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The Effects of Cannabis and other Natural Treatments on the Flu
Posted by Apothecary

As we head into the winter months one thing that you can be assured of is that fifth additional season: flu season. Every year, between 5% and 20% of the entire population of the United States will catch the flu. Of those, an estimated 200,000 will be hospitalized; most worryingly, between 3000 and 49,000 people will die from complications surrounding the flu.

Flu is an aggressive creature. According to the masters of public health online at the University of Arizona , vaccines are adapted each year to make sure that people are protected against the numerous different strains of flu that appear every year. Vaccination is a powerful and effective tool against flu, but are there additional things that you can do to help discourage the symptoms of the flu virus?

There are countless natural remedies easily available to you to help ease that horrible flu feeling:

1# Cannabis

One of the many health benefits of medical marijuana is its effects on the symptoms of the flu. According to Dr David Allen, marijuana, and particularly Cannabidiol, a compound naturally found in the cannabis plant, may have effects on the immune system that might decreases the negative symptoms caused by the influenza virus.

What many people don’t understand is that many of the adverse symptoms felt during an influenza infection are a response by the immune system to the virus. So, the common symptoms such as a runny nose, coughing and sore throat are really signs that the immune system is fighting off the virus. However, when the immune system is overactive, it may have debilitating effects and endocannabinoids have been shown to down regulate the immune system to make sure that the symptoms don’t get out of hand.

#2 Ginger Tea

Ginger has numerous restorative qualities for an assortment of ailments but when it comes to flu, ginger helps keep you warm, acts as a decongestant and will go some way to help with the aches and pains that often arise with the flu virus. Simply simmer a pan of water with a piece of ginger for 20-45 minutes. strain into a cup and add a little honey and lemon. Not only is this tea healing, it's pretty tasty too.

#3 Vitamin C

A vitamin C rich diet will help your immune system fight off the flu. Supplements are easily available and taken 3-4 times daily will give you a boost. If you have an appetite then vitamin C rich food is a better option because you'll be receiving additional nutrients. Foods like oranges, guavas and bell peppers all have a high vitamin C content.

#4 Echinacea

This popular herb has been used by native Americans for hundreds of years as a general 'cure all' and with good reason. Extracts of Echinacea seem to have an effect on the body's immune system with research showing an increase in white blood cells amongst users. Echinacea is recommended to...Read More

Using Cannabis to Help You Study
Posted by Apothecary

You’ve already heard a lot about the benefits of cannabis when it comes to treating a variety of medical
conditions, but did you know that cannabis could also have a positive effect upon your brain?

It turns out that using cannabis can actually help you study more effectively. So if you’re currently attending a prestigious school like Boston University and you’re moving through a program to complete your masters in CIS, your online computer information systems degree, your nursing degree, your MBA, or any other tough curriculum, keep reading to learn about the benefits that cannabis can provide.

Protect Your Brain from the Effects of Stress

Going to college for any degree can put a lot of stress on your body and on your brain. But if you use cannabis, you can protect your brain from the effects of chronic stress, which means you can protect yourself from emotional ailments like depression and anxiety as well. This is because the cannabinoids that are found within marijuana can protect you from the deficits and disorders that commonly occur when the brain is under stress.

Improve Your Short-Term Memory

Do you have trouble remembering things, especially when you need to study for an upcoming exam or recall important facts to move along from one course to another? It turns out that a daily dose of THC, which is found naturally in cannabis, could improve your short-term memory. Researchers found that rats that received THC had better learning abilities, so it can help you study more easily and help you retain that information more clearly as well.

Assist Your Brain’s Growth

The human brain never stops growing because of a process known as neurogenesis that allows new brain cells to constantly be created. When you use cannabis, you’re helping this process along, according to recent studies that found CBC could improve the growth of brain cells. The developing brain cells that CBC supports are actually a vital component of your brain’s health and function. So just as you exercise your muscles to keep them growing and keep them strong, you can do the same for your brain.  

Slow Down the Brain’s Aging

Every part of your body, including your brain, will age, but if you use cannabis, you can slow down the brain’s aging process, thereby improving your memory and keeping your mind as healthy as possible. Studies have even suggested that cannabis might be able to reverse the effects of brain diseases that include Alzheimer’s disease. This is because cannabis can help remove damaged cells and boost the effectiveness of mitochondria in brain cells. This reduces inflammation within the brain and could result in a brain that functions better overall.

Researchers are finding a lot of positive effects that are associated with the use cannabis, so it is not a plant that should be feared any longer. As more states begin to legalize...Read More

Technology Trends in the Medical Cannabis Field
Posted by Apothecary

As more and more states begin to legalize cannabis in some way or another from total recreational legalization, to medical marijuana laws in varying degrees to decriminalization, the industry is ripe for technological advances in terms of how patients receive treatment, how they find their medicine and even in wearables that track a patient’s responses to various strains high in CBDs or through the consumption of oils and edibles.

It is a fledgling industry, not yet available in all 50 states but there are currently 24 states with legalized medical or recreational cannabis on the books, 6 more on the ballots for November and then there is the nation’s capital, the District of Columbia that went legal in recent times. So what then are the technology trends in the medical cannabis field that are having a profound impact on patients? Here are a few.

