Cannabis sativa*

sativa-leaf-300x225 (2014). Cannabis Sativa Seeds. Retrieved from:

Botanical Name: Cannabis sativa
Common name: Cannabis, Marijuana, Hemp
Family: Cannabaceae (Natural Stanndard, 2014)
Parts used: seed, seed oil, leaves


History/Folklore: Cannabis has been used for over 5000 years, with medicinal use recorded in China, Egypt, Indian, Europe, Russia, The Middle East, South East Asia and South Africa (Natural Standard, 2014)

Hemp refers to a variation of Cannabis, lower in delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) grown specifically for industrial, non-drug use (Natural Standard, 2014).

THC is the psycho-active component of the drug (Natural Standard, 2014)



  • Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) (notably 11-Hydroxy- delta-9-THC)
  • Cannabinoids
  • Cannabidiol (CBD and cannabinol, two such cannabinoids
  • Hempseed oil (a source of essential omega fatty acids) (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Gamma-linolenic acid (Hoffmann, 2003, p. 213)



  • Appetite stimulant (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Diuretic (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Anti-emetic (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Anti-pyretic (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Sedative (Natural Standard, 2014)


Traditional Indications*

  • Neuropathic pain in Multiple Sclerosis (Iskedjian, Bereza, Gordon, Piwko & Einarson, 2007, Abstract)
  • Chronic pain (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • Chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (Natural Standard, 2014)



  • The herb has been associated with myocardial infarction (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • The herb has been shown to inhibit learning, memory and brain function (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • THC is associated with anxiety and psychotic-like symptoms, however these effects appear to be reduced by CBD (Natural Standard, 2014)
  • The herb is associated with a range of acute and chronic effects including impaired memory, attention and psychomotor performance (Piontek, Kraus & Klempova, 2008).



*The herb is schedualed in Australia (Australian Government, 2013, p. 213)

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