Hemp is not marijuana. The hemp plant was brought to the continental United States by the British Colonies. The fiber lines, sails and caulking of the Mayflower were made from hemp. The hemp plant was so widely used the pilgrims were required by British law to grow it. Through the 1600, 1700, and 1800s hemp plants were grown and used to produce cordage, cloth, canvas and paper both here in the states and for export to Britain. The first drafts of the Declaration of Independence were written on hemp paper. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson both grew hemp. Thomas Jefferson bred improved varieties of it and even invented a machine for crushing the stems when making fiber. Hemp was grown through the 1950s for the production of multiple products, including the fiber lines, sails and caulking of the USS Constitution, aka Old Ironsides.
In the 1930s it became too widely known that certain varieties contained compounds which caused psychoactive affects when ingested and in 1937 the Marijuana Tax Act was passed. This moved control of the plant from the Department of Agriculture to the Department of Revenue. Eventually leading to it becoming illegal.
Recently there has been renewed interest in the plant. Depending on who you ask or what reference material you read the same plant contains varying numbers of natural compounds with just as many uses. Of particular interest is a compound called cannabidiol or CBD. CBD is not THC (cannabinol). In fact, medical research suggests that CBD counteracts the psychoactive effects of THC. Yet they both exist in the same plant but in different concentrations depending on the variety of the plant.
Medically right now CBD is being used for PTSD, social anxiety disorder, schizophrenia and Dravet Syndrome, just to name a few. Continued research is suggesting it may be useful in the treatment of everything from acne to cancer. And all without the psychoactive effects of THC. THC is also widely used for many medical conditions. Additionally, hemp seeds are edible. Yes, you can eat them. They are rich in protein, iron, magnesium, zinc, Omega 3, 6, and 9. I add hemp seeds to yogurt, oatmeal, salads, even sprinkle a few on a peanut butter sandwich.
A notable reason for turning to a natural plant compound over man made drugs is that the natural compounds have little if any side affects. While most artificial or man made drugs not only have unpleasant side effects but some actually do as much harm as good. Every listen to commercials for man made drugs and hear the list of side effects which is longer than the list of maladies they treat?
So, if you are dealing with a medical condition, you now have a life altering option, do you want man made drugs that may or may not help you while also possibly (probably) damaging your body in other ways. Or do you want a natural substance known for centuries to be safe and will potentially (probably) improve your health?