Children born to expectant mothers who used marijuana during pregnancy are at a higher risk of developing mental disorders. The results were discovered in a recent study published in JAMA Psychiatry which analysed around 11,489 children for research purposes. The spectrum of disorders included a number of problems like autism, psychotic-like behaviors, and ADHD among many others.
The children were part of the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development study which is considered as the largest long-term study of brain development and child health in the United States.
Findings of the study
Out of the 11,489 children who were studied, almost 655 were exposed to marijuana during their gestational period. The negative effects were magnified in women who continued using marijuana through out their pregnancy and also while breastfeeding their infants. “Use of cannabis despite knowledge of pregnancy might represent a preexisting and more severe form of cannabis use,” the authors wrote.
Marijuana usage and Mental Disorders
The increased decriminalization and evolving legal acceptance of marijuana is leading to an escalation in its usage rates.
Compounds in marijuana bind to cannabinoid receptors in the brain and induce side-effects like intoxication, euphoria and cognitive delays. This is the main reason for its classification as a Schedule 1 drug at the federal level in the United States. For states where it is considered legal, the medicinal benefits attached to some of its non-psychoactive compounds are valued above the side-effects.
In general, the risks of addiction and other associated side-effects increase with the concentration of THC (psychoactive compound). The negative consequences can be more detrimental if the exposure happens at an earlier developmental age. This is why the incidence of marijuana use and mental disorders is higher for children who get exposed to it in the womb.
According to a research published by U.S Surgeon General Jerome Adams, the concentration of compounds in marijuana have changed overtime. The marijuana available today is much more stronger and THC concentrated as compared to what it was earlier. THC concentration in marijuana crops has increased by three-folds between 1995 and 2014.
In addition, according to his research, marijuana products sold in legal dispensaries may contain THC concentrations ranging between 17.7% to 23.2%. This is separate from the other class of concentrated products that are exclusively designed for recreational use. These products tend to contain between 23.7% to 75.9% concentration levels of THC in them.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse has reported that the usage rates of marijuana had more than doubled between 2002 and 2017 among pregnant women. Most of this use was recreational rather than medicinal in nature. Surprisingly, there are mothers who used marijuana because they considered it safer as compared to prescription medications.
Side-effects of marijuana on fetal development
THC affects the fetal brain via the mother’s bloodstream. It disrupts the mother’s endocannabinoid system, affecting fetal brain development. Outcomes of this early exposure to dangerous levels of THC and leads to anxiety, agitation and psychosis in children.
Some newborns exposed to marijuana have also reportedly experienced withdrawal symptoms including tremors, crying and sleep deprivation. Furthermore, some of the risks during gestation include lower birth weight, preterm labor and increased risk of miscarriages.
In addition to this, studies conducted by Duke University Medical Center have shown a clear link between autism and marijuana. It was a first study to highlight the changes in sperm genes that occur with a man’s cannabis intake. These changes in the sperm of marijuana users have been found to trigger autism in their offspring.
Effect of marijuana exposure later in life of children
According to Dr. Compton there is enough retrospective data to show an association between marijuana usage and the onset of psychotic symptoms. “Adolescent/premorbid marijuana use is not only a risk factor for the later development of primary psychotic disorders (which has been shown in prior studies), but is also a risk factor for an earlier onset of those disorders.”
Can the damage be controlled?
Camille Hoffman, MD, MSCS, is an associate professor of maternal- fetal medicine in University of Colorado School of Medicine. He has conducted a detailed study on the negative effects of marijuana on fetal development. His studies have found that maternal marijuana use begins to negatively impact the fetal brain at an earlier stage in pregnancy. However, some dietary measures can help to curtail these damages. “We also found that eating choline-rich foods or taking choline as a supplement may protect the child from potential harm.”
Cannabis Industry- A Way to Business or Social Justice in Society
For many, the booming cannabis industry is a blessing. Within the passage of two decades, cannabis has become a taboo substance to a highly profitable thing available in the dispensaries. According to research in 2019 the cannabis industry has alone provided 33000 jobs. Also, these jobs come with an average income that is 10.7 percent more than the national average income. As cannabis is becoming more common and mainstream many people don’t see any harm coming their way. All they see is an opportunity. Legalizing cannabis can be a significant way to improve society.
