Does Cannabis Protect the Brain, and Prevent Effects of Aging?
Does Cannabis Protect the Brain, and Delay Effects of Aging?
What we've got in this wonderful weed called cannabis is a potent plant; packed with potential and possibilities to prevent and treat diseases. Its benefits simply needs to be further studied and brought to light.
What if cannabis can protect the brain, and delay the effects of aging?
Age is a major risk factor for most common neurodegenerative diseases, including cognitive impairment, Alzheimer's disease, cerebrovascular disease, Parkinson's disease and Lou Gehrig's disease. Many traditional medicines have been used in attempts to protect the brain and prevent the effects of aging. Diet, exercise, and mental activities have also been used as treatments. Yet the problem is still far from being solved.
Enter tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
It appears that regular low doses of THC dramatically boosted memory and learning in older mice, say scientists, who plan a clinical trial in humans later this year.
The German study, published in Nature Medicine, showed that THC gave older mice a considerable mental performance boost. As has been observed with humans, younger animals excelled at the tests when 'sober' but tended to struggle under the influence of THC. "Mature" mice, on the other hand, struggled with tasks as consistent with their brain ages at first - but saw a huge increase in performance with THC infusions that raised their skill level up to young mouse standards that continued for weeks afterward.
“These results reveal a profound, long-lasting improvement of cognitive performance resulting from a low dose of THC treatment in mature and old animals.” the scientists wrote. The boost in brain function was linked to an apparent restoration of gene expression in the brain to more youthful levels.
Co-author Andras Bilkei-Gorzo said, “If we can rejuvenate the brain so that everybody gets five to 10 more years without needing extra care then that is more than we could have imagined.”
The big question now is - does the same apply to humans? Of course, further research is needed and will be done. We think they're on to something.
There are many reasons that we have a built in endocannabinoid system; which is a biochemical pathway that becomes less active with age in humans and other animals. It seems cannabinoids really do help open pathways in the mind.
Many cannabis users theorize that regular dosing of THC and CBD is good for prevention of many illnesses. A bud a day, they say, keeps the doctor away.
We think they're on to something.
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