4 Reasons Cannabis is the World’s Best Super Ingredient
By: Tiyana Matliovski
Did you know that the term ‘superfood’ is a contentious subject for many health professionals?
It turns out that there’s a debate around what constitutes a ‘superfood’, and whether or not the term is actually a clever marketing angle created by the food industry. When you think about it, only a handful of single buzzwords can elicit such a powerful purchasing response as the “superfood” label.
On the one hand, some will go so far as to say that there is no such thing as a superfood. while others focus on managing the hype, yet both camps tend to agree that there are some naturally nutrient dense foods that can and should be favoured over others. Tumeric goji flavoured matcha latte anyone?
Alas, if I may be so bold as to put forth my own definition of superfood (with absolutely no qualifications to do so), it would need two core components in order to make the cut - versatility and sustainability. Making it less of a superfood, and more of a super ingredient… We all know where this is going.
Four reasons why cannabis is the world’s best super ingredient!
Versatile & Sustainable
Perhaps one in the same thing, the fact that cannabis is so versatile in its uses makes it an ideal plant for a sustainable future.
The whole plant creates a multitude of products, everything from the seeds as food, to the stalk for fabrics, to the leaf and trim for topicals and of course the cannabinoid and terpenoid dense flowers for medicinal, therapeutic and adult use.
Something to remember, both its versatility and its sustainability rely on our actions. Where possible, ensure you’re purchasing cannabis products from reliable sources that keep waste to a minimum and employ sustainable practices.
Cannabinoids & Terpenes
There are said be more than 400 unique compounds in the cannabis plant, many of which interact with our various biological systems. In fact, it was the THC compound that led researchers to discover the endocannabinoid system which, according to some, is one of the most important biological discoveries of our time.
Medical use of cannabis relies on the cannabinoids found in abundance in the flower of the cannabis plant, with the plants various compounds working synergistically to alleviate a range of symptoms.
Unfortunately, much like the bloated use of the term superfood, there’s little management of the hype surrounding CBD, now known in the mainstream as the ‘good cannabinoid’. No disrespect to CBD, but we all know it’s THC that throws the best parties.
It’s an Adaptogen
Chronic stress has been implicated in a number of negative health issues and can affect people of all ages, across socio-economic groups, of any ethnicity and from any geographical location. From young parents, to uni students, the chronically ill, to the impoverished, chronic stress is known to increase the production of cortisol, speeding up aging and even changing the physical makeup of your DNA.
The term Adaptogen was first used in the 1940’s as a way of describing the effect certain medicinal herbs had on restoring the body’s natural state, aka homeostasis. Well known adaptogenic herbs include ginseng, abhwagandha, holy basil, and now, cannabis.
It’s a Nutrient Dense Food Source
Ever heard the term devils lettuce? Probably not it’s original intention, however, if you squint real hard the name becomes almost 50% accurate.
That’s right, cannabis is a food, a vegetable no less, ideal for herbivores, carnivores and even vegans! It is a nutrient dense plant packed with all the usual superfood qualities, most prominently omega-3 fatty acids. It is also a good source of Vitamin E (and other tocopherols), zinc, magnesium, iron, liver enzymes, antioxidants, proteins and fibre. Additionally, if you juice the leaf, you’ll add into your diet a range of raw cannabinoids and terpenes.
If you’re feeling inspired to make use of the worlds best super ingredient, here’s a wonderful cannabis salve recipe that packs an almighty, medicinal plant, punch!