Let’s be honest – weed without THC would be about as much fun as a pencil without lead or a weekend without a well-earned hangover. It’s the stuff that makes pot do what it does and also makes the difference between the weed you want and the stuff you wish you hadn’t bothered wasting your money on.
But while you might know what tetrahydrocannabinol does, chances are you might not know a great deal about its history and mechanics. Before you write all this off as a big yawn-fest without going any further, there are one or two bits in here that you’ll probably find interesting.
If not, you can at least bore the hell out of your mates with them next time someone tries to make out that they know more about weed than you do…knowledge is power, people!
1 – Scientists Discovered THC in the 1960s
So first up, weed may have been grown and smoked for thousands of years but it wasn’t until 1964 that a scientist actually pinpointed this key compound. Credit goes to Dr. Raphael Mechoulam for the discovery, having decided to take a deeper look into weed and find out what it is that makes it tick. As an example of how adamant he was in finding the truth, he didn’t even bother to gain permission to study the drug – he instead used an insider at the local police station to get hold of some for him!
2 – There Are Dozens of Active Ingredients in Pot
Most are aware that it’s THC that delivers the biggest whack in weed, but you might not know that there are over 60 active ingredients in the average bud. What’s more, most of these compounds have some kind of positive use for the pharmaceutical world, though are generally extracted from other plant sources. The medical/scienctific investigation into cannabinoids (the larger part of these other compounds) is ongoing, but displaying more and more positive results.
3 – THC is Used in Legal Drugs and Treatments
THC itself cannot be bought or used in most places the world over without risking a slap from lawmakers. However, it might surprise some folk to learn that THC has been used in the creation of certain drugs and treatments for decades now. For example, certain drugs that are used to treat the unpleasant after-effects of chemotherapy contain THC, as did a fair-few painkillers which for the most part have now been retired and replaced with the more commonplace OTC alternatives.
4 – THC is Good For the Brain
Chances are this’ll be the point any critics will start swearing at the screen, having heard that weed on the whole does nothing less than rot the brains of those using is. However, if you base your understanding on actual research and scientific evidence, it might shock you to learn that THC has shown remarkable promise in its ability to stimulate brain cell growth and protection. This particular discovery was made in 2005 and is still being investigated pretty heavily by leading medical scientists.
5 – The Body Produces Chemicals Very Similar to THC
One of the most common arguments against THC is that is goes against the body’s natural processes and therefore causes damage. Once again, however, science argues differently: it was back in 1992 that a scientist first discovered anandamide – a cannabinoid that’s actually produced by the human body. As such, it came to light that rather than poisoning the body, THC to some extent simply replicates the natural processes and effects of the body’s existing chemical compounds.
6 – Strong Weed May Have No THC Content
While it may be true to say that it’s THC that does its stuff when smoking, this doesn’t necessarily mean that the ultra-strong buds you have actually contain any THC at all. This is because it’s more common for the buds to contain tetrahydrocannabinolic acid – or THCA – which by itself in its raw form is not psychoactive. However, when you expose the stuff to a strong source of heat…as in light your joint…it is then converted into THC by decarboxylation, thus the reason you end up out of your tree despite there having been no actual THC in the buds.
7 – THC Does Not Cause Hormonal Changes
One of the longest-standing myths with regard to THC use recreationally is that of the compound eventually leading to hormonal changes in the user. This has been floating around for decades now and has been studied dozens of times…the results of said studies proving outright that’s it’s complete and total nonsense. But in a rather ironic twist that nobody ever seems to want to mention – alcohol can indeed cause hormonal changes and has been proven to do so time and time again…just saying!
8 – There’s Never Been a Recorded Fatal THC Overdose
As much as there will always be those people who heard about or perhaps even claim to know someone who overdosed on weed and died, scientific evidence suggests that doing so is technically impossible. To date, there hasn’t been a single recorded case of a THC overdose leading to a fatality, which comes down to the fact that you’d need to have so much of the stuff in your body, you’d have been violently sick before getting anywhere near a toxic dose.
9 – THC is Not Linked with Reproductive Problems
Though suspected over several decades of being a known contributor to fertility problems in men and women alike, in-depth and long-term studies have failed to draw any direct links between weed and reproductive problems…not a single one.
10 – We’re Still Learning
Last but not least, despite the fact that weed smoking dates back to thousands of years BC, we’re still only just getting started with our understanding of what it is and how it works. More importantly, there’s a ton of research going on into its potential benefits and how it could be used for the greater good – most of which seems to be bringing back extremely reassuring results! Sadly, it’s always more entertaining for the masses to hear scare stories that have been well and truly made up by the newspapers – it’s just a case of not falling into the trap of believing everything you read!