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Cannabis tea (also known as weed tea, pot tea, or "green" tea) is an infusion of Cannabis—usually the leaves of the plant—in hot water. Cannabis tea is an herbal tea, rather than a true tea. Without proper decarboxylation and preparation of the glandular material, this method of ingesting cannabis yields low psychoactive effects, as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the primary psychoactive agent in cannabis, is not a water-soluble compound. Dissolving the active ingredient THC in lipids (for example vegetable oil or butter) or alcohol (as in Green Dragon) is more effective for psychoactive purposes. While water-based tea is generally not very efficient, using milk, which contains fat, proves to be more effective. This technique has been used for thousands of years in India, and is referred to as bhang, which is a drink made of milk, clarified butter, and spices mixed with a cannabis paste, somewhat similarly to Indian tea or Masala chai which is made with tea leaves, milk, spices and sugar. Because of its smokeless form of ingestion, it is preferred by some as a method of using the plant for medicinal purposes.
Many patients intake cannabis regularly for chronic pain. For those suffering from conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis or AIDS, cannabis relieves pain and the mental anxiety that comes with constant body pain. For patients dealing with chronic pain and end-of-life care, cannabis also can reduce anxiety and increase feelings of well-being. Cannabis also reduces nausea, a debilitating side-effect of the drugs, including chemotherapy, used to treat life-threatening diseases. Stimulating appetite is another related effect of cannabis that can prevent weight-loss of patients undergoing taxing chemotherapy sessions or suffering from AIDS.
Cannabis tea is scheduled at the federal level in the United States by nature of being a derivative of cannabis sativa, and it is therefore illegal to possess, buy, and sell. Some US states have laws that allow cannabis tea, but these laws conflict with the federal law.
In Colorado, for medical purposes, cannabis tea is a "Medical Marijuana Infused Product" which is "a product infused with medical marijuana that is intended for use or consumption other than by smoking, including but not limited to edible products, ointments, and tinctures. These products, when manufactured or sold by a licensed medical marijuana center or a medical marijuana-infused product manufacturer, shall not be considered a food or drug for the purposes of the “Colorado Food and Drug Act”, part 4 of article 5 of title 25, C.R.S." Matt Cook, Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Revenue has been quoted as saying, "Medical-Marijuana Infused Products are any product, including but not limited to teas, tinctures, hashish, extracts, balms, and lotions that are ingested in any manner other than by smoking."
- Excerpt from Viv Richards' autobiography in which he describes using an infusion of marijuana leaves to control his eye problems.
- Health benefits of cannabis tea LiveStrong Mar 31, 2011.