Should You Be Adding Raw Cannabis to Your Smoothie? Some Medical Doctors Say, “Yes”.

Yes, for the overwhelming majority of you, adding raw cannabis to your smoothie is a highly improbable event. But what if you could? In this post, I present the findings of some medical researchers, ingredients to my raw cannabis smoothie, and cannabis juicing tips from an expert.


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A GROWING list of medical doctors are extolling the health benefits of consuming the non- psychotropic (no “high”) raw cannabis leaf, but most Americans will never get to find out if it’s useful for them.

That’s because marijuana remains a Schedule 1 drug and has been declared to have no accepted medical use.  This consistently intractable position by the US Federal government is slowly being challenged and circumvented by various States, such as Washington.

In Washington, a person can smoke marijuana without persecution from State authorities, and – with a doctor’s prescription – a resident there can grow up to 15 marijuana plants for personal use.

Heating marijuana “turns on” the psychotropic properties that get you “high”, which for some people is helpful for pain relief, among other benefits.

That’s interesting for sure, but what I find more intriguing are the potential health benefits of juicing or blending the unheated, raw cannabis leaf into a smoothie, as I showed you in the video above.

As reported by Natural News:

In raw form, marijuana leaves and buds are actually loaded with a non-psychoactive, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer nutrient compound known as cannabidiol (CBD) that is proving to be a miracle “superfood” capable of preventing and reversing a host of chronic illnesses.


According to Dr. William Courtney, a medical marijuana expert and founder of Cannabis International, CBDs bridge the gap of neurotransmission in the central nervous system, including in the brain, by providing a two-way system of communication that completes a positive “feedback loop”, which mimics the body’s own natural two-way communications system.

The result, say doctors who study CBDs in raw cannabis leaf, is that individuals whose systems are compromised by autoimmune disorders, cellular dysfunction, chronic inflammation, cancer cells, and various other illnesses can derive a wide range of health-promoting benefits simply by consuming CBDs.

If you’re lucky enough to have access to them, one of the best ways to obtain CBDs is to juice raw marijuana leaves and buds, according to Dr. Courtney.

For more about Dr. Courtney and his wife, who cured many debilitating disease by drinking raw cannabis juice, read (and watch), Can You Improve Your Health By Drinking Marijuana Juice?

Dr. Ethan Russo, a Seattle, Washington-area physician says this about CBDs in our bodies:

CBD works on receptors, and as it turns out, we have cannabinoids in our bodies, endogenous cannabinoids, that turn out to be very effective at regulating immune functions, nerve functions, bone functions.


In San Francisco, works one of the most preeminent medical researchers of cannabis, Dr. Donald Abrams.

Dr. Abrams is chief of Hematology Oncology, at San Francisco General Hospital, and a professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco.

His work on cannabis has made him an advocate of using it for medical purposes.

Dr. Abrams says this,

If cannabis were discovered in an Amazon rainforest today, people would be clambering to make as much use as they could of all of the potential benefits of the plant. Unfortunately, it carries with it a long history of being a persecuted plant.


In the first video below, Dr. Abrams has a conversation with about the science of medical cannabis.

He also appears in the second video, where he provides some unique insight into the benefits of ingesting medical cannabis in its raw form and introduces the newest technique for doing so, juicing.

Of course, as I demonstrated in my own video at the start of this post, you can simply add the raw marijuana leaf to the other ingredients of your favorite smoothie.




The last expert on this topic that I’ll introduce to you is not a doctor, but has had extensive experience helping people ease, and some claim, heal life-threatening diseases, such as cancer.

Canadian Rick Simpson has developed a reputation for helping very sick people better with “hemp oil”, which you can read about here.

Note: My reading on the topic – as well as the feedback from someone I know who has tried to help cancer patients by making hemp oil – indicates that this is not some panacea for curing cancer or any other disease.  Some people are helped by it; others not.


Ingredients in Joe’s Raw Cannabis Smoothie (Make em Organic)

Those of you who did not have a pen handy while watching my raw cannabis smoothie video, may find the following table handy.  And following it are some of Dr. Courtney’s raw cannabis juicing tips.

Ingredients List  Reason Alternatives/Addition
VitaMix blender Completely purees vegetable and fruit quietly and quickly. The Ninja Professional Blender works pretty well, and is Consumer Reports top pick, given price and performance criteria. It’s much cheaper than the VitaMixbut not as good.  Watch it in action here.
Marijuana leaf Read this post, or this one. None.
Hemp seeds Protein, fiber and high quality omega-3 fatty acids. Chia and/or flax seeds.
Kale Lots of vitamins/anti-oxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, aides in detoxification. Spinach, bok choy, watercress, red leaf chard.
Red leaf lettuce A good source vitamins A and K. See Kale Alternatives above.
Pure Water Less calories if use some water as the liquid base rather than some other liquid. If you don’t care about calories, or want a thicker smoothie, substitute almond/hemp milk and/or keifer.
Almond milk Adds protein, XXX and more thickness and water alone. Hemp milk.
Keifer Like all fermented foods, keifer feeds the beneficial microbiota in our bodies. New studies show that this is vital for health. More on this here. If you’re diary intolerant, or a vegan, substitute almond/hemp milk and/or water for the keifer.
Frozen banana Adds some sweetness and thickness. Frozen papaya or stevia.
Blueberries Reputedly, has the highest amount of antioxidants of any fruit, and may help the urinary track, vision, constipation and digestion. Blackberries
ImmunPlex whey powder Make sure the whey powder you use is undenatured. It provides protein and helps boost glutathione, a powerful antioxidant that is the cornerstone to healthy immune function. Dr Mercoa is a good whey alternative, and Raw Protein is a brand that offers protein powder made from organic sprouts. It’s great, and I use it all the time, along with the whey.
Cinnamon Helps slow down sugar absorption. High levels of blood sugar are likely a major cause of obesity and diabetes. More on that here. Apple cider vinegar serves the same purpose, but doubt you’d want it in your smoothie.
Chlorophyll Binds to heavy metals in our bodies and helps with their excretion. Cilantro, parsley, watercress.


