A new study suggests that secondhand marijuana smoke could be as fatal as cigarette smoke. Prof. Matthew Springer found that pot smoke can be three times worse than tobacco smoke when it comes to artery health.
Springer’s team found that tobacco smoke can negatively affect mice’s arteriesfor up to 30 minutes. When the rodents were exposed to marijuana smoke, the arteries remained impaired for up to 90 minutes.
Prof. Springer noted that many people think that marijuana is safe since it is a plant and “natural”. “I hear this a lot. I don’t know what it means,” the researcher said.
Past studies have shown that smokers can irreversibly negatively impact their arteries. This is why smoking has often been linked to heart attacks, blood clots, and stroke. Secondhand smoke appears to be even more dangerous than smoking.
The media and public health authorities have been warning the public against secondhand smoking for years. Yet, no one is talking about secondhand marijuana smoke exposure. Researchers believe that this situation is largely due to the lack of scientific evidence.
Secondhand Marijuana Smoke Contains Cancer-Causing Chemicals
CDC researchers found that cigarette smoke is packed with 7,000 chemical compounds. Of those, 70 have been proven to be cancer-causing. Although the CDC study zoomed in on cigarette smoke’s health risks, the agency hasn’t ruled out the risks of marijuana smoke exposure.
Marijuana smoke contains many of the chemicals in regular cigarette smoke like formaldehyde, hydrogen cyanide, and ammonia. Most pot users inhale the smoke through a water pipe or joint which enables these chemicals to directly reach their lungs.
Studies haven’t found a link between pot use and lung cancer, but pot smokers’ lungs show signs of damage which could be precancerous. In 2013, a research paper published in Cancer Causes & Control revealed that heavy cannabis smoking could lead to lung cancer.
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