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Cannabis benefits recognised but legal home growing still a pipedream

Hemp Embassy president Michael Balderstone says he feels vindicated. CBD oil will soon be available in pharmacies and a new study is investigating how cannabis helps sufferers of Parkinson’s Disease, causing local growers to question why they’re still unable to legally cultivate cannabis's benefits at home.

Previous international research has shown some benefits of cannabis use for the improvement of Parkinson’s symptoms, and the National Centre for Naturopathic Medicine is now surveying usage among Parkinson’s patients in Australia.

Lead researcher Dr Andrea Bugarcic said: ‘This survey is not just about knowing if cannabis is used by this population but also where they are sourcing it from and any ratio specifications to understand what is working in the context of positive patient outcomes’.

Dr Bugarcic urged people who might be eligible to participate in the research to fill out the online survey at

Hemp Embassy ‘vindicated’ by TGA decision

Last week, the Therapeutic Goods Administration approved the sale of CBD oil in pharmacies without a prescription, up to 150mg a day.

‘It totally vindicates what we’ve been saying for decades, and we were idiots, we were liars, this was going to make you into a rapist and murderer,’ said Michael Balderstone, president of the Nimbin Hemp Embassy.

‘It’s a fantastically useful, safe medicine for so many things.’

But no CBD oil products have been approved for sale yet. The TGA approval process is likely to take six to twelve months, according to Dr Mark Hardy, medical director and addiction specialist at Cannabis Access Clinics.

Producers ‘have to re-establish again the safety and efficacy of the product… they need to show it has superiority over existing products, or at least parity with existing products’, Dr Hardy said.

Dr Hardy said the over-the-counter products were likely to be effective for people seeking relief from chronic pain, inflammation, anxiety, and sleep disorders.

But he said a dosage of up to 150mg a day would be too small to address childhood epilepsy, cancer-related weight loss and nausea, and muscle spasms associated with Parkinson’s and multiple sclerosis.

These are conditions which generally require THC (the psychoactive component of marijuana) taken in tandem with CBD to increase its effect.

While people who need a THC/CBD combination will still have to seek a prescription, Dr Hardy is hopeful that in future the drug may be used to treat even more conditions.

‘We’re looking at dementia, brain injury, and these are areas of research… Inflammatory bowel disease, endometriosis – there’s a wide range of potential applications for THC/CBD combinations,’ Dr Hardy said.

Originally published here:

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