New from Budder Pros: Chocolate Pudding Mix.
Just add your milk and enjoy!
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New from Budder Pros: Chocolate Pudding Mix.
Just add your milk and enjoy!
Now available in Albuquerque and Grants.
Get them soon — they won’t last long!
A bill that would allow the use of medical cannabis at schools zoomed off the Senate floor Monday afternoon.
Senate Bill 204, co-sponsored by Sens. Candace Gould, R-Albuquerque, and Jacob Candelaria, D-Albuquerque, and Rep. Gail Armstrong, R-Socorro, would allow children who are qualified patients to use the medicine in school settings and permit school personnel to administer it.
With little discussion, 35 senators voted to pass and two did not.
Gould told Senators the bill addresses the problem of students choosing between going to school every day and taking their medicine.
"My constituent came to me, torn between using medicine that's working more effectively for her child's epilepsy with less side effects than the Valium she was using and being able to go to school," she said.
That constituent is Lindsay Sledge, whose daughter Paloma uses cannabis oil regularly to control severe seizures.
Sledge has been pushing to change the law in the state.
Sledge told the Journal she's "very excited" about the Senate's approval of the legislation.
"I'm sort of blown away by the amount of support we've had for the bill," she said. "When I first started doing this whole process, I had several people say this was going to be next to impossible."
Sen. Antoinette Sedillo Lopez, D-Albuquerque, supported the bill during Monday's debate, saying it addresses a problem across the state.
"Since it is the policy of this state to support medical marijuana this is an opportunity to let our schools know that they need to support it for our children as well," she said.
There are currently 175 other children in the state using medical cannabis, Gould said.
Sen. Pat Woods, R-Broadview, who voted not to pass the bill, pushed on SB 204 because it did not appropriate money for storing the medicine.
Gould said the medical cannabis probably would be locked up with other prescription medicines that are allowed on school campuses now.
The bipartisan bill approaches the use of medical cannabis at school much like the use of other drugs at schools.
But districts are allowed to opt out if they can determine they'd lose federal funding because marijuana remains illegal under federal law. SB 204 has a provision that allows parents to appeal to the state Public Education Department if districts are exempted from allowing the medicine at school.
The bill now heads to the House.
"I'm hopeful it will pass its next step quickly," Sledge said.
Courtesy of Las Cruces Sun.
Legislation is pending, House Bill 356, to permit the use, possession, and retail sale of cannabis for adults 21 and over.A separate proposal is also pending to permit adult use marijuana sales, Senate Bill 577, with retail stores being regulated and operated by the state government as opposed to being privately operated.
Statewide polling data shows that 60 percent of likely voters support legislation to legalize, regulate and tax marijuana sales to adults 21 and over.
Follow the link to message your lawmakers in support of legalization.
Courtesy of Norml.
Start to finish: 30 minutesYield: 1 ½ cups
*Note: The amount of cannaoil specified in this recipe is a very loose suggestion; the actual amount you use should be modified based on the strength of your butter and the potency you desire. Dosing homemade edibles can be tricky (click here to learn why), so the best way to test for potency is to start with one portion of a serving, wait one to two hours, then make an informed decision on whether to consume more. Always dose carefully and listen to your body, and never drive under the influence of cannabis.
Every Thursday, patients 55 and older receive 15% off their entire purchase at all of our locations.
For those who don’t have big properties or extra space, don’t worry: You don’t need a huge space to grow cannabis. Cannabis is an eager plant that will grow nearly anywhere given the right light and nutrients, making a grow room of any size feasible.
Growing in a tiny space has benefits too, allowing you to produce cannabis discreetly, in case you’re afraid of what the neighbors will think. A small grow also won’t create as much noise from machines or generate as much smell and will therefore attract less attention.A small grow doesn’t necessarily mean small returns, but, you do want to be growing as efficiently as possible. Here are some tips to maximize your tiny space to get the best and biggest returns.
A grow space can be as small as a 2’ x 2’ x 4’ grow tent or as big as a warehouse, but they all have a number of things in common.
Many small-space growers use grow tents, small units where you can grow one to a handful of plants—they can be as small as the size of a laundry hamper. These self-contained units will provide a controllable environment for your plants without the hassle of building out a big grow.
