A piece in Men's Journal took an interesting look at how cannabis, in contradiction to stigmas about it being a drug which makes people lazy, is now being seen as a potential part of healthy lifestyles. They examine the endocannabinoid system, anti-inflammatory properties of cannabis, and anecdotes from top athletes...
The piece by Men's Journal's Elizabeth Yun took a look at how many people are abandoning decades of stigma and re-examining cannabis as a potentially beneficial part of a fitness routine. They note, for example, that "Ultra-marathoners like Avery Collins are vocal about using cannabidiol (CBD) after 40-mile runs. Triathletes are doing the same, both with THC mid-run and CBD afterward."
A big part of the article is a good explanation of endocannabinoids. They explained, "Endocannabinoids are chemical compounds that occur naturally in the body. They’re crucial for regulating the immune system, insulin, inflammation, and fat and energy metabolism... Cannabinoids in marijuana mimic your body’s natural endocannabinoids. That’s why scientists are exploring cannabis’ effects on such a wide variety of bodily functions."
They went on to quote Dr. Perry Solomon, who said “Studies have found that THC in mice increase the death of T-cells, which are inflammatory; this helps in immunosuppression. Some studies have found that endocannabinoids themselves down-regulate chemicals the body produces when there’s inflammation. In theory, and even in some clinical trials, it shows there is a decrease in inflammation when using cannabis.”
The article, however, stops short of suggesting that cannabis is a cure-all drug for athletes. They note that studying athletic recovery is difficult because it's very subjective and that research into cannabis continues to face government restrictions due to it remaining a Schedule 1 drug.
Still, it's encouraging to see a major publication like Men's Journal discussing the benefits and uses of cannabis. Hopefully the spread of information about cannabis' potential will continue to change the minds of the public and push government officials towards rescheduling cannabis and allowing further study for medical use.