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 - How marijuana can improve your life -

Amanda Siebert

Foreword by DR. Rav Ivker
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Book Details
 155 p
 File Size 
 5,298 KB
 File Type
 PDF format

THIS HIGHLY INFORMATIVE book provides readers, first-timers as well as
experienced consumers, with an excellent practical introduction to the
multifaceted life-changing benefits of cannabis.
Retail sales of cannabis began in Canada on October 17, 2018,
making it the second nation in the world, after Uruguay, to legalize the
herb for recreational use. Since 2001, medical marijuana has been legal
in Canada, as it is in the majority of U.S. states, at time of writing, with an
ever-increasing number also approving the use of recreational cannabis.
This rapidly accelerating trend is reversing nearly a century of prohibition
of a powerful medicinal herb used throughout the world both medically
and spiritually for more than five thousand years.
However, as a result of its illegality, its criminalization, and the lack of
knowledge about the circumstances that led to its prohibition, as well as
disapproval among the medical establishment, the majority of the world’s
current population understandably remains skeptical. In addition, there
has been a relative lack of reliable evidence-based information to dispel
the myths and misconceptions surrounding cannabis. The Little Book of
Cannabis helps significantly to fill that void.
As a holistic physician and cannabis clinician, I have used medical
marijuana with more than eight thousand patients to relieve their
suffering. From both my professional and personal experience with
cannabis, spanning more than five decades, I strongly support the
material presented by Amanda Siebert. Whether the chapter is
discussing the use of cannabis for insomnia, anxiety, pain, inflammation,
cancer, creativity and sexual pleasure, or end-of-life care, the author
offers valuable and accurate information. I enjoyed her real-life
compelling case studies, which correlated well with many of my patient stories.

By far the most frequent use of cannabis as a medicine, and its
greatest therapeutic benefit, is the relief of chronic pain. This is certainly
true of my practice, as more than 90 percent of my patients suffer with
some degree of persistent pain. I found Chapter 7, “An Effective Source
of Pain Management,” to be particularly helpful for any patient struggling
with chronic pain or physicians who might be hesitant about treating their
patients with cannabis. Siebert did a superb job of researching this topic,
drawing heavily on recent studies, historical references, and the work of
Dr. Mark Ware, an associate professor in family medicine and anesthesia
at McGill University in Montreal and the director of clinical research at the
Alan Edwards Pain Management Unit at the McGill University Health Centre.

As a physician, I found the scientific references to be of particular
interest, and they added to my knowledge base. The book is very well
written, well researched, concise, yet comprehensive in its scope of
cannabis-related quality-of-life benefits. Cannabis is a complex herb
containing more than two hundred compounds. Siebert is able to simplify
its complexity and provide explanations at a level that can be easily
understood by most readers. As a result, The Little Book of Cannabis is
an excellent guide for anyone interested in using this remarkable herb to
heighten their enjoyment of life.
COFOUNDER AND FORMER president, American....

WHILE MY AGE of introduction to cannabis might send a shudder down the
spine of any lawmaker considering the pros and cons of cannabis
legalization, the stigma associated with youth use is one of the reasons I
feel the need to share my experience. At age fourteen, while taking a
break from staffing the merch table at a local punk show in my hometown
of Richmond, B.C., I tried cannabis for the first time. I had been curious
about the strange weed that my parents had cautioned me to avoid, but
when my older friends said it helped them feel relaxed, I figured my
parents were wrong and, like so many teenagers do, I decided I had to
find out for myself if cannabis would indeed “fry my brain cells.” Seated
atop a picnic table with two girlfriends, I indulged in a hoot and a half from
a pipe, which resulted in a momentary fit of laughter but nothing more.
After that first encounter, I used cannabis occasionally in social settings
with friends, but it wasn’t until college that I began to discover how using
it brought me direct and indirect benefits in other areas of my life.
I remember walking into a friend’s house for the first time during my
second year of college and seeing him point to a set of roach clips on the
table. (For the uninitiated, these are used to hold a joint when it gets too
short to smoke holding it with your fingers.) I remember thinking, “Wow,
this weed stuff can get pretty hardcore.” I won’t lie; there was a little
judgment there—and then I got high. From that point on, everything
It wasn’t long before I began to appreciate cannabis for its ability to
stoke conversation at social gatherings and calm me down after a week
of late nights spent meeting tight deadlines. Friday and Saturday
evenings were often spent steeped in bubbles of intelligent thought and
clouds of cannabis smoke as my friends and I waxed poetic about our
studies, current events, and pop culture, often opting for doobies over
booze in the interest of avoiding the next day’s hangover. Soon, when
assignments started to pile up, part-time shifts at work gobbled up my
free time, and arguments with my mother (sorry, Mom) took me to the
edge, cannabis would bring me to a place where all the seemingly
impossible tasks of the day could be tackled with a puff and a simple shift
in perspective.
I would soon discover that, even in the depths of a spinning anxiety
attack or a lapse in judgment caused by a stress-induced outburst, the
plant my parents, teachers, and authorities were so vehemently opposed
to was able to bring me more than just relaxation—it brought me peace of mind.

