Medical Pot: Haven’t Got Time For The Pain

To what extent has marijuana flipped the narrative about drugs? Weed has gone from Reefer Madness to…Reefer Gladness.

Cannabis is increasingly viewed as a highly effective way to not only alleviate physical pain, but also fight addiction to deadly drugs such as opioids. Indeed, marijuana is far less toxic than many of the drugs routinely prescribed by doctors.

An average of 38 people die each day from overdoses involving prescription opioids, totaling more than 14,000 deaths annually. The most dangerous drug pusher isn’t your local marijuana seller; it’s the health-industrial complex. Below, I explain how marijuana is addressing the opioid scourge and entering the mainstream of pain management.

The legalization of marijuana in the U.S. has been accelerating, particularly for medical cannabis. As of this writing, 16 states and the District of Columbia are home to adult-use (i.e., recreational) cannabis markets, while 36 states have established medical markets.

The majority of the marijuana market encompasses adult-use consumers, but the number of registered medical cannabis patients in currently legalized states is exploding. According to New Frontier Data, the the number of medical pot users is on track to reach 4.9 million by 2025. The sales of medical cannabis will grow by $8.7 billion between 2018 and 2025.

We’re witnessing a Golden Age of scientific research into the medical efficacy of marijuana. New reports attesting to the health benefits of pot are continually coming to light. Patients with chronic ailments and diseases that are unresponsive to conventional therapies are increasingly looking to marijuana as an alternative. That’s especially true in relation to invasive and addictive therapies.

These trends were confirmed by New Frontier Data’s latest report, Medical Cannabis & Pharmaceuticals: Growth & Disruption in U.S. Healthcare, released on May 10.

The report revealed how medical cannabis users are not only resorting to pot for pain management but also making the substance an integral part of conventional therapies.

As such, medical cannabis poses a threat to the market share of Big Pharma and has the potential to undercut sales of non-marijuana blockbuster drugs. That’s a problem for the major drug companies but a huge opportunity for marijuana investors. It’s a trend you need to watch, in your efforts to find the right marijuana investment.

Read This Story: 12 Criteria for Picking The Right Pot Stock

According to the New Frontier report, pain management is the number one application cited by medical cannabis consumers as motivation for pot use, coming in at 59% of respondents (see chart).

Research underscores the value of cannabis as an analgesic and anti-nausea remedy. What’s more, with the epidemic of deadly opioid addiction over the past two decades, medical cannabis has shown promise as an alternative, non-addictive (and non-deadly) technique for pain management.

New Frontier also asked medical cannabis consumers whether they substituted specific prescribed conventional pharmaceutical prescriptions with marijuana. For consumers indicating that they were prescribed opioids for pain management, 48% reported having replaced some of their prescribed medication with cannabis; 7% indicated replacing all of their prescribed medications.

Among consumers prescribed non-opioid analgesics, 38% said they had replaced some of their prescribed medication, while 11% replaced all prescribed medications with cannabis.

New Frontier also asked medical cannabis consumers whether using pot had helped their disease or ailment. The majority of medical cannabis consumers reported in the affirmative: More than half (52%) of medical consumers said that their medical condition had improved significantly with the use of cannabis, with an additional 41% indicating that their respective medical condition had improved slightly.

The study’s results come on top of an increasing body of research proving that medical cannabis accessibility significantly reduces statewide opioid use and even opioid deaths.

How to profit…

As the medical benefits of marijuana become all too clear, an increasing number of states are legalizing cannabis.

Cannabis investments are a must for your portfolio, but the trick is finding the right pot stocks. Some cannabis stocks are stellar investments. Many others are not. You need to conduct due diligence. The good news is, we’ve done the homework for you.

Our team has unearthed hidden gems in cannabusiness that most investors don’t even know about. Looking to make money on marijuana legalization? For our latest research on the most profitable pot stocks, click here.

John Persinos is the editorial director of Investing Daily. He also writes the twice-weekly e-letter Marijuana Investing Daily. Send your questions or comments to mailbag@investingdaily.com. To subscribe to John’s video channel, follow this link.