"I’ve heard marijuana can stop bone loss, help boost "good" cholesterol, and maybe even eliminate hot flashes. What can cannabis actually do for me, and what is the best method/dose/strain for me to consider? "
It is true that CBD stimulates bone growth which is a benefit to those patients who are aging or suffering from osteoporosis. With regard to cholesterol levels, one study has shown that people that use cannabis have lower body fat percentages, smaller waists, and higher levels of HDL cholesterol. Yet another study showed that cannabis consumption was associated with increased total daily caloric intake and an increase in weight and intake of foods such as candy bars and potato chips. That study did not address cholesterol levels. Neither study addressed CBD and THC levels which is important because CBD suppresses appetite and THC increases appetite. My point is that I don’t think there is enough evidence to rely on cannabis as a treatment or preventative measure for hypercholesterolenemia. With regard to menopause, in my clinical experience, cannabis has been very effective in treating menstrual cramps, bloating, mood instability, insomnia, anxiety, and dysphoria. I have not seen as much effectiveness in treating hot flashes, but that’s not to say that it doesn’t help some women. Since cannabis effects different people differently, no one can say definitively what cannabis can do for you. It’s affect depends on the cannabinoid profile (how much CBD, how much THC), how much you take in a dose, and your genetic make up. I would consider starting with a small dose of cannabis tincture (1-2 drops) under the tongue or vaporized flower or oil (1-2 puffs), then titrate the dose gradually to find out how much you need to alleviate your symptoms. I am a strong proponent of balanced varieties for daytime; ratios of THC:CBD of about 1:1. This way, the cannabinoids synergize each other and the CBD attenuates the psychoactivity of THC so that you can remain clear-minded, functional, and productive. A "Purple" or Kush variety with unopposed THC may be best for nighttime so as to be relaxed and mildly sedated.