The rabbit hole seems to be unraveling a new era in what has become the fusion of science, and essentially mankind’s need for weed. One of the stranger research topics which seems to have been in debate among smokers for many decades, is a simple and yet profoundly significant question.
Do men and woman react differently to cannabis, and in particular to the specific cannabinoid compound responsible for its popular psychoactive effect?
Evidence presented by Professor of Psychology, Rebecca Croft, at Washington State University, has formulated a list of research based outcomes which suggests the reactions of either sex are in fact very different!
While it is logical to assume that based on the number of variable hormones which come into play via either sex, it can be safely assumed that cannabis could, and does in fact, have a fundamentally different effect based solely on sex and the different hormones present in each, male and female. The root cause is however directly linked to Estrogen.
Woman have an abundance of this very special hormone, and as such find themselves both blessed, and simultaneously in a higher risk category based on their gender. A number of studies conducted using female rodents by Processor Croft concluded that the aim of the trails was to demonstrate gender variables in the onset of tolerances to THC. One of the resounding outcomes of this study have also been results which indicate that female rats developed a tolerance to THC more quickly, as apposed to males, which seem to have a upper hand in terms of the “munchies” response and sensitivity levels. Researchers also stated that THC sensitivity levels to the pain reliving effect of cannabis was 30% higher in female rats compared to male rats. Yes, that is correct, in the studies conducted by Researcher Margaret Hang at the Columbia University Medical Centre, clear indications provided evidence which validate Professor Crofts statements. Some of the more alarming finds included a documented transcription of what Hang explains as “The cannabis withdraw syndrome of intensity”. A simple yet effective tool which has provided a host of new and pertinent facts in relation to the physical and psychological effects cannabis withdraw may pose in females.
She also gave a direct correlation which states, “that woman are substantially more susceptible to cannabis abuse”. According to the research females have a much greater tendency to relapse when attempting to stop cannabis use. While hormone levels fluctuate during a woman’s life, so too the reaction to cannabis can be proportionate to the rise in estrogen levels during or leading up to ovulation. While observing female rats, it was noted that significant sensitivity increase occurred at this peak in estrogen levels during monthly ovulation, thereby significantly influencing the reactions to THC.
While it is easy to rejoice as a lady smoker in light of these studies, a number of important risk factors have been highlighted and may very well be that last torn rizzla effect!
Croft highlighted specific side effects that may be escalated in females due to the higher levels of estrogen. Among the most alarming are severe anxiety, paranoia and addiction issues. All research conducted in correlation to these studies, which where published in the 2014 study journal Drug and Alcohol dependence, made use of the standard research formulation of Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol.This is the cannabinoid found in what you and I smoke every day, alarming indeed!
On a more positive note, researchers discovered evidence that indicates low dose THC did not disrupt the reproductive cycles of rats during the study. While the open use of cannabis slowly becomes a socially acceptable practice, there is still great and aberrant misconception as to its safety in use during gestation. A number of elements still need to be evaluated in human trials, and there is a number of old school lady smokers that will tell you about pink elephants after only half a joint, speaking volumes to the factuality of scientific evidence, however I personally know of a few that can kill a bong!
New perspectives and opportunities provide simple answers to some of canna’sciences ever mounting questions. Above all we as men now have scientific proof that,
“The ladies always stick together!”