Cannabinoids: The Other Vitamin ‘C’?

August 18, 2016

Throughout the nation, one of the hottest social and political discussions right now is whether or not we should legalize marijuana. I believe that when examining what is known about the utility and the importance of the marijuana plant, specifically as it relates to health, it becomes clear what a grave mistake it is to deprive ourselves of this truly nutrient rich plant.

I believe that its cannabinoid compounds meet the definition of “vitamins”, not just any vitamin, but a vitamin that may be necessary for controlling our bodies ability to eliminate cancerous cells, in addition to supporting numerous bodily functions.

It’s worth pointing out that this post is not about marijuana or hemp’s numerous other uses as a food, fuel, or fiber.

What is a vitamin?

A vitamin is defined as “any of a group of organic compounds that are essential for normal growth and nutrition and are required in small quantities in the diet because they cannot be synthesized by the body.”

What is a “non-essential” vitamin?

A non-essential vitamin is an organic compound that is necessary for normal growth and function, that can be produced within our bodies.

What is a cannabinoid?

Cannibinoids are chemical compounds which act on cell receptors (CB 1) and (CB 2) within the body. In a normal, healthy state, the human body can produce two chemicals, possibly more, which act on these receptors: anadamide and 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG).These are called “endogenous cannabinoids”. Outside of the body, the hemp or marijuana plant are known to produce a number of forms of cannabinoids (phytocannabinoids), such as THC, or CBD, which also act on these receptors. These are called “exogenous cannabinoids”, or phytocannabinoids.

What do cannabinoids do?

Cannabinoids have been found to profoundly influence the immune system, with CB1 exerting its activity primarily through the brain and central nervous system, and CB2 exerting its influence over the gut, lymphatic system, spleen, pancreas, endocrine system, bone and peripheral nervous system.

Due to the broad range of tissues which demonstrate cannabinoid receptors, cannabinoids are reported to have near panacea type benefits, both anecdotally as well as from orthodox science. Perhaps most notably, cannabinoids demonstrate broad range anti-cancer benefits at even low doses, however some experts indicate that high doses are needed in the oral form (not smoked) for anti-cancer benefits. Also notable, are the reports of cannabinoids being effective in the treatment or management of autoimmune conditions.

Given the connection between disruptions in the gut lining and virtually every autoimmune condition known to man(7), one would expect to find some sort of regulatory action of cannabinoids in maintaining gut lining integrity, and research is clearly showing that to be the case.

Currently, the governmental scientific research repository, pubmed ,returns nearly 12,000 research papers on the search term “cannabinoids”. Clearly, the scientific community recognizes something very important here.

It’s worth noting that the US government owns a patent on cannabinoids due to their proven anti-oxidant and neuro-protective effects, which should seem odd since one of the prime justifications for not allowing medical marijuana to be legal in every state is that our governmental overlords claim that marijuana lacks medicinal value.

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