Are you a cannabis user? If you are, chances are you’ve lowered your alcohol consumption, replacing it with ‘less harmful’ cannabis.
A new study by Kadence International reveals insights into the changing landscape of the cannabis usage in the US. The study, published this week in London, has found that 47% of cannabis users are lowering their alcohol intake, citing cannabis as ‘less harmful’. The study also found that 1/5 (18%) of US adults (21+) consider themselves cannabis users, with 32% of them using cannabis daily, demonstrating the rapid adoption of cannabis within the national population.
Cannabis users lowering their alcohol intake
According to the research, cannabis has a very positive effect on lowering alcohol intake. The research has found that almost half of adult cannabis users (47%) are lowering their alcohol intake, with over 50% of them feeling cannabis is less harmful to them than alcohol. This attitude is especially prevalent in adults between 21 and 40 years old.
Looking at the results we can see that 33% of cannabis users lower their alcohol intake because it ‘help them feel better’, 20% to ‘have more control’, 19% to ‘consume less calories’, 13% to ‘save money’ and 12% for ‘safety reasons’. Cannabis, once associated with illegal and negative behavior, is rapidly becoming a positive force, allowing adults to lower their negative habits, such as alcohol consumption.
Using cannabis for medical reasons
Medical/health-related reasons are often cited when adult cannabis users are asked why they consume cannabis. When asked ‘Why do you use cannabis’? 48% answered that they use cannabis to relieve anxiety, 40% said they used it as a sleeping aid or for pain relief, and 20% said they use it as a substitute for prescription medicine.
As can be seen, anxiety, pain relief and aid in sleeping are three of the most common reasons for using cannabis, just after ‘relaxing/unwinding’ which strongly shows the medicinal benefits of cannabis usage. Another interesting finding is that the older generation (aged 50-65) are the most likely to supplement and replace existing medicines with cannabis.
Destigmatization of legal adult usage
The findings of this research strongly demonstrate an accelerated destigmatization of legal adult usage and a trend towards adult cannabis usage as part of an overall wellness regimen.
Interestingly, the study has found that the legalization is an important factor for cannabis adoption. According to the research, legalization of cannabis is also driving a change in attitudes. 70% of those surveyed stated that if cannabis were legal in the area they lived, they would be likely to try it. Only 4% of study participants refused to try cannabis.
The last section is very important for non-legalized countries such as Australia, Israel, Germany and some EU countries, where the regulation process is gearing more toward ‘medicalization’ (pharma dominated usage of medical cannabis). If nothing else it raises a lot of questions since legalization obviously allows patients to use cannabis medicinally. Could it be that medicalization countries are being influenced by pharmaceutical companies?