Can Cannabinoids Help Heal Cancer?
Can Cannabinoids Help Heal Cancer?
Many people are truly suffering from cancerous tumors, and I do not wish to spread false hope or peddle “snake oil”. However, if you or somebody you care about is already suffering from cancer, it cannot hurt to gather some more information about how cannabinoids may help treat some types of cancer. Some scientific studies and regular people’s experiences suggest that cannabinoids can help retard tumors or even kill cancer cells. Sometimes the active ingredients of marijuana work alone, but other times they supplement tradition treatments.
Consider the first major advantages of medicinal marijuana (cannabis). It is the absence of large and undesirable side effects. Most prescription drugs come with a list of possible dangerous and alarming side effects. Some can even cause people to become more ill or die. No major harm has been associated with the use of cannabis to treat cancerous tumors.
Even the National Cancer Institute of the US Department of Health has taken notice of the possible use of marijuana to treat tumors as well as alleviate cancer symptoms.
That said, the website of the US Department of Health’s National Cancer institute has recently added an official page titled “Cannabis and Cannabinoids”. The article can be found at cancer.gov, which is an official US government website. It clearly states that cannabinoids (active substance in the marijuana plant) may be useful for the treatment of cancer and cancer side-effects.
Animal studies conducted on laboratory rodents have demonstrated that cannabinoids cause cancer cell death by blocking tumor cell blood vessels. These tests have also demonstrated that the active ingredient in marijuana protects healthy cells while killing cancer cells.
A separate study on mice demonstrated that cannabinoids might help keep the colon inflammation free. This study concluded that cannabinoids may also have the potential to reduce the risk of colon cancer, and possibly even to treat colon cancer.
A detailed scientific study targeted at liver cancer ( delta-9-THC in hepatocellular carcinoma cells) was also conducted. This study demonstrated that the active ingredients in marijuana could damage or kill liver cancer cells.
Cannabis was also tested on two types of breast cancer cells. The results were very hopeful. The two types of cancer cells are called estrogen receptor positive and estrogen receptor negative cells. The active ingredient of cannabis caused both kinds of cancer cells to die without much impact on normal breast cells.
People need to understand that these studies were conducted with highly concentrated amounts of cannabinoids. This is not just the amount of cannabinoids a casual smoker takes in during recreational use. Therapeutic doses for the treatment of cancer should be delivered and supervised by a trained and experience medical professional. Normal smoking, vaporizing, or eating a pot brownie will not deliver an effective dose though it may help to alleviate some symptoms.
Products like Rick Simpson’s Hemp Oil are very highly concentrated cannabinoid extracts. Users have proclaimed the benefits of this type of concentrated hemp oil for the treatment of many health problems from minor skin rashes to life-threatening tumors.
I am not qualified to verify those health claims, but used with traditional medical treatments, cannabinoids seem to be effective. An elderly San Francisco lady named Michelle Aldrich has gotten in touch with me to tell me about her own experiences with cancer and medical marijuana treatment. Before I continue, allow me to mention that she and her husband have both been longtime marijuana supporters. In fact, they received a lifetime achievement award from High Times Magazine recently. You might assume that she is biased. I mention this to be fair, but before you rush to judgment, please consider what she has to say.
Aldrich got bad news in late 2011. She was diagnosed with lung cancer. In addition, she suffered from cancerous lymph nodes, a spot on her kidney and inflammation in her colon (three polyps). This was all very bad news for Ms. Aldrich.
The worst news is that the 5 year survival rate for her disease is only about one in four. Her doctors suggested a typical course of chemotherapy in order to shrink her lymph nodes enough so they could remove two lobes from one of her lungs.
Michelle Aldrich said she would agree to submit to the doctor’s recommended treatment, but she insisted on adding something she called Milagro Oil. Milagro oil is a variation of Rick Simpson’s hemp oil extract. She also decided to take a completely holistic approach to her illness in addition to trying chemotherapy and medical marijuana.
Ms. Aldrich spoke before the Women’s Visionary Congress in 2012. She told her audience that she wanted to set a new course for her treatment. She had decided that she really did not want to die of lung cancer, and she was determined to do everything she could to heal herself. She added that she intended to try the chemo, but also change her diet and supplement her medical treatment with acupuncture and medical cannabis.
Ms. Aldrich’s chosen extract contained 63% THC. She told her audience that it did not get her high. She also added a Cannabidiol (CBD) tincture. A tincture is a medicine made by dissolving a drug in alcohol. In addition she stuck to a very strict diet which excluded milk products, sugar, wheat, alcohol, and almost all meat. Her only meat was a servicing of chicken once a month. She did eat fish. Her fish was mostly salmon.
Now here’s the good news. She went through her recommended traditional chemotherapy treatments from February until April of 2012. She continued taking cannabis extract oil until May. She had a CT scan on April, 17 of the same year. By April, the scan revealed that her tumor had not grown, but had in fact shrunk by half. In May, she had a PET scan which revealed no discernible cancers. Additionally her formerly affected lymph nodes were normal sized. She did end up agreeing to a much more minor surgery than what was originally planned. The doctors took out her lymph nodes and the very thin remains of her tumor. Doctors said the tumor they removed was actually already dead when they took it out. Afterwards, Aldrich still went through the negative after-effects of chemotherapy. She was nauseated and lost her appetite. Her doctors were very surprised by her results and could not attribute it to chemotherapy alone.