As a tribute to the late champion legislator Ken Okoth, the topic of medical marijuana has to be taken with the seriousness it deserves. Yes, there are medical benefits of marijuana.
Throughout the world medical marijuana or hemp has been a billion-dollar industry with numerous applications in medical use and one of the oldest fabrics dating back to 8,000 years ago found in Turkey, (former Mesopotamia). Cannabis extracts were banned in the 1930s after chemical treatments became more profitable and ensured repeat customers as one treatment ensured future complications.
The popularity of marijuana/hemp in medical use has been fought by many big pharmaceutical (Big Pharma) companies which feared the natural and easy way to grow the high-yield plant which would become a home-made medical solution that would run them out of business. Medical benefits of marijuana are uncountable.
Hemp/cannabis seed oil has several proven applications. The cannabis extracts contain Linolenic acids which is an Omega-3 fatty acid that has proven results in preventing coronary heart diseases, which continue to kill many people including top leaders in Kenya and the world over.
Cannabis oil extract also contains sterols, which are medically used in lowering cholesterol. Consistent intake of sterols lowers your risks of suffering a heart attack.
Aliphatic alcohols contained in cannabis seed oil reduces platelet aggregation, while phytol has proven anti-cancer benefits and an anti-oxidant. Cannabis contains tocopherol, which helps fight degenerative diseases such as atherosclerosis and Alzheimer’s.
The benefits are numerous. Cannabis can aid in dermatological diseases, lipid metabolism, and the THC contained in cannabis is reported to be medically beneficial to people who have autoimmune diseases.
In terms of nutritional benefits, it contains vitamins A, C &E and is rich in minerals like phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, sulfur, and calcium. As a food additive, it has an excellent balance of polyunsaturated fatty acids which taste good. It’s also an anti-depression fix and an obvious pain killer.
Naturally, with the state of health in Africa and the cost of health care in Kenya, the Ministry of Health should have fast-tracked a research facility to get benefits of the high-yield and drought-resistant crop, which would save lives and boost the economy.
Western countries and even China and India have applied cannabis for medical benefits and are ripping billions of dollars from a crop that would thrive so well in Africa, and Kenya to be precise.
Lesotho led the way in legalization but Kenya’s leadership seems to care more about the taxes and kickbacks they get from pharmaceutical companies than the apparent health and social-economic benefits we could rip from a plant so natural and affordable.
The fact is hemp cannot be patented in spite of the medical benefits of marijuana. Oil extraction can be done in the house and going back to herbs and away from chemical medication will bring back the glory of Africa since most foreign aid is packaged as medical help.
Africa knows most killer diseases were introduced to the continent dressed in colonial vaccines to start a medical dependency set-up that cemented the colonial roles in Africa.
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Now that we have a chance to move with the same pace with our colonial masters, we are still waiting with Third World speed. It’s time for our leadership to be bold enough and take on the world in terms of medical progress and overall policy.
After all, most of the medicines we use are foreign formulas that keep their royalties and revenues growing.
Legalize medical marijuana! Our people matter.