One of the many positive effects of legalization is that it also helps advance research. This is especially true when it comes to research into marijuana’s potential medicinal qualities.
Specifically, as marijuana becomes legal in more and more places around the world, it becomes easier for researchers to access and use the plant in medical and scientific research.
And it’s not just immediate research that is benefitting and improving. Research into the long-term effects of cannabis is becoming much more accessible and more widely available, thanks to the ever-growing body of marijuana-related data.
Now, researchers in Israel have published a new study about the long-term effects of marijuana on inflammatory bowel disease. And according to their work, cannabis could have multiple positive benefits for people dealing with the condition.
New Research Shows Positive Outcomes from Using Medical Cannabis
The study was recently published online. It is part of the forthcoming November issue of the European Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology.
Specifically, the study looks at how marijuana impacts inflammatory bowel disease.
In the research, scientists worked with 127 patients. Each of them used legal medical marijuana to treat their bowel condition. Specifically, patients in the study consumed an average dosage of 31 grams per month.
Throughout the patient group’s ongoing treatment of inflammatory bowel syndrome, researchers gathered key metrics before starting medical marijuana, one month after using medical marijuana, and at least one year after consistent use of medical marijuana.
Additionally, patients periodically filled out questionnaires about their health in general and, more specifically, about the state of their inflammatory bowel disease.
After compiling and analyzing these numbers, researchers identified the following trends:
- Patients’ Harvey-Bradshaw Index (a method for gauging the severity of Crohn’s disease) consistently showed marked improvements.
- There was an average weight gain of 2 kilograms among patients within the first year of medical cannabis use.
- On average, medical marijuana patients reduced their need for other medications.
- Employment among medical cannabis patients rose from 65 percent to 74 percent.
In addition to noting several positive health indicators among the medical marijuana patients, researchers also said they did not observe any noticeable negative side effects.
Ultimately, they concluded: “Cannabis use by inflammatory bowel disease patients can induce clinical improvement and is associated with reduced use of medication and slight weight gain.”
They also wrote: “We conclude that the majority of inflammatory bowel disease patients using cannabis are satisfied with a dose of 30g/month. We did not observe negative effects of cannabis use on the patients’ social or occupational status.”
Cannabis and Bowel Disorders
This study is not the first time experts have linked cannabis to the effective treatment of bowel disorders.
In fact, it is fairly common for people to use medical marijuana to treat the following bowel conditions:
- Celiac disease
- Leaky gut disease
- Crohn’s disease
- and many others.
Now, in the wake of this brand new research, it seems as if patients might be able to add inflammatory bowel disease to that list.