A recent 60 Minutes interview revealed that four-time Grammy award winner Olivia Newton-John has not only made marijuana a part of her journey to wellness after a cancer diagnosis, but also that her husband, John Easterling, has been growing the plant at the couple's home.
"It's been a maligned plant all these years, and it really is a magical, miracle plant," Newton-John said in the interview, citing the ways in which marijuana helped her feel better during her battle with cancer. She noted that the "tinctures" made by her husband from the home-grown plant eased her symptoms of "pain and inflammation" in a way that was deeply impactful for the singer-slash-actress.
The Australian-American star, who is perhaps most famous for her iconic role of Sandy in Grease, is currently in the midst of her second brush with cancer. After battling breast cancer in the early 90s, Newton-John remained in remission for years but continued to be an advocate for cancer research, donating proceeds from several of her albums to cancer research centers and charities and creating the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre in Melbourne, Australia.
Throughout the difficulty of dealing with this second bout of cancer, Newton-John notes that she intends to be an advocate for the use of medical marijuana in her home of Australia.
Though marijuana use is still considered to be controversial in some countries, the medical marijuana movement is gaining steam with the endorsement of many medical professionals who agree that it can be used to soothe cancer-related symptoms as well as ease discomfort from other treatment options. For instance, in 2013, Dr. Sanjay Gupta made waves by introducing the first of a series of television documentaries publicly reversing his previous stance on medical marijuana.
He publicly apologized for the medical community's role in misinforming the public, stating that "we have been terribly and systematically misled for nearly 70 years in the United States". More recently, he has stated that marijuana's medical uses are far-reaching, "including treatment for cancer, epilepsy and Alzheimer's, to name a few".
Though the tide continues to turn, bringing medical marijuana acceptance to the forefront, Newton-John's disclosure may still come as a surprise. However, she has nothing but good things to say about her experience with marijuana, and continues to be an active member of the cancer research community.
Just last week, the star stepped out with her husband (and "plant medicine man") for the 2017 Olivia Newton-John Gala in support of the ONJ Cancer Wellness & Research Centre, looking lively and determined.