Students learn more about medical marijuana

Amelia Fields, Arie Christon, and Dr. Novell Tani inform students on the effects of marijuana. Photo by Adriana Alexander

Do you know what you are putting into your body? Do you know the long-term effects of using marijuana? Do you know all the negative effects that marijuana comes with?

A medical marijuana informational meeting Wednesday left students at Florida A&M University who attended questioning their reasons for using marijuana.

The event was held in order to inform students on all of the effects that marijuana has on the body. There are many things to be aware with marijuana, whether it is through inhalation, ingestion or absorption.

“It is important to have self regulation and regulate how much you intake in your body. Marijuana has neurological, emotional and behavioral components that can disrupt the body,” said Arie Christon, a master’s candidate in the psychology program at FAMU.

There are more intricate components to marijuana, which include cannabis, a tall plant with a stiff upright stem, divided serrated leaves, and glandular hairs. It is used to produce hemp fiber and as a drug. Cannabinoids,  any of a group of closely related compounds which include cannabinol and the active constituents of cannabis. Medical marijuana, now legal in Florida, is marijuana that has been prescribed by a doctor in the treatment of a medical condition.

Herbs do not just include cannabis, but also basil, thyme, sage, and rosemary. “Although there are many herbs that exist, that does not mean that they are all good for you,” said Novell Tani, an assistant professor of psychology.

How does cannabis affect your body you might ask? Although the word anandamide wouldn’t ring a bell in your brain, it is a key component in your brain that is the cannabinoids that your body produces. It’s like the THC or CBD inside of us. The more we indulge in cannabis, the less that our body will produce anandamide and will end up craving for THC or CBD from an outside source, like marijuana,  according to

The more your body craves marijuana, the more negative short-term and long-term effects will follow. Some short-term effects are euphoria, delayed reaction, impaired memory, and increased heart rate. Some long-term effects are sativa and indica, which are two different ways your body reacts to cannabis.

Forms of cannabis do not just have to be smoked but can be consumed in many other ways. This includes brownies, cookies, gummy bears and tea. If these sorts of things are not bought at a local cannabis dispensary like Vida Cann or Trulieve, it is important to be aware of  “fake marijuana” on the streets.

“Unlicensed dealers often enhance their products by lacing them with chemical sprays, toxins and poisons. It is recommended to purchase from a licensed dispensary to avoid running into a more serious problem,” said Tani.

So before you use and form of cannabis, think about the negative effects that it can hold on your body. Are you indulging due to depression or anxiety? Is there real treatment that you can receive instead of ruining your body?

“There are more smoke shops and liquor stores in the black community than any other community and there is a reason why,” Tani said. “Continue to gain knowledge and decide whether you are going to escape or elevate. Be mindful and aware of what you put into your body.”