Cannabis-Based Osteoporosis Drugs Gain Viability as Fear Mounts Over Traditional Pills

Article by Emily Gray, Extract

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Given its diverse pool of user effects ranging from “the munchies” to pain relief and seizure reduction, it’s safe to say cannabis does many things. But one of the somewhat lesser-known benefits of cannabis is its effect on bone health.

Studies show cannabinoids help prevent bone loss and regenerate new bone growth. That should come as welcome news to the millions of Americans currently living with osteoporosis.

A large body of research links cannabinoids with bone health, including a 2009 Israeli study published in the Annals of Medicine that found marijuana compounds can even reverse bone loss.

Bone Laboratory researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem determined that compounds in marijuana activate the body’s CB2 cannabinoid receptor, which effectively stimulates bone growth and inhibits bone loss. Additionally, CB2 receptors are not associated with psychoactive effects of cannabis.

“It appears that the main physiologic involvement of CB2 is associated with maintaining bone remodeling at balance, thus protecting the skeleton against age-related bone loss,” authors write.

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