Don’t Let ‘Pot’ Go to Your Head

There are lots of arguments about Marijuana, and whether or not it should be legalized across the United States. When used for medicinal purposes, the drug carries many benefits for those suffering from chronic pain, loss of appetite or extreme nausea; But when healthy people use the drug for a ‘high’, the benefits of Marijuana greatly diminish. Studies have shown that Marijuana usage effects not only your mental abilities, but also your heart and lungs. This latest news could strike you out in the bedroom as well; from Women’s Health Magazine:

When Sex Goes to Pot

If your guy smokes the green stuff, your sex life may suffer.  Even if it’s just once a week, it can inhibit his libido and get in the way of his orgasm, reports a study in The Journal of Sexual Medicine. “Frequent marijuana usage lowers men’s testosterone levels,” says lead study author Anthony Smith, Ph.D., of La Trobe University in Australia.  But women aren’t off the hook: The same study found that female smokers are more at risk for contracting a sexually transmitted infection (possibly due to carelessly having unprotected sex with multiple partners) than nonsmokers.  Do your lust life a favor and quit together.

If you need a few more reasons to pass on the puff, check out this information from the National Institute on Drug Abuse:

A number of studies have shown an association between chronic marijuana use and increased rates of anxiety, depression, and schizophrenia. Some of these studies have shown age at first use to be an important risk factor, where early use is a marker of increased vulnerability to later problems. …. Chronic marijuana use, especially in a very young person, may also be a marker of risk for mental illnesses – including addiction – stemming from genetic or environmental vulnerabilities, such as early exposure to stress or violence. Currently, the strongest evidence links marijuana use and schizophrenia and/or related disorders.

But that’s not all! Marijuana doesn’t only affect your mental function, it also alters the way your body functions (National Institute on Drug Abuse):

Marijuana increases heart rate by 20-100 percent shortly after smoking; this effect can last up to 3 hours. In one study, it was estimated that marijuana users have a 4.8-fold increase in the risk of heart attack in the first hour after smoking the drug. This may be due to increased heart rate as well as the effects of marijuana on heart rhythms, causing palpitations and arrhythmias. This risk may be greater in aging populations or in those with cardiac vulnerabilities.

Numerous studies have shown marijuana smoke to contain carcinogens and to be an irritant to the lungs. In fact, marijuana smoke contains 50-70 percent more carcinogenic hydrocarbons than tobacco smoke. Marijuana users usually inhale more deeply and hold their breath longer than tobacco smokers do, which further increase the lungs’ exposure to carcinogenic smoke.

Although studies have not been able to clearly link Marijuana use to cancer development:

marijuana smokers can have many of the same respiratory problems as tobacco smokers, such as daily cough and phlegm production, more frequent acute chest illness, and a heightened risk of lung infections. A study of 450 individuals found that people who smoke marijuana frequently but do not smoke tobacco have more health problems and miss more days of work than nonsmokers. Many of the extra sick days among the marijuana smokers in the study were for respiratory illnesses.

All this leads me to believe Marijuana is not as “safe” a high as we are made to believe. Marijuana is still an illegal substance, and should be treated as such. If you, or someone you know is a regular smoker, it is in your best interest to quit, and get the help you or your friend may need. Get healthy and stop polluting your body.


About SuzieSloth

I am a Certified Personal Trainer and Martial Arts Instructor with a passion for physical fitness and a background in public health. I love learning new things about the fitness world and about innovations in all health fields. I like to share tidbits that I find in magazines or on the internet with friends and clients. Please feel free to email me with questions or comments, or leave comments on any post on my blog. And make sure to stop by my website: View all posts by SuzieSloth

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