Smoking cannabis ‘doubles risk of pregnant women giving birth prematurely, says study

 

Doctors have warned women not to smoke cannabis during pregnancy after a landmark study found those who do face double the average risk of going into labour prematurely.

The news comes despite a growing belief among young people that cannabis is harmless because it is ‘natural’ and may have medicinal properties.

But now Canadian researchers have found that cannabis use during pregnancy is linked to a much higher possibility of a premature birth – putting the baby at serious risk.

pregnant-black-woman (2)

The study found that almost one in eight women who smoked cannabis while pregnant delivered before 37 weeks, which is classed as premature. In contrast, the chance of a premature birth for women who avoided the drug was just one in 17.

Those who used cannabis in pregnancy were also more likely to suffer a serious complication called placental abruption, during which the placenta separates from the wall of the womb. The condition can be fatal for the unborn child.

In addition, the babies of cannabis smokers were more likely to require care on a neonatal ward, according to the research, reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Dr Pat O’Brien, of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said: ‘This new study adds to a growing body of evidence which shows smoking cannabis during pregnancy is associated with adverse outcomes for women and their children, including pre-term birth.

pregnant-woman-doctor_custom-28b3fc34af75ee9cfc595cb81fa7e87cedff5195-s900-c85

In the study, researchers examined 661,617 births between 2012 and 2017 in Ontario, where pregnant women are routinely asked about their drug use.

Among these women, 5,639 admitted using cannabis during pregnancy. Researchers found the smokers were at double the risk of having a premature birth than non-users.

The team also tried to account for the possibility that women who smoke cannabis in pregnancy might be at a higher risk of premature birth for other reasons, such as being more likely to smoke cigarettes or drink alcohol.

After performing this analysis, they still found women using cannabis in pregnancy were 41 per cent more likely to have a premature birth than women who did not.

Professor Daniel Corsi, lead author of the report, said: ‘We recommend against using cannabis in pregnancy.

‘The best advice for women would be to speak to their healthcare provider, physician or midwife to discuss alternatives to cannabis for treating morning sickness.’

Dailymail

Also read more here

Photos: Ex-Presidential Aspirant Nabbed With 445Kgs Weed Worth 13 Million

The economy has become so bad that even former presidential candidates are now travelling with large consignments of drugs in their cars.

45-year-old Jaffer Isaak Sora, who contested the presidency in 2013, was nabbed at a police checkpoint near Marsabit town. He was reportedly driving a Toyota Prado Landcruiser that was towing a trailer packed with 445 kilograms of marijuana valued at Ksh13,350,000.

jaffer Isaak Sora
jaffer Isaak Sora’s campaign poster

According to police reports, Jaffer Isaak Sora was stopped by police officers at a roadblock on Wednesday night. He, however, declined to allow the officers manning the checkpoint to search the trailer, prompting them to impound his vehicle.

At Marsabit Police Station, officers conducted a thorough search leading to the marijuana bust. The police report read;

A thorough search was conducted and a total of 445 kgs of street value Ksh13,350,000 of narcotics and psychotropic substance were recovered hidden in a trolley.

The police theory is that the marijuana was sourced from Ethiopia. Check out pictures of the drug bust below;

jaffer Isaak Sora's car
jaffer Isaak Sora’s car
The impounded drugs
The impounded drugs
The impounded drugs
The impounded drugs

While the amount of drugs is substantial. It pales in comparison to the haul made by the Americans this week were more than Ksh. 100 billion worth of cocaine was been seized at the Philadelphia Port on Tuesday.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said the drug bust netted approximately 16.5 tons of the narcotic from a cargo ship docked at the Packer Marine Terminal.

Read here for more

Woman named Marijuana Pepsi gets worldwide attention

 

A US woman has gone viral on the internet and it all has to do with her name.

She was named Marijuana Pepsi at birth and it’s a name that has haunted her her entire life.

1560968429224_dr.marijuanapepsi__WIDE

Marijuana Pepsi recently graduated with a PHD after studying unusual names.

Marijuana is 46, and recounted how she has been bullied for her unusual name.

Her siblings have such ordinary names, one wonders why her parents did this to her.

pepsi

She refused to change the unusual name in a bid to prove to herself and to others that overcoming obstacles is possible.

Now, the mother-of-one is officially Dr Marijuana Pepsi Vandyck after earning her PhD in higher education leadership from Cardinal Stritch University in Wisconsin last month.

