12 Leading Experts Share Top 3 Health Uses of Medical Marijuana
Medical marijuana is arguably the most debated topic worldwide. Is it safe? Should it be legalized, decriminalized? Is it addictive? From doctors to scientists and policymakers to the public, everyone seems to have questions on the drug.
Indeed, there are even a few people who believe that medical marijuana is just a ploy to legalize marijuana in general. Is it really the “wonder drug” that people claim it is? Has its effectiveness been proven? These are just some of the questions they’ll ask.
What the Experts Say
First off, it’s important to mention that we truly believe in the powers of cannabis. Whether used as the whole, unprocessed marijuana plant or first extracted to its basic components, we know that medical marijuana has the potential to treat many illnesses. It also eases pain, is a fantastic muscle relaxant, and has shown benefits in managing nausea, weight loss, and PSTD.
However, to answer the many questions you may have, including whether medical marijuana is the “wonder drug” we claim it to be, we asked 12 leading experts to share their professional opinion on the drug.
Each expert was asked the same question: What are the top 3 benefits of medical marijuana that you have witnessed in your work so far?
An internationally respected authority on cannabis, Chris Conard works as a consultant, public speaker, and cannabis witness expert in state and federal courts throughout the US.
He is not only an expert on medical marijuana but also industrial hemp, cultivation of the plant, garden yields, marijuana processing, dosage, commercial intent, personal cannabis use, and the marijuana culture. A lecturer at Oaksterdam University, he has made presentations for the International Pharmacology Academy as well as Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Continuing Legal Education (CLE) programs countrywide.
Mr. Conard has authored four books on medical marijuana, the two most widely-read being Hemp for Health and The Newbie’s Guide to Cannabis & the Industry.
Cannabis has so many benefits that it’s hard to narrow it down to three.
Helping people destress and sleep is probably number one. Being rested and relaxed helps people function better overall and treat others around them with less anger and irritation.
It has an analgesic effect which can range from distracting a person from their minor aches and pains to allowing us to function better with chronic pain such as back pain and arthritis to eliminating neurological pain that does not respond well to other pain relievers.
Reduces both muscle spasms and ataxia. These benefits help child patients with seizure disorders, people with MS with general movement disorders (and neuropathic pain, mentioned above) and even people with asthma, where a few quick puffs can relax their aveoli and allow people to breathe more deeply and evenly. The list gets longer from there!
Javier Hasseis a reporter who focuses on cannabis, hemp, CBD, and psychedelics. He’s a co-founder and the current CEO of the Spanish news site El Planteo. He’s also the manager of Benzinga Cannabis.
Javier uses his broad reach to champion the use of medical cannabis. He has submitted more than 5,000 unique marijuana-related articles to numerous mass media outlets, including Yahoo Finance, High Times, Market Watch, the Houston Chronicle, and the Nasdaq Morning Star.
Mr. Hasse’s work has also appeared on CNN, Forbes, CNBC, the Chicago Tribune, the Entrepreneur, Merry Jane, and MSN, to name just a few.
In times like these, where uncertainty reigns, and unrest shakes America to its core, cannabis is proving to provide much necessary relief across the country. The fact that cannabis provision was deemed an essential service in many states only underlines what many in the cannabis community have known for years: cannabis is real medicine, and millions rely on its benefits.
From anxiety to pain, and from epilepsy to eczema, cannabis and its derivatives have become a central part of the health and wellness regimens of a large amount of people.
Picking a Top 3 for health uses of cannabis is far too difficult. The list of both scientific and anecdotal evidence backing cannabis’ efficacy or potential in treating health ailments is long, and no one can determine where relief is most needed. There are, however, a few severe conditions like epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and autism, where cannabis has been used with very positive results.
A cannabis expert, Angela Ardolino, has a medical degree in the therapeutic uses of cannabis from the University of Vermont’s School of Medicine. She’s also a pet lover and the host of the radio show “It’s a Dog’s Life” on Cannabis Radio.
Away from the radio, she’s the founder of CBD Dog Health and owns Beautify the Beast, a natural pet salon and spa where pets are groomed and can enjoy therapeutic massages. The salon caters to dogs, chickens, ducks, pigs, and geese, to name just a few.
Ardolino also operates Fire Lake Farm, a rescue farm located in Lutz, Florida, where she currently cares for up to 20 dogs, 12 ducks, 12 chicken and 9 geese.
It has gotten rid of my arthritis pain.
Reduced my anxiety and stress levels to almost nothing
Helped me sleep
Needless to say cannabis has changed my life and many animals at my rescue and shop.
With a full spectrum hemp extract tincture we’ve
Rid 14 dogs of cancer.
Stopped seizures in 68 dogs
Helped 3 dogs get up and walk again after going paralyzed.
