- On October 24, 2016
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Ever get the munchies from smoking weed? Worried your waistline will increase if you use weed recreationally? You might want to reconsider your beliefs, as recent studies have linked marijuana to reducing body mass index, or BMI. They also show that marijuana can effectively reduce obesity in users.
Researchers have shown that marijuana users actually have lower BMIs than their non-partaking counterparts. The recent study conducted by the University of Miami determined that in a sample of over 13,000 people, women who used cannabis daily actually had BMIs which were about 3.1 percent lower than that of non-users.
The men in the study, who also used marijuana daily, had BMIs that were 2.7 percent lower than those of non-users.
In another study, published earlier in the year, San Diego State University and Cornell researchers found that marijuana users were both thinner and had lower blood glucose levels than non-users. They believe medical marijuana is linked to lower rates of obesity.
Facts and Figures
States that have legalized medical marijuana have shown to be 6 percent less likely to be obese.
Why? Researchers believe these lower obesity rates have a lot more to do with other lifestyle changes. Typically, people who smoke cannabis tend to drink less than non-users, meaning fewer calories are taken in overall.
In addition, a 2015 study performed in Canada found that cannabis users are also at less risk for diabetes than non-users, which is a truly incredible finding.
The study was done on participants in the Nuvarik province of Canada. It looked at past-year cannabis use and found the lower body mass index as referenced above, as well as a lower overall percentage of body fat and lower fasting insulin levels. All of these are factors that result in fewer cases of diabetes.
When the body cannot metabolize glucose, it results in higher blood sugar levels. This results in diabetes, which can lead to organ damage and can even death.
The authors of this Canadian study believe that cannabis may interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, the ECS, in a way that affects how the body’s tissues metabolize glucose. Or, they conclude, it may be simply that cannabis helps to stimulate more physical activity, which in turn stabilizes weight.
A prior Harvard study, backs up the Canadian theory. They too, found that cannabis users had a lower risk factor for developing Type 2 diabetes.
So, while you may fear the munchies will make you gain weight, it seems studies say the opposite. Marijuana may actually help with obesity!