Cannabis (also known as Marijuana, Weed, Pot, Grass, Herb and by many other names) is a preparation of the cannabis plant that can be used for both recreational and medicinal purposes. It produces a unique mixture of stimulant, depressant and hallucinogenic effects when administered, which is typically done via smoking or oral administration.
There are hundreds of compounds in marijuana, but scientists believe the one responsible for the drugs’ psychoactive effects is tetrahydrocannbinol, or THC. THC binds to cannabinoid receptors throughout the body, and marijuana’s “high” comes from THC’s binding to brain regions responsible for pleasure, time perception and pain, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Medical marijuana can soothe nausea and increase appetite, quiet pain, soothe anxiety and even reduce epileptic seizures.
The plant can grow up to 18 feet tall. In the Americas, Cannabis extract was a popular medicinal drug in the 1800s. But in the 1900s, the tide began to turn against the drug. In the 1920s, Mexican immigrants became associated with the smoked, recreational version of the drug, and anti-immigrant sentiments fueled marijuana prohibition.
If you have had any experiences with Cannabis, be sure to tell us about it in the comments – we are always interested in hearing about our readers experiences in areas like this.