source

Harvard Study: Using Cannabis Does Make you Smarter

Harvard study results show that cannabis use improves cognitive abillities.

Scientific findings recently published in Frontiers in Pharmacology may have cleared up mystery if weed makes you stupid or not, once and for all.

Preliminary evidence from a new study led by Harvard Medical School Affiliate McLean Hospital’s Staci Gruber, PhD, suggests that medical marijuana may not impair, and in many cases, may actually improve executive functioning in adults. The behavioral scientists behind the work summarized in “Splendor in the Grass? A Pilot Study Assessing the Impact of Medical Marijuana on Executive Function” tracked 24 certified medical-marijuana patients over a three-month dosing period. The patients were repeatedly measured for cognitive proficiency through challenges to the intelligence that included the Stroop Color Word Test and Trail Making Test.

source

After three months of cannabis treatment, the patients took two different cognitive tests. The first is called the Stroop Color Word Test. This test assesses thinking ability by measuring how long it takes for a person to name a color of a printed word that does not match the written word itself.

Patients also performed a trail making test, which requires them to connect numbered dots.

The three-month scores were then compared to their original baseline. After herbal therapy, the study found that patients were faster in completing tasks. They also did not make any more errors than they had before.

In addition, patients self-reported improvements in a variety of symptoms, including condition-related symptoms, sleep, and overall health.

From a McLean Hospital report:

“After three months of medical marijuana treatment, patients actually performed better, in terms of their ability to perform certain cognitive tasks, specifically those mediated by the frontal cortex,” explained Gruber.
Study participants also reported improvements in their specific clinical conditions, sleep, and overall health as well as a decreased use of conventional medications, particularly opiates.
“We saw a 42 percent reduction in opioid use,” reported Gruber. “This is significant, particularly for those of us in Massachusetts and other areas of the country where the opioid epidemic is ravaging so many. This preliminary finding certainly warrants deeper and broader investigation.”

But this is not only for patients seeking for pain relief, because many patients have also read about, for example, the benefits of drinking hemp oil or the success of taking CBD oil for OCD, and they’re now trying cannabis as an alternative treatment.

Besides, similar findings have been reported in other surveys, such as one with 271 respondents published in February [2017]. This study found that 30 percent of respondents preferred cannabis to opioid pain relievers. More research suggests that patients see cannabis as a viable alternative to pain relievers.

Still, Gruber wants to play it safe on the subject until further researcher is completed. She says,

As a clinical researcher, I’m not interested in exploring only the good or the bad, I’m only interested in the truth. That’s what our patients and our recreational users have a right to know and a right to expect from us. People are going to use it. It’s up to us to figure out the very best and safest ways in which they can do that.

But this is not only for patients seeking for pain relief, because many patients have also read about, for example, the benefits of drinking hemp oil or the success of taking CBD oil for OCD, and they’re now trying cannabis as an alternative treatment.

Besides, similar findings have been reported in other surveys, such as one with 271 respondents published in February [2017]. This study found that 30 percent of respondents preferred cannabis to opioid pain relievers. More research suggests that patients see cannabis as a viable alternative to pain relievers.

According to the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, more than 22 million Americans report current use of recreational marijuana and more than 1 million are certified for medical marijuana use. Since MMJ users in the study did not experience the deficits commonly observed in recreational MJ users, the authors believe that “it is in the public’s best interest to develop a robust, evidence-based understanding of both the positive and negative effects of MMJ use on various aspects of functioning: cognition, quality of life, physical and emotional health.”

source

Deeper, broader investigations into marijuana’s ability to improve our mental functioning and reduce our susceptibility to opioid dependence should be happening sooner than later.

In that regard, “Splendor in the Grass?” lead Staci Gruber appears to be every bit as invested in the public wellbeing as she is smart in her approach to unraveling and establishing best marijuana practices.

“People are going to use it,” she concludes. “It’s up to us to figure out the very best and safest ways in which they can do that.”

  • We don’t have subscription plans, nor do we lock our content so readers who show their support with purchasing cannabis seeds and CBD products help us keep doing this. Thank you for your support and for helping us improve!

  • 1.2K
    Shares

Comments:

Your opinion matters!

Please Login to comment
avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of