Long considered a drug, used for recreation by millions of people, it seems that findings on the medical use and health benefits of marijuana are revolutionizing medicine, law and the public opinion worldwide. Countries, one by one, all take the train of legalizing marijuana.
So what is Marijuana?
Marijuana is a popular name for a plant called cannabis. This plant has originated thousands of years ago in Asia. It has since found its way in every continent and country in the world. In America it was known as cannabis, until the Mexican revolution that started in 1010, when Mexican peasants immigrating to the US brought the plant with them; a plant they referred to as “mariguana”.
Cannabis is used in three main forms: herbal, hashish and hash oil. The dried flowers and leaves if the plant are what is actually referred to as marijuana. Hashish is made from the resin (a secreted gum) of the cannabis plant, when dried and pressed into small blocks. Hash oil, the most potent cannabis product, is a thick oil obtained from hashish.
There are three cannabis families: Cannabis Sativa, Cannabis Indica and Cannabis Ruderalis.
Cannabis Sativa is physically the largest of the three – the most popular as well. These plants are tall, loosely branched and have long, narrow leaves. They are usually grown outdoors and can reach heights of up to 20 feet.
The effects this plant produces when consumed tend to be uplifting and creative, with cerebral focus. They also include boost of energy and exhilaration, making Sativa best for day use.
In terms of the medical benefits, Sativa is proved to aid in the relief with patients with depression, ADD, fatigue and mood disorders.
Indica plants typically grow short and wide. These plants are better suited for indoor growing because of their short growth.
The effects of indica include body pain relief, relaxed muscles, spasm relief and reduced seizure, headache and migraine relief, as well as anxiety and stress relief.
Cannabis ruderalis is a unique variety of cannabis that isn’t as popular as indicas or sativas. The plant has its origins from Russia. These are incredibly short plants and only grow to about 2 feet tall.
They also have the least amount of THC, which explains its rare use for recreational purposes. It has, however, a very fast growing cycle, and also what is known as the “auto-flowering” which is a characteristic sought by marijuana breeders. Hybrids made from combining Indica and Ruderalis strains are currently proving to be some of the earliest-maturing outdoor plants available.
Ruderalis hybrids are also useful for medicinal applications in cases where the therapeutic benefits of CBD are preferred without the attendant psychoactive effects of high-THC strains.