Marijuana use has long been associated with "the munchies," so it may come as a surprise to hear that a new study in the journal Obesity suggests that marijuana users have a lower body mass index than non-users. After studying 786 Inuit adults between 18 and 74, researchers found that marijuana users had a BMI of 26.8, versus a BMI of 28.6 in non-users.
The data provides further support to arguments that marijuana could be an effective treatment for many different medical conditions.
GW Pharmaceuticals PLC-ADR (NASDAQ: GWPH) has been working to develop a new drug that it believes has the potential to combat Type 2 diabetes by using cannabinoids. The Obesity study supports GW's plans, as the results showed that marijuana users not only had a lower BMI, but that their fasting insulin levels were lower as well.
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In 2013, the American Journal of Medicine published research showing that marijuana users had lower insulin levels than non-users. The data also showed that their bodies appeared to be less resistant to naturally produced insulin, meaning that it was easier for them to maintain normal blood-sugar levels.
Studies like these give marijuana advocates more ammunition in the fight to legalize marijuana. The medical benefits of the drug are still questioned by the scientific community and many believe that the potential risks outweigh the positives. With the drug still a relatively new treatment option, many believe that further testing is the only way to determine whether or not pot has any viable medical benefits.
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