Can Cannabis Help You Quit Smoking Cigarettes?

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Cannabis might help you to quit smoking, according to a study by the University College in London.  

Smoking tobacco is not comparable to smoking cannabis, despite the fact that many users around the world adopted the questionable habit of smoking cannabis mixed with tobacco.

No-one has died from smoking cannabis, while 1300 people die every day due to cigarette smoking in the United States alone. For every death, there are at least 30 others who live with a serious health condition due to their smoking habit.

Tobacco smoking has very serious consequences on our health, our families and not to mention on our finances. Cigarette cost usually takes up large sums of money of a smoker’s income and the economic cost of smoking is estimated to be USD 300 billion a year in the US alone.

Based on the above statistics, if you are someone who is considering quitting, it is unquestionably a very good idea, and it seems like cannabis might just make it easier to help you achieve this potentially challenging goal.

The fact that the endocannabinoid system plays a role in nicotine addiction has previously been acknowledged and a group of researchers at the Clinical Psychopharmacology Unit at the University College London conducted a study to understand if Cannabidiol (CBD) can actually help with nicotine addiction.

The researchers worked with 24 smokers who wanted to quit smoking and gave all of them inhalers to use when they felt the urge to light up a cigarette. Half of the participants had CBD in their inhalers and half of them had a placebo.

The results were overwhelmingly positive and amazingly encouraging.

The placebo group showed no difference in the number of cigarettes they smoked, while the group with the CBD inhalers smoked 40% fewer cigarettes.

CBD’s role in treating drug addiction through the modulation of various circuits involved in the condition of addiction was previously acknowledged, however, this study was the first to confirm this fact specifically with nicotine addiction.

There are a number of ways how CBD can assist with addiction, such as stress relief, and an interesting attribute could be the disruption of contextual memories associated with the use of drugs.

Memories that are related to drug use are reactivated as the person gets exposure to environmental cues and goes through a re-consolidating process that makes memories even stronger.

This is why smokers feel an urge to light up after a meal or during a break at work when other smokers are standing around chatting and smoking. Our mind associates memories with the stimulus that keep us in the loop of addiction.

CBD administered at this memory reactivation time (just like the University College London study did), can help to unpair drug-reward memory and ultimately break the pathological cycle of addiction.

In reference to this research, the cannabis cigarette that was launched in Swiss supermarkets recently, may not be a bad idea to help smokers to quit?

Only time will tell, however, based on what we currently know, it is better to have cannabis mixed into your tobacco for many reasons, and making it easier to quit smoking cigarettes, might be one of them.

Has cannabis impacted your smoking habit? Share your experience in the comments below.

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