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Marijuana Is 114 Times Less Deadly Than Alcohol

Marijuana is approximately 114 less deadly than alcohol. A new study recently published in the journal Scientific Reports notes that of seven different drugs included in the research, at an individual level, alcohol was determined to be the deadliest.

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Smoking marijuana/Image: HempBomb

The project compared lethal doses of both legal and illegal substances with how much a typical user uses. The risk of death by alcohol is reportedly 114 times higher than that of marijuana. Alcohol was followed by heroin, cocaine, tobacco, ecstasy, methamphetamines and marijuana.

Other older research has also ranked marijuana as the safest of all recreational drugs. It was not previously determined that the discrepancy was this large. It is the difference between its lethal dose and typical user dose that resulted in the researchers classifying marijuana as the sole “low mortality risk” drug tested.  The others were designated “medium” or “high.”

Study authors say that marijuana should be legalized. Professor David Nutt, chair of neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College London, England stated:

“The results make perfect sense. The ultra-low mortality of cannabis has long been recognized with health harms greatly exaggerated. I would recommend that cannabis be reinstated as a medicine as recognized by the House of Lords report in 2001, as the clear harms are well outweighed by the health benefits.”

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Smoking marijuana/Image: TheChart

The investigative team notes that it was not until sometime in the past 10 years that researchers examined the risk of drug abuse in terms of quality and quantity. Prior to the past decade the researchers claim that risk assessment of drug abuse focused on anecdotal evidence. Thus legislative policy was based on little more than “educated guesses.”

They also note, however, that their study does not in any way suggest that moderate alcohol consumption is more of a risk than regular use of heroin. Their research was focused on measuring the deadliness of each of the substances themselves and does not include environmental conditions such as the use of dirty needles or “unregulated supplies.”

Marijuana Is 114 Times Less Deadly Than Alcohol

About Will Phoenix

W. Scott Phoenix, B.A., B.S. was born in Hawaii, raised in Pennsylvania and resides in California. He has been a published writer since 1978. His work has appeared (under various names) in numerous places in print and online including Examiner.com. He is a single parent of three children and has also worked as an actor, singer and teacher. He has been employed by such publications as the Daily Collegian and the Los Angeles Times.