Smoke Two Joints in the Morning. . .

But, only if it’s the dank. British researchers released a study that says smoking the poor man’s weed causes more short-term memory loss than smoking strains of Marijuana not only with higher THC levels, but also lower cannabidiol levels. The THC is what most smokers look for. It’s what gives them the “high” most commonly associated with marijuana. According to the study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, it’s the cannabidiol in the less potent strains that causes the memory loss.

The second chemical, cannabidiol, has more calming effects, and brain-imaging studies have shown that it can block the psychosis-inducing effects of THC2. Skunk-type strains of cannabis contain a higher ratio of THC to cannabidiol than do hashish or herbal types.

Because the study was conducted in Europe, specifically the U.K., there were not the same politically & socially archaic restrictions to their methodology. In fact, the methodology proved to be more effective in producing quality results.

The results suggest that cannabidiol can mitigate THC’s interference with memory formation. This is the first study in human to show such effects. One previous study, led by Aaron Ilan, a cognitive neuroscientist at the San Francisco Brain Research Institute in California, failed to find variations in cognitive effects with varying concentrations of cannabidiol3.

Ilan attributes the positive finding of Curran and her team to their more powerful methodology in analysing subjects’ own smoking preferences. In the United States, government policy dictates that only marijuana provided by the National Institute on Drug Abuse can be used for research — and it “is notorious for being low in THC and of poor quality”, says Ilan.

This study is important because it shows that not all types of marijuana are the same when it comes to the effects on the human brain, unlike other so-called narcotics. Chalk up more evidence against the myths of the dangerous weed, and another reason to end the failed drug war.

Read the rest of the story by Nature.com’s Arran Frood: Key ingredient staves off marijuana memory loss

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