[Canniseur: Great study, mostly because I exercise and agree with it!!! Do I exercise more when I smoke? Probably not. But I do exercise and I do watch my diet, so my “n” of 1 says this study is absolutely accurate!]
For decades, mainstream media has painted cannabis users as lazy, couch-locked slobs. But, scientists are finding that people who use pot are actually healthier and more active than those who abstain from the plant.
Cannabis consumers aged 60 and older are more likely to lead healthier lives than non-users of the same age group, according to a new study published in the American Journal of Health Behavior. This study compared the health and fitness habits of 28 older cannabis users to 136 non-users.
Each of the subjects was already participating in another four-month study examining the relationship between changes in physical activity and cognitive function in older adults. During the course of the study, researchers measured each participant’s body mass index (BMI) and asked them to self-report how often they exercised or engaged in physical activity.
Researchers from the University of Colorado at Boulder conducted an additional study on the same subjects to determine whether seniors’ use of cannabis negatively impacted their willingness to exercise.
“Adults over the age of 50 are the fastest-growing population of cannabis consumers in the US, with national prevalence rates estimated at up to 9.1% in 2013,” the authors explain. “Given the plethora of negative health consequences associated with inactivity and the protective factors associated with exercise, efforts must be made to understand factors, like cannabis use, that may affect older adults’ engagement in exercise.”
But, although they may have expected older stoners to exercise less often than their peers, the exact opposite proved to be true. Both groups of subjects exercised three times a week as part of the original study, but pot users were more likely to add in extra exercise days every week, compared to non-users. The cannabis users also scored higher on a survey of healthy community activities and were found to have significantly lower BMI measurements than non-users.
“Compared to older adult nonusers, older adult cannabis users had lower BMI at the beginning of an exercise intervention study, engaged in more weekly exercise days during the intervention, and were engaging in more exercise-related activities at the conclusion of the intervention,” the study authors wrote.
The present study does have a number of limitations, including its reliance on self-reported exercise questionnaires, lack of information on cannabis doses used by the subjects, and a small subject size. Still, researchers believe that their results, “although preliminary … suggest that it may be easier for older adults who endorse using cannabis to increase and maintain their exercise behavior, potentially because cannabis users have lower body weight than their non-using peers.”
“At minimum, the evidence suggests that cannabis use does not hinder older adults’ ability to engage in physical activity, to participate in a supervised exercise program, or to increase their fitness as a result of physical activity,” the authors conclude.
This is one of the first studies to look at the relationship between cannabis use and exercise in seniors, but other studies have found positive links between weed and good health in the general population. A 2019 study comparing BMI measurements and cannabis use among 33,000 Americans found that pot users put on less weight over time than non-users.
Plus, not only are cannabis consumers more likely to exercise in general, but many like to combine weed with their workouts. Another University of Colorado Boulder study from last year found that nearly 82 percent of all cannabis users said they get high before working out.
So, what these studies basically confirm is that the “lazy stoner” stereotype was always a farce — and now we have an abundance of data to prove it.
[Canniseur: Hate is not welcome here. With the SCOTUS ruling yesterday, LGBT have finally realized employment security. Finally! It’s 2020 FFS. The cannabis industry can surely step up and support both the LGBT AND the Black community. The bottom line is, we ALL can step up a bit more and support everyone’s efforts to be equal humans. ]
The shared history between cannabis and the LGBTQ+ community is long, including the landmark moment when HIV/AIDS activists pushed through medical marijuana legalization in California in 1996. There is a commonality of lived experience as well. As articulated by Laila Makled and Caroline Phillips in an April 2019 article for The Washington Blade, “Both cannabis and LGBTQIA community have lived on the fringes of society for decades, navigating a country where their acceptance was, and often still is, hard to attain.”
Several cannabis companies are stepping up to support and commemorate Pride month. In addition to donating $15,000 to GLAAD for Pride month, edibles brand Kiva Confections has re-released their tropical-flavored Proud Camino gummies. San Francisco-based company SPARC has launched its exclusive Unicorn OG cartridge, and is donating $1 per sale to the GLBT Historical Society. Peak Extracts is offering a Pride promo with 10% off of their entire line of tinctures and topicals, and purchases of Aster Farms’ limited edition Rainbow Chip Pre-Rolls and a Coolhaus pint will benefit Los Angeles based LGBTQ+ charities.