One of the biggest concerns with a tiny grow is lighting. Grow lights run very hot and need to be kept at a safe distance from your plants so they don’t burn buds or leaves. Either the plants must be kept short or your lights need to be elevated—the latter can be hard to pull off in a confined space, so usually plants need to be kept small through topping and pruning.LEDs are changing the game for small-space growing by providing quality full-spectrum light with minimal heat. This allows plants to grow closer to the light source without damage from heat, while also reducing the need for climate-control equipment to bring down the temperature in your grow. It should be noted that LEDs can still burn your plants, but there is less of a risk than with older lights.This will give your plants more room to grow and therefore give you a bigger return when it’s time to harvest.
With a limited space, you can also train your cannabis plants to increase yields. Some effective methods include:
Scrogging is probably your best bet for getting a high return with minimal space. This process involves weaving the stalks and branches of a plant through a screen—mesh sizes usually range from 3-6 inches square—before switching to a flowering light cycle.This spreads out the plant’s branches, allowing all nodes to receive more light and also opening up the plant so that middle and lower branches can receive more light. This will give you a level canopy that will fill out with big colas.Everything below the canopy can be pruned to save energy and keep the space clean and free of pests while the buds have direct exposure to light, increasing your yield.Low-stress training involves tying down parts of the plant to create offshoots that will lead to additional cola sites.A more aggressive method, high-stress training increases cola sites through topping or super cropping to promote an even canopy and increased cola sites.
Sativas, indicas, and hybrids all grow differently. Sativas are known for their lanky growth and more open bud structure, while indicas tend to grow short and stocky and have denser buds. Hybrids can have traits from both.For a tiny grow, indicas will probably be easier to maintain when looking to maximize your space and yield because of their short and stocky nature. Sativas can work too, but you might have to spend more time and attention in pruning them.
Keep in mind that this is a generalization of strains—some indicas grow tall, and some sativas grow short. Be sure to check out Leafly’s strain explorer for growing tips on specific strains.You can also try growing autoflowering cannabis, plants that start flowering when they get to a certain age, rather than when the light changes. They also grow short and small.
The grow medium is the home for roots, which send water and nutrients to the rest of the plant. A quality grow medium is especially important for a tiny grow in order to get the most out of a plant in a cramped condition.Try using complete soils or super soils—they have a majority of the nutrients a plant needs and they allow a plant to efficiently store water for a longer time between waterings.Be sure to include enough soil in your pots to prevent roots from getting bound. Frequently check to see if roots are exposed. If you see them coming out of the drainage holes at the bottom of the pot, it’s time to transplant it to a bigger pot.
A stunted plant that appears droopy even after watering can also be a sign of roots being bound and needing more soil.
Climate control is also crucial in a tiny grow. Ideally you want to maintain a healthy temperature of 70-75 degrees with a relative humidity between 40-75%. Using LED lights will reduce the overall temperature and your need to cool down your grow, but you will still need a fan to pull fresh air into your grow space.Fresh air circulation is crucial to getting high yields, as your plants use CO2 in the process of photosynthesis. Fresh air will give them a boost of growth and will also be effective in cycling new air into your garden while pulling out stale air, keeping the temperature and humidity in check.
Tiny grows can be a lot of fun and will give you insight on the growing process and these methods will improve the quality and yield of your cannabis.https://www.leafly.com/news/growing/tiny-cannabis-grow-space-tips
Island Sweet Skunk, sometimes called Sweet Island Skunk, is a sativa strain that users enjoy for its energetic effects. The flavor is most easily described as “sweet skunk,” where tropical fruit flavors take the lead. Often the fruity aroma is likened to grapefruit.
Users describe the Purple Haze high as one with almost immediate high-energy cerebral stimulation accompanied by an intense sense of creative inspiration and blissful contentment. You may experience a mild body buzz that is warming and spreads from your head and neck throughout the rest of your body. Due to these potent effects, Purple Haze in ideal strain for treating patients suffering from conditions such as fatigue, mild to moderate cases of depression, and chronic stress or anxiety.
Purple Haze has a sweet earthy berry aroma and a pungent berry taste with a hint of spice.
