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Risk Associated With Medical Use Of Marijuana


Although marijuana is known to be a potent medicine with several properties, it is not an entirely beneficial substance. While smoking marijuana is definitely harmful, the other undesirable consequences owing to the use of the herb can be found in the assortment of consequences endured for other remedies. Significantly, while the harmful physical effects from the abuse of the drug are virtually same in all individuals, the adverse affects on individuals owing to potential medical use of marijuana many not inevitably be the same. It may be mentioned here that most of the studies on marijuana that assert using the substance is harmful, are basically based on smoking marijuana because it is virtually impossible to detach the effects of cannabinoids (the active substances found in cannabis) from those of breathing in the smoke from the smoldering plant substance and noxious wastes.

In general it has been seen that the basic unfavorable effect on people owing to excessive use of marijuana is retarded mental and physical activities also known as psychomotor performance. Hence, it is advisable that none should drive any vehicle or operate any machinery under the influence of marijuana. It also applies in the case of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or any other drugs prepared from the active substances present in cannabis as all these have similar effects. Apart from this, there are a few marijuana users who suffer from dysphoria or horrible feelings. It may be mentioned here that though the short-term immunosuppressive properties of marijuana are still not proved, but it is believed that even if such properties are real, they are unlikely to stop the legal medical use of the herb or its extracts.

The unceasing or chronic consequences owing to the use of marijuana are of immense apprehension for the substance's medical use and can be categorized into two groups - influences of unremitting smoking and concerns of THC. Studies have established that smoking marijuana is directly linked with the anomalies of the cells found in the inside layer of the human respiratory system. What is worse is the fact that like the tobacco smoke, marijuana smoke is also related to greater hazards of cancer, lung injuries and problems during pregnancy and child birth. While all cellular, genetic as well as human studies imply that the smoke of marijuana is vital in increasing the risk factor of developing cancer of the respiratory tract, well-planned studies are yet to ascertain whether smoking marijuana regularly leads to cancer or not. Nevertheless, several studies in the past have proposed that the marijuana smoke is a significant factor in resulting to other respiratory diseases.

It may be noted here that several studies have found that the prototypes in evolution of drug use from one's teenage years to later life are conspicuously normal. Since marijuana is the most extensively used illegal drug, it is also inevitably the first banned medicine that most people come across. What is interesting is that some studies have found that most people who use other illicit drugs have used marijuana foremost. The fact remains that most users of most medicaments (substances used to treat an illness) usually begin with alcohol and nicotine and then switch over to marijuana even before they attain the legal age.

Marijuana is often known as the ‘gateway' drug owing to the fact that most people begin using illicit drugs by smoking marijuana first. Thus, it may be said that illicit drug usage begins with marijuana and not with any other substance. Only juvenile tobacco smoking and alcohol consumption precede marijuana. Incidentally, there is no concrete evidence to substantiate that the consequences of marijuana use is anyway associated with the ensuing abuse of other unlawful drugs. Here is a word of caution. The data regarding the evolution of drug use should not be taken for granted to be applicable for drugs taken for remedial reasons. At the same time, it would not be right to assume that if marijuana was offered by prescription for medical use, the prototype of drug use would have been the same as it is now vis-à-vis use of illicit drugs.

Before concluding, it would be worthwhile to mention that there is a general public apprehension that if the authorities approve the medical use of marijuana, it is likely that more and more people would begin to use the substance. However, there is no data available to substantiate this social concern. Presently, data available offers a view that sanctioning medical use of marijuana would not pose a problem for the society if it is also strongly controlled as is the case for the potential abuse of other medicines.

The existing data on drug use development is silent on the issue. It neither espouses nor discards the idea that approval of medical use of marijuana would enhance the misuse of the substance. Nevertheless, this issue is in no way related to the therapeutic use of medicaments and should not be considered as an aspect for assessing the remedial prospective of either cannabinoids or marijuana.

Marijuana seed oil

As the oil extracted from marijuana seeds contains substantial amount of essential fatty acids (EFAs), like the linseed oil, it was also used in paint. When the EFAs come in contact with oxygen the reaction leads to the formation of a dehydrated thin coating. The oil is beneficial when painting items made from wood or other materials as they form a tremendously tough coating over these materials and protect them from degeneration by wind, water, salt water as well as sunlight. The coating formed with the marijuana seed oil also retards the corrosion of these materials when left open to the forces of the weather. Interestingly, long before electricity was exploit to generate light, marijuana seed oil was also used to light up lamps.

Incidentally, the account regarding the use of marijuana seed oil in foods and that of flax is quite comparable. To be used in food, the flax seed oils needed to be acquired from fresh seeds and it was important to use up the substance within two weeks of manufacture as there wasn't any superior technology to prepare the oil or any refrigeration system to store it for long. In fact, obtaining oil from marijuana seeds is a more difficult process than acquiring flax oil simply because the marijuana seeds are comparatively tougher to be crushed by machinery. Nevertheless, the oil obtained from the marijuana seeds has been found to be one of the more balanced or stable EFA oils offered by nature. This is owing to the fact that the oil processed from the marijuana seeds not only comprises the right percentage of EFAs that makes it suitable for long-term use, but also because it also encloses GLA.

It may, however, be mentioned here that obtaining marijuana seeds is relatively hard as it needs to be imported from China, India or Europe where the plant is cultivated without using chemicals to kill pests. Even if you have succeeded in importing the marijuana seed, it is important that you fumigate the seeds to eliminate all unknown pests that the consignment may carry. Fumigating the seeds helps in getting rid of the foreign pest as the process is fiery compelling the pests to disappear. Tests conducted after the fumigation of the imported marijuana seeds have shown no noticeable remains of the pests at the standard detection limit, i.e. 50 parts in every billion. If one desires to cultivate marijuana following the ‘organic' instructions, it is essential to grow the plants locally. Unfortunately, all the good features and its commercial prospective notwithstanding, cultivation of marijuana have been banned in North America. However, the oil extracted from marijuana seeds and the steamed seeds of the plant are considered legal in the continent. The governments in North America have also considers the marijuana fiber, cloth and rope to be legal. At the same time, all marijuana seeds that can be sprouted are considered illegal as people may misuse them to grow marijuana plants. All such precautions have been initiated because the marijuana leaves and flowers contain traces of the drug tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) - the chief vigorous amalgam found in cannabis.

It may be mentioned here that when the marijuana seeds are steamed, they crack open leading to oxidation of some of the oil extract. In such cases, the peroxide value (PV) - a calculation of the amount of rancidity of any oil - being 0.1 to 0.5 that is the normal rancidity while obtaining the oil by cautious pressings, the PV level goes up to approximately 6 or 7. Although this high PV is still safe and retains the oil's taste, the rise in the PV owing to oxidation has made it all the more important to legalize the marijuana seeds. On the other hand, flax oil having a PV of 2 to 3 is bad to experience. Incidentally, the PV of natural olive oil is approximately 20 and the PV of unprocessed corn oil may even be around 40 to 60!



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