But Pride month is not happening in a vacuum. We are in the midst not only of a global pandemic, but a global uprising of citizens in the face of systemic racism and police brutality against Black people. Though many cannabis companies have made strong gestures of solidarity with the fight for racial equality during Pride month, such as Envy CBD which posted a “How to Support Your Community” primer on its website, few are stepping up on the monetary end, at least not yet.
Black communities have long been disproportionately affected by the criminalization of marijuana (as reflected in this report published by the ACLU), and black trans women of color are even more vulnerable to police brutality than their cisgender counterparts. “Trans people who have done street economy work are more than twice as likely to report physical assaults by police officers and four times as likely to report sexual assault by police” according to Blueprint for Equality, published by the National Center for Transgender Equality. In case you missed it, “street economy” includes the sale of marijuana in places where its recreational use is still a crime.
Many Pride event organizers have offered to dedicate their marches and rallies to solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, such as the All Black Lives Matter march in Los Angeles on Sunday, June 14. The organizers made inclusivity an explicit theme of their protest, which helped to highlight the invisibilization of black trans people that occurs within the context of racial justice.
The annual Pridefest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin was canceled altogether to center the concerns of the Black Lives Matter movement. With all of the crossover between cannabis, LGBTQ+ and Black communities, it seems a natural step that in addition to “sharing the mike” with Black voices, cannabis companies might be moved to share the spotlight and profits from their promotions as well. With two weeks left of Pride 2020, there’s still time.
[Canniseur: In time for Jack’s 81st birthday wonderful story about how Jack Herer changed the world we knew as every state had prohibitions in place. Now that’s not the case and Mr. Herer is one the persons we have to thank for this! P.S. Love the strain as well.]
Jack Herer was likely the figure most responsible for the revolution in cannabis consciousness in the 1990s — especially where the industrial applications of hemp are concerned.
Born June 18, 1939, Jack Herer was a cannabis rights activist the author of The Emperor Wears No Clothes, his landmark book calling for the re-scheduling and legalization of cannabis.
As a veteran of the Korean War, Herer was one of the first veterans leading the fight to legalize cannabis, and took the fight all the way to President Reagan himself. Passing away in 2010, Herer never lived to see a single state legalize cannabis for recreational use.
This week marks Herer’s birthday and to honor his legacy, here are four articles that will bring you closer to the legend who fought for the legalization of cannabis for nearly all his life.
Eddy Lepp, a cannabis activist who has been arrested for growing medical marijuana numerous times, remembers his friend and colleague in the cannabis movement, Jack Herer. Lepp gives great insight Herer’s life and paints an accurate image of the cannabis community during the ’70s and ’80s.
This world-renowned strain was named after and bred in honor of the legendary author and cannabis activist, Jack Herer. As one of the industry’s most awarded strains, it’s become a staple for connoisseur smokers and growers alike and is regarded by many as one of the most elite hybrids ever created.
The legendary hemp crusader Jack Herer drew up a California ballot initiative for a cannabis economy based on maximum freedom. He did not live to see its passage. But amid growing disillusionment with the Prop 64 legalization model, his heirs believe that in 2020, his hour has posthumously arrived.
Using cannabutter made from the strain Jack Herer, chef Jessica Catalano presents a delicious Butternut Squash Risotto edibles recipe. If you want to get really nerdy in celebrating The Hemperor’s birthday, get your ingredients to make this dish on June 18.
A recent discovery at an ancient Jewish temple showed early Jewish culture used cannabis in their religious practice.
An ancient temple with two altars was discovered at what is now called the Judahite Fortress at Tel Arad in the Negev desert. Inside the fortress, archeologists found a structure that was used for religious practices. There were 2 altars in the temple. Discovered in the 1960s, Tel Arad the archeologists noted at the time both altars had residue on them. The residue wasn’t analyzed at the time of discovery because instruments were not sensitive enough. Now we have mass spectrometers to identify the residue compounds. These new devices allowed archeologists to determine the residue on the altars included THC.