King Tut the strain is a sativa-dominant hybrid (sativa/indica ratio of 80:20) with an uncertain parentage, though it’s known to descend from the legendary sativa-dominant AK-47. The high is cerebral and peppy, making this a good choice for daytime errands, social events, or creative endeavors. Use this strain to treat depression, chronic pain, stress, inflammation, and nausea. King Tut tastes like fresh fruit and flowers and has a sour, Skunky smell.
Senator Ron Wyden has introduced legislation in the Senate — The Marijuana Revenue and Regulation Act— to permit states to establish their own marijuana regulatory policies free from federal interference. In addition to removing marijuana from the United States Controlled Substances Act, this legislation also removes enforcement power from the US Drug Enforcement Administration in matters concerning marijuana possession, production, and sales — thus permitting state governments to regulate these activities as they see fit.Click here to send a message to your lawmakers in support of Senate Bill 420 now!“Senate Bill 420 is another sign that the growing public support for ending our failed war on cannabis consumers nationwide is continuing to translate into political support amongst federal officials,” said NORML Political Director Justin Strekal. “If we are truly going to move our nation towards sensible marijuana policies, the removal of marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act is paramount. Annually, 650,000 Americans are arrested for nothing more than the possession of small amounts of marijuana and now is the time for Congress to once and for all end put an end to the national embarrassment that is cannabis prohibition. With marijuana legalization being supported by a supermajority of Americans while Congress’ approval rating hovers around 20 percent, ending our country’s disastrous prohibition against marijuana would not just be good policy, but good politics.”Upon introduction, Senator Wyden said, “The federal prohibition of marijuana is wrong, plain and simple. Too many lives have been wasted, and too many economic opportunities have been missed. It’s time Congress make the changes Oregonians and Americans across the country are demanding.”Representative Earl Blumenauer, who will carry the House companion legislation, said, “Oregon has been and continues to be a leader in commonsense marijuana policies and the federal government must catch up,” said Blumenauer. “The American people have elected the most pro-cannabis Congress in American history and significant pieces of legislation are being introduced. The House is doing its work and with the help of Senator Wyden’s leadership in the Senate, we will break through.”Legislative text for the Marijuana Revenue and Regulation Act can be found here.Thirty-three states, Washington, D.C. and the U.S. territories of Guam and Puerto Rico have enacted legislation specific to the physician-authorized use of cannabis. Moreover, an estimated 73 million Americans now reside in the ten states where anyone over the age of 21 may possess cannabis legally. An additional fifteen states have passed laws specific to the possession of cannabidiol (CBD) oil for therapeutic purposes.Sixty-eight percent of registered voters “support the legalization of marijuana,” according to national polling data compiled by the Center for American Progress. The percentage is the highest level of support for legalization ever reported in a nationwide, scientific poll.Majorities of Democrats (77 percent), Independents (62 percent), and Republicans (57 percent) back legalization. The results of a 2017 nationwide Gallup poll similarly found majority support among all three groups.To date, these statewide regulatory programs are operating largely as voters and politicians intended. The enactment of these policies have not negatively impacted workplace safety, crime rates, traffic safety, oryouth use patterns. Instead, they have stimulated economic development and created hundreds of millions of dollars in new tax revenue.Specifically, a 2017 report estimates that over 149,000 Americans are now working full-time in the cannabis industry. Tax revenues from states like Colorado, Oregon, and Washington now exceed initial projections. Further, numerous studies have identified an association between cannabis access and lower rates of opioid use, abuse, hospitalizations, and mortality.https://blog.norml.org/2019/02/08/s-420-introduced-to-end-federal-prohibition-and-regulate-marijuana-nationwide/
This day is for all the Seniors 55+ to come in and get 15% of your purchase.
Congressional Democrats are already moving ahead with plans to consider broad changes to federal marijuana laws in 2019.
