Exercising Could Trigger Another High for Marijuana Users
Even though marijuana is slowly becoming legalized throughout the United States, the debate over whether or not people should use this substance is still at large. People who are for marijuana believe that the drug can be used medicinally to relieve pain. On the other end of the spectrum, people against marijuana see it as an additive substance that could impair one's ability to carry out daily activities. Regardless of the debate, a new study examining the effects of marijuana is reporting that users might get an extra high if they work out after smoking.
Since a lot of people are currently taking medicinal marijuana, finding out how the drug affects the body is important. For this study, the researchers were interested in the levels of THC, which is the active ingredient in the drug. The research team recruited 15 people who were regular marijuana users, which was defined as smoking an average of one joint a day. The participants were asked to provide a blood sample so that the researchers could measure the levels of THC before and after exercising. The participants were asked to exercise moderately for 35 minutes on a stationary bike. The participants had not smoked for a full 24 hours. The researchers also measured body fat. The researchers found that exercising increased the levels of THC in the body. For people who had more fat accumulation, THC levels rose even higher.
"People with larger BMI [body mas index] showed a bigger increase [and] very thin people [had] no effect," Iain McGregor, the study's lead author said according to TIME. McGregor is a professor of psychopharmacology at the University of Sydney in Australia.
The researchers added that the high, however, was very short lived. High levels of THC only lasted for less than two hours. The researchers could not determine if the high was enough to lead to impairment. The research team now plans on continuing its study on the effects of marijuana more in depth.
The study was published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence.