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American Medical Association

Key Information For The 60+ About Marijuana



It is a big summer for the cannabis industry – will Boomers join Gen Z in embracing marijuana?

It is the summer of cannabis with the potential for rescheduling.  Both the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Health and Human Services (HHS) has recognized marijuana has medical benefits and is not a dangerous drug. The American Medical Association also recognized it can help patients and they and research show it is better for you than alcohol.  Gen Z has started moving away from alcohol (mainly beer) and embracing cannabis.  With all these changes – here is key information for the 60+ about marijuana in today’s world.

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There are two uses for cannabis – recreational (fun stuff) and medical. Even though a little high has never hurt anybody, you don’t have to get high to benefit from medical marijuana. Effective medicinal CBD strains contain small amounts of THC. These strains focus their efforts on the therapeutic side of the plant, producing little to no psychoactive effect.

The other interesting update is the days of smoking cannabis tends to be waning. it is used more by the aficionado and the old school consumers.  Today, most users have used a vape or a gummy. You can manage dosing better, they are discreet and you take it to events without the smell.  Gen Z has truly embrace the on-the-go aspect of today’s marijuana.

Study: Older Adults Are Using Cannabis At Higher Rates
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With aging, bodies start to deteriorate in every way, leading to some pain and discomfort. Seniors are more prone to experience inflammation, mental and bone health issues and high blood pressure. Evidence and studies show cannabis is a good way of providing some relief, especially in the chronic pain area.

One of the most common wellness ways cannabis is used is for sleep. Like most natural medicines, it needs to be taken occasionally, but enough to change your sleep patterns. With the correct dosage, it can increase total sleep time and decrease the frequency of arousals during the night.

Another key issue is anxiety. Some people use marijuana to cope with anxiety, especially those with social anxiety disorder. THC appears to decrease anxiety at lower doses and increase anxiety at higher doses. Studies has shown CBD appears to decrease anxiety at all doses.

In the fun category, marijuana is healthier than alcohol and can make experiences much more vibrant and alive. Science shows listening to music, watching a movie, or just looking at scenery is more vibrant.  Part of the reason is while on THC, is slows the “memory search part” of the brain and allows it to focus on the moment. Also, cannabis and cannabis creams can help in the intimacy department, sometimes reopening a door which might have been closed.

RELATED: 6 Ways Cannabis Can Improve The Life Of Seniors

There needs to be an awareness on the possible effect marijuana can have with common medications taken by older adults. A review published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology says that marijuana can interact with common heart medications, such as statin and blood thinners. Marijuana use can alter the time in which these medications have an effect and could also result in bleeding.

People should also avoid pairing marijuana with anti-seizure medications or any other substance that produces strong effects. If having surgery, it’s important for older adults to disclose marijuana use to doctors, even including the use of CBD. The compound has also been linked with altering the way in which the liver processes dosages in medications.

RELATED: Survey: Seniors In Pain Want To Try Cannabis, But This Is Preventing Them

Like alcohol, cannabis can make you a bit unstable on your feet. Using either could result in dizziness and in feeling out of control of your body. This in turn could increase the risk of falling and getting involved in all sorts of accidents. Falls pose serious risks for seniors, with 1 out of 5 resulting in a head injury or broken bones. The good news, if done right, cannabis makes you chill.

How CBD Helps Seniors Exercise
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According to a study published in the journal Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine, like with alcohol, older marijuana users are more likely to experience depression than non-users. While it’s not know exactly why this occurs, it’s likely a combination of things; these users might be taking cannabis instead of seeking medical help, or maybe cannabis is interacting with the medications they’re already taking in ways that are not beneficial.

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Medical Marijuana Reduces Opioid Use




Opioids and fentanyl driving a crisis in recent years, with the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbating the public’s abuse of the drug. The crisis has also become a major U.S. foreign policy issue.  Massive lawsuits have been filling the courts due to the addictive and damaging nature of some opioids and patients have been left in shambles.  Now, data shows medical marijuana reduces opioid use.

RELATED: 8 Ways to Enjoy Marijuana Without Smoking It

A new study from New York State and CUNY researchers suggests receiving medical cannabis for thirty days or more may help patients on long-term opioid treatment to lower their dose over time.

Medical Marijuana Applications Soaring Under Coronavirus Pandemic
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Another study conducted by the American Medical Association showed positive data.  The study, published in JAMA Oncology, analyzed the results of thousands of patients with different types of cancer. ound an association between receiving medical cannabis for chronic pain for a longer duration and a reduction in prescription opioid dosages among patients on long-term opioid therapy. Patients who were on higher baseline dosages of prescription opioids when they started receiving medical cannabis experienced larger reductions in opioid dosages.

Researchers explained that the study was conducted in order to explore the links that exist between marijuana legalization and opioid use. They concluded that medical marijuana curbed opioid use and provided an alternate route for treatment.

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“Findings of this cross-sectional study suggest that medical marijuana legalization implemented from 2012 to 2017 was associated with a lower rate of opioid dispensing and pain-related hospital events among some adults receiving treatment for newly diagnosed cancer,” they wrote.

“The nature of these associations and their implications for patient safety and quality of life need to be further investigated,” researchers added.

Medical marijuana has less of an impact on the body and mind. Cannabis can be an effective treatment for pain, greatly reduces the chance of dependence, and eliminates the risk of fatal overdose compared to opioid-based medications. Medical cannabis patients report that cannabis is just as effective, if not more, than opioid-based medications for pain.

