Pot Replaces Booze?

(StraightShooterNews.com) – A new study revealed a historic shift in our country’s lifestyle, as more Americans now smoke weed more often than they drink booze, marking a significant cultural and behavioral change.

This groundbreaking research conducted by Carnegie Mellon University involved an in-depth review of extensive data collections dating back decades.

Remarkably, one-third of cannabis users reported using the substance daily or nearly every day, whereas only about 10% of alcohol consumers reported similar levels of drinking frequency.

“The data come from survey self-reports, but the enormous changes in rates of self-reported cannabis use, particularly of daily or near-daily use, suggest that changes in actual use have been considerable,” said study author Jonathan Caulkins to ScienceAlert.

The surveys, which started in 1979 and transitioned from pencil-and-paper to online formats, have expanded to include diverse populations across all 50 states, including those in brief living situations.

Reflecting the habits of around 1.6 million Americans, the findings show a significant shift in substance use preferences over the years.

While alcohol still has a higher overall usage rate, the frequency of daily cannabis use has surpassed that of regular drinking.

Back in 1992, daily alcohol users significantly outnumbered daily cannabis users by tenfold.

Fast forward to the latest survey, daily cannabis users have risen to 17.7 million, overtaking the 14.7 million daily drinkers.

The surge in cannabis usage aligns somewhat with evolving drug policies, ranging from strict prohibition under the 1980s’ war on drugs to the recent decriminalization and legalization for medical and recreational use.

However, Caulkins noted that policy changes alone do not fully explain the increase in use: “Whichever way causal arrows point, cannabis use now appears to be on a fundamentally different scale than it was before legalization.”

Changes in public perception toward alcohol could also be influencing these trends. Recent studies have challenged the safety of any alcohol consumption and linked abstinence to lower risks of cancer, cognitive decline and premature death.

Yet, research also indicates that moderate drinkers may have a longevity advantage over non-drinkers.

Conversely, frequent cannabis use is not without risks. According to the Journal of the American Heart Association, daily cannabis smokers have a significantly higher likelihood of experiencing a heart attack or stroke compared to non-users.

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