Every component of the human body is complex, from the tiniest cell to the largest organ (which, by the way, is your skin). However, no organ is more complicated than the brain. This three-pound organ houses billions of neurons that guide thought, perception, emotion, and action, making each and every one of us who we are today. In this article, I’ll explore a few of the many ways the human brain is affected by using marijuana (Cannabis). If you have any questions about registering for a Massachusetts medical marijuana card, I encourage you to contact Inhale MD for a private consultation.
“Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change” (Stephen Hawking).
Stephen Hawking was known as one of the top physicists, professor, and author in modern physics. At age 21, he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease. ALS is a neurodegenerative disease that attacks nerve cells in the spinal cord and brain. The manner in which ALS develops is by the deterioration and death of neurons, in particular motor neurons that are vital for communication between the brain and voluntary movement. As ALS progresses, it causes lack of nourishment to these neurons and eventually the neurons degenerate to the point where muscles are weakened and begin to waste ways (atrophy).
Cannabinoids interact with different cannabinoid receptors in the body, sometimes in tandem and sometimes in competition. Each activation gives a response to dampen pain stimuli and reduce inflammation.
The most well known cannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2, are proteins that are imbedded in the membrane of cells. These surface proteins are then attached to another protein that determines the signaling direction: activation or inhibition. The signal that goes out will depend on which molecule (THC, for example, will activate) that binds to the receptor. There are, however, many other receptors in the human body that are activated by cannabinoids.