autism

Autism could now be added to the lengthy and perpetually-expanding list of afflictions and symptoms treatable with the one product of nature shamefully prohibited by the federal government — the “miracle” palliative, cannabis.

One in every 68 children in the United States is now affected by autism, and the number of kids coping with the developmental disorder has been increasing at an explosive rate in recent years. With onset most common during infancy and early childhood, autism can impact social and communication skills and may cause repetitive or compulsive behaviors, among other manifestations.

Now, fresh evidence again frowns upon U.S. federal prohibition of cannabis — listed as a Schedule I dangerous substance of no potential medical use, alongside heroin — which could be depriving ailing children the chance for treatment, and hope for a better-adjusted future.

In contrast to its staunch U.S. ally, Israel has approached the cannabis plant as the medicinal healer it has more than proven to be — medical marijuana was first approved in Israel decades ago, in 1992, making it one of the first in the world to do so.

As USA Today notes, in a recent article titled, Marijuana may be a miracle treatment for children with autism, Israel and just two other countries — Canada and the Netherlands — have government-sponsored medical marijuana programs available to citizens.

As USA Today reports:

When Noa Shulman came home from school, her mother, Yael, sat her down to eat, then spoon-fed her mashed sweet potatoes — mixed with cannabis oil.

Noa, who has a severe form of autism, started to bite her own arm. “No sweetie,” Yael gently told her 17-year-old daughter. “Here, have another bite of this.”

Noa is part of the first clinical trial in the world to test the benefits of medicinal marijuana for young people with autism, a potential breakthrough that would offer relief for millions of afflicted children — and their anguished parents.

Because of the notorious, if not nefarious, American war on drugs irresponsibly focuses on the cannabis plant as a dangerous substance sans redeeming medical value, research here lags exponentially behind other nations — unnecessary red tape, regulations, laws, and restrictions make procuring clearance for scientific study a somewhat odious hurdle.

To wit, the Food and Drug Administration — which, incidentally, oversees the drug warriors of the DEA — has thus far only approved two antipsychotic pharmaceuticals for the treatment of symptoms of autism. Both of those come replete with a host of serious and untenable side effects — making the choice to treat a difficult one, at best.

Israeli researchers, unbound by the absurdities of the drug war, began a new study in January at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, comprised of 120 children ranging in age from five to 29 years, who have been diagnosed with mild to severe autism.

Study participants are given one of two cannabis oil treatments or a placebo, drops of which can be mixed into a meal — none contain high levels of THC, the ingredient which gives users a ‘high.’

“Adi Aran, the pediatric neurologist leading the study, said nearly all the participants previously took antipsychotics and nearly half responded negatively. Yael desperately pushed Aran and other doctors to prescribe cannabis oil after a news report aired about a mother who illegally obtained it for her autistic son and said it was the only thing that helped him,” USA Today reports.

Myriad scientific studies and innumerable anecdotal cases have proven cannabis to treat everything from PTSD to ADHD, various cancers to the painful pressure of glaucoma — but the plant’s miraculous quality has been most apparent in treating severe seizures of childhood epilepsy.

Now, it appears, cannabis — specifically, the non-psychoactive compound, cannabidiol or CBD — may offer improved quality of life for children with autism, and the families providing their care.

“Many parents were asking for cannabis for their kids,” Aran told USA Today. “First I said, ‘No, there’s no data to support cannabis for autism, so we can’t give it to you.’”

Doubt quickly lifted, however, after multiple studies championed cannabis in the treatment of childhood epilepsy and in reducing the severity of symptoms of autism. Aran points out 30 percent of children with autism are also afflicted with epilepsy.

In an observational study, the doctor found 70 patients with autism experienced positive results from cannabis — so the clinical trial was launched for in-depth study.

Where Israel provides hope for families of children with various ailments with government-sponsored cannabis care, parents in the United States are forced to grapple with a patchwork of laws and regulations. Packing up a house of belongings to flee draconian marijuana laws for life-saving cannabis treatment has become commonplace to the point such families are now deemed, in all seriousness, medical refugees.

As long as cannabis prohibition remains in effect — an overwhelming likelihood, given the profiteering possible at every level of the system, from police departments to courts to for-profit prisons, and so on — children and adults will needlessly suffer without the healing powers of a substance that couldn’t get anyone high.

One-hundred-ten clinical trials of cannabis are currently underway in Israel — and although there may be many in the U.S., research primarily focuses on the treatment of addiction and related issues.

Should cannabis, specifically, CBD oil, prove its mettle in treating the symptoms of autism in children, it would behoove U.S. bureaucrats and drug warriors to pay attention and save lives — rather than standing tough on an anachronistic and harmful national policy.

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Claire Bernish began writing as an independent, investigative journalist in 2015, with works published and republished around the world. Not one to hold back, Claire’s particular areas of interest include U.S. foreign policy, analysis of international affairs, and everything pertaining to transparency and thwarting censorship. To keep up with the latest uncensored news, follow her on Facebook or Twitter: @Subversive_Pen.
  • Gordon Klock

    The response is likely to be, to double down on cannabis prohibition, & generally treat these kids, even more like ‘disobedient farm animals’-(cause that’s what we all, secretly are to them)…..

  • Thad Knowles

    Please get your research straight, cannabis only looks like it is effective in helping seizures, when in fact when a full eeg is done the seizures are still there doing damage and the cannabis is only masking them.

    • Source? You can’t possibly mean that going dozens of visible seizures to near zero, with remarked improvement in daily living activities isn’t meaningful?

    • Christopher O’connor

      Thats the stupidest thing i ever heard

  • John C Carleton

    Most Autism in the US is directly tied to the increase in vaccines the US forces on babies and young children. The US knows this, and don’t give a rats butt. US knows they are causing children to be damaged for life, some die, by forcing their witches brew of chemical cocktails on Americans children. US don’t care, congressional prostitutes get their bribes from the vaccine manufacturing criminal corporations, the vaccine criminal corporations make mega bucks. Everyone happy but the damaged children and their parents..

  • Cannabis could heal the world if “we the people” would let it. Oddly
    enough the majority supports full legalization and it is still taboo in
    half the country. The government,big pharmacy, and alcohol companies are
    pushing their agenda for profit and have the political power to do
    so.We all know of the medical benefits that is why certain states have
    “medical” marijuana but If it is mentioned in a non-legal state to a
    physician then be prepared to be treated like an addict and a drug
    user…and guess what they will have a pill for that!!! The profit in
    sickness is literally killing people.

  • Rhea Graham

    Whole plant, not just CBD. Our Creator made the whole plant to feed our EndoCannabinoid System… not just one part! Blessings up.

  • Di

    cannibis has been proven to cure numerous afflictions including cancer and this is why it is illegal. big pharma would lose profits.