Can Medical Cannabis Combat The Coronavirus?

Since the pandemic began, Covid-19 has been shrouded in mystery. As time has passed, we’ve learned a lot about how Covid affects our bodies and how to alleviate some of its most challenging symptoms.

What you may not know about, though, is the power of medical cannabis. 

Can Medical Cannabis Combat The Coronavirus

Medical cannabis is used to treat all sorts of ailments, and recent research suggests you can now add Covid to the list. Ready to tackle Coronavirus head-on? Let’s take a look at how medical cannabis may help combat Covid.  

CoVid And Cannabis: What’s The Link? 

Until the beginning of this year, we weren’t sure how cannabis affected CoVid.

However, a groundbreaking study published at the beginning of the year discovered that cannabis might prevent infection from the virus that causes CoVid by restricting its entry into our cells.

The study was performed by researchers associated with Oregon State University, and it seems to have thrown up some pretty interesting debate around the topic. 

In a nutshell, the researchers discovered that two cannabinoid acids could attach themselves to the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes Covid), preventing it from entering the cells and causing infection. Pretty impressive, right? 

According to Richard van Breeman, a researcher in the study, cannabinoid acids “are not controlled substances like THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, and have a good safety profile in humans.”

In other words, you don’t need to ingest the compounds that get you high to help fight your CoVid infection.

This means that this medical treatment could one day become available, even to people who live in areas where access to Cannabis is restricted. 

Could Cannabis Stop New Variants? 

CoVid is a remarkable virus. Like many others, it will continue to evolve into new variants so that it can keep infecting its hosts.

Unfortunately for us, this means that it can be much harder to find lasting protection against CoVid .

Even those who are vaccinated may experience less protection against new variants as they evolve. But what about cannabis – could medical treatments offer protection against newer variants, too? 

According to the study, the research shows that the compounds extracted from hemp were just as effective against ALL variants of SARS-CoV-2 – including both B.1.1.7 and B.1.351, two of Covid-19’s most recent evolutions. This is promising news. 

When Can We Start Using Cannabis To Treat CoVid? 

Although this preliminary research is a step in the right direction, it may be some time before we can ‘officially’ start using cannabis to treat Covid-19.

If additional research vouches for its efficacy, there’s a possibility that the compounds in cannabis that treat CoVid could be made into medication and used for treatment. 

This could be big news, especially as the researchers have said that the compounds could both prevent and treat different CoVid infections.

CBDA and CBGA are the two compounds found in the hemp plant that could be effective against CoVid ; however, they are not contained in most traditional hemp products. 

Can Medical Cannabis Combat The Coronavirus (1)

Can Smoking Cannabis Help With Covid? 

This leads us to a big question that many people will be asking themselves… Can smoking cannabis help with Covid? 

Interestingly, the verdict is a bit mixed. One study found that although people who smoked cannabis were at LESS risk of developing CoVid than other substance users (such as tobacco, alcohol, and cocaine), their risks of contracting Covid were up to five-times greater than people who didn’t use any psychoactive substances at all. 

Note: this study explored the effects of SMOKING cannabis. It’s unclear whether or not consuming cannabis in other ways would still lead to an increased risk of developing Covid. 

As we know, CoVid can hit our respiratory systems pretty hard. Smoking anything when you have a cold or respiratory infection is not good for your lungs, and if you have CoVid , you’ll be putting yourself at increased risk. 

However, if we examine anecdotal evidence, there are plenty of people claiming that cannabis has helped alleviate their covid symptoms and speed up their recovery.

There is probably a lot of truth to this, considering the recent findings on the links between cannabis and CoVid . 

The Medical Effects Of Cannabis 

It’s no secret that cannabis contains a whole host of medicinal properties. This makes it a popular treatment for people with all sorts of ailments, including cancer, Parkinson’s, arthritis, Alzheimer’s, and many more. 

There are two main properties in cannabis: THC, and CBD. THC is the psychoactive part of the plant, aka the bit that gets you high.

On the other hand, CBD is non-psychoactive, and it’s often used to treat anxiety, depression, insomnia, PTSD, and more. 

If you’re smoking cannabis to treat CoVid , you will probably reap the benefits of both of these substances (unless you’re purely smoking CBD).

Although THC doesn’t have any particular health benefits, it’s great for relieving short-term pain and anxiety.

Its short-term psychoactive properties are likely to provide you with some relief, but it’s unlikely that they’ll treat your underlying CoVid . 

On the other hand, CBD contains all the health benefits. According to some studies, CBD may be able to reduce the inflammatory responses associated with CoVid .

This is where the treatment side of cannabis comes in, rather than just the short-term relief. 

The Bottom Line 

Covid can present with a nasty range of symptoms, from coughs, cold-symptoms, and muscle aches, to gastrointestinal issues, temperatures, lethargy, and many more. 

Although more research is needed to determine just how effective cannabis can be at treating covid, the preliminary research suggests that CBD may hold all the power and could even protect against new variants, which is big news. 

If you want to take cannabis to treat your CoVid symptoms, talk to a  doctor first. We’d also advise against smoking your medical cannabis, as you risk aggravating your respiratory symptoms. 

David Barton
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