Whereas the Republican-controlled House for the past several years had blocked votes on most cannabis-related measures, the chamber's new Democratic majority on Wednesday announced it has scheduled a hearing for next week to examine the difficulties that marijuana businesses face in opening and maintaining bank accounts.Titled, “Challenges and Solutions: Access to Banking Services for Cannabis-Related Businesses,” the hearing will take place on February 13 before a subcommittee of the House Financial Services Committee.Although a growing number of states are moving to legalize marijuana for medical or recreational use, cannabis remains federally prohibited. As a result, and despite a 2014 guidance memo released on the topic by the Obama administration aimed at clearing up the issue, many financial services providers remain reluctant to work with the industry out of fear of violating money laundering or drug laws."When we introduced this bill six years ago, we warned that forcing these businesses to deal in cash was threatening public safety. No hearing was given," Rep. Denny Heck (D-WA) said in an email, referring to marijuana banking legislation he and Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) have filed for the past several Congresses.He lamented that Republican leadership didn't schedule a hearing on the proposal even after a security guard at a Colorado dispensary was killed during a robbery."Chairwoman Waters has made it one of her first priorities to address this urgent and overdue issue, demonstrating that she understands the threat to public safety and the need for Congress to act," Heck said of the committee's new leader. "We have a bipartisan proposal to allow well-regulated marijuana businesses to handle their money in a way that is safe and effective for law enforcement to track. I am eager to get to the work of refining it and passing it into law."That a hearing on the issue was in the works was first noted earlier this week by Politico, and Marijuana Moment reported that the full committee is also actively planning to vote on a marijuana banking bill in the coming months.The newly scheduled marijuana hearing is a signal that Democrats intend to move cannabis legislation this year, and is likely to be the first in a series of committee-level actions across the House on the issue."The upcoming hearing presents a real opportunity for the Democratic Party to assert their leadership by finally beginning the conversation on how we end the failed policy of marijuana criminalization," Justin Strekal, political director for NORML, said.While two limited medical cannabis research bills were able to advance out of House committees last year, they never made it to the floor for votes. Meanwhile, Republican leaders consistently prevented members from offering marijuana-related amendments—including ones on banking issues—to larger legislation.In contrast, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) suggested in a memo to party leaders late last year that they pursue a step-by-step approach to legalize marijuana in 2019. His plan recommends that Financial Services and other committees first begin holding hearings on incremental reforms like banking access, research expansion and medical cannabis for military veterans before passing bills on those issues as part of a lead up to ultimately approving broader legislation to formally end federal marijuana prohibition by the end of the year.A House bill to protect banks from being punished for working with state-legal marijuana businesses that Heck and Perlmutter introduced garnered 95 cosponsors in the last Congress, and 20 senators signed onto a companion bill, but neither were given hearings or brought up for votes."Depriving state-legal cannabis businesses of basic banking services and forcing them to operate entirely in cash presents a significant safety risk, not just to those businesses and their employees, but to the public," Don Murphy, director of federal policies for the Marijuana Policy Project, said in an email. "Support for addressing the cannabis banking problem is strong and bipartisan, and it appears Congress may be ready to adopt a real, commonsense solution. Members concerned about public safety should be jumping at the chance to express their support for this legislation."Congress has held only a handful of hearings on marijuana reform issues in recent years, and never before has any come at a time when broad cannabis reform legislation seemed to be conceivably on its way to passage."This hearing is historic for cannabis policy reform advocates, business owners and the banking sector, and could directly lead to the first in what is hopefully a series of positive changes in the 2019 legislative cycle," Morgan Fox, media relations director for the National Cannabis Industry Association, said in an email. "Allowing banks to work with cannabis businesses more easily will benefit public safety, increase transparency, provide more financing options for small businesses and communities that have been targeted by prohibition, and help companies thrive so they can further displace the illicit market."Outside of the two committee markups of cannabis research legislation last year, which were not preceded by formal hearings on the relevant issues, Senate panels have on a few occasions held lengthy discussions on marijuana.In 2013, for example, the Senate Judiciary Committee convened a hearing to dig into the fact that a growing number of states were legalizing marijuana in contrast with federal law.The Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control, which is not a formal standing committee of the body, hosted a discussion on federal marijuana enforcement in 2016. Its two cochairs, Sens. Charles Grassley (R-IA) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), have long been among Congress's most vocal opponents of cannabis reform, though Feinstein began to shift her position last year.Also in 2016, the Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism held a hearing on the risks and potential benefits of medical cannabis, but it did not lead to votes on any marijuana legislation.Meanwhile, pressure to address cannabis banking has been growing. Several top Trump administration officials have indicated they support clarifying the issue.Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, for example, suggested in testimony before a House committee early last year that he supports letting marijuana businesses store their profits in banks.“I assure you that we don’t want bags of cash,” he said. “We do want to find a solution to make sure that businesses that have large access to cash have a way to get them into a depository institution for it to be safe.”In a separate hearing Mnuchin revealed that addressing the issue is at the “top of the list” of his concerns.Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said that the growing gap between state and federal marijuana laws “puts federally chartered banks in a very difficult situation... It would great if that could be clarified."And last month, Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting called on Congress to "act at the national level to legalize marijuana if they want those entities involved in that business to utilize the U.S. banking system."Meanwhile, although many major financial institutions are staying away from the cannabis industry, federal data does show that an increasing number of banks are beginning to work with marijuana growers, sellers, processors and related businesses.It hasn't yet been announced who will be testifying at next week's cannabis banking hearing before the Consumer Protection and Financial Institutions Subcommittee.https://www.forbes.com/sites/tomangell/2019/02/06/the-first-marijuana-hearing-of-the-new-congress-has-been-scheduled/?fbclid=IwAR22s-A1QFcanrQ8rppOX7YW-ylaEQcEaEVPOkeTGvFtB-kTkHuo0D6gv9c#2ff91b281287
The overuse and misuse of opioid medications is major public health problem for which we don’t currently have an effective solution. Nearly 2.5 million Americans struggle with opioid addiction and over 100 people die every day from opioid overdose. Though controversial, more and more evidence is showing that medical cannabis could be a lifesaving component of a strategy to solve to this epidemic.
I recently had the opportunity to work with Sanjay Gupta on the fourth installment of his groundbreaking series on CNN, Weed 4: Pot vs. Pills, which aired last month, helping to explain how cannabis can be a solution to this epidemic.
Thousands of people have used cannabis to help them reduce and replace opioid medications, as demonstrated in numerous recent scientific papers and strongly supported by animal research.Like the reports in the scientific literature, I’ve seen the same positive results firsthand in my medical practices. From a survey of our patients in 2016, of the 542 opioid users who added cannabis:
Cannabis alone isn’t enough to completely solve this epidemic, but we know it can help replace the opioids, improve their safety, and increase adherence to addiction treatment programs.
It’s essential that everyone who is concerned with this problem learn about the potential solution that’s right within reach, so we can make this life-saving treatment available for those dependent on opioids. For this reason, I have created guidelines based on my experience treating chronic pain with cannabis in 8 years of clinical practice, conferring with my colleagues, and closely following the scientific literature. These guidelines apply to patients from any walk of life, including those with chronic pain, PTSD, addiction, non-medical use of opioids, etc.
In How to Use Cannabis to Reduce and Replace Opioid Medications, you’ll find the advantages of adding cannabis, complete with scientific references and specific dosing strategies for successfully relieving the symptoms of opioid withdrawal and enhancing the safety and medical benefits of opioids.The guide includes links to several of my free online cannabis education programs for both patients new to cannabis and experienced cannabis consumers, and other programs that can help improve your likelihood of successfully using cannabis to reduce and replace opioid medications.
This guide is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for diagnostic or treatment purposes. It is not intended to be patient education, does not create any patient-physician relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. I strongly suggest that patients:
Those who are most successful in using cannabis to replace opioid drugs always use a combination of pharmacologic and behavioral interventions. No medication is powerful enough to accomplish this goal on its own. By prioritizing and organizing the proper resources for sleep, exercise, counseling, support groups, and social support, you can ensure your success.If you decide to follow this path of treatment to reduce or replace medications, I want to learn from your experiences. Please share them with me here.https://www.leafly.com/news/health/using-cannabis-to-reduce-opioid-dependence
Pain is the number one reason people seek medical care—and quite possibly medical cannabis—and it affects more people than diabetes, heart disease, and cancer combined. In the clinic, pain is often treated with opioid drugs like OxyContin, Percocet, Vicodin, and Fentanyl. This has traditionally been a first-line treatment approach because they work—at first.
