Cannabinoid Insufficiency Disorder

A Tangible Polarity

There is a singular opposite to all of the marijuana syndromes. I want to present it here because it’s so simple, and also because it forms a tangible polarity to nearly everything else I discuss on this website and in my book Marijuana Syndromes.

I call this situation Cannabinoid Insufficiency Disorder. It sometimes occurs when an individual is and has been highly motivated for an extended period of time to the point that it has become an essential feature of her/his character.

This person often seems to have mastered his/her internal reward system. S/he can drive her/himself to complete any goal whatsoever, and her/his life and life energies appear to be entirely driven by these projects and/or crusades.

Yet over time, something may happen to her/him. S/he can begin to experience pain and inflammation in diverse areas of the body that aren’t relieved for more than a very short time by any kind of therapy. If this situation worsens, s/he can begin to identify with her/his pain as completely as s/he identifies with her/his goals and aspirations.

Various digestive issues may enter into the picture along the way that can be equally difficult to treat.

The separation between this person’s aspirations and her/his actual abilities in real time can create an agonizing paradox that may lead sometimes to anxiety, and sometimes to depression in a cycle that goes on seemingly without hope and without end.

A Very Unexpected Solution

There’s something profoundly interesting about this situation. If this person takes even an extremely low dose of a CBD-rich cannabis strain, s/he may become rapidly and dramatically healed. Often times it only takes one or two cannabis experiences of this nature to completely turn the situation around for the better.

What’s going on here? This person appears to have developed an ability to repress, sublimate and/or shut down her/his own endocannabinoid system. [i]  This is one of our many internal reward and feedback systems that are responsible for guiding us through life.

Yet any form of excessive repression is ultimately unsustainable, and finally leads to its opposite as the energy in the system runs down. In this case, it may be that this person doesn’t allow her/his endocannabinoid system to do what it’s supposed to do. When its functions fail, chaos ensues until the person’s internal environment is corrected. This can happen through trial and error over the course of life’s events, through a variety of intentional therapies and/or in a single breakthrough in the form of one of these cannabis experiences.

The final diagnostic of Cannabinoid Insufficiency Disorder is treatment. In the worst-case scenario where the diagnosis is incorrect, the individual may have some insightful experiences and go back to the drawing board with other treatments. However when the diagnosis is correct, a miracle of healing may appear to occur.

CID, CCD and Long-Term Solutions

Cannabis advocates will certainly receive these observations with great enthusiasm as they have with Dr. Ethan Russo’s brilliant discovery of Clinical Cannabinoid Deficiency,[ii] and claim that CID reveals further ‘proof’ that marijuana is somehow a natural and necessary part of human existence.

The answer for people with CID is not that marijuana should become a regular part of their lives. To do so would only further damage[iii] their already injured and impaired endocannabinoid systems. Instead, a program of progressive behavior modification that includes liberal and regular self-care, rewards, meditation and Qi Gong practice can help these people to recondition and tune their own endocannabinoid systems to a refined state that can match and balance the rest of their highly achieved personalities.


A Summary of Cannabinoid Insufficiency Disorder

Again, the symptoms and signs for Cannabinoid Insufficiency Disorder are as follows:

1) Long-term highly motivated individual.

2) Pain.

3) Inflammation.

4) Digestive issues.

5) Anxiety and/or depression.

Do not miss Cannabinoid Insufficiency Disorder in your diagnostic proceedings. This is an excellent time for a professional referral.

I want to reemphasize that treatment for CID is extremely short-term and low-dose and should only be handled by a physician competent in this arena.


Important Marijuana Articles




For more information on how to balance and optimize the effects of cannabis using Traditional Chinese Medicine, please refer to


Marijuana Syndromes

How to Balance and Optimize

the Effects of Cannabis

With Traditional Chinese Medicine



More Resources

We now know that chronic stress or acute, severe emotional trauma can cause a reduction in both the production of endocannabinoids and the responsiveness of the receptors, and that although marijuana’s exocannabinoids also can reduce anxiety, chronic use of the drug down-regulates the receptors, paradoxically increasing anxiety....

And it turns out that CB2 receptors in the brain are deeply involved with excitation/suppression of the hippocampus...

Deficiencies in natural cannabinoids could result in a predisposition to developing PTSD and depression...

CBD may protect against the negative psychoactive effects of THC...

For extensive details on how to balance and optimize the effects of cannabis using Traditional Chinese Medicine, please refer to

Marijuana Syndromes

How to Balance and Optimizethe Effects of Cannabis with Traditional Chinese Medicine





[i]   [ii] Russo, Ethan. 2004. Clinical Cannabinoid Deficiency. Neuroendocrinology Letters, 2004, Feb-Apr; 25(1-2):31-9.   [iii] Long-term use of marijuana causes a decrease in brain receptors that bind with the psychoactive chemicals in cannabis and a person’s own endocannabinoids by about 20 percent.   Hirvonen, J. et al. 2010. Reversible and regionally selective downregulation of brain cannabinoid CB1 receptors in chronic daily cannabis smokers. SNM’s 58th Annual Meeting, June 4–8, 2010, San Antonio, TX.   Society of Nuclear Medicine. 2011, June 6. Chronic marijuana smoking affects brain chemistry, molecular imaging shows. ScienceDaily.