There's one stoner cliché that might actually be true. New research has discovered that people who smoked pot everyday for five years or more had damage to their short-term memory. The University of Lausanne conducted a study that measured how often 3,400 Americans smoked marijuana for a period of 25 years, and then gave participants a series of cognitive tests to measure their memory, focus and decision-making skills, reports the Washington Post.
RELATED: What Religions Use Cannabis?
The study concluded that people who smoked everyday for 5+ years have poorer verbal memories by the time they're middle aged, compared to people who only smoke occasionally, or not at all. The memory loss wasn't drastically different between marijuana smokers and non-smokers, but results show that it does get worse the longer someone continues to smoke every single day. The number of people who smoke this often in the U.S. is fairly low (and made up only 8% of the study participants). However, some worry that it will increase in states where marijuana is recreationally legal.
Here's the caveat: causality cannot be officially determined from this study. The results could show that heavy weed smoking leads to lower verbal memory, or they could show that people who already have a lower cognitive ability are more likely to smoke a lot of weed. Additionally, the study found that other cognitive functions like focus and processing speed were not affected by frequent pot smoking.
So, does this evidence support the case for all the marijuana haters out there? Not really. There are still many benefits to smoking pot, particularly for those who suffer from frequent pain - both physical and mental.
Via The Washington Post
For more on the benefits of marijuana and the clean cannabis movement, check out The Man Creating The Whole Foods of Weed: