Benjamin Bey of Soul D’licious Seasonings and co-host Stephanie Magurno of THC Production, LLC talk about cannabis and its relationship to depression treatment, as well as its potential to increase depression symptoms. Then, in Nugs of Knowledge, Stephanie discusses an email she received about using CBD for anxiety and depression. Finally, they conclude their interview with Dr. Ruth Fisher.
Cannabis Science – Depression
Depression has reached epidemic proportions in the United States. In fact, nearly 20% of the adult population has been diagnosed with depression. Frequently, prescription drugs are touted as the solution to the problem. However, there are a number of issues and consequences associated with these drugs. First off, some of these prescription medications may take time to take effect. It could take days, weeks, or even months for someone suffering from depression to see a positive lift in mood. Additionally, depression medications can have both mild and severe side effects. Patients may experience agitation, anxiety, drowsiness, sedation, and insomnia. RX meds may even cause suicidal ideation.
With cannabis’s recent push into the medical spotlight, many people have attempted to use cannabis to treat their depression symptoms. Some have had great success. However, others have an adverse reaction when their thought patterns go haywire. Consequently, this can lead to feeling worse and result in increases in depression symptoms.
Can Cannabis Treat Depression?
That’s why the University of New Mexico’s Medical Cannabis Research Fund performed an experiment tracking cannabis flower’s application for treatment of depression. The results were definitely noteworthy. The researchers teamed up with an app called Releaf. Outcomes of 1,800 people who reported nearly 6,000 different sessions using cannabis. Shockingly, 98% of participants experienced lessened symptoms of depression using cannabis. Interestingly, results were not affected between the use of Indica and Sativa. The amount of THC seemed to be the correlating factor in symptom relief.
However, some cannabis users did report negative results as well. Depression can increase. Up to 20% of users experienced negative side effects. But, 64% felt happy, peaceful, optimistic, and relaxed. In other words, the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. The findings suggest that, at least in the short term, the vast majority of users experience antidepressant effects. Finally, the study noted that the magnitude and extent vary according to the chemotopic properties of the plant.
My Experience with Depression
On a personal level, I myself have experienced depression for many years. Sometimes, it still creeps back up, especially during the winter months. In fact, just last week it hit me pretty hard. Despite taking prescription medicine for it, sometimes my depression wins the fight that day. I’ve tried two medicines for my depression so far. And in that aspect, I guess I’ve been fortunate to have found something that works well for me on the second try. Many others suffering from depression aren’t so lucky. They may cycle through a cocktail of dangerous pills and still never find anything that helps.
Over the years, I’ve tried to use cannabis here and there to help with depression, but it has yet to prove itself as a valuable tool. Conversely, when depression is bad, cannabis often makes my symptoms worse. Exactly as we mentioned above, my mind goes haywire and thoughts spin out of control. I guess I’m just not one of the lucky ones. For now, I feel it’s best for me to avoid cannabis use when depression symptoms are creeping back up. It’s something I have to watch for constantly. And fighting depression is a battle I assume may last a lifetime.
Hash It Out! – Ruth Fisher (Part 2)
Today we finish up our interview with Dr. Ruth Fisher. Before Ruth changed her view on cannabis, she bought into the hype. She highly doubted that cannabis had any medical benefits. Skip ahead a few years and her brother was diagnosed with MS. He had been prescribed a number of meds and had flown all over the state trying to find a way to put an end to his pain. It was at this point that his doctor recommended he try cannabis. To his and Ruth’s surprise, cannabis provided the first pain relief he had experienced in years. It was at this point that Ruth found out about the endocannabinoid system.
During her journey with cannabis, Ruth’s understanding of both the plant and the human body improved tenfold. While all the systems are separate, they all work together in cooperation. Each major system has a task on its own to do. However, neurons exist to communicate with all other systems. As Ruth puts it, neurons are the maestro keeping the concert going. The endocannabinoid system also qualifies as this type of system.
Sadly, many doctors working today don’t even know the endocannabinoid system exists. Because of this, many cannabis patients are forced to experiment with various strains and dosages to find this out for themselves. That’s why Ruth Fisher wrote her book. This publication was intended to be a friendly guide to cannabis use and the benefits one can expect. Additionally, it was meant to educate skeptics about the benefits of the cannabis plant and to reassure them about the safety of doing so.
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“Soul D’licious Infused”
Each podcast episode of Soul D’licious Infused includes different topics on the Nevada cannabis industry, as well as special guests. We interview different people from across the industry and discuss all kinds of topics. These include the pros and cons of different extracts, cannabis trends, local market info, and more. Additionally, we talk about cannabis science topics and cannabis studies. Finally, we feature the stories behind the people who work in the cannabis industry.
We Want to Hear From You! Reach out to us to suggest topics or find out about guest spots on the Soul D’licious Infused podcast. You can get ahold of us by sending an email to Podcast@THCProduction.com. Additionally, keep an eye out for our new segment, “Read Your Mind” where we read and answer your questions on the show!