With medical marijuana available in 40 states, this is indeed good news for most patients.

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American Medical Association

What’s Up With Motivation And Marijuana?





Anecdotally people share how marijuana use turned a high performing, eager person into a slug. Images of a consumer laying on a couch with empty bags of chips fill pictures with people assume to a be a “regular” partaker.  But is this true?  Does science back up the impression? Globally, marijuana is third behind alcohol and nicotine in consumed controlled substances.

Like alcohol and other intoxicants, early use of cannabis causes less development in brain functions. It is widely accepted in the medical world, they should avoid intoxicants until there are into there 20s to allow the brain full functioning abilities.

Day drinking alcohol can make you feel drowsy or lethargic. If you didn’t sleep well the night before, even one drink can make you drowsy, especially if you drink during one of your usual low-energy times such as midafternoon or late evening. Alcohol produces chemical imbalances in specific neurocircuits and can be neurotoxic.

Chronic heavy drinking can, for example, damage brain regions involved in memory, decision-making, impulse control, attention, sleep regulation, and other cognitive functions.


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Like alcohol, casual marijuana use can have short and long term effects on the brain and behavior.  There have been few studies examining the link between cannabis and motivation using performance-based measure.  But there is a difference between casual and heavy use.

For casual, short term use, a study from University College London, the University of Cambridge, and the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College London doesn’t find major differences.

But there is one key element. Cannabis use in humans is associated with reduced dopamine in the striatum. Dopamine is responsible for allowing you to feel pleasure, satisfaction and motivation. When you feel good that you have achieved something, it’s because you have a surge of dopamine in the brain. PET studies have shown lower striatal dopamine synthesis and release capacity in cannabis users.

Alcohol use overloads the brain with dopamine, while also reducing the brain’s dopamine receptors in the process. This makes quitting alcohol difficult.

RELATED: 5 Signs That It Is Time For A Cannabis Detox

Scientists at Imperial College London, UCL and King’s College London, conducted a study  funded by the Medical Research Council and published in the journal Biological Psychiatry. Long-term cannabis users tend to produce less dopamine, a study has found.

Researchers found dopamine levels in a part of the brain called the striatum were lower in people who smoke more cannabis and those who began taking the drug at a younger age.

They suggest this finding could explain why some cannabis users appear to lack motivation to work or pursue their normal interests.

Cannabis Does Not Make You Lazy
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It seems causal use has little effect, but dependence can have long term issues that would need to be addressed.  This is not unlike alcohol.

RELATED: New Study about Marijuana And The Creative/Programmer Set

Like most thing, cannabis should be used in moderation and long term use should be done thoughtfully. Use wisely.

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American Medical Association

Science Tosses Cold Water On Psychedelics




Psychedelic plants and mushrooms have been used for a thousand years. Long part of indigenous medicinal traditions, it wasn’t part of modern research until 1938.  In recent years, there has been an explosion in for profit businesses who push for legalization. The Psychedelic Drugs Market is anticipated to reach a valuation of  $11.82 billion US by 2029 from $4.87 billion US in 2022.

Veterans of the  boom – bust – and sort of boom marijuana industry pivoted starting in 2019 to jump into building psychedelic companies and brands. Investors who have seen slow returns on companies like High Times and Tilray have been wooed into the next big thing which, they say, will have a quicker return.

Now JAMA has tossed cold water on the immediate future for the industry.

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RELATED: Science Says Medical Marijuana Improves Quality Of Life

The crux of the issue is the research. Anecdotal information is abudant with millions swearing to the effectiveness of treatment.  But that is not science, and there is not data to verify claims. In the 1950-60s there was a  period of scientific and cultural exploration.  Psychedelic research was slowed significantly decreased starting in the 70s with governmental interventions.

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There are issues the recent article in the  JAMA that need to be resolved for government always it become fully mainstream. We have highlighted three in this article.

How Reliable Are The Studies?

The double-blinded randomized controlled trial (DB-RCT) remains the gold standard method for determining if an intervention is efficacious. However, psychedelic drugs’ intense psychoactive effects make blinding difficult and render trials susceptible to expectation effects.  Psychedelic are very personal so looking at a groups of blind data is very difficult, making it even harder to see trends, patterns, benefits and warnings.

What Are The Risks

The challenges of rigorous trial design and the “moral panic” that accompanied the first wave of psychedelic research make separating the true risks of psychedelic drugs from myth and misinformation difficult. Classic psychedelic drugs cause acute and dose-dependent increases in heart rate and blood pressure, but they do not seem to have significant nonpsychiatric medical risks.4 In terms of psychiatric risks, there is concern that individuals with a diagnosis, or immediate family history, of a psychotic or bipolar disorder may be at increased risk of adverse events (eg, prolonged psychosis), but more research is needed.

Another arguably underappreciated risk of psychedelic therapy concerns the possibility of major life changes after the experience.

What Are the Challenges of Scaling Psychedelic Therapy?

Questions remain regarding the societal impact of psychedelic drugs as they are scaled up from research trials to clinical practice. Another critical issue is the high cost of current psychedelic therapy models, which typically involve 2 clinicians for the 6- to 8-hour dosing sessions, bookended by approximately 10 to 15 hours of talk therapy.

RELATED: Dementia and Marijuana

Anything that is a healthier and a more natural solution for physical and mental ailments is a positive. It is important for global research to invest in solutions that will benefit millions.  Equally important is people understand science will make things more effective if allowed to explore and research.

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