New Finding from an Old Dig
Saying there’s cannabis residue on a “Jewish” altar from 2500 years ago might sound cool, but that statement misses something important. The Jewish rituals of 2500 years ago were certainly different from today’s practice of Judaism. We don’t know what those practices exactly were, but we do know they were different from today’s, except for one thing; monotheism. The Jewish religion differed from most other religions in a belief in one god. Not one major god with other minor gods, but one god. Only one.
Was Cannabis Really Used to Get High During Rituals?
We don’t really know whether the attendees at the rites in this temple or generally in Jewish practice of the time got high. Judaic practice 2500 years ago has little to do with Judaic practice today. The Torah, the central book in the practice of Judaism was written about 3300 years ago, probably was part of the ritual somehow. It was handed down to Moses, supposedly at Mount Sinai. It was probably written while the Jewish people were in exile in Babylonia, about 3800 years ago. That would make authorship of the first five books of the bible in around 1300 BCE. Cannabis is mentioned in the bible as well. So we truly don’t know if the plant was used to get high during the rituals of the time.
Surprisingly, the modern Hebrew word for cannabis is pronounced ca-na-bos and that comes from an even older word, KaNeH BoSeM, which means fragrant reed. It’s mentioned in Exodus it’s mentioned as an ingredient in an anointing oil where the ingredients are spelled out. From this, we can gather that cannabis was a salve used by the ancient Jews.
Is Cannabis Kosher?
Through all of this you might wonder, is cannabis kosher? It’s a plant, so yes it is. Kosher food can be a little intimidating to folks. But it’s actually quite simple at the basic level. There are three classes of food in kosher cooking; meat, dairy and pareve. Meat and dairy are never mixed together. All plants fall into a category of pareve foods. So do eggs and fish. Pareve can be mixed with meat or dairy. So yes, cannabis is kosher. It’s a plant. To my way of thinking, in order for plants to be kosher, they should be organic and they should be non-GMO. And if you need an official blessing to know that cannabis is really kosher, here’s a short video of the chief rabbi in Israel blessing a marijuana plant for Passover, so not only is cannabis kosher it’s also kosher for Passover! Amazing.
Some organizations like Chabad have an official position that cannabis is not good for you. Their views go back to the 1970s and are outdated and misinformed. The views in our society have changed considerably, both socially and scientifically, since the 1970s, so I’d take the view with a grain of salt. Not to say it’s 100% uninformed, as their views on the ‘kosher-ness’ of cannabis have a great deal of validity.
It does get complicated though. If you smoke your marijuana, there is no kosher about it. Kosher is about the foods you consume. Smoking, while consuming, doesn’t go into your stomach and that’s what Kosher is about. But if you take cannabis for medical reasons, and we all have ‘medical’ reasons for consuming cannabis, and it’s in pill form, then you should be concerned about how the cannabis is packaged. If it’s packaged with pork products or shellfish products, then it can’t be Kosher. But if you’re taking the pill for a true medical condition, then you can get a pass on the Kosher-ness of the pill. Like most Jewish law, it’s complicated.
While we don’t know exactly what the fragrant reed was used for back in those days of antiquity, I’m going to make a WAG (wild ass guess) that if it was known, some people used it to get high. This is pure conjecture, but give me a break. If you have a plant and you know it does something good to you, some people are going to avail themselves to the use of the plant.
[Canniseur: As an ally, it’s important to remember to first listen, and then learn. This list is being offered as a starting place for learning. I plan on ordering at least one book asap, as well as regularly listening to these podcasts. Let’s all do our part to end this horrific cycle NOW.]
“In order to stand with us, and people who look like me, you have to be educated on issues that pertain to me, fully educated so you can feel the full level of pain so that you can have full understanding,” said Emmanuel Acho. The NFL athlete and TV personality addressed white people in a video that quickly went viral, advocating for more listening and educating ourselves as we work to fight racism and police brutality.
As protests ignited by the murder of George Floyd by a white police officer in Minneapolis continue to spread throughout cities and communities in the U.S., many are left wondering how they can help fight anti-black police brutality.
Along with calls to protest and donate resources and funds to organizations built to combat systemic racism, there has been a steady drumbeat pushing the message that it isn’t enough to simply not be racist — you have to be actively anti-racist.
