Last modified: 7:58 AM Saturday, 14 January 2017

Denaturing nature

What’s wrong with pot that ‘doesn’t get you high’

There is nothing new about this idea. Social puritans and pharmaceutical-industry flaks have realized that they can’t stop the medical-cannabis movement, so they’ve found a different angle of attack. To break down cannabis and isolate specific compounds that can then be sold as drugs for pain relief and similar purposes will doubtless serve their agenda well, if they can first sell the idea that there’s something inherently wrong about the full range of cannabis’ psychoactive effects.

Cannabis leaves

Cannabis leaves...
[ Image Source ]

Meanwhile, however, the news for patients isn’t so good. Not only will they then have to pay more for these refined products, but they may soon discover unexpected side-effects. We co-evolved with cannabis; this can be seen in the specialized cannabinoid receptors in our brains. But we did this with the whole plant, not selected elements of it. The plant as a whole contains numerous compounds whose therapeutic value medicine is only now rediscovering, and as this happens, we find that it is not isolated compounds but the full range of them that is beneficial. In fact, THC refined and used alone appears to have harmful effects on the central nervous system, which are mitigated by other cannabinoids in the natural product; remove them, and the adverse effects make themselves felt.

Make no mistake: Denaturing cannabis doesn’t serve the medical needs of patients. It serves what it is intended to serve: the bottom line of the corporations that will win the contracts to do it. And, as always when profit becomes the prevailing motive, human rights and health will mean nothing.

Originally published as a review of a report on the pharmaceutical industry’s attempt to denature medical marijuana.

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