It is non-psychoactive. The molecule is identical to THC with the exception of a Carboxylic acid (COOH) group attached to it. It appears to hold great promise as an anti-oxidant and it's full medical benefits are still yet to be shown through scientific study. Once inside the body, there is almost zero conversion of THCA into THC, meaning the value of the medicine can be realized without the "high" that users experience.
THC: tetrahydrocannbinol. The famous psychoactive molecule of cannabis. Very little THC is found naturally in the cannabis plant. THC is produced when heat or time causes the COOH group to be knocked off of the THCA molecules. In smoked cannabis, the combustion converts a percentage of THCA into THC, causing the psychoactive effects. In eaten cannabis, cooking causes this. THC has been shown to have many positive effects in killing diseases. THC acts like anandamide as an agonist upon the CB1 receptor found throughout the central and peripheral nervous systems, giving it its psychoactive properties.
CBD: Cannabidiol. CBD is the second most abundant phytocannabinoid found in cannabis. It is the molecule that appears to hold the most medicinal properties found in cannabis. Though considered non-psychoactive, studies have shown CBD to have an antagonist role on the CB1 receptor, meaning it prevents or inhibits THC or anandamide from effecting the neurons carrying the CB1 receptor. Cannabis strains high in CBD such as Charlette's Web are in extreme demand due to the medical benefits of this molecule.
CBN: Cannabinol. CBN is not produced directly by the cannabis plant, but is produced when THC degrades over time. It is identical in structure to THC but with a butyl (4 carbon) chain instead of the pentyl (5 carbon) chain in THC. CBN is considered to be non-psychoactive but does act as an agonist on the CB2 receptor found throughout the peripheral nervous system possibly giving a "body high" some users experience. The CB2 receptor is not found in the central nervous system.
THCV: thetrahydrocannabivarin. Found more in sativa dominate strains, THCV is identical to THC and CBN except it has a propyl (3 carbon) chain instead of the butyl and pentyl chains found in CBN and THC respectively.
CBG: Cannabigerol. CBG is non-psychoactive. But it has been attributed to lowering intra-ocular pressure thereby reducing the harmful effects of glaucoma. Not many studies have focused on the effects of CBG.
CBC: Cannabichromene. Another non-psychoactive cannabinoid. Studies are being done to study anti-viral and anti-inflammatory effects of CBC.
Cannabinoid absorption into the body:
Cannabinoids are hydrophobic, meaning they are repelled by water and will not dissolve in water. It is very difficult to get high from cannabis tea, as the water prevents the cannabinoids from dissolving and absorbing into the bloodstream. However, cannabinoids will dissolve into fatty acids. Adding cream or milk to cannabis tea will greatly increase the absorption rate.
Because cannabinoids dissolve into fatty acids, and fatty acids are readily absorbed into the lymphatic system (the body loves fatty acids, and many of them bypass the bloodstream directly by going into the lymphatic system for faster utilization), this is the best way to make use of your medicine. Heat is a prerequisite to activating the psychoactive effects of cannabis, as raw cannabis will not get you high. If you would like to activate the psychoactive effects of cannabis, you must heat it before ingestion.
What I do is go to the store and get some cannabis oil concentrate (plant matter will work too, but it's harder to know the dose). I then get coconut oil for preparing the medicine (most oils or butters or creams will do, I prefer coconut oil). Most of the time, I prefer to activate the psychoactive effects for relaxation. If not, I'll heat up the coconut oil just enough to make it liquid (80 degrees) so the cannabinoids will dissolve, but I don't get high. To activate the psychoactive effects I'll put the equivalent in cannabis oil of about 100mg of THC into a shot glass full of coconut oil (the proper amount is extremely variable from person to person, know how much you personally can handle. Too much WILL NOT be enjoyable). I'll then place the shot glass in a partially filled pot of water (careful to keep the water out of the shot glass) and let simmer for about 20 minutes. This will decarboxylate the THCA into THC and activate the "high" users experience. After ~20 min of simmering, I will let the shot glass cool. Usually I'll speed up the cooling process by adding a bit of cold water to the simmering water. If you use purely cold water, you may end up cooling the glass too much causing it to crack, ruining the contents inside. Once cool, you have a fully prepared single dose of medicine, take the shot. I like this method because the simmering water guarantees the heat won't get over 212 degrees. Higher heats are not necessary. Plus it reminds me of the movie "Menace to Society." There are better ways to prepare it, but this one works for me and the main principles are communicated in the recipe.
This recipe is only for a single dose, but the ingredients can be extrapolated to make larger amounts. Just make sure you know how much you have in your final product. The stores label THC content, and this label is usually proportional to how much it will effect you. This single dose will last me the entire rest of the day if taken right after work and will be effective in treating my insomnia when I go to bed that night without further medication.
-cannabinoids are hydrophobic and will not dissolve in water, nor be efficiently absorbed into the body without fatty acids.
-Raw cannabis will not be psychoactive, to activate the psychoactive effects, heat must be applied.
-liquid fatty acids dissolve the cannabinoids making the readily absorbable inside the gastrointestinal tract.
Pro-tip: Dark Chocolate contains anandamide, the endocannabinoid found in your body. Eating a bar of dark chocolate will add to the pleasurable effects of cannabis. Another neurotransmitter found in dark chocolate is oxytocin, afeel good drug. It also includes phenylalanine, which is an essential amino acid used in dopamine production.
And now you know how to properly prepare your medicine. Happy medication everyone! "The more you know..."
For more about the medical benefits of cannabis, YouTube videos of Dr. Bob Melamede and visit his University of Colorado at Colorado Springs page here: http://www.uccs.edu/~rmelamed/
Also be on the look out for the documentary "Run From the Cure II: Run 2 the Cure" which should be released later this year. Rick Simpson opened my eyes years ago to the corruption suppressing this medicine with his original documentary. See:
PS: I must express my disappointment in the cannabis market in Colorado. The state has instituted such ridiculous taxes and are further trying to regulate it so much it pisses me off. My DP friends can understand this. Prices are 3 times higher than before the legal market. And higher than in other states' black markets. Direct sales taxes are 25%, but because the Feds won't allow the business to deduct legitimate business expenses, the effective tax is probably closer to 60-80%. People are still getting shot and killed in Colorado attempting to sell marijuana on the black market. See: http://www.startribune.com/politics/national/253860141.html. Further, the state is spending millions of dollars on TV ads informing people they can't drive high, as if this is some new phenomenon that wouldn't exist in a black market. These ads make cannabis users out to be a bunch of morons that can't perform the most basic tasks. My post above shatters the conventional image of a pot head in my opinion.
EDIT: To be clear, when I use the term "raw cannabis" I simply mean the plant material all by itself, unheated. If you take raw cannabis, and mix it with oil or some sort of fatty acid base, this is how you unlock the medical benefits. If you then heat that, you unlock the psychoactive effects. HEATING IS NOT NECESSARY FOR MEDICAL BENEFITS. And unheated, prepared cannabis is preferable for people that don't want the "high" associated with use.