There is a constant search for the cure for cancer, which is an ever-present and growing epidemic that plagues millions of people every year. For years, a widely popular, natural, and beneficial cancer treatment option has been the use of marijuana, but smoking the substance also causes harmful effects on the body. Cannabis oil, while not fully backed by scientific evidence, has become a desirable option that could help cure cancer.
What is Cancer?
Cancer is not a disease, but rather a process that affects the cells in the body. The process causes cells to rapidly grow without dying. In the normal process that is apoptosis, cells grow, separate, and die. If this system doesn’t function properly, cancer cells, which aren’t programmed to die, will keep growing out of control. The causes of cancer are aplenty, including age, genes, carcinogens, environment, immune system dysfunction, bacteria, viruses, and lifestyle choices. When cancer cells grow they can form a mass, which is known as a tumor. When a tumor grows it can inhibit proper bodily functions, primarily with the nervous, circulatory, or digestive systems, and cause health problems. The type of cancer will be determined by the kind of cells that happen during this growth process.
What is Cannabis Oil?
Before we can discuss how this may be the cure for cancer, we must first clarify what cannabis oil is. Cannabis oil differs from other essential oils because of the plant from which it is derived. It starts with the cannabis sativa plant, of which hemp and marijuana are primary varieties. Marijuana has a higher tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabinoid (CBD) content than hemp. Cannabinoids activate cell membrane receptors and cause a person to feel stoned (high).
The second thing to know is that cannabis oil is not hempseed oil. A lot of names get thrown around when it comes to cannabis, but they are not the same. While hempseed oil is cold-pressed from hemp seeds, cannabis oil is made from the buds of female marijuana plants. The THC and CBD in the bud impact cells and provide medicinal properties.
Cannabis oil is highly volatile and has strong medicinal properties that benefit different conditions. Because of the legal ramifications that surround cannabis oil, it is not easily obtained or widely used in the medical field. This is a shame because there is evidence that it could be curing cancer.
Possible Cancer Cure?
How exactly does cannabis oil cure cancer? There isn’t a simple answer. It all starts at the cellular level, where cancer begins to grow. In each cell there are sphingolipids, which manage a cell’s life and death. If ceramide (lipid molecules) is high then cell death (apoptosis) is certain, but a cell continues to grow and strengthen if ceramide is low. Now, there is an inner cannabinoid system living in all cells waiting to be reacted by its external cannabinoid match; we’ll come back to this later. When THC enters the system and connects to the CB1 or CB2 cannabinoid receptor in the cancer cell, there is an increase in ceramide, which causes the death of the cell. How cool is that?
There is a cell nucleus, many mitochondria, and organelles in the cytoplasm of every cell. A cancer cell dies because of a minor change in the mitochondria, which produce energy (ATP) for cell use. Cytochrome c is an important protein involved in energy synthesis. As ceramide levels increase, cytochrome c gets pushed out of the mitochondria, ultimately killing the cell’s energy source. Ceramide disrupts the cell’s digestive system and blocks pro-survival pathways, which means that there is no chance for cancer cell survival.
In order for this process to work, ceramide levels have to be high. Regular therapeutic amounts of cannabis oil must be ingested orally over time to ensure the cancer cell death pathway. This pathway exists because there is an endocannabinoid system in all animal life. Our endocannabinoid system manages our nerves by flowing between the immune and central nervous systems. So when the body is sick, stressed, or damaged, the endocannabinoid system comes to the rescue by instructing the immune system to heal the body in the most natural way possible.
Because inner cannabinoids exist in our bodies, there is a plug and socket fit when the external cannabinoid comes in contact with its internal match. The body can use both THC and CBD interchangeably. In the case of cancer, the body uses the THC and CBD to sustain pressure on the homeostatic systems. THC and CBD possess the ability to kill cancer cells and can intercept the pathway to inhibit tumor growth. CBD, commonly found in indica plants, will travel to CB2 receptor cites in the spleen, which plays an important part in your immune system, and then immune cells attack and kill cancer cells.
This is a lot of information to absorb, but illustrates that there is a remedy for cancer in nature that fits with our immune systems. It is important to note that cannabis oil cannot cure all cancer, as some forms of it are too advanced and not caught early enough for treatment to be effective. It is, however, a natural and herbal remedy that is, in an increasing number of cases, helping to cure cancer. With more scientific research and testing, cannabis oil could very well be the cure for a deathly illness.