It's time for a change

A lot of controversy continues to surround cannabis. Largely due to the fact it is on the federal list of controlled substances. But, an article I read in the Washington Post July 9, sheds new light on the way some Democrats are working to elevate its status from dangerous gateway drug. As reported, text of the amendment says: “Because of conflicting laws concerning marijuana, both on the federal and state levels, we encourage the federal government to remove marijuana from its list as a Class 1 Federal Controlled Substance, providing a reasoned pathway for future legalization."

Now although getting the status changed is by no means a done deal. There are still a lot of hoops to jump through, and we all know the political path will not be smooth. But, I’m optimistic. If this amendment were to take wings, it would be great news and a step in the right direction to helping many people with debilitating illnesses.

Medical marijuana and CBD oil have been more widely studied in other countries than in the United States. These studies have shown the benefits of marijuana and CBD oil for physical and mental illnesses. Maybe once the stigma has been dialed back, American researchers can get on with the business of finding evidence-based medicinal value in cannabis.

There are already many people who know the benefits, but without the evidence-based studies, their knowledge is irrelevant in the eyes of the medical community and beyond. But, consider individuals with epilepsy whose seizures are decreased, or cancer patients whose symptoms of nausea and vomiting during chemotherapy are eliminated. In fact, according to the American Cancer Society, “Recently, scientists reported that THC and other cannabinoids such as CBD slow growth and/or cause death in certain types of cancer cells growing in laboratory dishes. Some animal studies also suggest certain cannabinoids may slow growth and reduce spread of some forms of cancer.”

There is also evidence that depression, glaucoma, insomnia, post-traumatic stress disorder, some heart conditions and Alzheimer’s Disease can be treated effectively without many of the side effects that come with sanctioned medications.

So the value of marijuana and CBD products is real. We just need the pass that will allow researchers to study these products so they can be prescribed to those who need it.