We’re here to tell you that cannabis is medicine. The anecdotal evidence gathered about the therapeutic benefits of cannabis is overwhelmingly positive. Research on cannabis—including cannabidiol, or , which is contained within cannabis—is being conducted in many countries, with some research even taking place in the United States. The results are promising and support claims that cannabis can be used to reduce inflammation, relieve pain, and help people suffering from conditions ranging from epilepsy and Tourette’s syndrome to Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
And yet, in the United States, cannabis is still federally illegal, and many of us are nervous about looking into its health benefits. Did you look over your shoulder when you pulled this book from the shelf at your local bookstore or library? Or did you buy it online to avoid prying or disapproving eyes? If you did, you’re not alone.
Cannabis changed the trajectory of my life. I would not have been able to finish medical school and become a doctor had it not been for cannabis treatment.
—Dr. JUNELLA CHIN
Many of us were taught to believe that cannabis is bad, unsavory, and dangerous. We might associate pot with stoners, weed with hippies, and marijuana with criminals. Luckily, attitudes about cannabis, and in particular, are changing. According to the Pew Research Center, 62 percent of Americans say the use of cannabis should be legalized. You’re probably seeing more human interest and news stories about cannabis and in mainstream media about everything from cannabis-infused dinners to beauty products. Depending on the legal status of cannabis and in your city or state, you may be feeling more confident about exploring one or both for health and wellness. If you’re living in a state that has not yet legalized cannabis, you can still do your homework and get ready for when your state does legalize or when you are visiting an adult-use (recreationally legal) state.
Cannabis can be used, with proper guidance from a medical professional, to replace pharmaceutical medications such as antianxiety drugs, SSRIs for depression, and opioids to address pain.
Cite: Cannabis and for health and wellness by Aliza Sherman and Dr. Junella Chin