Dr. Courtney’s Tips & Suggestions for Juicing or Adding Cannabis To Your Smoothie

  • When it comes to juicing, as with any vegetable, the fresher the better.
  • Cannabis that has been dried and prepared for smoking is not suitable for juicing.
  • Dr. Courtney recommends that patients juice 15 leaves, and 2 large (2 to 4 inches long) raw buds per day.
  • Raw buds are flowers harvested when the THC glands are clear rather than amber.
  • It is recommended that you mix in another vegetable juice to cut the bitterness of the raw cannabis. (Watch my video at the top of this post.)
  • A popular choice is carrot juice, and a ratio of 1 part cannabis juice to 10 parts carrot juice is a good rule of thumb.
  • Split the drink into 3 parts and drink with each meal, or store for up to 3 days in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator.  (Source)


Your Takeaway

As I said at the beginng of this post, most of you would not be able to legally access or grow cannabis for its medicinal/health benefits.

So why did I bother writing about it?

Because it’s among some leading-edge research on the pharmacological benefits of plants, and some day we’re going to have acccess to this much maligned plant.

Your takeaway then is to know the value of ingesting raw cannabis and either support its legalization and/or work to make it happen in your State.

Ciao for now.


P.S. Comments are welcomed.

Last Updated on February 28, 2022 by Joe Garma

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Joe Garma

I help people live with more vitality and strength. I'm a big believer in sustainability, and am a bit nutty about optimizing my diet, supplements, hormones and exercise. To get exclusive Updates, tips and be on your way to a stronger, more youthful body, join my weekly Newsletter. You can also find me on LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 12 comments
Stacy Hall - June 15, 2014

Great post–I have access to a plant and am going to try adding a few leaves to my green smoothie today. Never though of doing this, sounds awesome. Thanks, and have a swell day. : )

    Joe Garma - June 16, 2014

    Hi Stacy… let us know what you think once you’ve experimented with it.

Tania - April 16, 2016

Hi I just wanted I know where can I find cannabis that hasn’t been prepared to smoke?

    Joe Garma - October 5, 2016

    Tania, that’s not something I know about.

Eric - October 4, 2016

Good article – but it’s not necessary to juice fresh cannabis leaves. In fact the leaf has 1/10th the effect of fresh/frozen (harvest from the plant then freeze immediately) buds – even high THC commercial strains. And even high THC commercial strains won’t get you high when eaten fresh – in fact THC-A (the acidic form found in fresh cannabis) has remarkable medical benefits on it’s own.

I’ve been using high-THC varieties of fresh/frozen cannabis buds for almost 4 years and as a result my depression, arthritis, and prostate problems have disappeared. I’ve also used Harlequin (high-CBD) but the medical benefit I realized was after a couple of months using regular high-THC strains.

Started using leaf – which was ok – but the fresh/frozen buds/flowers were easily 10X more effective than the leaf.

    Joe Garma - October 5, 2016

    Hi Eric, thanks for your raw cannabis insights. What you wrote makes sense. The idea behind the blog post was that there’s benefit to using the leaf, so don’t throw them away.

    Charlotte Bacon - June 20, 2017

    Eric, Thank you for your input. We were wondering about freezing the bud. We don’t have any access to leaves or bud at this time but we are working on it. Thanks again

Jenn Borjeson - December 25, 2016

Thanks for the info, I’m a huge believer in the medicinal benefits of marijuana and have been using edibles to treat my ulcerative colitis. I’m excited to try juicing too!

Nathan Frodsham - December 28, 2016

I am working with an organization trying to educate our state (Utah) about health benefits, and we have some inquiries about juicing. As home grow isn’t an option here, much less even a medical cannabis program to date, I have been trying to see if any way around the “fresh leaves” question. If somebody only wants to the THCA and CBDA, why would the dry flower not be effective, i.e. blended into a smoothie. Do those acids completely disappear over time? I would think they would still exist, even if not as good as fresh, but everything I’ve read seems to indicate it is not recommended. If, however, a patient goes say to Colorado, buys some bud, and takes it and make a green smoothie – no heat, is it completely a waste, or would some THCA and CBDA, not to mention other cannabinoids, terpenese, etc., exist for some benefit? Again, raw consumption seems such a promising topic for people with significant autoimmune or arthritic related pain symptoms, but it seems near impossible to obtain anything fresh if you don’t grow or know somebody in a state where it is legal to grow.

If, however, there were some benefit to including some raw bud legally obtained from a dispensary and consumed in a legal state, would this not be better than nothing? Just trying to understand if it is like 80% benefit of fresh, or more like 0% benefit. Make sense? Really want to help educate people who are in a lot of pain with very few options, so hopefully somebody can help me see if there is a pathway for people willing to travel somewhere legal and consume something legally available, or if really access to fresh cannabis is a complete prerequisite. I welcome any thoughts or feedback.

David - January 4, 2018

Will this be able to help with my severe asthma?

    Joe Garma - January 4, 2018

    David, suggest you google around to see if any research indicates, or anecdotal evidence, that particular high-CBD cannabis strains are useful to ameliorate asthma.


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