Diabetes is something that afflicts almost 10% of the American population. A shocking, 11.8 million people over the age of 65 have it; that means 25.9% of all seniors suffer from this illness. As America’s baby boomers grey, more and more of them are turning to healthier lifestyles, and healthier lifestyles include cannabis.
In 2005, research was released by the American Alliance for Medical Cannabis (AAMC), which found that cannabis could benefit those with diabetes in a number of ways. Studies have found cannabis to be helpful in treating type 1 and 2 diabetes. In fact, two additional studies were released in 2013 in the American Journal of Medicine and in the Natural Medicine Journal in 2014, both concluding very definitively that cannabis helps diabetics. The findings showed that cannabis helps control glucose levels. Additionally, users are found less likely to be obese, and have lower BMI with smaller waistlines. Users showed higher levels of HDL – “good cholesterol” – as well as having better fasting insulin and were less insulin resistant.
A 2015 study by the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, showed that the anti-inflammatory properties in cannabis effectively treat several illnesses including type 2 diabetes.
Cannabis is also neuroprotectant meaning it actually helps protect nerves from inflammation. Cannabis also lessens the pain of neuropathy by activating receptors in the body and brain. Some components of cannabis (perhaps cannabidiol) act as anti-spasmodic agents similar to the far more toxic anti-convulsants like Neurontin. This action of cannabis helps relieve diabetic muscle cramps and gastrointestinal tract upsets.
There are even more ways cannabis can benefit diabetics! Marijuana also helps to keep blood vessels open improves circulation. It can also reduce blood pressure over time. Though it is not generally categorized as an anti-hypertensive, it does aid in lowering blood pressure. This is something vital in treating diabetes.
Additionally, using cannabis in food provides long lasting blood levels of key cannabinoids. Cooking in general allows for overall blood sugar maintenance. Cooking with cannabis can be optimal in this as cannabis butter and oil substitute triple bonded fatty acids for the saturated fats normally contained in these essential cooking products. This substitution will benefit cardiac and arterial health in general. If nighttime hypoglycemia is a problem then a cannabis cookie can be very helpful.
Topicals infused with cannabis can be applied directly to hands and feet affected by neuropathic pain and tingling. Cannabis topicals can treat restless leg syndrome – often plaguing diabetics – in a more natural way, versus having to take muscle relaxants.