When I first came out to my mom about using cannabis, one of the first questions she asked was, “doesn’t it kill brain cells?” And I didn’t have much information to point at, but I did have the confidence that I’m not getting stupider and more forgetful because I’m on a regimen of medical marijuana. On the contrary, I’m feeling more focused, curious, and sharp since starting to use cannabis one year ago. I can’t possibly attribute those things to the herb, but some compelling studies are starting to dispell the myth that marijuana makes us stupid (if you were around for the DARE program, you know what I mean). Some research is even leaning towards the idea that it could improve the cognitive function of the ageing mind. Here is the latest in a growing number of arguments suggesting that you can improve your memory with cannabis.
In a study published in Nature Medicine, researchers led by Andreas Zimmer, from the University of Bonn, Germany, scientists administered three milligrams per kilogram of the mouse’s body weight and found that it reversed the cognitive damage. In some instances, THC worked to improve the memory of the older mice. The older mice were better at navigating a tricky maze than mice of the same age who were not given THC. However, the younger mice seemed impaired by the cannabinoid. This agrees with the experts who believe the brain’s response to THC is somewhat attributed to age-related factors and discourage marijuana use before the brain is finished developing at about 25-years-old.
Could THC play a possible role in memory and cognition?
The study showed that THC could provide significant benefits to mice when it comes to age-related cognitive decline. The younger mice had some “Dude, where’s my car?” moments, while their elders laughed all the way to a reward. Researchers in the past have found that THC helps restore the hippocampal gene, which is linked to memory and learning new skills as well as cannabinoids ability to act as a neuroprotectant. Because this study was conducted only on animal subjects leaves it vulnerable to skepticism, human testing would be worthwhile especially due to the existing science behind disorders like Alzheimer’s disease.