Is Smoking Marijuana Better for your Health than Smoking Cigarettes?

By  //  December 21, 2021

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With more and more areas legalizing marijuana and cannabis usage, many have concerns over the impact on a person’s health. The volume of people making the switch from smoking nicotine and tobacco to smoking marijuana has people wondering if marijuana is truly the healthier option.

Marijuana Use is Growing

As of 2021, growing marijuana for medical or recreational use is legal in 18 states and the District of Columbia, and those numbers were on the rise from just 16 states in 2016. With more areas poised to legalize growing weed for personal use, now is a great time to start looking into marijuana seed selection to learn which varieties work best for your specific needs.

Cannabis has been used for a Long Time

People first began to cultivate marijuana more than 10,000 years ago, and the crop is believed to have served several purposes. The roots of the cannabis plant were used in making medicines to treat fevers, burns, and inflammation. It is thought that the roots were juiced and then applied directly to the skin.

For internal purposes, the juice was added to oil before consumption. Early evidence shows that cannabis root was also used in making wine. 

The stalk of the cannabis plant is extremely durable and was used by ancient societies to make ropes and other fibers. These stalks were strong enough to construct huts but flexible for clothing material. In modern times, cannabis stalk is widely used as a natural garden mulch as it is pest-resistant by nature and used as a substitute for straw since it is several times more absorbent. 

Tobacco has many uses

On the other hand, humans first cultivated tobacco around 7,000 years ago in the area now known as Central and South America, where it often grew wild. Ancient civilizations would smoke the leaves during religious ceremonies and sacred observances.

These early cultures also used tobacco leaves and other parts of the plant for medicinal purposes to treat burns, fever, bowel issues, and depression. The use of tobacco bio-oil has shown promise as a natural pesticide.

Nicotine Has Surprising Benefits

Nicotine has long been credited as the addictive chemical in cigarette smoke, and it’s found naturally in the leaves of the tobacco plant. However, nicotine has been shown to benefit treating Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, and Tourette’s disease due to its unique effect on the brain. These same effects can cause a slower reaction time with long-term nicotine use, especially in adolescence.

“Tar” is Deadly

While nicotine has been proven to be highly addictive, this substance is not the leading cause of the many health problems associated with cigarette smoking. The majority of the cancer-causing and dangerous chemicals are found in tar. When cigarette smoke is inhaled, tar coats the lungs in a sticky substance that not only makes it difficult for the lungs to operate it can cause cancer and emphysema. Tar also damages the gums, teeth, and tongue.

There are many similarities between smoking weed and cigarettes. Both plants contain cancer-causing chemicals, including tar. But the principal difference between the health of weed smokers and cigarette smokers appears to come down to volume.

The more exposure the body has to dangerous substances, the more those substances will damage the body. Cigarette smokers consume many times more cigarettes than marijuana smokers, dramatically increasing their exposure.