Researchers, a team from Arizona State University, Duke, and other institutions, scraped statistics from the Dunedin Study, a famous data set that followed 1,037 people born in 1972 and 1973, in the town of Dunedin, New Zealand. The subjects have been tested and re-tested for decades. It’s one of the most-cited longitudinal studies in medical science.
The researchers mined the Dunedin data for adverse health effects among cannabis consumers at age 38. In other words: of those who regularly used cannabis up to age 38, were there any health problems associated with that use?
The answer: not really. All they could find was a slightly higher instance of gum disease. The reason, the researchers guessed, was that cannabis consumers tended to brush and floss less than others.
In fact, the shocker in the study was this: cannabis consumers actually exhibited better overall fitness than non-cannabis users. “Cannabis use was associated with slightly better metabolic health,” the researchers wrote. Cannabis users had smaller waist sizes and lower body mass indexes
“Our findings show that cannabis use over 20 years was unrelated to health problems in early midlife.” I’m quoting directly from the researchers study here. “The general lack of association between persistent cannabis use and poor physical health may be surprising,” the scientists wrote. So surprising, in fact, that they racked their brains to come up with possible reasons. “One explanation is that healthy youth select into cannabis use,” they wrote. “Another explanation is that cannabis users may have healthier adult lifestyles.”
Another explanation might be that cannabis users in this cohort found a way to incorporate cannabis into a healthy lifestyle. They successfully avoided repeating the stoner stereotype—the fat slob, the loser, the burned-out head.
Except reposted from Leafly.com original article written by Bruce Barcott
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