Smoking Marijuana Reduces the Risk of Obesity and Diabetes

  • It was already more than proven that cannabis could provide benefits in the treatment of multiple diseases.
  • This is why medicinal marijuana use has been approved in so many countries, or is in the process of decriminalisation.
  • Now diabetes and obesity have been added to the list and they further clarify the only possible course: legalisation.

While some are busy setting up obstacles for marijuana decriminalisation, many more are focusing their efforts on presenting positive new arguments backed by science. If authorities have had to adapt their laws to allow for the medicinal use of this plant across the globe, it is because its positive effects are more than proven, whether you like it or not.

There are several problems that can be alleviated with the correct variety of pot. From anxiety to insomnia, even inflammation of the bones causing arthritis, to the spasms and tremors produced by such a devastating disease as Parkinson. And that is not all. There are other well-known medicinal uses for cannabis, such as alleviating nausea caused by chemotherapy in cancer treatment or by medication used to combat the effects of AIDS.

However, little did we know till now about the relationship between blood sugar and marijuana use. A study published by the American Journal of Medicine has confirmed the positive effects of cannabis consumption in avoiding two of the most common disorders in 21st century societies: obesity and diabetes.

They are two diseases that specially worry health authorities for several reasons. The new pace of life, multiple irregularities in our daily diet and low amounts of physical activity have caused the number ofoverweight people in the most advanced societies to increase exponentially in recent years.

Don't be afraid to eat that pastry

Everyone knows that your appetite increases after smoking and in many cases, we cannot resist the temptation to eat something sweet – a pastry, sweets, etc. Despite the sugar supplement in your diet, studies from various countries have found lower rates of obesity and diabetes among cannabis users compared to non-users. However, thus far, everything we knew on the matter was the result of conventional wisdom. 

To delve into this question, researchers from the University of Nebraska, Harvard School of Public Health and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Bostonconducted a study involving 4,657 adult men and women. Among them, 579 were cannabis smokers at the time and 1,975 had used it previously. The rest had never used marijuana at any time in their lives.

The authors of this study evaluated levels of blood glucose, insulin resistance and other related diabetes factors among the cannabis users. To do so, they divided the respondents into three groups: those who had never smoked cannabis, those who had done so within the last 30 days and those who smoke regularly. Their goal was to evaluate their levels of blood sugar while fasting, cholesterol, as well as blood pressure, body mass index and waist circumference.

The results were conclusive: marijuana users had lower levels of insulin when fasting, lower levels of insulin resistance and the smallest waist circumference. By contrast, they had the highest levels of HDL cholesterol, the so-called "good" cholesterol because it helps reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. 

All this goes to show that marijuana helps control the effect of sugar in blood. Apparently, this beneficial effect could be related to the improvement in the activity of the hormone adiponectin, which is responsible for modulating different metabolic processes, among which is the regulation of glucose. 

Thus, the researchers who participated in this study have been able to corroborate previous research on the matter that had already pointed out that marijuana helped govern insulin levels and body mass, which would explain why smokers are less likely to be obese and, therefore, diabetic.


With information from  Fox News, The Atlantic, The American Journal of Medicine (and 2) and Association for Cannabinoid Medicines.


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