Side Effects of Weed
Posted by on 10/18/2022 to Information
Since Canada legalized weed in 2018, the plant has been the most consumed mind-altering product in the country. Weed is available in multiple forms, ranging from flowers to concentrates, edibles, Cbd oil, tinctures, and cosmetic products. This provides consumers with a wide range of consumption options. For example, weed can be vaped, smoked, added to foods and beverages, infused into edibles like gummies and chocolate, taken sublingually, or swallowed.
With such diversity and freedom, it is paramount for consumers to understand the various ways that weed can be beneficial or detrimental to their health. Every drug has its positives and negatives - including weed. This piece highlights the positive and negative side effects of weed with the aim of educating adult cannabis consumers.
A better understanding of weed's positive and negative side effects gives you a better understanding of how the plant can help you and how it can work against you. You will know the best consumption method and how to consume weed responsibly. Without further ado, let’s begin…
How does weed interact with the human system?
Weed contains hundreds of compounds that interact with the human endocannabinoid system to produce a host of effects. The ECS is a cell-signaling system that utilizes receptors, enzymes, and endocannabinoids to promote normal body functioning. Weed contains cannabinoids, such as THC (the psychoactive compound), CBD, and minor cannabinoids like CBC, CBN, CBA, and CBG.
These compounds perform their functions by interacting with the ECS receptors. For example, THC attaches itself to the CB1 and CB2 receptors to cause psychoactive effects that affect one’s memory, coordination, and cognitive function. On the other hand, CBD does not bind with the receptors but influences their functioning to produce a host of therapeutic benefits.
Positive side effects of weed
To a person who doesn’t know much about weed, the plant is simply a recreational tool. However, many individuals have turned to cannabis consumption primarily because of the multiple therapeutic benefits associated with the plant. THC and CBD, in particular, have been scientifically proven to provide the following benefits;
- Reduction of mild to chronic pain and inflammation
- Helps with the reduction of ocular pressure associated with ocular pressure
- Combating nausea and vomiting associated with harsh treatments, such as radiation, chemotherapy and HIV medication. This helps improve the quality of life of the patients.
- Managing Multiple Sclerosis symptoms, such as lethargy, fatigue and muscle stiffness.
- CBD oil is essential in managing epilepsy and seizures
Weed occurs naturally and is associated with fewer side effects compared to pharmaceutical drugs used to treat and manage the conditions highlighted above. Additionally, weed provides what is commonly referred to as the entourage effect. This means that different compounds, such as minor cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids, all support THC and CBD’s effects to produce better results.
Negative side effects of weed
Common negative side effects of consuming weed include red eyes, dry mouth, poor coordination, delayed reaction time, lowered inhibitions, and increased heart rate. When taken in high doses, weed can cause anxiety, paranoia and dizziness. This is especially true for weed edibles which have a delayed onset. Consumers take higher doses, thinking that the previous dose was insufficient.
Smoking weed can be detrimental to the lungs due to the toxins and smoke produced. This explains why vaping, oils, and edibles have become increasingly popular. For example, famous country singer and weed enthusiast Willie Nelson had to break from smoking weed in 2019 and has since turned to edibles and vapes.
Individuals with pre-existing cardiovascular and heart issues risk experiencing chest pain and heart attack after taking weed. This is because weed accelerates the heart rate by 20 to 50 beats per minute.
Regular weed consumption leads to tolerance, meaning one will require a higher dose of weed to attain the same effects they would have previously experienced with a lower dose. According to statistics, 10% of weed used may become dependent.