We know that weed has many benefits. It’s been widely used to treat chronic pain. Its anti-inflammatory properties are also well established. The popularity of medical marijuana is largely attributed to the numerous health benefits the drug offers. And while there isn’t enough research to prove all these claims, scientists are hard at work trying to prove (or disprove) the potential of weed use to the overall health of the body. Here are a few surprising health benefits that are associated with weed use.
- Weight Loss
This news might come off as a surprise seeing as how people normally associate marijuana use with eating, but a recent study has suggested that marijuana users have a lower body weight than non-users. THC, a compound found in cannabis plants affects appetite in users leading to a feeling of being famished. But the study states that despite weed’s effect on appetite, it does not lead to weight gain. In another study, it was concluded that those who regularly consume cannabis has a lesser chance of gaining weight than those that don’t consume it.
- Exercise Motivation
Building on to the premise that weed use affects weight loss, it can also motivate people into exercising more. In a survey conducted by researchers from the University of Colorado Boulder, it’s been found out that many regular weed users use it before and after their exercises. They claim that it lessens the pain they feel during gym time motivating them to push harder. And weed also aids in the recovery period, particularly in lessening the muscle and joint aches after a particularly hard workout.
- Great for Tourette’s Syndrome
Tourette’s Syndrome is a debilitating neurological disorder that’s characterized by repetitive, involuntary vocalization or movements, often referred to as tics. These tics vary in severity, some that are covert while others impeded the daily life of those afflicted. A recent study found out that weed can mitigate some, if not all, tics associated with the disorder. The subjective and objective measure showed that there is a marked improvement in the severity and frequency of verbal and motor tics after weed treatment.
- A Cure for Diabetes?
As the number one leading cause of death in the world, there is a significant push to prevent and cure diabetes. The causes of diabetes and why its prevalence is increasing is complex, but sources point to an increase in the rate of obesity and lack of exercise worldwide. Marijuana is the secret cure for diabetes is largely based on anecdotal accounts but this has led to more pressure to investigate this claim scientifically. Despite this, marijuana can be used to address the symptoms common in diabetic patients. It can help stabilize blood sugar levels. It can help lower inflammation in the arteries for better blood circulation. It can reduce neuropathic pain, a common complication in diabetes. And it can help keep blood vessels open which helps reduce blood pressure and improve circulation.
- Treating Glaucoma
Glaucoma is a condition that involves a build-up of pressure inside the eye that results in the damage of the retina. In most cases, unaddressed glaucoma can lead to vision loss and permanent blindness. It is the leading cause of vision loss, affecting approximately 10% of the world’s population. There is no known cure for glaucoma. However, there are medications and procedure to slow its onset or stop its progression. But it seems like those who suffer from this disease will soon have an answer in an unlikely drug, weed. Among medical marijuana users, a huge chunk seeks the drug for treating glaucoma symptoms. Research findings even back in the 70s have found out that THC found in weed can help reduce intraocular pressure that leads to glaucoma. Patients also prefer using weed over conventional glaucoma medication because it has far lesser side-effects.
The full potential of the health benefits of weed is still up for debate. The fact that it is only in recent years that more and more states and countries around the world lifted their ban on the drug means it is only now that researches about the plant were approved. Initial findings, however, point to the direction that marijuana offers more good than bad. Only time will tell.