Treating cancer with medicinal cannabis

Treating cancer requires a comprehensive strategy, including diet, exercise and improving immune function. Immune function can be supercharged with essential oils, the most notable being medicinal cannabis oil.

Essential oils (EOs) are the extraction of a plants immune system. Plants typically kill invading pathogens by triggering a process called apoptosis. This translates into English as ‘cell suicide’. Effectively EOs cause bad cells, including cancer cells, to kill themselves. Nice.

The most effective essential oil for killing cancer is medicinal cannabis oil (MCO). MCO contains multiple compounds (144 known and more as yet unidentified) that work symbiotically in the containment and elimination of cancer. Naturally there are conditions which allow the medicine to work effectively – and some conditions that will limit it’s ability.

Why use cannabis oil and not others as the principle treatment?

Your body has an endocannabiniod system – a network of receptors on cells that are coded for MCO compounds. The endocannabiniod system is the first evidence that we, as humans, are meant to use this plant as a medicine – we are, by default, heavily connected by our endocannabiniod system to this plant.

Secondly, there simply is no toxic level for cannabis – there is no point at which it is unsafe, and overdosing is virtually impossible. Tea Tree Essential Oil follows the same pathways as MCO and also triggers apoptosis, but ingestion of this oil can become toxic very quickly. The result is that you can’t take enough tea tree oil to kill a tumour.

Medicinal Cannabis Treatment Program.

When I was dealing with my cancer the hardest thing was to make sense of the information I was getting – some of it quite contradictory. But after nine months of experimentation it started to make sense.

There are principle considerations to be made. This includes the trickiest question: what’s the dosage? The compounds that draw the most attention are CBD and THC. They have completely different roles. By better understanding them you can also better understand dosage.

CBD – Cannabiniod. CBD is a perfectly legal compound. It is approved by WADA (the World Anti Doping Authority) which means it is available even to elite athletes. While it has never been illegal, the complication was that is has been illegal to grow the cannabis plant from which CBD can be extracted.

CBD is best known for its use in the treatment of epilepsy. However it has many other quite amazing abilities. It is a very effective anti-psychotic, and very effective pain killer. It works as an anti anxiety and anti depressant medication also, and can effectively treat conditions like ADHD. It also treats neuropathic conditions, including MS and Crohns.

THC – Tetrahydrocannabinol. This is the only notorious compound in cannabis, mostly associated with recreational users. However, THC is the cancer killer. This is the compound in medicinal cannabis that triggers apoptosis in cancer cells (cell suicide) and actually any ‘bad guy’ floating around your blood stream. While THC has received a bad rap, it is actually your best friend if you have cancer. It is determining the correct dosage of THC which has been the hard part, simply because of the psycho active effect of taking too much of the stuff. Taking medicinal cannabis in order to help treat cancer does not require that you get cross eyed and ‘stoned’.

Cannabis, despite the propaganda of the 1930’s which still persists today – is not addictive. It is not a so called gateway drug. More than a third of the Australian population has consumed cannabis on a recreational basis. Over one million Australians have consumed cannabis over the last 12 months. And then they leave it alone.

There are some people who abuse cannabis, however that says much more about the addict than it does about cannabis – addictive personalities will find something – anything – to get addicted to. If they couldn’t get cannabis it would be something else, and something inevitably unhealthy. Perhaps ironically, research has shown that the cohort of long term ‘recreational’ users have a much lower likelihood of contracting lung or bladder cancer.

Medicinal cannabis is a different beast to recreational cannabis. Medicinal cannabis comes as a purified, certified product that is typically consumed orally or as a suppository. Recreational cannabis is typically smoked – because cannabis needs to be heated in order to release the THC (known as decarboxalation). The effects on the body and the mind are quite different.

THC when smoked can cause anxiety and disorientation as well as the ‘high’ one may get. Interestingly, unlike drugs of addiction, cannabis does not enable an escape from ones situation, for example the way heroin does. Smoking cannabis will exaggerate an existing state of mind – so if you are anxious or stressed it will make it worse, which makes recreational use unviable unless you are already happy and want to get happier. The result of this is that it is not addictive.

