It's Official: Smoking Marijuana is Safer Than Puffing on Cigarettes | The Informer | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
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It's Official: Smoking Marijuana is Safer Than Puffing on Cigarettes

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Wed, Jan 11, 2012 at 8:01 AM

click to enlarge Not bad, apparently. - TORBEN HANSEN
  • Torben Hansen
  • Not bad, apparently.
The anti-smoking Nazis have taken control of the greater Los Angeles area, prohibiting your bad habit even in many outdoor dining areas.

Often cited are the ridiculous stats claiming that 53,800 people die each year from exposure to secondhand smoke. (Coughs: bullshit).

Perhaps, then, there is a safer, greener way to put hot air in your lungs without putting your kind neighbors in the grave.

It turns out maybe there is:

Researchers from UC San Francisco and the University of Alabama compared 20-year smokers to 20-year tokers and discovered that "moderate" marijuana users suffered little loss of air flow rate or lung volume.

In other words, while cigarette smokers saw a dramatic decrease in "lung function" over the years, pot users were irie.

click to enlarge JAMA
  • JAMA

In fact, academics saw a slight increase in lung capacity among tokers. (Explains why surfers remain in such good shape despite their ... hobby).

And get this: Researchers identified "moderate" bud users as those who had smoked, on average, a joint a day for ... seven years! We know that guy! (You're gonna be fine, bro).

Academics looked at 5,115 men and women. We love this particularly wonky definition from the abstract:

Lifetime exposure to marijuana joints was expressed in joint-years, with 1 joint-year of exposure equivalent to smoking 365 joints or filled pipe bowls.

Yeah, we know, you're already 65 in "joint years."

The study concludes:

Our findings suggest that occasional use of marijuana for these or other purposes may not be associated with adverse consequences on pulmonary function.

So toke up. Just not in Santa Monica.

[@dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]

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