Weed in Review: 3.30.18

Weed in Review: Friday, March 30, 2018

Cannabis News In the United States

7 Things You Can Do To Help Legalize Marijuana: What are some things you can do to help legalize marijuana? The legalization of cannabis has come a long way in the last six years. Currently, there are nine states in which recreational marijuana use is legal.

Iowa licenses three retailers for upcoming low-THC marijuana sales: Iowa announced three medical marijuana retailers that will be allowed to sell low-THC cannabis, including the only company currently allowed to cultivate the plant.

McConnell calls for the removal of industrial hemp from controlled substances list: The Senate’s top Republican says hemp shouldn’t be a controlled substance, and he plans to introduce a new bill to make the change. Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell made the announcement about the proposed change to federal hemp law Monday in his home state of Kentucky. “It’s now time to take the final step and make this a legal crop,” McConnell said.

CBD is cannabis that won’t get you high. So why are so many people using it?: [H]ere’s why CBD appeals to some who would never smoke a joint after dinner: Take a few milligrams of CBD as, say, an oil slipped onto the tongue or a piece of candy, and it tastes unmistakably like cannabis, which is to say, slightly minty and herbaceous, and just a little funky. But cannabidiol’s effect is startlingly anticlimactic. It’s weed without the high.

Opioids, cannabis and school security recommendations at Tenn. capitol this week: Rewritten bills on medical cannabis and opioids, along with the release of the governor’s school security recommendations, top the Tennessee legislative agenda this week. First, the drama over medical cannabis overshadowed a compromise of sorts on an opioid bill. “They are stuck in reefer madness,” thundered medical cannabis House Sponsor Jeremy Faison. His fiery words came as he essentially gutted the medical cannabis bill while trying to get it through a full house committee.

CBD raids spread to Alabama as officials seize gummies over THC concerns: Police seized boxes of CBD-infused gummy bears from an Alabama company that distributes products to convenience stores after receiving complaints the candies may contain THC. Authorities are testing several boxes of gummies taken Friday from American Wholesale Distributors, according to Birmingham TV station WBMA.


Weed in Review: March 30, 2018

Medical Research Updates on Cannabis

Pennsylvania taking applications for medical marijuana research: Pennsylvania’s Department of Health has released application rules for universities and hospitals in the state interested in researching medical marijuana. The state announced it will issue permits for “clinical registrants,” which are hospitals and medical schools that wish to research cannabis, according to Bala Cynwyd TV station NBC 10.

Research Shows Cannabis May Curb Alcohol and Cocaine Addictions: Solutions to public health problems, such as the opioid crisis and addictions, might be right under our noses. Recent research has shown cannabis can help curb alcoholism and cocaine addictions. The Daily Mail reports researchers gave rats cannabidiol, otherwise known as CBD. A number of conclusions were made from the research. Rats who consumed CBD, which is known to reduce anxiety and stress, were less likely to relapse five months later. Notably, researchers pointed out that the chemical’s ability to minimize impulsiveness was significant.

Could cannabis help cure lung cancer? This man thinks so – and he’s already spent £1.5m on research: Cannabis could be a cure for lung cancer, according to a research laboratory in Cardiff. MediPen research facility in Cardiff have been experimenting with cannabinoids and its effectiveness in slowing down the growth of cancer cells, something their managing director says is the first of its kind in the world. Metro.co.uk visited MediPen’s labs and spoke exclusively to managing director Jordan Owen, who told us: ‘The end goal is to bring a treatment to market for lung cancer.’

Does Cannabis Affect Cardiovascular Health?: Research has shown the body’s endocannabinoid system responds well to the introduction of cannabis. The drug provides relief for a number of conditions, including MS, seizures, cancer treatment recovery, or eating disorders. But these medical issues don’t often involve the cardiovascular system. Nonetheless, scientists and doctors continue to study the effects of pot on the blood-pumping organ. At the present moment, no consensus has been reached in the scientific community about the effects of marijuana on the heart. But there has been promising findings suggesting it may. For example, a researcher named Alexander Stokes in Hawaii recently secured a patent for a cannabis-derived compound he believes can help to treat heart disease. By activating a receptor, this compound encourages the heart to work harder to pump blood.

Cannabis News Worldwide

In a first, Africa exports medical marijuana to Canada: A company in southern Africa has sent the first-ever shipment of medical cannabis from Africa to Canada, a milestone that illustrates the increasing globalization of the MMJ industry in recent years.

Alzheimer’s Patients in Puerto Rico May Get Cannabis-Based Treatment: Alzheimer’s patients in Puerto Rico may get cannabis-based treatment that would make them the first in the United States with access to a new cannabinoid medicine. The development could be a big step for Puerto Rican Alzheimer’s patients in particular and for medical marijuana more generally.

Doctors Nova Scotia makes 6 recommendations ahead of cannabis legalization: An association representing doctors in Nova Scotia has its eyes on the green — on Monday it released a list of six recommendations for the government ahead of the planned legalization of cannabis later this year. Doctors Nova Scotia says their recommendations aim to minimize the harm associated with cannabis use. According to 2012 data from Health Canada, cannabis is the most commonly used illegal drug in Nova Scotia.

New Zealand hemp industry taking off with new uses, more acres: A hemp education hub opening Saturday in New Zealand comes as the nation prepares for a big uptick in hemp growing because of new rules expanding how the plant can be used. According to the New Zealand Herald, the hemp innovation hub will offer consulting and education for interested hemp farmers.