Cannabis Positive Side
Native cultures use cannabis for healing, spiritual and medical reasons. One of the largest cannabis markets in the world is America. Under federal law using, possessing, and sale of marijuana is still illegal. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, the laws are still shifting. The ballot states that soon cannabis will be legal for adult recreational use in many states. In addition to this, it is also estimated that medical use of marijuana will also be allowed in many states. Many people still don’t believe that marijuana is becoming a big business deal.
Decades of drug arrests, violence, sentencing, and imprisonment have tangled the relationship between black and brown communities. According to Stormy Simon, the executive director of the board for Mission Green states that there are many large companies making millions and many people remain in prison because of the classification of the marijuana plant as a Schedule 1 Drug in the same state where adults use is legal. It looks that the cannabis dispensaries are also increasing in number in society along with the pandemic yet the drug remains illegal in others.
A Quick View on the War of Drugs
Social equity becomes a key question. Advocates who look forward to legalizing marijuana have argued for social justice. After decades of the long drug war, they targeted minority, poor communities and societies only. Social justice has been a turning point that has also become the selling point of these drugs in Ney York and New Jersey among many other states that still wait to decide whether to join the states that allow the recreational use of weed or not. It is impossible to talk about marijuana and social equity without really knowing the war of drugs and its after-effects.
President Nixon is famously known for his racist views. He declared drug abuse as public enemy number 1 officially culminating the war on drugs. Many people argued that this move is targeting anti-war activists and wage a systematic war against Black Americans, fighting for civil wars.
Many people see a very positive side of the marijuana industry. According to Brittany K Barnett, a lawyer and co-founder state that bold and brave actions are required by the cannabis companies and legislation. She urges that marijuana justice means everyone can achieve economic equity and general social equity. The U.S House of Representatives has passed the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act that the bill has removed marijuana from the controlled substances list.
White believes that cannabis and its related industry can provide many advantages. Not only entrepreneurial opportunities for people of color. One day he expects as a culture and society people to learn the power of this plant. We are not going to over-consume it. Indeed we all are going to use it respectfully.
How to Make Ice Cream Infused with Cannabis
Some of the common ways to consume marijuana are smoking, vaping, and dabbing. Yet when it comes to edibles then it is another great idea. Some of the treats that you can enjoy at your home are cookies, lollipops, and cannabis-infused ice cream. You just need to follow the simple instructions and enjoy mouthwatering treats.
Initial Three Steps
There are three initial steps that you need to follow to make ice cream. You need to complete these processes before making ice cream because they may take several hours or even more time. The three steps are strain, decarboxylation, and arranging the equipment.
The first step is to select any marijuana strain depending on the effect that you wish for. Just focus on the 15 best strains that may be used for the edibles producing different effects and the ones that you like. The weed ice cream is defined by the potency and dosage depending on the CBD and THC ratio.
Decarboxylation is the activation of the compound CBD in weed. The process is a bit complicated. This process is time-consuming that may take several hours. You should start this process beforehand. To get the desired effects you should follow all the steps correctly.
ALSO READ: Easy To Do Recipe For Cannabis Tinctures
Equipment to Use
You require a stove, spoons, saucepans, bowls, and mixer or a hand blender. In addition to this, it will be a perfect idea if you have an ice cream maker. In case you don’t have it just make sure to have a container that fits in your freezer properly.
Cannabis Basic Ice Cream Recipe
The taste of the ice cream differs. Majority of people like the taste of cannabis-infused ice cream. It is an easy recipe followed by 4 ingredients. You will need 4 eggs, ½ cup caster sugar, and 1tsp Vanilla extract. To make simple cannabis cream use 2 cups of heavy cream and 5-10g of marijuana, decarboxylated.
An important thing to consider is the dosage of the weed material that varies according to the strain and individuality. The additional equipment to make this ice cream are cloth or fine mesh, saucepan, and hand mixer. Firstly take a medium saucepan. Secondly, take cannabis and heavy cream and combine them. Then cook below a simmer for 1 hour, strain it through fine mesh or cheesecloth. Lastly, add the non-infused ice cream and mix it with a blender or mixer for half a minute. Just chill it and then it’s ready to use for the ice cream.