Vandyck told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that her mother Maggie Johnson picked out her name when she was born and declared it would take her around the world. She has two sisters whose named are Kimberly and Robin.

screenshot-60

Despite people criticizing her mother for the name choice, Vandyck says she credits her for helping her become the strong woman she is today.

‘I’ve grown into my name because I am a strong woman. I’ve had to be,’ she has said previously.

Vandyck, who left an unstable home when she was 15, graduated high school and went on to earn her college and master’s degree.

She vowed early on to earn her doctorate.

Dailymail

Also read more here

Marijuana could affect fertility in women AND men – study

Marijuana could be linked to fertility issues in women and men, researchers warn.

The drug, now legal in most US states and all of Canada, has been tipped as a therapeutic for all kinds of ailments, with one study even suggesting it could boost sperm counts.

But researchers at Western University in London, Ontario, Canada, say the broad picture of evidence suggests cannabis is linked to decreased sperm counts, hampered ovulation and reduced odds of conceiving.

The team is now calling for more research into how the drug affects reproductive health, especially because of increased use in US states and countries where pot is legalized.

Here are five things couples who are looking to get pregnant should consider when it comes to marijuana use:

1. THC AFFECTS REPRODUCTIVE TISSUES

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the psychoactive compound responsible for the euphoric, ‘high’ feeling often associated with marijuana.

THC interacts with CB1 receptors in the central nervous system and brain and creates the sensations of euphoria and anxiety.

Studies have shown that THC acts on receptors not just found in the brain but in the reproductive organs of both males and females.

2. CANNABIS CAN DECREASE SPERM COUNT

Past studies has found that semen quality, and male fertility, can be negatively affected by marijuana use.

A 2011 study found that men who smoked marijuana more than once a week saw their total sperm count decrease by almost 30 percent.

And an October 2018 study looked at semen samples from more than 400 men screened for infertility.

Men who had used cannabis at least once had less volume and a decreased motile count, meaning how sperm that can move, researchers told DailyMail.com at the time.

The men were also at an increased risk of sperm that was abnormally shaped, which can affect its ability to reach and penetrate an egg.

Although how pot affects sperm is not exactly understood, new research has shown the drug may alter DNA, leading to worse sperm quality.

3. SMOKING POT CAN DELAY OR PREVENT OVULATION

A 2007 study in the Journal of Women’s Health looked at more than 200 women and found that occasional marijuana use was linked to menstrual cycle delays of up to three-and-a-half days.

Another study found that moderate-to-heavy marijuana users were more likely to have anovulatory menstrual cycles, meaning no ovulation occurs.

Researchers believe pot use may disrupt the release of gonadotropins, hormones that stimulate the ovaries, and thereby affect menstrual cycles.

However, other lifestyle factors could be having an effect on fertility, said Dr Sara Ilnitsky, a reproductive endocrinology and infertility fellow at Western University.

‘If someone already has some underlying fertility problem, if you’re then also reducing the amount of sperm available or changing when the egg is being released, that could further impact your ability to get pregnant,’ she told the Canadian Press.

4. MARIJUANA DOESN’T SEEM TO AFFECT COUPLES WITHOUT FERTILITY ISSUES

A 2018 study from Boston University found that marijuana doesn’t lower a couple’s chances of getting pregnant.

After accounting for variables such as frequency of intercourse, the researchers found that the probability of conceiving after 12 menstrual cycles was similar among couples who used cannabis than those who didn’t.

And a data analysis from the National Survey of Family Growth found that neither pot use nor frequency of pot use affected time to pregnancy.

But the team of the new study says that the results are likely from couples that are not experiencing fertility issues.

‘For couples with infertility, the changes in ovulatory function and sperm count associated with smoking marijuana could compound their difficulty with conceiving,’ they wrote.

5. MORE RESEARCH IS NEEDED LOOKING INTO POT’S EFFECTS ON FERTILITY

Currently, 10 states and Washington DC, have legalized recreational weed and 33 states have legalized medical marijuana.

Studies that have looked at cannabis and fertility are most small and non-randomized, the researchers point out.

Additionally because there different concentrations and strains of pot, that also can confound the data.

‘Reliance on self-reported marijuana use introduces inaccuracy, especially where the drug is illegal, and omits valuable information on route and dose,’ they write. ‘The findings should be interpreted with caution.’

While the team suggests that men and women cut out recreational marijuana use altogether if they’re looking to get pregnant, anyone who is using the drug therapeutically would need to have a risk-benefit discussion with a fertility doctor before stopping use completely.

Daily Mail

Actress Whoopi Goldberg launches line of marijuana products for period pain

 

Outspoken marijuana fan Whoopi Goldberg today announced she is launching a new line of products featuring the drug that claims to help women who suffer from menstrual stomach cramps.

