Marijuana is a mixture of greenish-gray leaves of Cannabis plant. Commonly known as weed, herb, pot, grass, and bud, it is smoked in hand-rolled cigarettes, water pipes, and cigars (known as blunts). It is also mixed with edibles such as brownies, cookies, and candies.
The Marijuana Plant
Marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug among adolescents and young adults in the US according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. The cannabis plant has different species, not all which are psychoactive. The main chemical in marijuana that induces euphoria is THC. It’s found in the resins produced by the leaves and buds of the plant. Other than THC, the plant contains 100 more chemicals that have a similar effect to THC.
Possible Unwanted Effects (Short-Term)
- Atypical behavior
- Impaired coordination
- Increased heart rate
- Long-Term Effects
A Brief History Of Marijuana
The cultivation can be traced back to at least 12,000 years back, among the mankind’s oldest cultivated crops. Throughout the history, it has served as a potent agent to achieve euphoria. Its use as a psychoactive agent can be referenced from the writings of Chinese emperor Shen Nung and the focus of marijuana therapy was to treat rheumatism, malaria, gout, and absent-mindedness. The Cannabis plants are considered to be evolved in Central Asia. The Yangshao, being the oldest known Neolithic culture in China, cultivated cannabis to sustain its economy. From China, it traveled to different parts of the world such as India, Egypt, and eventually Europe. It came to the United States of America at the beginning of 20th century from Mexico during the Mexican revolution of 1910, by fleeing immigrants.
Possible Unwanted Effects (Long-Term)
- Lower life satisfaction
- Anti-social behavior
- Impaired thinking
- Heart Diseases
Legalization of Marijuana
More and more countries are considering legalizing marijuana due to its potential health benefits. Advocates of legalization argue that it will also end the illegal trade and associated crime, and governments can generate revenue for the benefit of the population.
How Does Marijuana Produce Its Effects?
The THC in marijuana interacts with the certain brain receptors. This allows THC to affect the brain centers which influence thinking, memory, pleasure, concentration, movement, coordination, and senses.
Scientists are trying very hard to incorporate marijuana into the modern medicines as they have shockingly proven to have a lot of health benefits. It can be used to treat glaucoma, seizures, anxiety, arthritis discomfort, Parkinson’s, and most importantly some types of cancer.