But opioid use has spiraled out of control and we find ourselves amidst an opioid epidemic that cost the U.S. $504 billion in 2015 alone, claims the lives of over 30,000 annually, and damages the quality of life of countless others. Clearly, we must do something to curb the growing opioid epidemic, but unfortunately, it appears that the federal government is ignoring one of its strongest solutions: cannabis.
We know that cannabis is effective in treating chronic pain. We understand its ability to effectively substitute for opioid medication, and that CBD can combat opioid abuse by reducing its rewarding effects. Here, we’ll take a look at how cannabis enhances the effects of opioids—an interaction worth exploring in an era plagued by opioid dependence and overdose.
The original natural painkiller, opium, dates back to 3,400 B.C. in Southwestern Asia. Cannabis followed a half a century later. It’s unclear if they were ever used together to treat pain, but consumers would have found profound pain relief from low doses of both drugs when used together.Science is revealing that the cannabinoid and opioid systems can work synergistically to achieve greater pain relief. This interaction becomes clear when you consume super low-doses of THC or opioids; on their own, these low doses do not relieve pain, but in combination, they do.
For instance, a recent double-blinded, placebo-controlled study (the gold-standard in clinical research) investigated the effects of low-dose cannabis (5.6% THC) and the opioid drug, oxycodone (2.5 mg) on pain thresholds in human subjects. Neither THC nor oxycodone independently affected pain, but when used in combination, participants were able to withstand higher levels of painful stimuli consistent with substantial pain reductions.To achieve these pain-relieving effects, could THC’s primary target, cannabinoid type I (CB1) receptors, and opioid receptors be working together? There’s evidence that they do.Take mice that have been genetically engineered to not express CB1 receptors (that’s right, you can create mice without CB1 receptors!). These mice enjoy nicotine, amphetamines, cocaine, and they’ll eagerly press a lever to self-administer these drugs. But they won’t do it for the opioid drug, heroin. Normal mice do, but not the mice without CB1 receptors. This tells us that CB1 receptors are important in the euphoric effects of heroin. Extending these findings to pain, blocking the activity of CB1 receptors weakensmorphine’s ability to reduce pain.
So CB1 receptors are important in opioid drugs’ ability to make you feel good and reduce pain.These are two critical elements driving the opioid epidemic and an integral component of the pain experience. After all, pain is subjective. The severity of pain is determined by numerous factors including:
Opioid medications predominately target two of these factors. First, they weaken the strength of the pain signals from the site of injury to your brain, and second, they improve your mood by boosting levels of the pleasurable dopamine chemical.
These dual effects make stopping opioid use difficult, especially when repeated opioid use leads to long-term brain changes that reduce the number of opioid receptors in the brain and body. Lower numbers of opioid receptors enable stronger pain signals to enter your brain and reduces the levels of mood-boosting dopamine. This is the phenomenon of tolerance, which leads to increased opioid consumption, the transition to stronger drugs, and increased risk for overdose and death.
Pain signals begin at the site of injury, then make their way into the spinal cord and travel up to the brain. After exiting the spinal cord, they activate brain cells in critical pain processing regions including the periaqueductal gray, thalamus, and cortex. If you were to design a pain medication, you’d try to (a) weaken pain signals as they enter and exit the spinal cord and (b) dampen their effect in the brain.CB1 receptors and opioid receptors, specifically the µ-opioid receptors that modulate pain, are found expressed together in the spinal cord, the periaqueductal gray, and the brain’s reward centers. That is, you find these two receptors together in all the places that are important in pain relief.
Once activated by either opioids or cannabinoids, they share many common downstream signaling features. In fact, if you activate one receptor, it affects how the other one responds. This has led many to believe that the CB1 and µ-opioid receptors physically interact. The consequence of this interaction depends on where in the brain they’re found, but in some cases, it means that their co-activation by low amounts of drug leads to a stronger effect than what would be predicted by activating either CB1 or opioid receptors on their own.While the physical interaction between CB1 and opioid receptors is likely important for the pain-relieving effects of cannabis and opioids, cannabis can enhance the effect of opioids by also increasing the body’s endogenous opioid levels, themselves. The effect is reciprocal; THC can increase opioid levels to help relieve pain, and using drugs to boost the body’s own opioid levels enhances THC’s pain-relieving effects.