Digital Connection with Patients

Google, just last year, mandated that everyone with a website should go mobile friendly or be penalized because more people search via mobile devices than via desktop PCs. In fact, walk into any electronics store or even at the computer department of Walmart and you will see maybe one or two ‘all-in- one’ desktops but a wide array of laptops and tablets. You will also find a huge selection of smartphones. This is how cannabis patients search for dispensaries where they can get their medicine and if they are in a new area of their state, it is an invaluable asset to have a mobile friendly site.

However, that is not the only way in which the industry connects with consumers. Almost every dispensary on the face of the earth has a minimum of a Facebook and Twitter account and so the industry uses technology to go social. Information is passed on in this manner for the safe consumption of medical marijuana and specialists in healthcare informatics can track key metrics to gauge where there are high concentrations of patients so as to have a better idea of stocking to supply a need.

Speaking of Metrics – Health Informatics Is a Key Issue

A very large part of getting medical cannabis on the ballot is in providing key metrics to be analyzed by local and state authorities. Being that medical marijuana is a ‘new’ industry, these metrics are critical in measuring a need within society in terms of how people are using the plant and if there is a great enough acceptance within the population to warrant looking into the matter of legalization.

Leading universities offer health informatics graduate degrees and these are the professionals who have the expertise to develop applications that track the success and/or failure of cannabis in treating patients based on a given diagnosis. University of Illinois health informatics is one program that has produced career oriented professionals who have the expertise to design and develop health informatics platforms to assess the needs of cannabis patients in real...Read More

Study Finds Marijuana Users Have Better Cognitive Skills
Posted by Apothecary

The arguments about marijuana have raged on for a long time; should it be legalized ? Can it help people manage pain? Is it addictive? Should it be classed the same as other much harder drugs? There have been many studies done into its different affects and uses, but it has generally been agreed upon that marijuana impairs user’s cognitive abilities, now there’s a study that seems to disprove that.

The Study

The study in question can be found here . The researchers, in 2014, at the University of Minnesota, compared the test results of those not using marijuana, with those who had been using since before the age of 17. The results found no difference in memory or verbal learning in the two groups, the users scored lower in tests on decision making, engagement and verbal memory, but the study claims users scored better when it came to processing speeds.

Criticisms of this Study

  • There were only 35 people in each group. This is a relatively small group, and cannot be said to give a true representation of users generally.
  • Everyone tested was between 18 and 20, it is stated that this is because those are the ages when marijuana is thought to affect cognitive abilities most, but no referencing is given to support this, nor is it fully explained for how long these people have been users. 
  • The group was told not to use for 12 hours before the study. While this is a fair way of testing in this case, generally those that use marijuana daily, won’t ever go 12 hours without, so will be affected differently.
  • No mention is made to the IQs of these people, how do we know the marijuana users weren’t just more intelligent than the other group?
  • The study seems to gloss over the fact that users scored lower in many areas, calling them “discrete” impairments. These impairments include verbal memory and decision making. These seem like quite important cognitive skills. This to me implies the researchers could be bias towards a use of marijuana. 

Further Discussion

All this study really suggests, is that more study is required to fully understand how marijuana use affects cognitive abilities. To give any definitive proof, more people would need to be tested, as well as different age ranges of people (perhaps against non-users in the same age bracket as themselves). It would also be useful if the users could be tested both while under the influence, and after a much longer period without. if these studies were done, there could be more definitive evidence of marijuana’s effects on cognitive abilities.

If you have an interest in healthcare issues such as these, and hold a relevant degree, you might want to consider a doctor of nursing practice online degree course to further your learning.

Marijuana usage will continue to be discussed, and researched for a long time,...Read More

How Online Degrees Are Helping People with Chronic Pain Towards a Better Life
Posted by Apothecary

One of the groups that benefit most from the use of medical marijuana are people who experience chronic pain. Whether it is pain from an injury, a back problem, or a condition like fibromyalgia, experiencing pain regularly or all the time can be hugely debilitating, and can stop a lot of people from doing the things they want to do. One area where it can hold people back is in education, as it makes it difficult for sufferers to commit to things like going away to college to do a degree or masters program.

Online Studying

Fortunately, the internet can offer a lot of help for people who want to undertake further education but find that chronic pain – even with the help of medical marijuana and other medications – stops them from being able to reliably attend school. Some of the top colleges in America offer a vast range of online degrees , including both bachelors and masters programs like the MBA or the masters in social work.

Studying Around Your Condition

With good pain management, most people with chronic pain have some times in their day when they can comfortably study, without the pain limiting their ability to sit still for a period or distracting them from taking in what they are reading. If you understand the times when you feel best, it can be good to use these times to focus on studying, and to schedule your exams at times when you feel you are most likely to have your pain under control. With an online degree like an MSW online, you can work at your own pace, so even if it takes you longer to finish your course than it would for a student full time on a campus, you can still get there.

Career Prospects

You can, of course, do a degree just because you find it interesting and want to expand your knowledge and gain confidence. However, if you feel like in the future you will be able to work – whether full or part time, or even from home – then your online degree or masters will be a huge asset. It can also be a good way to change careers , if you previously had an active career you can no longer do because of your condition. You can study to start a new career that you can do from home or which requires less physical activity, for instance accountancy or web design. It has been shown that the vast majority of employers (91% and rising according to a 2014 Gallup poll ) believe that it is the knowledge your degree represents that is important rather than where you got it, so having an online degree will prove no less valuable than one you did on campus when looking for work.

If you feel held back in your education or career by chronic pain, take a look at the...Read More

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