THC when ingested as a medicine acts quite differently, notably when controlled by CBD. The reason is that recreational ‘weed’ has been cultivated to increase the THC content to unnatural levels. This creates an imbalance between the psychoactive effects of THC and the anti-psychotic effects of CBD. In the natural world the CBD content is equal or greater than the THC content. This significantly shuts down the high from smoking weed, which is why recreational cannabis is bred for high levels of THC.

When taking THC as medicine it is ingested in combination with CBD. This way you can control your own experience. If you do find that the THC is affecting you then you can take some extra CDB to neutralise that.

Dosage.

This is where information becomes very contradictory. However, after almost 12 months of taking medicinal cannabis oil, of listening to a variety of opinions, including that of my specialist, it comes down to this:

CBD is critical to the treatment. It works with the THC to get the result, and it enables you to take a higher dose of THC without getting whacked. It does not kill cancer cells but the anti-psychotic properties will make it much easier to deal with the psychological effects of having cancer – anxiety, depression, stress etc.

How much CBD should you take? Micro-dosing is the short answer. In the world of pharmaceutical drugs, dosages are measured in milligrams. The dosage will vary depending on the drug and disease, but often it is measured in just a few milligrams – maybe 5 or 10 per dose. Micro-dosing CBD for my treatment was about 100 to 150 mg per day, however this dosage was specific to prostate cancer. CBD dosages will vary according to the condition being treated, and will also vary according to an individuals sensitivity. But keep in mind this is an anti-psychotic drug, so taking more will only make you feel better, if not lazier.

How much THC should you take? Long standing advice originating from a Canadian farmer (Rick Simpson – to whom we all owe a huge debt for propelling this whole journey into the 21st century) was to consume 1000 milligrams per day – an entire gram of medicinal cannabis oil. This advice has stuck – despite there being zero scientific evidence to support this idea.

When I was confronted with the idea of taking an entire gram per day I was horrified. Especially considering the MCO required only one or two drops (about 50 mg) to get me whacked. And I am supposed to take 1000? My specialist was equally confused because taking excess amounts of cannabiniods shuts down the receptors in the endocannabiniod system, making it a virtually useless exercise. The fact is your body can only use so much and pouring more in on top becomes pointless if not counter-productive.

This begs the question: why is it effective to micro-dose CBD but macro-dosing of THC is required in order to experience the benefits? It makes no sense, and after my experience it makes no sense from that perspective either.

The tiny bits of random recommendations on dosage that have a scientific basis suggest that taking more is unproductive at best.

The science says that CBD and THC work best in combination, and they occur naturally in cannabis plants at about a ratio of one to one. So do that. That is still a huge amount of THC and it will impact your state of mind – but you are killing cancer here. It is a long way from 1000 mg per day, which I did take for a period of time, and which I regret. It messed me up and derailed my program. I cannot imagine that nature would require us to be so badly affected by a plant in the name of healing.

Dosage is a very individual thing. It has nothing to do with physical size. While anyone can take CBD without negative side effects, THC can send some people into a spin – anxiety will take over, largely due to not understanding the effects. This is why it is recommended to start with CBD, and after about two weeks of regular dosage you may add one drop of THC and slowly build up that up.

The reality is that the interaction between a person and medicinal cannabis is very individual, which means that you will have to experiment to some extent. The main thing is to be in a safe, supportive environment when you start out. You will need support – at least you will need someone to drive for you as driving under the influence of THC is unsafe (and illegal).

How should you take this medicine?

CBD is easily taken orally. The active compound is mixed into a carrier – usually MCT coconut oil – typically at about 4:1 carrier to active compound. You can just use a dropper into a tea spoon and take it that way.

THC can be taken orally or in a capsule used as a suppository (empty capsules are available at most pharmacies). However, this is where it becomes important to know whether the oil has been properly decarboxalated. Decarboxalation converts the THCa that occurs naturally in the plant into THC. If this has not been properly done then it will be less effective as a suppository as it bypasses the liver. This is a good thing if the oil has been decarboxalated. However if it is not decarboxalated the liver will do it for you when you ingest it, but not when you use it as a suppository.

This highlights the need to know exactly where the oil has come from, and that it has been properly tested and profiled. There are a number of people producing very high quality oil and provide the profile, and there are some people trying to help but they are producing sub standard oil. I’ll talk about how to pick one from the other later.