ALSO READ: Catering Company Mixes CANNABIS with FOOD
Methodology to Follow
The first step is to take 2 large bowls, separate the yolks and the egg whites and place them in the other bowls. After this, you require to beat the egg whites stiff with a mixer. You can test the consistency by seeing if the peaks form. Once you are done with this then you may add the caster sugar gradually; 1 tsp at a time until 1/4th cup of castor sugar is consumed. Mix the yolks with the rest of the castor sugar and you will find a thick mixture. Add vanilla extract to the mixture and combine both the egg mixtures while folding them smoothly. Now is the correct time to incorporate cannabis cream into the egg mixture. Make sure they are combined perfectly without any lumps. Lastly, you can take any container and pour all the mixture. Allow it to freeze for 3-4 hours.
How to create cannabis ice cream for vegans?
An alternative to heavy cream can be used to make it suitable for vegans. You can use 1 can of coconut cream instead of heavy cream. Also in place of milk, it is suggested that you use 1 can of coconut milk.
Can You Calculate the Potency of Weed in Ice Cream?
Several factors come into play to determine the potency of any edible. For instance, strain, dosage, health conditions, and susceptibility of an individual. Therefore it is advisable to start with a small dosage as it is very hard to calculate the potency of the homemade food items.
Cannabis Packaging- Need to Recycle
Have you ever purchased a few buds of cannabis? You must have noticed the excessive packaging that comes along with it. Based on the laws and regulations it is that way but something can be done in this manner to make our campaign go green running. These packings are thrown away, adding more waste to the landfills.
Save The Earth
We need to save earth from the landfills. The containers that we use currently are decent in size and shape. However, these containers are made up of cheap plastics and cardboard that add up to the wastes. It doesn’t matter whether you are a chain smoker or an occasional one but the amount of waste from purchasing the cannabis keeps on adding up. Imagine a person who smokes cannabis every day. Then this person is likely to go to the dispensary every week or might be on alternate days. The amount of packaging waste will be a lot. Imagine accumulating the packaging waste for a month, two, and then might is a year or two it will be a lot.
Recycling Cannabis Packaging
We can have a system where we can recycle all the cannabis packaging just the way we do in the case of cans and bottles. Might be the government can add a small incentive so that people dispose of the packaging properly. This incentive will help to reduce and lessen the impact of disposal on our environment. The Alberta Bottle Depot Association in Canada states that only cannabis producers will be responsible for innovating, investing in, and funding cannabis package recycling solutions.
Think Twice Before Throwing
Before you even think of throwing the cannabis packaging you should consider recycling the packaging. Just give it some time. You can come up with a variety of ideas. Consider using it for a variety of purposes like using glass jars for growing flowers at home. We can even reuse rather than recycling. Make it a point to ask your dispensary about their reuse or recycling program for cannabis packaging.
Also, some dispensaries will allow you to reuse the exit bags; most of them will not allow customers to reuse the packaging that contains marijuana products earlier. On the other hand, some dispensaries do offer recycling services and incentives for bringing old containers. In case your dispensary doesn’t offer any recycling or reusing of the exit bags then you should contact them on their website or their social media page. The very successful dispensary owners pay a lot of attention to their ratings and reviews.
How to Recycle Cannabis Packaging?
Even if none of the local dispensaries offers recycling options you can always use your creativity. There are several options to reuse the cannabis packaging. Companies like Colorado’s Green for Green are working to transform Cannabis container usage. Not only this, but it also aims to provide recycling bins around the Front Range.
Another very good option is the charitable organizations that accept such containers and sends them to countries that need medical supply containers. You can remove the labels on the glass and plastic containers by removing the glue from hot water. Also for recycling the plastic containers you need to watch the bottom of the container to see the triangle and the number that it contains. You have to act according to the number in the triangle. It looks like coming to the culmination but recently recycling has a different story due to China’s denial to accept any more American waste.
Some More Tips
You can even use the glass jars and excessive packaging to organize your things like screws, small pins, and nails, or any of the loose items lying in your drawers. You can make a pen and pencil holders for your office desk by simply cutting the top of the plastic containers. Try using DIY hacks too.
It’s high time that cannabis is legalized and there is a boom in sales so its manufacturers should just not focus on the green plants but also the planet. It is an ideal condition that everyone pays a little attention to this concern and invest in a proper reusable container that they can refill every time.
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