Laura Lagano is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Certified Dietitian Nutritionist, and Holistic Cannabis Practitioner. As one of a handful of dietitians worldwide to have completed the prestigious Institute of Functional Medicine training program (IFM certification- eligible), Lagano is unique in her ability to integrate nutrition, biochemistry, functional medicine, and cannabis/cannabinoid medicine. Her expertise and passion involves healing the body with alternative practices including food as medicine, orthomolecular nutrition, essential oils, and medical marijuana. Areas of foci for Lagano include Alzheimer’s disease, anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorder, chronic inflammation, epilepsy, fibromyalgia, inflammatory bowel disease, insomnia, irritable bowel syndrome, multiple sclerosis, and skin and women’s health.
The top three documented reasons why cannabis is both recommended by healthcare practitioners and self-administered are for pain, insomnia, and anxiety.
As a registered dietitian nutritionist, my clients tend not to experience pain; however, insomnia and anxiety, particularly during the pandemic, are common.
Many of my clients also suffer from gastrointestinal (GI) issues, such as Crohn’s, IBD, and IBS. Combined with medical nutrition therapy, these conditions are very responsive to medical marijuana and, sometimes, hemp-derived CBD. Because neurotransmitters are produced in the gut, GI health impacts brain health.
Essentially, the endocannabinoid system regulates the bidirectional communication between the brain and the gut. Integrating cannabis with nutrition recommendations is the best way to achieve optimal health.
Dr. Joseph Rosado is a philosophy doctor with a medical degree from Universidad Central del Este in the Dominican Republic. He has also completed both the Florida Cannabis Directors Course and Florida Physician Cannabis Course.
Dr. Rosado is currently the co-owner of Coastal Wellness Centers located in Orange City and Ormond Beach, both in Florida, with a few branches located overseas. He oversees Therapeutic Cannabis (medical marijuana) and Suboxone Therapy at the clinics.
The distinguished doctor is a widely recognized public speaker who has made presentations in more than ten countries. He has also written multiple articles that appear in various medical journals and is the author of the bestselling book, Hope and Healing – A Case for Medical Cannabis.
1. Reduce inflammation and relieve pain
For patients with chronic pain-related ailments, medical marijuana has meant the relief from persistent, life-altering chronic pain. Of the hundreds of patients, we have managed with chronic pain, whether it be malignant or non-malignant, all have found a substantial improvement through using medical cannabis, particularly in the following ways:
Improved quality of life.
Reduced opioid usage.
Decreased side effects of other medications.
2. Reduce anxiety, nightmares and insomniarelated to PTSD
My evidence suggests that the medical use of cannabis has significantly improved the quality of
life for both those who have PTSD and their families. By using medical cannabis, it has provided to our patients incredible relief for a few of the most debilitating symptoms associated with the disorder, including, but not limited to: Anxiety, Nightmares and Insomnia
3. Manage symptoms associated with cancer
The most common symptoms in which patients have reported relief with medical cannabis include Pain , Fatigue , Unexplained weight loss due to anorexia. On a side note, The National Cancer Institute states that medical marijuana can also block cancer cell growth, which many of our patient’s CAT and PET scans and MRIs have demonstrated.
A resident of Chicago, Brendan Shiller, who’s also the managing partner at Shiller Preyar, has broad experience in multiple areas of law, including criminal defense, civil rights, licensing, white-collar criminal defense, zoning, and, above all, marijuana law.
His academic record is impeccable. In his first, second, and third years at the John Marshall Law School, he received the John N. Jewitt, Arba N. Watermen, and Edward T. Lee Scholarships, respectively, after coming out at the top of his class. He eventually graduated top of the class.
Shiller currently works as a respected attorney, with several high profile clients, including elected officials and the president of a major local business. He represents more than a dozen cannabis businesses.
Pain relief and pain reduction in all types of patients. This is a benefit that crosses, strains, brands, and conditions, but usually requires a lot of trial and error. I also think this is one of the most fruitful areas for research and development that I hope the industry delves into. It is clear that people really want a non-addictive pain treatment.
Appetite suppression or appetite enhancement. As a treatment to secondary symptoms, addressing appetite/nauseous issues is a big concern. While there are several strains that help create appetites, there are a couple that help suppress appetites.
Sleep assistance. similar to pain relief, patients want a non-addictive, non-side effect source of help for getting a full night’s sleep.
Dr. Lakisha Jenkins is a traditional naturopath, registered master herbalist, and teacher of endogenous cannabinoid systems. Her core competencies center on the use of herbs to treat symptoms of chronic, degenerative, and terminal illnesses. She mainly focuses on endogenous cannabinoid system balancing and cancer prevention.
She’s been working in the medical cannabis field for more than 14 years now. During that time, she has served as the California State Representative and founding Chair of the Minority Business Council as well as a member of the National Cannabis Industry Association Board (2012-2015).
Currently, she’s a Founding Board Member and President of the California Cannabis Industry Association, where she’s served since 2012.
Homeostasis, or balance in the system. The endogenous cannabinoid system as a regulator has the ability to endive homeostasis in the system. This affects all areas of health and wellness.
