Scientists have proven that cannabis helps the body's natural chemicals work better when fighting pain and uncomfortable symptoms like nausea. It gets pretty technical reading about neuron sensors and brain receptors, but the research is solid. The genus Cannabis contains two species which produce psychoactive cannabinoids and are used in herbal medicine. Both Cannabis indica and Cannabis sativa are very useful in alternative medicine. Too bad they are listed as Schedule One medicinal plants in the US (along with heroin and cocaine) making them illegal to possess. A third species, Cannabis ruderalis, has few psychogenic properties but is useful for making hemp rope. The Cannabis plant has a history of medicinal use dating back thousands of years and across many cultures. Since ancient humans used hemp seed as food, it was quite natural for them to also discover that the plant contained medicinal properties. Ancient Egyptian scrolls from 1550 B.C. mention medical cannabis. The writings describe adding cannabis to suppositories for relieving the pain of hemorrhoids. In ancient India, cannabis was used for treating insomnia, headaches, gastrointestinal disorders, and pain. The Ancient Greeks used cannabis leaves to treat nose bleeds and cannabis seeds to expel tapeworms. In the medieval Islamic world, physicians used cannabis to treat edema, epilepsy, inflammation, and pain. It's no surprise that marijuana has healing powers, but whether or not using it to treat common ailments should be legalized continues to be a hot topic of debate among government leaders and medical practitioners alike. Marijuana comes from the cannabis plant, an herb whose leaves can be extracted and used as a recreational drug, allowing users to feel a euphoric high. But the cannabis plant has many non-psychoactive properties as well. Cannabidiol, also known as CBD is a substance extracted from the cannabis plant that has been proven to have all the healing powers of marijuana without the psychoactive properties.
Cannabis and its psychoactive cannabinoid, THC, are considered incredibly safe for human consumption. The Drug Awareness Warning Network Annual Report, published by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), contains a statistical compilation of all drug deaths which occur in the United States. According to this report, there has never been a death recorded from the use of cannabis. In fact, many studies show it is physically impossible for a human to die from a cannabis overdose. The documented use of cannabis as a safe and effective therapeutic botanical dates to 2700 BC. Between 1840 and 1900, European and American journals of medicine published more than 100 articles on the therapeutic use of cannabis. In fact, cannabis was part of the American pharmacopoeia until 1942, and is currently available by prescription in Canada, the Netherlands, Israel, and Germany.