Health & Wellness

The World of Juicing is Missing Something: RAW CANNABIS
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Photo and article by Samuel Farley, Twitter and Instagram: @ THC_Samuel

Juicing whole plant raw cannabis (flower, stems and fan leaves included) and finding other ways to add raw cannabis to a daily healthy diet has been a popular topic in recent cannabis news. Although there is little scientific research being done involving the benefits of consuming cannabis in its raw form, many people both in the medical community and elsewhere continue to share its benefits.

It has been well documented in various scientific studies, including one by Verhoeckx and colleagues, that cannabis in its raw form contains THCa (the “a” stands for acid) and only when cannabis is smoked or vaporized does it actually change and release the Delta 9-THC that is known for the euphoric “high” of cannabis. Knowing this, many have begun to consume raw cannabis to improve health and cure certain diseases. There are many health benefits associated and the various types of cannabinoids present (over 60) in cannabis that are hugely beneficial to the body. There are multiple people in my family who suffer from Crohn’s, and many traditional medications have not worked or have not helped with all of the issues that they experience. Coming from a family of health nuts, I’ve grown to have a strong appreciation and understanding of the value of a healthy diet and have juiced many times myself. However, juicing raw cannabis was completely new to me.

I had the opportunity to speak with Alice Darling, a raw cannabis juicing expert who was able to mitigate the symptoms of her Crohn’s disease by adding raw cannabis in various forms to her health care regimen. Alice began using cannabis as a medicine at the age of 18 to help treat a heart condition called tachycardia (an excessively rapid heart beat) as well as her Crohn’s disease. At first, simply smoking cannabis helped many of her symptoms, but over time she began to realize that it was only treating certain aspects of her health issues. It was soon after that she began hearing about the full-body benefits of juicing the cannabis sativa plant raw.

She was introduced to raw cannabis juicing by her boyfriend, and she began including it as a part of her daily diet during the summer of 2014. She saw the benefits within a couple of days. At first she noticed improvements in her mood and she began to sleep better. After a few weeks, her stomach issues improved, and a year later her Crohn’s disease is in remission. She explained to me that it takes quite a bit of raw plant material to make a raw cannabis juice drink and that finding the raw material is often the hardest part. For best results, Alice recommends that the plants always be fresh. She juices an average of about half an ounce of whole, raw cannabis plant for her standard juice blend of six to eight ounces. Her favorite juice mixture is a combination of wet, raw cannabis plant, lemon, cinnamon, turmeric, ginger and a little bit of cayenne. Adding veggies like carrots and cucumbers can add volume as well as additional nutrients and flavor. Towards the end of our conversation Alice mentioned, “The most eye opening experience from juicing was realizing the potential treatment you can give your whole body and endocannabinoid system; juicing has allowed me to take my healing to the next level.”

The real benefits of juicing is that it gives the nutrients the ability to spread throughout the whole body and blood stream via the natural digestive process. At the end of the interview it was time for me to try some raw cannabis juice for the first time. Alice pulled out a container with just enough raw material to make a small glass of raw cannabis juice and added it and a small amount of water to the juicer. When I took my first sip I was somewhat surprised. Raw cannabis juice tastes similar to kale juice, so I decided to add some carrots to the juicer and it turned into a somewhat bitterer version of a vegetable juice drink. If raw cannabis juice can help Alice deal with a serious internal illness like Crohn’s disease, then it is definitely a topic worthy of further exploration. Hopefully we can get to a point where cannabis is legal nationwide, and government-funded research involving raw cannabis in all forms is the norm, so people everywhere can benefit from and have access to it without fearing arrest.

Cannabis Medicine
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by Rick Macey

In a strict medical sense, Jack Quinn’s war with skin cancer began nearly 40 years ago. Yet the 66-year-old knows it actually started much earlier.

As a fair-skinned, blue-eyed Irish kid from the Bronx, Quinn sought a bronze tan every summer. It was the late 1940s and early ‘50s, a time before sun lotion was marketed according to its sun protection factor.

“Back in those days there was a common belief that you needed to get sunburned a few times before your tan would take,” he said. “We used to use baby oil and iodine to magnify the sun’s effect on our skin.”

His family would stay at a seashore bungalow during the summer months. As a teenager, he worked as a lifeguard. He loved the sun. “I did get a fantastic tan,” he said.

“To see me now,” Quinn continued, “I’m covered with scars. Any part of my body, you name it, I’ve had skin cancer there.”

He feels lucky that of the three prevalent types of skin cancer, he’s fought with the

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least deadly two - basel cell and squamous cell carcinoma.

In 1974, Quinn had his first skin cancer tumor removed. It was a lump under his left eye. Since then, he’s had more than 300 lesions and tumors cut off or frozen off with liquid nitrogen. “Cut and burn,” he said.

The older he got, the more frequent the trips to the doctor became: Every two or three years at first, until every three or four months as he reached age 60.

And the cuts and burns took a toll on his skin. He’s even missing part of an ear. Quinn discovered medicinal cannabis trying to help a nephew who was suffering from Stage 4 cancer of the esophagus. Medicinal cannabis wasn’t a part of his nephew’s paradigm and he never did try it.

“In doing all that research for him, I realized I could’ve done this for my skin cancer,” he said. “So I decided to do something.”

That something was to try CBD oil, Rick Simpson style. He went to River Rock Wellness, where Tony Verzura kept telling him that he had a better product.

“I didn’t believe him,” Quinn said. “Then last March [2013] I went on Tony’s program. The results, frankly, were amazing. I did a high CBD program. After three months, I went back to my skin doctor and there was not a single thing to cut off or to freeze off.”

But then to the concern of Phyllis, his wife of more than 40 years, Quinn lapsed in his treatment. Sometimes River Rock didn’t have the oil he needed. Sometimes he simply couldn’t afford it. By December 2013, four new cancers appeared.

After that, he reconnected with Verzura. He’s back on a similar program at River Rock. He consumes a two-thirds CBD and one-third THC mixture with the addition of other nutriceuticals, including enzymes and extracts from berries. He’s also treating the lesions topically with the cannabis oil on band-aids.

Quinn has other health issues which often leave him chronically fatigued. He said he has more energy since he started the latest regimen, which is now just raw juice and capsules.

He has words of advice for folks who still doubt the healing power of cannabis. “Try it. You’ve nothing to lose,” he said.

“I was amazed.”

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