From cognitive function to inflammatory response or regulating the immune system, properly supporting the endocannabinoid system with a full or broad spectrum phytocannabinoid supplement is the best thing you can do for overall maintenance of health.
Other specific symptoms that cannabis supplements can positively affect, in the acute sense are chronic pain, insomnia and gastrointestinal disorders. I would like to stress, however, the importance of properly supporting your endogenous cannabinoid system even if you are not suffering from an acute illness.
Mara Gordon is an entrepreneur, researcher, and above all, a cannabis advocate. As a process engineer, she creates therapeutic regimens for her many patients the world over and has witnessed the drugs improve patients’ health conditions, quality of life, and longevity.
Mara uses multiple platforms to share her cannabis knowledge and expertise. Whether through ongoing consultations with medical teams or numerous presentations on TEDx, she takes it upon herself to call out the hyperbole and myths surrounding the use of medical marijuana.
The company she co-founded, Aunt Zelda, which deals in bespoke cannabis formulations for patients, rose to prominence in 2011, around the time California was tightening regulations on marijuana use.
Alleviating the most common side of traditional cancer treatments – pain, nausea, sleeplessness, anxiety. These are conditions that are also experienced by non-cancer patients, so it frequently is the right option for them, too.
It is important to keep in mind that cannabis is biphasic, and the conditions helped may be exacerbated by taking too much. For example, THC has been known to address nausea for many years, yet too much THC can make the patient nauseous.
It is fabulous as a sleep aid. However too much can cause the mind to be overactive. Always begin with less than you think you need and increase with caution.
Dr. Donald I. Abrams is a cancer treatment and integrative medicine expert currently attached to the UCSF Osher Center for Integrative Medicine. His work mostly involves consulting for cancer patients on integrating complementary therapies into their treatment programs.
Although he has previously also worked as an HIV/AIDS researcher, Dr. Abrams has spent the large part of his career studying complementary and alternative therapies. His primary focus areas include but are not limited to mind-body therapies, botanical medicine, the medical use of cannabis, and herbal therapies used in Chinese medicine.
He was part of the 16-member team that wrote; The Health Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids in 2017.
Michael E. Cindrich is one of the fiercest cannabis attorneys in California. He has won “Not Guilty” verdicts on multiple high-profile cannabis-related cases and had many other similar cases dismissed by prosecutors and judges. For instance, in 2016, Mr. Cindrich was the lead attorney in three widely-publicized cannabis-related cases that returned a “Not Guilty” verdict.
Mr. Cindrich currently serves as a Director at the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) – San Diego Chapter and is a lifetime member of the NORML Legal Committee.
Above all, Michael is a grower. He has licenses allowing him to cultivate, manufacture, sell, and distribute cannabis throughout California.
Rod Kight is an award-winning attorney recognized as a knowledge authority by his peers at the North Carolina Super Lawyer, Best Lawyers in America, and the Business North Carolina Legal Elite.
He’s also an AV Pre-eminent Peer Rated Lawyer by Martindale Hubbell and has contributed to the fight for medical cannabis through multiple media outlets. His contributions to cannabis business matters are captured in the Wall Street Journal, Business Insurance, and the Business Insider.
Mr. Kight currently serves as an advisory board member of the American Journal of Endocannabinoid Medicine. He also writes a legal column for the peer-reviewed publication.
As a cancer survivor who used cannabis during chemotherapy treatments, the legal advisor to the American Journal of Endocannabinoid Medicine, and an attorney who represents hundreds of cannabis businesses, I have first-hand knowledge of cannabis as a health aid. For me, cannabis minimized
Nausea caused by my chemotherapy treatments improved my sleep and helped me regain strength, all of which were important for my recovery.
I have had countless conversations with clients who have used cannabis successfully to improve their well-being by reducing pain and anxiety and by promoting a sense of well-being.
I have read numerous peer-reviewed studies regarding cannabis use for a wide range of medical issues, from epilepsy to Crohn’s Disease to a potential treatment for Covid-19.
Dr. Angela Grace is a Ph.D. holder in Counseling Psychology. She specializes in the prevention and treatment of eating and body image issues and provides holistic counseling and healing for children, women, and families faced with challenges stemming from life experiences, trauma, and self-hate.
Currently, she works as the Clinical Director at the Heart Center and Counseling, where she uses mindful and intuitive approaches to counsel and help women and children.
Throughout her work, Dr. Grace strives to help patients establish their truths and gain personal authenticity and spiritual growth as a means to improved health and optimal well-being.
My clients that use medical marijuana have reported it to be most helpful for insomnia and anxiety.
Some clients have reported that small, regular doses of CBD oil have been helpful for calming hyperactivity associated with ADHD.
Overall, clients have reported that they prefer the ability to work with a health care professional to create their own dosing schedule for medical marijuana that helps them attain optimum functioning with minimal to no side effects.