So, taken together, cannabis can increase opioid’s pain-relieving effects by modulating opioid-receptor signaling directly through physical interaction between CB1 and opioid receptors, and by increasing the body’s own opioid levels.
THC’s other primary target, the CB2 receptor, can also interact with the opioid system but these effects are less well-studied. The greatest evidence for CB2’s effects on opioid signaling occurs at the site of injury, where activating CB2 receptors stimulates the release of endogenous opioids to help dampen the pain where it starts. As discussed in part one of this series, CB2 receptors play a large role in regulating inflammation.https://www.leafly.com/news/health/how-opioids-marijuana-work-together-for-pain-relief
SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) - For the first time this session, lawmakers are taking a stab at legalizing recreational marijuana in the state.The bill, sponsored by House Democrats, would make it legal for anyone 21 and over to possess up to two ounces of pot.It also provides for a person to grow up to six mature plants in their home.
The law would allow towns and cities to ban the sale of pot, but they could not ban the use or growing of marijuana in private homes.The bill will have to clear two House communities to be heard on the House floor.
Courtesy of KRQE.
Chronic pain can be an incredibly debilitating condition. For many who live with it on a daily or near daily basis, the condition can be so oppressive, it affects other parts of their lives, impacting their mood, health, and overall well-being. Unfortunately, many treatment options are only nominally effective. Worse, commonly prescribed drugs like opioids are highly addictive and potentially toxic; 28,000 people died from an opioid overdose in 2014, more than any other year in history. No wonder a growing number of the estimated one in five Americans who suffer from chronic pain are turning to cannabis as an alternative.
While many people believe cannabis to be an effective treatment, what does the science say? Is it really more effective and safer than other drugs? Fortunately, when it comes to cannabis and cannabinoid-based formulations, chronic pain is one of the best studied conditions. However, the causes of chronic pain are diverse. Moreover, chronic pain can be nociceptive or neuropathic. Nociceptive pain is caused by tissue damage or inflammation. Neuropathic pain is caused by nervous system damage or malfunction.
Everyone’s biology is unique and will respond differently to cannabis depending on a number of variables, including what type of chronic pain they experience, dosage, strain, and administration method (vaping, edibles, tinctures, etc.).
In a comprehensive, Harvard-led systematic review of 28 studies examining the efficacy of exo-cannabinoids (e.g. synthetic formulations or cannabinoids from the plant) to treat various pain and medical issues, the author concluded, “Use of marijuana for chronic pain, neuropathic pain, and spasticity due to multiple sclerosis is supported by high quality evidence.”Of the studies reviewed, six out of six general chronic pain studies and five out of five neuropathic pain studies found a significant improvement in symptoms among patients. Notably, while most of the studies were limited to synthetic preparations of cannabinoids, three of the five neuropathic pain studies investigated “smoked” cannabis, while two examined an oral spray preparation.
Dr. Donald Abrams, a professor and Chief of Hematology/Oncology at San Francisco General Hospital, supports cannabis to treat chronic pain, suggesting the following:
“Given the safety profile of cannabis compared to opioids, cannabis appears to be far safer. However, if a patient is already using opioids, I would urge them not to make any drastic changes to their treatment protocol without close supervision by their physician.”
North America has been hit hard by the opioid epidemic. Prescriptions have increased 400% percent since 1999, and with this trend a shocking increase in fatal overdoses has followed. Every day, 40 people now die from prescription narcotic overdoses. Many also move on to heroin because it is cheaper, easier to find, and more potent.Could cannabis be part of the solution? Quite possibly. An increasing number of studies provide evidence that many patients can use cannabis instead of opioids to treat their pain, or they can significantly reduce their reliance on opioids.
“We are learning that the higher the dose of opioids people are taking, the higher the risk of death from overdose,” said Dr. Daniel Clauw, one of the study’s researchers and a professor of pain management anesthesiology at the University of Michigan Medical School. “[The] magnitude of reduction in our study is significant enough to affect an individual’s risk of accidental death from overdose.”Kevin Ameling, a chronic pain patient who now works for a Colorado-based non-profit cannabis research advocacy group called the IMPACT Network, is a success story. Ameling believes cannabis saved him from a life of dependency on prescription drugs. In 2007, he suffered a severe fall and was prescribed a cocktail of prescription drugs that included OxyContin, Tramadol, Clonazepam, and Lexapro. The pain became so severe that he had to progressively increase dosage while the OxyContin became less and less effective.