Then, while writing this book, I was diagnosed with PTSD (posttraumatic
stress disorder), generalized anxiety disorder, and depression.
The symptoms of my conditions nearly put me over the edge, but I told
myself I could manage and that I didn’t have time in my busy schedule to
find help. I chose to wear my struggle on the inside until I interviewed Dr.
Zach Walsh on the subject of PTSD while experiencing the very
symptoms he listed off. That’s when I realized that it was time I put my
health first. (Thankfully, my editors and publishers were incredibly
understanding of this situation.) Everything changed again, but in a much
different way as I began using cannabis with a new intention: relieving
the flashbacks, panic attacks, and “hair trigger” you’ll read about in
Chapter 3. And while cannabis has certainly been there to help lift my
mood, relieve my anxiety, and calm my erratic nerves, I used it frequently
in the process of writing this book to help spur creative thought, too.
Having said all of this, writing a book about cannabis was never
something I seriously considered until it fell into my lap. While my day job
at a newspaper had me neck-deep in cannabis policy announcements,
news of corporate mergers, and the unending flow of information on
Twitter, writing this book allowed me to gain a deeper understanding of
exactly what cannabis does when it enters the body, and how we as
humans can use its healing properties to treat different ailments, relieve
stress, and even spice up our sex lives. (Trust me on this one. Skip to
Chapter 6 if you must.) My appreciation for the plant that has brought so
much improvement to my life has grown, you might say, like the very
weed in question.
But every time I get excited about cannabis and its potential, I’m
reminded that it’s only truly accessible in a few areas of the world. The
global war on drugs, and on cannabis in particular, has resulted in the
arrest of hundreds of thousands of people. More than half of drug arrests
in the United States are related to cannabis. Between 2001 and 2010, 8.2
million Americans were arrested for cannabis-related offences, with 88
percent of those being for simple possession. These arrests cause
irreparable harm to families and communities and occur at
disproportionate rates among people of color.1 The same is true in
Canada,2 where in 2016—the year after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
promised to legalize cannabis—55,000 cannabis-related charges were
laid, with 76 percent for simple possession.3 That a plant—put here by
God, you might say—with such incredible medical benefits has been
vilified truly upsets me, and that people continue to be unjustifiably
punished for using it angers me to my core.
My personal experience with the plant is just one perspective, but
when it’s combined with the testimony of the hundreds of people I’ve met,
interviewed, and smoked with, as well as the bodies of research that
scientists have been trying to develop for the last several decades, the
benefits of using it become too great to ignore—as do the grave and
inherent harms associated with its prohibition. When we add the historical
uses of cannabis to all of our current evidence, the idea that this plant is
illegal anywhere in the world becomes preposterous. In truth, the last
seventy-five to one hundred years are the aberration. Cannabis is only
the forbidden herb we know it to be because in the 1930s, a few powerful
men crafted some artful propaganda, and it became accepted as fact.
Historically, cannabis was used to treat a variety of illnesses dating back
thousands of years, and as recently as the mid-1800s it was a mainstay
in medicine cabinets throughout North America.
It is my hope that those who read this book approach this material
with an open mind, and perhaps with a willingness to shed the negative
messages they’ve carried about cannabis from the past. For years, we’ve
been fed misinformation about a plant that in many cases is nothing short
of life-saving. I hope that this little act of rebellion (after all, this is a book
about a controversial substance) opens your mind to the idea that
cannabis is more than just a weed with an undeserved reputation—it’s a
plant that truly does hold the power to improve your life.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Dr. Rav Ivker
1. Improving Sleep
2. Decreasing Stress and Anxiety
3. Boosting Mood and Creativity
4. Metabolism, Weight Management, and Exercise Recovery
5. Cannabis as a Superfood
6. A Steamier Sex Life
7. An Effective Source of Pain Management
8. A Powerful Support for Cancer Treatment
9. Easing the Aging Process
10. The Exit Drug
Appendix 1: The Endocannabinoid System
Appendix 2: How to Prepare and Use Cannabis


THIS BOOK IS not intended to be a substitute for medical advice from physicians. The reader should regularly consult a physician about matters relating to their health, and particularly with respect to any symptoms that may require diagnosis or medical attention. While this book may mention specific product types, cannabis strains, cannabinoids, consumption methods, and so forth, the author and publisher recommend that readers notify their physicians if they are thinking about consuming cannabis for medicinal purposes.
Although the author and publisher have made every effort to ensure that the information in this book was correct at press time, they do not assume, and hereby disclaim, any liability to any part for any loss, damage, or disruption caused by errors or omissions, whether such errors or omissions result from negligence, accident, or any other cause. The state of cannabis research is changing, and with the renewed interest in this plant, it is being studied more rigorously. As such, future research on the topics mentioned may come to conclusions that are contrary to what has been printed in this book.
Please consult local laws for the minimum age for cannabis use and other restrictions.
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