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Cannabis: Keeping Your Insulin Levels & Pant Size Down

Zach Reichard May 16, 2013
Cannabis: Keeping Your Insulin Levels & Pant Size Down

Research published in the current issue of The American Journal of Medicine concluded that regular cannabis users have a lower chance of obesity and diabetes mellitus than people who have never used cannabis.

The study was done by the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) in Boston, where the 4657 men and women in the study were assessed after a 9-hour fast. Glucose and fasting insulin were tested for by way of blood samples, and a Homeostasis Model Assessment (HOMA) of insulin resistance (IR) was calculated to evaluate insulin resistance.

Their tests found that, “Current marijuana use was associated with 16% lower fasting insulin levels and 17% lower HOMA-IR.”

Lower Levels Of Insulin & Smaller Waist Sizes

Researchers concluded that regular cannabis users (reported using marijuana in past month) have lower fasting insulin levels, and a lower risk of insulin resistance compared to those who have never used cannabis.

“Researchers concluded that regular cannabis users have lower fasting insulin levels, and a lower risk of insulin resistance compared to those who have never used cannabis.”

They also found a relationship between frequent marijuana use and smaller waist sizes. These findings were scarce in people who had reported smoking marijuana at least once, but not within the past 30 days, suggesting the effects of cannabis on insulin exists only during periods of recent use.

The study suggested that this is due to cannabinoids affecting peripheral metabolic processes via cannabinoid receptors in your body.

However, it has not been made clear what exactly causes the effects on body mass index (BMI).

Cannabis Users Eat More & Weigh Less

It is a commonly accepted fact that cannabis users eat more. But did you know that it’s actually been shown in a study that they do? That’s right, an extra 600 calories per day more at that.

Yet marijuana smokers still have been found to have a reduced prevalence of obesity and lower incidence of diabetes (obesity is a precursor to diabetes). Regardless, the ramification of these discoveries could be monumental, considering the fact that nearly 40% of U.S. adults are considered obese and are costing the U.S. trillions in healthcare costs. It seems like something that most definitely deserves some additional research.

The article concludes, “With the recent trends in legalization of marijuana in the United States, it is likely that physicians will increasingly encounter patients who use marijuana and should therefore be aware of the effects it can have on common disease processes, such as diabetes mellitus.”

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