If you are considering indulging, you may be considering whether to have a drink or to enjoy some cannabis. This decision may be made for you if you live somewhere where cannabis is illegal. However, if you have the choice, you may want to reconsider reaching for a bottle of booze. Study after study has found not only is marijuana increasing in popularity and acceptance, but it is being found to be better for you as well.
Evidence of this includes the study from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. This shows that the perception of smoking weed once or twice a week as being a “great risk” has dropped from 54% in 2002 to 34.3% in 2014. Additionally, Pew Research shows that people in favor of legalization have grown from 31% in 2000 to 61% in 2018.
Let’s look at some of the reasons for this switch to cannabis.
Drinking a lot can have disastrous effects the next day. Your brain has been denied oxygen from ingesting too much alcohol. The next day, you feel nauseous, suffer from a headache, and are generally groggy. This is not the same feeling you get the day after enjoying cannabis. The worst you may feel is what is known as a “weed hangover” which is essentially still being a little high from the night before. This is not to say you should go wild with THC as overindulging on edibles, for instance, can result in some very scary results. It is important to know what you are consuming and be aware of the right dosage of cannabis edibles.
No Chance of Fatal Overdose
Binge drinking has been known to cause alcohol poisoning. This can lead to immediate hospitalization and death. There is a specific threshold known as LD50. This is a fatal threshold that is far easier to accomplish with alcohol as compared to THC. It is near impossible to consume enough THC to cross the LD50 threshold, whereas there are several documented cases of alcohol poisoning leading to death. In fact, according to the NIAAA, approximately 95,000 people die every year from alcohol related deaths. This makes it the third largest preventable contributor to death in the United States. According to the CDC, a fatal overdose is unlikely. That being said, it is still likely to die while high if you are driving a motor vehicle or engaged in other questionable behavior.
Cannabis Has Medicinal Uses
Cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes for a variety of health conditions and is commonly available at medical marijuana dispensaries. Patients with epilepsy, AIDS, PTSD, cancer, Crohn’s disease, and other conditions have found relief from symptoms through the use of cannabis. In contrast, alcohol consumption, especially in excessive amounts, can cause severe damage to the body, particularly to the liver and brain. According to a study by the University of Colorado Boulder, long-term alcohol use can alter the structure of white and gray matter in the brain. In contrast, cannabis use has not been found to have any significant effect on long-term brain structure. Therefore, for individuals seeking alternative forms of treatment or relaxation, medical marijuana dispensaries may offer a safer and less harmful option compared to alcohol.
Many people have utilized cannabis to help with creativity. While famous authors, like Ernest Hemingway, champion the creative effects of alcohol, they also identify that many ideas came up with while drunk are not exactly noteworthy. It is the reason why Hemingway never wrote while drunk. A small amount of an uplifting cannabis variety used with dry herb vaporizers can inspire a person to be more creative. Higher doses of cannabis can very well impede creativity, depending on the task at hand.
Relaxing is much easier when cannabis is involved. While many people reach for alcohol when feeling anxiety, it generally does nothing to actually alleviate the stress. In fact, most people become more stressed out while consuming alcohol. Those who are enjoying the effects of cannabis tend to be able to face a stressful situation successfully.
Less Chance of Risky Behavior
Whereas cannabis stories may be linked to forgetfulness, alcohol stories tend to be linked to risky behavior. Can you think of a time when someone got high and decided to see if they could climb a water tower? The term “hold my beer” is all the evidence needed to exemplify how your inhibitions are decreased when consuming alcohol.
More Ways to Enjoy It
Alcohol comes in many different formats, but it all amounts to the same thing. Alcohol is alcohol. Whether it is beer, liquor, or wine, you will become intoxicated in much the same manner.
With cannabis there are different strains with varying levels of CBD as well as the ability to create a body or head high. Anecdotal tales dictate that different types of alcohol affect them differently. Cannabis, with the varying levels of THC, CBD, terpenes, and such, allow you to craft your experience. You also have the ability to enjoy cannabis by smoking flowers, using a vaporizer, using cartridges, consuming edibles, and utilizing topical creams.
Light to Moderate Use Does Not Increase Risk for Cancer
The biggest argument against cannabis is the negative effects smoking flowers have on the body. Two important considerations with this are the studies putting these effects against tobacco usage. Whereas someone who smokes cigarettes may consume over 20 cigarettes in a day, cannabis use is a fraction of that amount. Light to moderate use of cannabis does not increase the risk for developing cancer. Even a light usage of alcohol puts you at risk for cancer.
Makes Food & Sex Better
The lowering of inhibitions may create an environment in which sex is more likely to happen, but it is not as enjoyable while imbibing in alcohol. Men have been known to suffer from erectile dysfunction as well as premature ejaculation. Alcohol tends to depress your olfactory senses while cannabis tends to enhance them. This is why food tastes so much better whenever you are high. Of course, the ability to perform at all, let alone for how long, makes having sex while high better than when drunk.
More Cost Effective
Drinking can definitely be expensive. Think about your last bar tab. You most likely spent upwards of $50 if you became intoxicated. The same amount spent on that one bar tab can easily translate into multiple sessions of getting high. Depending on where you live, the costs will vary. Anywhere cannabis has been legalized, you are going to be able to purchase enough to keep you happy for quite a long time and still have plenty to share with friends.
Helps with Menstrual Cramps
If you are thinking about cannabis helping with menstrual cramps in terms of decades, try over a century! William O’Shaughnessy, an Irish physician, started prescribing cannabis to patients in 1842 to help alleviate the pain associated with PMS. In fact, this was such a popular method for alleviating menstrual pain it was even utilized by Queen Victoria in the 1890s. Alcohol, on the other hand, has never been known to help with alleviating menstrual pain.
This is a good way for you to understand why cannabis has been growing in popularity. The research is ongoing to find even more ways in which cannabis is beneficial. As more information becomes available, it is easy to see just how much better cannabis is than alcohol. As always, enjoy it responsibly.