Would you believe....Cannabis for WEIGHT LOSS ?
The Endocannabinoid System
Cannabis preparations have been used medically for thousands of years for illnesses such as epilepsy, migraine headaches, childbirth, and menstrual symptoms. However, it is only relatively recently that the active components have been identified and their mechanisms of action have begun to be understood. While delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) was first synthesized by Mechoulam in 1967 , it was not until 1990 that the cannabinoid receptor was localized in the brain  and cloned . Since then, discoveries in the field have proceeded at an ever-increasing pace. The discovery of cannabinoid receptors on cells naturally prompted the search for internal compounds (endogenous ligands) that would activate the receptors since it seemed unlikely that cannabis receptors had evolved so people could partake of cannabis. In 1992, anandamide was discovered . This lipid metabolite was the first ligand of an ever-expanding class of molecules known as endocannabinoids (internal marijuana-like compounds) to be discovered. Endocannabinoid synthesis, degradation, transport, and receptors together form the endocannabinoid system.
The broad therapeutic potential that can result from correctly manipulating the endocannabinoid system is just beginning to be realized[9,10]. In fact, major pharmaceutical companies, and university researchers all around the world are now engaged in the cannabinoid-related research . Their efforts focus on learning how the endocannabinoid system functions, and on how to manipulate it in order to increase or decrease its activity, depending on the illness or condition under consideration. GW Pharmaceuticals in Britain has been developing and testing a plant extract-based product line that is in clinical trials in Britain and Canada . The results thus far have been positive to the extent that Bayer AG has entered into a 25-million-dollar distribution agreement for GW's product, Sativex which has recently been approved in Canada. In contrast, Sanofi Research has developed an antagonist that will inhibit the ability of endocannabinoids to stimulate hunger and thus potentially be useful for weight control.