The 60-year-old actress, businesswoman, comedian and television host from New York, who publicly supports marijuana use, told USA Today period pain is ‘not a joke’ and that she wants to help those who suffer from it.

Whoopi says that her product, which is released next month, is for people who ‘don’t want to get high high’, but instead simply want a way to relieve their period pain in a calming and relaxing way.

It will only be available in California to people with medical marijuana cards due to the federal ban on the drug.

The View co-host launched the brand, Whoopi & Maya, with Maya Elisabeth, founder of Om Edibles, an all female-run medical-marijuana cannabis company in California.

By entering the marijuana industry, one of America’s fastest growing, Whoopi is following in the footsteps of rapper Snoop Dogg, who backs Leafs by Snoop, and the family of late singer Bob Marley, who joined a cannabis company to make Marley Natural products.

Whoopi said although joint-smoking is ‘fine’, the majority of people cannot do it before work and function.

‘For me, I feel like if you don’t want to get high high, this is a product specifically just to get rid of discomfort,’ she told Vanity Fair.

‘Smoking a joint is fine, but most people can’t smoke a joint and go to work.’

‘This, you can put it in your purse. You can put the rub on your lower stomach and lower back at work, and then when you get home you can get in the tub for a soak or make tea, and it allows you to continue to work throughout the day.’

Dailymail

Weed up? Kibra MP Ken Okoth to introduce bill legalizing marijuana

Kibra MP Kenneth Okoth plans to introduce a Marijuana Control Bill, 2018 with a view to decriminalising the growth and use of bhang.

He revealed this in a letter to National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi on Friday.

The lawmaker said amnesty measures should be instituted for the removal of criminal records against citizens with prior convictions of marijuana use.

“There is a regulation for growth and safe use of marijuana and hemp, including the registration of growers, producers, and manufacturers.”

“….and users with special focus on protection of children minors from illicit use just as we do with tobacco and alcohol,” Okoth said.

The MP noted that there is research and policy development on growth and use of marijuana and hemp for medical industrial textile and recreational purposes.

This, he said, is with a focus on preservation of intellectual property rights for Kenyan research and national heritage, knowledge and our indigenous plant assets.

“The should be progressive taxation measures for the marijuana industry to boost Kenya’s economic independence and promote job creation.”

He argues that thousands of jobs are possible to come by along the full spectrum of the value addition chain for marijuana and hemp.

Okoth asked Muturi for assistance in preparation of the necessary Bill for publication.

According to Nacada, 1 per cent of Kenyans aged 15 to 65 years are regular users of bhang, the most widely used narcotic drug in the country.

Last year, a petitioner seeking legalisation of marijuana, says the plant can cure up to 6,077 medical conditions.

Ogot Gwada presented his petition to the Senate Health committee saying that marijuana has not only huge medicinal benefits but also massive industrial use.

In 2015, the Kibra MP proposed that the government should stop wasting money on sugarcane farming and legalise marijuana instead.

He added that marijuana is a very valuable commodity and has a ready market in the USA and believes it will give Kenyans a lot of money.

“Let us emancipate ourselves from mental slavery and start planting marijuana, legalise it, and tax it.”

“We should replace sugarcane with medical marijuana which has a ready market in the USA,” he said.

Some of the proponents are scientist Prof Simon Mwaura, economist David Ndii, and Gwada among other Kenyans.

ODM leader Raila Odinga’s son, Raila Junior, also on September 12 called for its legalisation calling for serious discussions on the same.

Mwaura petitioned Parliament in August, saying he had found a way to separate the plant’s psychotropic elements, therefore, making it safe for consumption.

Last year, Ogot started an online petition for the legalisation of weed. He has collected more than 5,000 signatures.

He needs 7,500 signatures for the petition can be tabled in Parliament for debate.

On Monday, South Africa became the third African country to legalise weed for personal use after Lesotho (first) and Zimbabwe (second).

In 2013, Uruguay became the first country in the world to legalise the production, distribution and consumption of marijuana.

Other countries that followed suit for recreational purposes are Canada, Georgia, Colombia and nine states in the US and Washington DC for recreational purposes.

Countries that have legalised cannabis for medicinal use include Chile, Colombia, Peru, United Kingdom, Canada,Germany, Greece, Italy, Poland, Australia, and Israel.

A policy of limited enforcement has also been adopted in countries like Spain and the Netherlands where the sale of cannabis is tolerated at licensed establishments.