Surprising Facts About Marijuana: Cannabis For The Curious
10 Surprising Facts About Marijuana
Marijuana is one of the oldest known psychoactive substances used by humans, dating back to at least 3000 BC in ancient China.
The plant’s official name is Cannabis sativa, and it contains over 100 chemical compounds called cannabinoids, with the most well-known being tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).
In the United States, marijuana was legal until the 1930s when it became criminalized due to anti-drug campaigns and racial prejudice against Mexican immigrants who were perceived as using the plant.
The first recorded use of medical marijuana was in ancient China around 2000 BC, where it was used to treat a variety of ailments such as malaria, constipation, and rheumatism.
Marijuana can be consumed in many different ways, including smoking, vaping, edibles, and topical creams. The method of consumption affects how quickly and how long the effects last.
The average joint contains between 0.5 and 1 gram of marijuana, which can produce effects that last for several hours.
While marijuana can produce short-term side effects like dry mouth, increased appetite, and impaired memory, it is not physically addictive and does not produce severe withdrawal symptoms like other drugs such as opioids.
In recent years, many countries and states have legalized marijuana for medical and/or recreational use, including Uruguay, Canada, and several US states. However, the legal status of marijuana is still a topic of debate and controversy.
Despite its widespread use, marijuana remains illegal under international law. However, some countries, such as the Netherlands, have a policy of non-enforcement towards recreational use.
There is ongoing research into the potential medical benefits of marijuana, particularly in the treatment of chronic pain, epilepsy, and cancer-related symptoms. However, more research is needed to fully understand the effects and potential risks of long-term use.
10 More Interesting Facts About Marijuana
According to a national survey conducted by the federal government, marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug in the United States, with approximately 43.5 million people using it in the past year.
The United States has a long history of drug use, with marijuana being criminalized in the 1930s as part of a larger crackdown on drug abuse.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that marijuana use among young people in the United States has increased in the past decade, with more than 11% of 8th graders reporting past-month use in 2020.
Despite being illegal under federal law, several U.S. states have legalized marijuana for medical and/or recreational purposes, with New York being the latest state to legalize recreational cannabis in 2021.
George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were both hemp farmers, and Washington reportedly grew marijuana plants as well.
The first recorded use of marijuana for medical purposes was by Chinese Emperor Shen Nung in 2737 BC.
Ingesting marijuana can be a safer alternative to alcohol and tobacco, as alcohol poisoning causes an average of 2,200 emergency room visits in the United States each day, while there have been no known cases of fatal overdose on marijuana alone.
More Fascinating Marijuana Facts
Here are some additional marijuana facts that cover a wide range of topics:
According to a recent study, over 10% of American adults reported using marijuana in the past month, with the majority of those being first-time users.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that smoking marijuana can cause lung cancer and respiratory problems.
Marijuana has been shown to help relieve symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in some patients, according to recent research.
In the last year, there has been a significant increase in the use of marijuana for mental health purposes, including anxiety and depression.
According to a recent Pew Research Center survey, the best way to refer to the plant is simply “marijuana,” with “pot” being the least preferred term.
The cannabis plant contains over 100 different cannabinoids, with the psychoactive ingredient being tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Hemp fiber comes from the stem of the cannabis plant, while marijuana buds come from the flowering tops.
In 2019, the cannabis industry produced 6,400 metric tons of marijuana for medical and recreational use.
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) considers marijuana a Schedule I drug, meaning it has a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use at the federal level.
A recent study found that monthly use of marijuana among college students has been steadily increasing, with over 43% of students reporting using the drug in the past year.
In North Korea, marijuana is legal and is often smoked as a substitute for tobacco.
Harry Anslinger, the first commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, played a significant role in the criminalization of marijuana in the UnitedStates in the 1930s. He pushed for strict laws against the drug, making unfounded claims about its supposed dangers and links to violent crimes.
Marijuana use disorder is a recognized medical condition characterized by problematic use of cannabis despite negative consequences. It affects around 30% of current marijuana users.
Cannabis seeds are a nutritious food source and can be used to make hemp milk and protein powder.
A recent study found that older adults are increasingly using marijuana for medical conditions such as chronic pain, anxiety, and sleep disorders.
The main difference between marijuana smoke and cigarette smoke is that marijuana smoke contains the psychoactive ingredient THC, while cigarette smoke contains nicotine.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that marijuana can help with pain relief, but more research is needed to fully understand its effects.
Marijuana smoke can increase heart rate, which can be dangerous for people with pre-existing heart conditions.
The smell of marijuana can linger in the air for hours, making it difficult to hide use in public places.
The District of Columbia has legalized recreational marijuana use, but it remains illegal under federal law.
According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the most commonly reported emergency room visits related to marijuana use are due to acute intoxication, followed by psychiatric symptoms and respiratory distress.
Bob Marley is perhaps the most well-known celebrity associated with marijuana, and he was an advocate for legalization and the cultural acceptance of cannabis.
Snoop Dogg and Tupac Shakur were also known for their fondness for marijuana, and both have referenced it in their music. Tupac’s murder is rumored to have been linked to drug-related violence.