Cannabis for Symptoms of Cancer and Effects of Treatment


Without a doubt, finding out that you or someone you know has cancer is a difficult experience.  With so many options for treatment, navigating the process can be overwhelming. Many people have heard about the benefits of cannabis for cancer but don’t know exactly how it can help. This article is intended to help you understand which symptoms cannabis can aid and to provide some basic education.

Whether or not you choose to undergo chemotherapy, cannabis can have numerous benefits including managing symptoms of nausea, insomnia, anxiety, depression, appetite loss and pain. Read on to discover the benefits of cannabis.  

… for Nausea

THC and CBD are both effective in treating nausea. In flower, Sativa dominant strains have shown to have the greatest effect in treating nausea. This is because sativa strains treat symptoms related the head and the gut.

Strains for treating nausea: 

• Sativa-dominant strains; Pineapple Express, Jack Herer, Strawberry-banana

Edibles/Tinctures for treating nausea

• Zoot Rocks, Illuminations, Mr. Moxey’s Mints, THC Tincture

… for Insomnia

If you’re experiencing insomnia caused by chemotherapy, cannabis can help.  THC is known for aiding in sleep, and Indica strains are particularly helpful in this.

Strains for treating insomnia:

• Generally, Indica strains will help with sleep.  Strains known for their sedating affect include: Hindu Kush, MK Ultra, and Nine Pound Hammer.

Tinctures for treating insomnia:

• Deep Sleep Tincture, Beauty Sleep

Capsules for treating insomnia:

• Deeper Sleep, Relax Indica

… for Anxiety & Depression

Depression is a common side effect of chemotherapy and often comes with anxiety.  Cannabis has been shown to be effective in reducing these unwanted side effects.  THC has shown positive effects in managing depression.  And both THC and CBD may be beneficial for managing anxiety related symptoms.

Strains for treating depression:

• Sativa and hybrid strains affect the head and tend to be good options for mood elevation.  Specific strains that may alleviate depression include: Jack Herer, Pineapple Express, and Blue Dream.

Strains for treating anxiety:

• Any strain that is high in CBD may beneficial for anxiety.  Specific strains include Frida, Gilda, and ACDC.

Edibles for anxiety and depression:

• Zoot Rocks, Illuminations, Mr. Moxey’s Mints, Legal Tonic 1:1 CBD

… for Appetite Loss

Loss of appetite is a common symptom with cancer regardless if you are undergoing chemotherapy. THC is known for its appetite stimulating effects and is famous for causing “munchies.”   More specifically, sativa-dominate strains have appetite-enhancing effects.  

Strains for appetite loss:

• Any sativa or sativa-dominant strain such as: Grape-Stomper, Jack Herer, Acapulco Gold or Cinex.

Capsules for appetite loss:

• Fairwinds Recharge, Nectar Sativa

Tinctures for appetite loss:

• Fairwinds THC Tincture

… and for Pain

Both THC and CBD work on managing pain related to chemotherapy in different ways. CBD helps to manage the pain in the body and THC helps to manage your perception of the pain. Thus, CBD and THC work synergistically to create a full entourage of pain relieving effects. You may have to experiment to find the ratio of CBD:THC for you.

Strains for treating pain:

• Look for strains that contain both CBD and THC, e.g. Frida, Gilda. A sedating Indica may also be beneficial for pain management and additionally it can help with sleep, e.g. Hindu Kush, LA Confidential.

Capsules for treating pain:

• Rejuvenate CBD, Fairwinds FSO, Relax Indica

Tinctures for treating pain:

• Fairwinds High CBD Blends – 10:1, 5:1, and 3:2.