THC!

Last updated on October 23, 2020

So THC!, what is it? Where does it come from? and most importantly, what does it do?

THC is a Cannabinoid just like CBD is, it is naturally occurring in a Cannabis plant and THC stands for Tetrahydrocannabinol.

Image Credit: Google

THC & CBD are just 2 of 113 known Phytocannabinoids. Did you know that a Cannabis plant has over 700 compounds!! That includes Cannabinoids, Terpenes, Flavonoids and others.

There are a few different ways these compounds can be extracted.

Super critical C02 extraction, Ethanol which is a solvent process and Hydrocarbon extraction

The video below will explain these 3 processes a lot easier than I’m able to.

Credit to: Precision Extraction Solutions

Benefits

Now that we know what THC is and where it comes from it’s time to talk about the most exciting part which is the benefits.

One of the top benefits of THC is the Pain Relief aspect. Studies have found that THC activates pathways in the central nervous system that block pain signals from being sent to the brain. In 2013 there was an FDA Approved trial that took place and confirmed that THC is effective for pain relief.

The next benefit is that THC is eases Nausea and Vomiting. Fun fact: Did you know that there has been an FDA Approved medicine that has been around since the 1980’s that was marketed as a pharmaceutical alternative to Cannabis. Marinol is a synthetic THC medicine made from isolated, synthesised THC. Marinol was marketed to help cancer patients with the vomiting and nausea side effects of chemotherapy. It contains no other compounds, Cannabinoids or Terpenes.

Even though Marinol may seem effective, if you read my last blog you would know that we touched on the Entourage Effect, this means that when the compounds of cannabis work together synergystically they are much more powerful.

More benefits

The next benefit is of THC is that it is neuroprotective. This means that it can protect your brain cells from potential damage. Here’s an example that will blow your mind, astudy done in 2014 found that people with THC in their systems were 80% less likely to die from a traumatic head injury than people without THC in their system. Crazy right!

Another benefit is that THC aids sleep. Studies done in the 1970’s showed that THC helped insomniacs fall asleep faster, Recent studies and research also suggests that it may reduce sleep interuptions by improving breathing.

The next benefit of is that it can help with symptoms of PTSD such as aggitation, depression, insomnia, flashbacks, nightmares and anxiety.

Next up is Appetite. Research shows that Ghrelin, (which is the hormone that stimulates hunger) originates from the CB1 receptors. THC will bind with those receptors which increases appetite.

Another benefit of THC is that it is Anti Bacterial. The Cannabis plant actually produces THC to protect itself from pathogens, and several studies suggest that it may do the same for humans and animals.

Credit: Great hemp .net

And more benefits

The next benefit is that THC is a very potent Anti Oxidant. We all know how important anti oxidants are since they protect the body from oxidative stress related damage. Oxidative stress can cause damage on a cellular and DNA level meaning it can cause cancer, neurodegenerative disorders and other serious illnesses.

Next is Anti inflammatory. Cytokine and Chemokine are immune compounds that trigger inflammation. THC combats the inflammation by decreasing the production of these 2 proteins.

Another benefit is that it is a Bronchodilator, this means that THC helps to open airways in your lungs. Research dating back to 1975 gave evidence that THC has the ability to ease Asthma attacks.

THC is also a muscle relaxant, which is really helpful for people with MS that suffer from muscle spasticity, pain and cramping. There is actually another Cannabis based medicine on the market that’s been available for the last 30 years. That is Sativex, it’s hard to get on prescription but can and will begrudgingly be prescibed to patients with Multiple Sclerosis.

Sativex contains CBD & THC as well as 2 other ingredients.

https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/602/smpc#gref

https://www.gwpharm.co.uk/healthcare-professionals/sativex#

Last one

Now the last benefit on my list (this list is not exhaustive there are many more amazing benefits) is that THC is an Anti Tumor Agent. This is a HUGE one. Cannabis is definitely making wave where cancer research is involved.

Dr Gregory Smith who is a Harvard trained physician states that there seem to be 3 ways in which THC affects cancer cells. The first is through a process called Apoptosis. This is an immune function that triggers cells to self destruct when they are damaged, diseased or dead. Apoptosis is a form of programmed cell death.

The second way is that THC can block a tumour from forming blood vessels, this starves the tumour from a food and oxygen supply. And the third way is that in some cases THC can stop cancer cells from metastasizing, which means it prevents a cancer cell from leaving the colony of other cancer cells and going and forming its own new metastatic area in the body.

That’s pretty amazing if you ask me!!

Cell Apoptosis – Credit: www. biocompare .com

For more on Apoptosis check out this link. https://www.biocompare.com/Editorial-Articles/332620-Monitoring-Apoptosis-by-Flow-Cytometry/

Sources

Thank you so much for reading. If you have any questions or anything you would like to add please comment below.

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Please Note

  • I am not a Doctor.
  • The MHRA or the FDA have not evaluated any of these statements.
  • I do not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
  • Do not use this information to replace your doctor’s advice. 

Cover Photo credit: Remedy columbia .com

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