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Cannabis: The Actual Plant Works Better

Have you wondered why we’re told to eat vegetables and a balanced diet, rather than just pop pills? The fact is, the real food we consume contains a great number of benefits that simply don’t act alone.

In the 1960s, Raphael Mehoulam was a young graduate student in Israel, studying the active compounds of marijuana.

Since it was illegal, he was forced to get it from friends in a police station. His study wasn’t stopped by the Israeli government, and as a result, he determined what’s in cannabis, and why it works better with all components intact.

For the first time, in 1963, the structure of cannabidiol was discovered. A year later, Mehoulam was able to isolate THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.

Through the years, more and more cannabis compounds were isolated by the team. They managed to indentify the first known endogenous cannabinoid in the brain itself. It was termed Anandamide, from the Sanskrit word ananda, meaning “supreme bliss”.

There are almost five hundred components known to exist in cannabis plants:

Cannabinoids, proteins, terpenes, esters, fatty acids and more.   Mehoulam maintains that the plant’s components must act in concert to maximally benefit the body and brain.

Termed the Entourage Effect, there is still no explanation as to why the whole plant works better than using THC or CBD alone.

GW Pharmaceuticals have likewise found that plants containing proportional amounts of THC and CBD better reduce spasms and pain in patients with multiple sclerosis than drugs made from a single compound.

March 2014