What Does Scientific Research Still Need to Prove About Cannabis

Cannabis and hemp products have grown in popularity. There has been a decent amount of research over the past few years into the potential benefits these plants have to offer. Current research shows they may help with a variety of ailments, including pain, anxiety, cancer, chronic health conditions, and more. There’s even one FDA-approved medication that contains CBD to help reduce seizures. 

Despite the thousands of studies and articles on cannabis, more research is still needed. According to a study in 2020, at least 33% of the U.S. population has tried CBD. Approximately 12% of people are active cannabis users, according to a 2019 Gallup Poll. Many expect the popularity of these products to continue to grow. As it does, more research is needed to fully understand the effects of these plants and the benefits they provide. 

Where Is Research Lacking?

Research on cannabis and hemp is still in the early stages. Some studies show conflicting results. Many studies use only animal subjects, so the effects on humans aren’t yet known. Other studies show potential benefits, but more research is needed to cement them as accurate. 

Experts are starting to understand certain things about cannabis, but there’s still a lot they don’t know. For instance, it’s known that various cannabinoids provide benefits, but it isn’t fully understood how those compounds work together. There’s a theory that cannabinoids work more effectively together than separately, but it’s just that at this point — a theory. 

Another area that could use more research is the effect of cannabis on cancer. For example, researchers have known for a while that cannabis use can help alleviate the side effects of cancer treatment. It’s only now starting to become apparent that cannabinoids may help to slow or stop the growth of cancerous tumors. As there are no human studies right now, however, there’s still much more to learn.  

Why Is Research So Sparse?

If experts know that more research is needed to understand the full potential of cannabis, why isn’t there more? One of the biggest reasons why research is so limited is that although hemp is legal in all 50 states, cannabis is still illegal on the federal level. Even in states where its use is legal, federal regulations essentially tie the hands of researchers.

As a Schedule I drug, cannabis is deemed by the U.S. government to have no accepted medical use. Researchers have very limited access to the plant. The plants that they do have access to don’t represent what consumers in the real world use. 

In some cases, researchers can conduct their studies but aren’t able to include certain results. As long as the federal restrictions remain in place, studying cannabis and uncovering everything it has to offer will be a challenge.

What Does the Future of Cannabis Research Hold?

While there is a significant amount of anecdotal evidence supporting the benefits of cannabis and hemp products, more scientific evidence is still required. As the number of users grows, understanding the full potential of the plants is crucial. 

Even with limited scientific studies, one thing is certain for cannabis cultivators, distributors, brands, and dispensaries: Providing high-quality products is a must. Cannabis business loans can provide you with the working capital you need to produce or procure the best quality products to keep your business operating at its best. Bespoke Financial offers various solutions including invoice financing and lines of credit. We can help to find the solutions that work for you.

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