How Exactly Does Cannabis Cure Cancer?
Cancer is a common disease that affects many across the globe.
It has been estimated by the World Health Organization that 1 in every 6 deaths is a result of cancer. This converts to 8.8 million deaths across the world in 2015 alone.
What’s really good is that the number of five-year cancer survivors has risen to 32.6 million! That’s greater than the number of people suffering from cancer. Coming in many aggressive forms, cancer can push many to the brink of exhaustion looking for remedies that are all-natural.
You’re probably wondering if cannabis has the potential to cure cancer. Well, here’s all you need to know about the all-natural herb.
Does cannabis cure cancer?
There isn’t a sole definite answer to that question yet. The reason is due to the lack of scientific trials done on humans to test the effectiveness of cannabis oil, or other methods of cannabis treatment, to cure cancer. Scientists have been blocked from performing human trials involving cannabis.
Pre-clinical research has shown that compounds within cannabis are powerful and effective in killing cancer cells in labs. Many reports have found that patients using cannabis oil find it effective in curing the disease.
A well-known cannabis activist from Canada, Rick Simpson, is the leading icon of the movement for cannabis oil.
Simpson had a form of skin cancer and resorted to cannabis oil for relief. In an effort to expand awareness and education, he made a documentary Run From The Cure covering the full extent of cannabis oil’s healing effects.
Since he released it, thousands of people have been inspired by his story and gave medical cannabis a try. A lot of people saw significant improvements in their health condition with the use of cannabis oil. Believe it or not, archeological evidence has shown us that cannabis had been utilized back in ancient times as far as 2,500 years back.
In 2014, MRI scans were conducted by researchers to diagnose breast cancer in the corpse of a Siberian woman, whom had been frozen in place for over 2 million years in ice. She was around 25, and had a jar of cannabis buried with her.
It’s suggested by researchers that she could have been utilizing cannabis to help alleviate her pain from breast cancer. There isn’t much to prove this, but only we can theorize that cannabis has been widely used by early humans as a healing treatment for thousands of years.
The 4 ways cannabis kills cancer cells
It was found that in laboratory models, compounds in cannabis had worked successfully in eliminating cancer cells. Does this guarantee that cannabis is a cure for cancer? No, In fact, many of these personal reports grouped together with preclinical data could suggest that cannabis is worth researching.
Cancer is complex; Everyone responds uniquely to the cancer-drugs that are commonly prescribed. However, rodent tests involving cannabinoids were a success, which further encourage human clinical trials.
Here’s four ways that cannabis can eliminate cancer cells in the laboratory:
1. Programmed cell death
Cancer cells can survive a long time. This is because of a damaged cell that ceases to respond to the body’s normal immune signals. The normal process involves damaged, mutated or old cells to endure a process of programmed cell death. This process ensures the elimination of mutated cells ability to divide and grow.
With cancer, this process comes to a stop. Over the past 20 years, research has discovered that cannabinoids such as cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), trigger programmed cell death in many cases of cancer.
THC is the primary psychoactive within cannabis. CBD is non-psychoactive ingredient and is abundant in cannabinoids. THC is found to cause the high feeling, while CBD works to relax the body. Compounds within cannabis have been found to trigger a certain form of programmed cell death, apoptosis, or death of cells. Many studies have come to similar conclusions, in both cell and animal line models.
Cannabis compounds work to also eliminate cancer cells by stopping proliferation. Due to cancer not being able to die off on its own, the cells work to grow and divide.
They then create a tumor, which can mess with vital body parts and their functions. CBD and THC are found to contain anti proliferative effects. Cannabis has essentially stopped tumor growth in cellular and rodent models.
Not only does cannabis compounds stop the dividing and growth of cancers cells, there is evidence pointing that cannabinoids contain anti-metastatic properties.
A tumor is metastatic when
cancer cells travel into the bloodstream, and accumulate in certain parts of the body. Metastatic cancers are very complex and hard to treat.
In the research between animal and cellular models, it was found that CBD and THC are anti-metastatic. It means that evidence from laboratories prove that cannabis has the potential to stop the traveling of tumors to other places in the body.
Cancer also does another awesome thing to stop tumors on their tracks: Starvation. Tumors essentially have to have their own blood vessels to excrete oxygen and nutrient from the body. Angiogenesis is the developmental process of blood vessels.
Many preclinical animal and cellular studies find that CBD and THC stop tumors from creating its own blood vessels. They both work to hinder a tumor’s access to nutrition that helps sustain itself.
Does cannabis ease cancer symptoms?
When looking at a scientific view, there is no one that can say cannabis cures cancer yet. Although, many patients are resorting to experimenting with cannabis to treat their cancer. There are some who say that high amounts of medical cannabis oil worked well in fighting their cancer.
Yet, scientific evidence hasn’t backed up the claims. Both scientific and personal research proves cannabinoids work to alleviate symptoms from chemotherapy.
Currently, there is cannabis prescription medications that are accessible to patients suffering from cancer. Nabilone (Cesamet) and Dronabinol (Marinol) are synthetic cannabinoids that are made to copy THC. These synthetics are administered to patients suffering from cancer caused vomiting, nausea, and appetite loss.
In Canada, patients who experience pain from chemotherapy can receive a prescription for a cannabis-based drug named Sativex, which has an equal amount of CBD and THC in it.