How do you know if it is working?

With CBD results may be seen within 90 minutes, while with some conditions the outcome is virtually invisible. For example, in the case of neuropathic pain I have seen years of pain disappear in 90 minutes. In respect of emotional wellbeing I have seen crazy become calm in a few hours. It depends on the person and their history. As I mentioned earlier, I used CBD to support my surgery and the result was spectacular, as was my recovery. So it comes down to purpose – what are you using it for and what outcome is expected. Measure against that – but no doubt CBD is very effective when applied appropriately.

THC is a different story. It has a limited and very specific purposes. The measure of the results of THC will be associated with the mitigation of disease symptoms. For example I had an MRI at the start, followed by another one six months later. I also had several PSA tests along the way. These results enabled my specialist and myself to make a decision about what to do next. THC has killed many prostate cancers but was unable to kill mine and so I opted for surgery, using the CBD and THC for surgery and recovery very effectively.

How often should you dose?

With CBD it is a personal thing – there is no downside to CBD other than chronic laziness if you take too much. Not exercising is counter productive and so adjust your dosage so that you can continue to do whatever exercise you are capable of.

With THC you need to be more specific. The only reason you would be taking THC is to kill cancer or some other pathogen. This requires a constant dosage – a bit like antibiotics, you have to take your dosage regularly to maintain a constant level of THC. Do not interrupt your THC program. You may need to adjust the amount you take, but remain consistent in your usage, only stopping when the disease has been cured, or you have a change of strategy. Do not quit simply because you are fed up with the psychoactive affects – rather adjust the THC down and the CBD up. Interrupting your program will reduce the benefits if not prevent the outcome you are looking for.

It is also very important to maintain the recommended diet as outlined previously.

Is medicinal cannabis a miracle drug?

Yes, and no. The real miracle drug is healthy food – a healthy diet and active lifestyle will prevent disease. However if disease has struck – mental or physical – a healthy diet and exercise is still required in order for medicinal cannabis to be effective. This was discussed earlier, but basically diet is the basis of immune function and a healthy immune system requires a healthy diet.

Medicinal cannabis can produce ‘miraculous’ results – miraculous meaning that modern medicine has not had the solution while a much disparaged weed does.

That said, CBD and THC will both be very effective provided that the required protocols are followed. But not every time. Sometimes the cancer may be too old in which case they become rocks that can’t be broken easily. For example, what I needed to do was to look at using CBD and THC in combination with the surgery – and that was very successful.

Where do you get it from?

The first place to start is with your GP. They are legally able to prescribe CBD in most states but supply is a problem. However, this is changing and so asking your GP is the first point of reference. Some GPs love the idea, but I had one young GP literally accuse me of being insane for thinking about it. By finding a sympathetic GP you have a medical professional there to support you, even if they can’t supply.

There are a surprising number of people producing THC oils. It is also easy to make it yourself. The problem is that they are THC heavy oils, which aren’t that helpful without CBD, notably when CBD is the most likely medicine that you will require. CBD oil comes from strains that are CBD heavy, which no one has been growing due to the obsession with THC. That trend is reversing.

The trick is to find a supplier who can provide both CBD and THC oils. They are more likely to be genuine than suppliers who can only provide THC oils. Keep in mind that you need both anyway.

I know several people producing high quality CBD and THC in the Northern Rivers of NSW. Unfortunately I cannot list them here. So although this is a life saving medicine, all I can legally say is ‘ask around’. Every city in Australia has producers. Seek and ye shall find, as I did. (Or email me).

How do you know if you found the right producer?

Simply, the oil is certified. Every batch must go to a lab to be profiled. This is because the batches always vary in cannabinoids, and the producer needs to know what the variation is in order to correctly prepare the medicine. For example my oil came with the certificate stating exactly what was in there and this allowed for it to be mixed with a carrier so that every bottle was of the same strength.

If the oil is not certified, don’t buy it. Otherwise you can make the THC oil yourself if you have cancer and want to get started asap – but this implies experience with cannabis and knowing where to buy high quality plant material. You can also purchase CBD strains online and grow them yourself. It is all illegal of course, but you have to choose that over dying, which was my choice.

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