Cannabis and Health

31 May 2019

Reasons to start smoking your cannabis pure

And why you should avoid rolling your joint with tobacco

By Mell Green

Those living in places like Australia, UK and parts of Europe are no stranger to smoking cannabis with tobacco. However, combining the two is uncommon or unheard of in many other parts of the world. There a ton of people who only smoke pure and wouldn’t touch a cannabis and tobacco “spliff” with a 10-foot pole, perhaps with good reason.

When combined and inhaled, the stark contrasts of these two substances show that they can have drastically different effects on your health as well as your high, yet still, people prefer mixing their cannabis with tobacco.

Smoking cannabis pure is a huge cash saver

In different parts of the world, the price of cannabis may cost more than tobacco. While it seems sensible to smoke 50/50 mixes in order to stretch your baggy and get more bang for your buck, it may not be worth it in the long run. Whether mixed or used alone, the major health implications of using tobacco are well-documented, so it’s no question why it can cost some people their health. Trying to quit smoking tobacco is difficult — and for good reason.

Those who quit tobacco or in recovery probably know that the costs of quitting can wreak havoc on a person’s finances. Aside from being extraordinarily time-consuming and having to deal with uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms, it’s quite difficult to kick the habit when you’re constantly spending on patches, gums, or even coaching. So, why not drop one and buy more of the other? In the end, when mixing a 50/50 spliff, you are still doubling your costs, but this is only temporarily if you drop the tobacco. Trust us, your body and wallet will thank you.

Cannabis just tastes better than tobacco

The argument here isn’t that tobacco doesn’t taste good. With millions being spent annually on high-quality tobacco products (cigars, pipe tobacco, etc.) renowned and loved for their flavors, it’s evident why people find its taste endearing. However, we’d like to counter that cannabis tastes better. And, chances are, you agree if you’re reading this article. The specially cultivated flavors of different cannabis strains boast a variety of aromatic terpenes responsible for its delicious smell and taste, but additives in tobacco interfere with that. Furthermore, tobacco has sensory effects that can influence one’s sense of smell and taste to gradually fade over time.

So, if you want to really enjoy the unique flavor of cannabis, why bother mixing? It’s just like mixing Champagne with Pepsi.

Nicotine is addictive

Some of you may dislike knowing this, but nicotine (found in tobacco) is one of the most addictive substances in the world. In fact, it has been ranked as far more addictive than many other drugs including stimulants, alcohol, and more.

By mixing these two substances, many people might think they’re addicted to cannabis; but they may actually be addicted to nicotine. The effects of nicotine make you want more and therefore might cause the urge of wanting to smoke more joints, blunts, or spliffs — which aren’t going to help anything at all. Although nicotine withdrawal poses little danger, symptoms are uncomfortable and can have physical and mental manifestations. They usually start within a few hours and can last a few days to up to several weeks. However, things begin to clear up every day that a person stays tobacco-free.

For this reason, it’s probably better to change to smoking cannabis pure to avoid nicotine addiction.

Bigger lung capacity when smoking cannabis pure, as opposed to tobacco

With so many biased, poorly-conducted studies and mixed conclusions out there, it’s easy to believe that cannabis smokers are puffing away their lungs health. But, as you probably wouldn’t believe, it doesn’t negatively influence lung function and capacity (how much air your lungs can contain) as much as tobacco does. Research has shown unexpected and positive results, which occasional cannabis use had increased lung airflow rates and lung capacity. By inhaling more deeply and holding the breach for some time, pure cannabis smokers are regularly training their lungs, thus, making them stronger. And we haven’t even taken into account the positive effects of some cannabinoids and terpenes on our respiratory system.

On the other hand, results of tobacco use show the expected drop in lung function and chest expansion. Damaged muscles in the chest and airways caused by tobacco not only decrease lung capacity but also limits the amount of inhaled of air over time.

Cannabis is less harmful than tobacco

Any form of smoking can cause health issues, but the science behind it all boils down to the chemicals (by-products) of tobacco combustion — many of which are carcinogenic (cancer-causing). Increased exposure to tobacco smoke not only increases the amount of these chemicals absorbed in the body, but it puts our respiratory and cardiovascular systems at risk of damage, disease or a variety of cancers. In regards to cigarettes, let us not forget that they contain over 4,000 toxic chemicals, 70 of which are said to cause cancer, including formaldehyde, arsenic, ammonia, to name a few.

Although there are some studies that challenge cannabis smoke to be equally damaging as that from tobacco, it’s unclear exactly just how much.

an infographic about the dangers of smoking cannabis mixed with tobacco at Coffeeshop Guru
These are the dangers of smoking tobacco and the additives it holds. Cannabis smoked pure is a lot less harmful.

Cannabis’ effect is on your high is compromised by tobacco

Let’s dispel the myth that the effects of tobacco will maximize your high. This is a misleading and long-standing norm that has dictated the way we perceive cannabis to work with other substances. Studies have shown that tobacco and cannabis are vastly different in the effects on the body; cannabinoids found in cannabis expands our blood vessels, improving the circulation of blood supply, while nicotine narrows and restricts blood vessels. And by doing so, also impacts the high you get from cannabis in a negative way.

Though more research may be needed to solidify these claims, looking at it from a medical perspective, it’s no question that the effects of tobacco not only overshadows the therapeutic effect of cannabis, but can also put a damper on the high itself.

In every way, cannabis is better than tobacco

From lung cancer to heart disease and respiratory damage, the dangers of smoking tobacco are well-known. The cold hard truth is, you can’t have it all. If you’re not a tobacco smoker, what viable reason do you have to explain why you’d want to combine tobacco with cannabis?

There are a lot of complicated reasons why people smoke, we get it. However, the adverse health effects of tobacco are evident, while those of cannabis are still debated and researched.

The Final Toke

We should be much more conscientious of the substances we put in our bodies. One thing is clear, smoking pure cannabis is better from all perspectives, when compared to that with tobacco. Such as with all good things in life, we suggest smoking the two substances separately to enjoy each on its own merit.

Post author
Mell Green
Mell Green is an enthusiast of all things cannabis and writes content that represents some of the best things that we as a people can strive for: good health and happiness.
See more from Mell Green

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