Smoking joints will not cure you of cancer
After all, one of the most famous advocates of marijuana, Bob Marley, died of cancer at the age of 36. Clearly, cannabis did not cure his cancer, despite his daily use of the substance. Likewise, cannabis does not cure cancer for anyone.
However, some scientists are studying components of marijuana. This is to determine its potential health benefits to cancer patients. And excitingly, there are a few. There is evidence that marijuana can reduce nausea and vomiting in chemotherapy patients. This is tremendous news, as it contributes to the cure by alleviating suffering.
Cannabis could also increase the appetite of chemotherapy patients. This enables them to receive vital nutrition to enhance their health. Good health is the foundation of healing and overcoming illness. But it isn’t a cure.
It is understandable that desperate patients want to try every possible avenue to cure cancer. Receiving a cancer diagnosis is like having received a death sentence. People will do whatever it takes to overturn it.
Cancer patients feel at the mercy of those holding the remedies and therapies
They must trust them, without having a scientific understanding of why such a treatment might work.
As cancer is a category of disease, not a single disease, it can be harmful to suggest there is one definitive remedy. Cannabinoids have demonstrated apoptotic activity in Petri dishes, against pancreatic tumor cells. However, tests in a petri dish do not represent a cure in a human. There was also evidence that there could be some negative side-effects.
There has been much excitement about GWPharmaceuticals selling shares to continue their scientific research into cannabis. However, there are accusations that the research shows bias. When people have a vested interest in an outcome of research, the scientific community become skeptical.
Premature certainty over a conclusion is not a basis for truth. Wanting cannabis to cure cancer cannot be the starting point for any quality scientific search for the truth. However, one can see how cannabis cure claimants can be lead to feel justified in their beliefs. Especially, when premature conviction comes from their opponents.
Refusing to research the potential curative properties within cannabis inhibits the truth. It leaves a gray area of “what if?“. It leads to questions such as “what are they hiding?“.
To find the truth once and for all, the debate asking “can cannabis really cure cancer” must enter into the arena of open and quality research
So we must weed through both camps. On one side, we have people who want to believe that cannabis will cure cancer. They start with their belief and look for evidence that backs up their theory. On the other side, we have those who believe it doesn’t cure cancer. They too start with the belief that it is not a cure and look for evidence that backs up their opinion.
In the middle, we most likely will find the truth from those with no invested interest either way. If scientists can tangibly prove that cannabis heals cancer, then this news is enthusiastically welcome! But if scientists tangibly demonstrate that it doesn’t, then searches for the remedy will continue elsewhere.
Standing in the middle of both camps is the Marijuana Policy Project
One of the biggest fogs blurring the truth about cannabis as a cancer cure is the illegality of it. As long as it remains a federal offense to own it, research becomes difficult. The Marijuana Policy Project campaigns for the legality of cannabis.
In the United States, medicinal pot is available in 28 states. Gradually, decriminalization is taking place on this level. But it is still only seen as a strong painkiller for chronically ill people. It’s palliative qualities are being recognized.
However, we can look to a country where weed has been long decriminalized, even for recreational use. And sadly we still find no proof of it being a cancer cure. The Netherlands don’t feel prejudiced against marijuana. Likewise, there is no prohibition against scientists utilizing it in quality studies to see if it can cure cancer. Nevertheless, still, no research exists to prove cannabis is curative.
To understand how a cure for cancer needs to work, we need to understand cancer
During the process of mitosis, for some reason, apoptosis did not occur when a genetic anomaly occurred. To be a cure, a component of cannabis must therefore successfully destroy such genetic abnormalities.
As mentioned earlier, in a petri dish this has occurred on a cellular level. However, no such peer-reviewed studies exist which show that an actual tumor in someone’s body dissolved thanks to cannabis. No studies exist to show it happening to a substantial amount of cancer patients. So is marijuana anti-cancer?
There is simply not enough research. We don’t know the truth about marijuana smoke and cancer. And it is unfair to promise cannabis as a cure for desperate patients without guarantees that it will succeed. Meanwhile, cancer patients are using cannabis in palliative care. They are reporting dramatic reductions in their suffering. And this is certainly a positive endorsement to promote the use of cannabis to cancer patients.