Marijuana Does NOT Increase Cancer Risk

A somewhat surprising find by the researchers at the UCLA Medical School was that Marijuana not only doesn’t increase cancer risk, but may in fact reduce it.

Tashkin’s group at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA had hypothesized that marijuana would raise the risk of cancer on the basis of earlier small human studies, lab studies of animals and the fact that marijuana users inhale more deeply and generally hold smoke in their lungs longer than tobacco smokers — exposing them to the dangerous chemicals for a longer time. In addition, Tashkin said, previous studies found that marijuana tar has 50 percent higher concentrations of chemicals linked to cancer than tobacco cigarette tar.

And yet they found that in spite of all of that, marijuana didn’t increase cancer risk.

Earlier work established that marijuana does contain cancer-causing chemicals as potentially harmful as those in tobacco, he said. However, marijuana also contains the chemical THC, which he said may kill aging cells and keep them from becoming cancerous.

I suspect that the fact that cigarettes also contain a myriad of other chemicals and agents other than tobacco adds to their negative effect.  Marijuana by contrast is generally smoked “pure”.

As an athletic coach, I would have a hard time advocating the use of marijuana, primarily because of its’ estrogen promoting effects.  But, if it’s between that and cigarettes (or Printers):  Marijuana wins.

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