Smoking Marijuana Once a Day for 20 Years Does Not Damage the Lungs, According to a New Study

  • According to a study at Emory University, smoking marijuana in moderation does not entail the serious threat of lung disease in the long term. Vaporized marijuana, meanwhile, reduces the risk of suffering bronchitis.

Marijuana consumption's effects on health have always been a source of debate. We have already written about the medical benefits that cannabis consumption can deliver; for example, for treatment against cancer, but it has constantly been contended that it could also have negative effects on health, particularly the lungs.

A new study at Emory University in Atlanta, published in the journal “Annals of the American Thoracic Society”, demonstrates that everything depends on the amount of consumption. Smoking marijuana once per day for 20 years is not associated with adverse effects on pulmonary function.

The researchers found that exposure to marijuana among adults ages 18 - 59 was not related to a drop in FEV1 levels (the maximum amount of air that one can exhale in one second), according to the spirometry measurements taken. The study concludes that the numbers were similar in those who did not smoke marijuana.

Normally a decrease is observed following diseases that affect the lungs, like asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, typical of long-term tobacco smokers.

The study also demonstrated that there are differences with regards to the method of marijuana inhalation: those who smoke traditional cigarettes are more vulnerable to bronchitis symptoms. The consumption of vaporized marijuana is much more advisable, as it has fewer adverse effects on breathing.

In another similar study, in 2013, researchers at the University of California had comparable findings: the regular use of marijuana by itself did not give rise to significant alterations in pulmonary function, although its intensive use could have negative effects in the long term. So, as with any substance, everything depends on how much is consumed. Moderation is the key.


With information from Fool and Medical Daily


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