Most research experiments on 'emotions and cannabis' are done in the lab, and are therefore not representative of normal-life marijuana effects. Finally an at-home user study in Washington State with over ten thousand medical-marijuana users has shed genuine light on whether grass is helpful in raising our mood and emotional wellbeing. A total of 11,953 at-home cannabis sessions were monitored with a special app, 3,151 sessions for depression, 5,085 for anxiety, and 3,717 for stress. Here's the results:
50% Reduction In Symptoms: Overall, users reported a 50 percent reduction in depression and a 58 percent reduction in anxiety and stress after getting high with grass. Curiously, women experienced a significantly greater reduction in anxiety than men following their use. And different concentrations of cannabinoids seemed to have different effects.
What Worked Best? Users in the study reported that high CBD / low THC cannabis was linked to the largest changes in depression ratings, whereas high CBD / high THC cannabis produced the largest perceived changes in stress and anxiety levels. As one of the researchers stated: "A lot of consumers seem to be under the false assumption that more THC is always better. Our study shows that CBD is also a very important ingredient in cannabis and may augment some of the positive effects of THC.
Depression Note: Even though anxiety and stress seemed to remain improved over a longer time period, there was indication that for some people, depression symptoms return while using grass. Depression is a terrible affliction that over 20% of our population suffers from regularly - and a combination of grass and therapy should be indicated for severe cases. Also - the inclusion of regular while-high guidance such as we're aiming to provide should be of great help.
'Set & Setting' Research: We hope to have similar research done soon that includes our MindfullyHigh App or something similar, to see how the addition of a mindfulness-based 'set and setting' moderator will impact a similar study of mood adjustment and marijuana use. The whole issue of suggestibility needs intense scrutiny scientifically, so that users can be better advised regarding how to manage their mindset and environment to optimum advantage, if marijuana is being used to improve one's emotional wellbeing.
And really, except for specific medical concerns, isn't that why people use marijuana - to boost positive affect - to raise one's spirits - to brighten our mood? This study (above) shows that anxiety, depression, and stress can be reduced over fifty percent by using grass on a daily schedule. That in itself is a gigantic statistic, because most prescription mood elevators can't match that figure, and add negative side-effects to the equation.
So - what statistics will we get, when we include a 'set and setting' variable like our app in the equation? Bring on the research please!
Here's my source article that leads to the actual research paper:
'At Home' Study of Mood & Marijuana