Switzerland considers making cannabis legal and approves pilot programs: Cannabis could soon be legal in Switzerland. The Swiss Council of States, Switzerland’s smaller chamber of parliament, unanimously approved a bill allowing studies and pilot programs in the landlocked Alpine nation. The Council called for an experimental article in the Swiss Federation’s Narcotics Act that would allow for scientific research projects including trials of a “coffee shop” system of cannabis distribution similar to that of Amsterdam. Five Swiss cities have already called for such coffeeshop pilot programs.

Cannabis Events:

Check out Cannabis Business Times Events Page for the latest.

Our favorite news sources:

The Cannabist

High Times

Merry Jane

Vice Marijuana


There are still a couple more days for our Montana Medical Marijuana Patients to catch Herbaceous Inc.’s Deal of the Week.

Wellness with Weed: Sleeping with cannabis

It’s complicated…

As Bill Nye recently pointed out, “What’s happened with marijuana is it’s a Schedule I drug, which means it’s presumed to be addictive and it’s presumed to have no medical value,” he stated in a recent interview with NowThis. “Yet people are using it for all these medical applications,” he said. “So well, let’s study it. Well, you’re not allowed to study it because it’s a Schedule I drug… So that has to be sorted out.”

In other words, an old-school policy is holding up really important cannabis research. Once Jeff Sessions and POTUS have their secret meeting with Russian Big Pharma, the doors to research may finally burst open. Mostly kidding…that doesn’t feel like a healthy solution! But until policies change, scientists in the United States are practically wading through concrete when it comes to research on the medicinal properties of marijuana. Nonetheless, we do have some information to help you make informed decisions about cannabis for sleep. As with any medication or drug, we recommend that you pay attention to how your body responds to cannabis. You know your body better than anyone else.


Highlights on how cannabis can help you sleep better

Leafly has a great article about sleep from March of 2016. Here are some highlights:

THC (especially indica) is better than CBD for sleep, CBN (aged/degraded THC also known as cannabinol) is 5x more sedating than THC, it may help restore respiratory stability, it may help you fall asleep faster, you may feel groggy in the morning, cannabis in conjunction with natural remedies such as lavender and chamomile may maximize the effect, and cannabis inhibits dreaming (more below)

The effect of cannabis on sleep may vary

A publication from September 2017 by sleep psychologist, Deirdre A. Conroy, Ph.D., suggests that “cannabis’s effect on sleep may differ depending on whether you have depression or anxiety. In order words, if you have depression, cannabis may help you sleep – but if you don’t, cannabis may hurt…Cannabis’s effect on sleep seems highly variable, depending on the person, the timing of use, the cannabis type and concentration, mode of ingestion and other factors.” Dr. Conroy is at the University of Michigan with research that focuses broadly on sleep and psychiatric disorders and specifically on sleep disturbance in alcoholism, insomnia in adolescent depression, and sleep in marijuana users. Keep your eyes peeled for more work from this woman!

Cannabis suppresses REM sleep (when you have most of your dreams and/or nightmares)

For those who struggle with nightmares, cannabis could be a fantastic solution. Thanks to VICE Netherlands, Dr. Hamburger confirms: “Every night, you go through about four or five sleep cycles…Each cycle takes about ninety minutes, during which you go through different phases. There’s superficial sleep, deep sleep, and finally REM sleep. During that REM period, you have most of your dreams…By smoking weed, you suppress the REM sleep…” thus greatly reducing the chance of good or bad dreams.

But Hamburger also reminds us that by suppressing REM, “…you also suppress a lot of important functions of that REM sleep. One of those functions is reliving the things you have experienced and coming to terms with them, as it were. Processing all kinds of psychological influences is something you do in REM sleep. You also anticipate the things that will happen the next day or the days after that. While you’re sleeping, you already consider those and make decisions in advance.” So if you’re trying to reduce nightmares and holding the options of Big Pharma in one hand and cannabis in the other, I’d opt for cannabis. As a therapist, I’m biased enough to throw in the recommendation of considering cannabis in conjunction with therapy because when the cannabis nightcap stops, your dreams may resurge with two or three weeks of temporary intensity as your body readjusts.

Cannabis for sleep apnea

Cannabis.net released a publication in February 2017 that highlights the potential benefits of cannabis for sleep apnea. The University of Illinois published research 15 years ago explaining that

“THC and oleamide were effective in stabilizing respiration in the subjects during the entire cycle of sleep, which reduced the apnea index during NREM and REM sleep stages by as 42% and 58% respectively. The reduction was dose-dependent…a higher dose of cannabinoids…resulted in a greater reduction in apnea symptoms.”

The findings prompted Dr. David Carley, the study’s lead author, to conduct the first human trial in 2013. He wanted to document the effect of THC (dronabinol) on sleep apnea. The 17 participants were administered with different doses of dronabinol (2.5, 5, and 10mg) before bedtime over the course of 3 weeks. The results showed that the overall reduction in sleep apnea indexes was at 32%. The study’s authors suggest that patients can still find relief by using cannabinoid medications, whether they are suffering from mild or moderate cases.

Cannabis may be worth trying!

And in conclusion, if you’re struggling with sleep, we encourage you to explore the possibility of using cannabis as a form of treatment. Talk to your doctor, talk to your medical marijuana provider, or if you’re fortunate enough to be in a state where recreational marijuana is legal, talk to your budtender. Let us know how it goes!