Living in Colorado, he decided to try medical marijuana in 2013. He claims he achieved results immediately and was able to significantly reduce his prescription intake. He cut his OxyContin dosage by 50%, reduced Clonazepam from 3 mg to 0.5 mg, Lexapro from 30 mg to 5 mg, and Tramadol from 300 mg to 75 mg.“It’s hard to express in words what a life changer medical marijuana has been for me,” said Ameling. “I was becoming increasingly worried about having to take higher doses of prescription drugs that can be highly addictive and toxic. Not only was I able to cut back significantly, with cannabis I can often skip the OxyContin with no adverse effects, something I couldn’t do before.”
Ameling added, “Everyone will respond differently. For me, I found smoking can worsen my symptoms, while low dose edibles work the best.”No doubt, the chemical composition of the strain you choose and how you consume will affect the outcome. It may take a little trial and error before you find the most effective cannabis strain, dose, and preferred method of administration for your pain. Most importantly, if you are currently using opioids, exercise extreme caution. A change in treatment protocol should be done under medical supervision.
And, finally, heed the advice of Dr. Michael Hart, head physician at Marijuana for Trauma in Canada: “When considering cannabis to treat chronic pain, the adage ‘less is more’ rings true. Patients seem to find more relief in indica strains which are higher in THC than most sativa or hybridstrains. What we’ve found is that these strains can be highly effective in low to moderate doses, but could actually make pain worse in higher doses. So it’s important to start low, and titrate up as appropriate.”https://www.leafly.com/news/health/cannabis-for-chronic-pain-vs-opioids
Turns out, the nose did know.
Cannabis lovers the world over are missing out on optimized highs because they don’t know enough about terpenes. We’ve all been lured toward high percentages of THC—the main active ingredient in cannabis. But is THC the main ingredient?
More and more people are learning that title may go to the terpenes, the molecules responsible for cannabis’ smells and tastes. There are over 150 of them like terpineol, linalool, and pinene, and they have measurable effectson mood, all on their own.
Many have heard of the cannabinoids THC and CBD, but terpenes are a huge part of the chemical fingerprint of cannabis—its chemotype. New data is augmenting our old folk knowledge of strains, families and classes of cannabis like indica, sativa and hybrid.
Science is confirming that you have to look beyond the THC score of a plant to tell its true effects. If THC is the engine, terpenes are the steering wheel and tires.
“Nobody likes a person without personality, same for weed,” said Ed Rosenthal, leading cannabis horticulture author. He co-wrote the 2017 crop science book Marijuana Harvest. [Full Disclosure: Marijuana Harvest is also co-written by David Downs]
“Terpenes are absolutely the driving force behind the diverse effects of cannabis,” said Stephen Rechif, a San Francisco dispensary operator of The Bloom Room and a veteran cultivator. “When you break it down to a chemical level, there is much more evidence of the importance of terpenes over the traditional indica vs. sativa conversation.”
“Experienced cannabis enthusiasts always lead the with nose and there’s a good reason for that—you’re much more likely to enjoy a strain that is pleasing to your nose rather than going by only THC potency. That’s the effects of the terpenes and that’s what makes every strain of cannabis special.”
The most award-winning strains aren’t often the highest-THC, but they all have riotous terps.
“Since 2010, when The Emerald Cup began testing, the winner has never had the highest THC. It’s all about the ensemble of terpenes and cannabinoids,” said Nikki Lastreto and Swami Chaitanya of Mendocino County, judges in in the world largest outdoor organic cannabis competition since it began in 2003.
This week, Leafly celebrates terpenes and the science behind them with Terpene Week, where we present never before seen terpene data and dig into how our knowledge of cannabis is changing.
We also arm you, good reader, with the info to dial in the exact cannabis effects you want, and avoid the ones you don’t.
Turns out, it’s got a lot to do with the terps! So clear your nostrils and get ready to take more than a whiff. It’s time to inhale deeply.