This notion isn’t exactly new. In fact, there is an entire book dedicated to this, aptly called How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi, the director of the Antiracist Research and Policy Center at American. The idea is that non-Black Americans first need to familiarize themselves with the Black experience in the United States before they can effectively use their privilege, resources, and platforms to enact meaningful change in our communities and culture.
There are a variety of ways for people to educate themselves on the experience of Black people in the U.S., but perhaps the quickest, easiest way for people to get started is by turning to the Black voices who have told Black stories in various media for decades.
We compiled a list of books, documentaries, and podcasts that speak to the racial injustice, police brutality, and long-lasting pain felt by Black people in order for you to educate yourself so that you can begin to have a fuller understanding.
We stand with the Black community against systemic racism and police brutality. We have a Black Lives Matter page with resources for how to get involved and stay safe. Be anti-racist. Organize. Vote. Make change happen.
[Canniseur: Photography is a great medium. Here are 10 terrific photographers who deserve this recognition for being top in their craft for cannabis photography.]
Cannabis Now has been keeping tabs on the cannabis photography niche for almost a decade now and there’s no question that since legalization and decriminalization have spread across the nation, the quality within the cannabis photographer community has grown tremendously. We have had the pleasure of working with many of these pros throughout the years and are excited to see the cannabis photography industry expand.
Here’s our round-up of some of the top cannabis photographers in the game and their unique stories.
[Canniseur: This is a promo. When I first looked at the glass, I thought it was just plain lab glass, which it is, until I looked harder. The decoration on the glass was drawn by none other than Keith Haring, an artist who had a regrettably short but impactful career that brought social awareness to many issues. It’s worth a look and a read, and possibly purchase one of these pieces to get this impactful art into your mind. They’re functional and they’re art. I wish he hadn’t died so young.]
The K.Haring Glass Collection is an exclusive line of glass pipes and accessories featuring artist and social activist Keith Haring’s iconic graphics, which incorporate broad, bold strokes and groundbreaking imagery that helped spread messages of peace, love equality and compassion in the 1980s during the AIDS epidemic….
[Canniseur: I’ve had a few Runtz strains in the past. Pretty good and now there’s an “Obama Runtz” which might be a hoax, but a pretty funny one, if true. We love that people are having some fun with this during COVID-19. Hang in there.]
You won’t be able to find Obama Runtz weed in dispensaries — at least not yet — but the viral strain name is already confusing political pundits and cracking up social media.
In California’s legal weed market, Runtz and its many crosses are currently some of the most sought after strains on dispensary shelves. Whether it’s Runtz OG, White Runtz, Pink Runtz, Divine Runtz, or Money Bagg Runtz, it can be hard to keep track of the popular flower variety. But on the black market, or at least in the internet rumor mill, there’s a new version of Runtz, and it’s now trending on social media and making political experts scratch their heads. Enter: Obama Runtz.
The term “Obama Runtz” exploded on social media yesterday, thanks to a viral video of a young kid with a thick Southern accent walking around a housing complex and telling followers to look out for a local man boasting about this particular, presidential strain of pot.
“I ain’t never heard of no Obama Runtz a day in my life, and I ain’t even know Obama condone shit like that,” says the kid in the clip.
Runtz, a potent cross of Zkittles and Gelato, is branded and sold legally in California by rapper Yung LB, a member of Berner’s influential Cookie Fam. But in addition to selling non-stop at Golden State dispensaries, Runtz has taken on a life of its own through the black market, where the strain and its namesake have proliferated in a number of unlicensed forms across the country. And while there are at least a half-dozen different legit Runtz strains on the market, Obama Runtz appears to be an unofficial (or hypothetical) cross of Runtz and Obama Kush.
Above, Google Trends data for the term “Obama Runtz” indicating peaks in 2018 and again this week on May 20th
Of course, as soon as the viral selfie video hit Twitter, social media comedians immediately turned “Obama Runtz” into a trending topic, cracking jokes about the made-up presidential strain name and potential packaging. But while most Twitter users got the jokes, the term eventually ended up trending under the “politics” tag, leading to plenty of head scratching and even a massively misguided article in Newsweek.
But just like the old saying about art imitating life, a quick look at Runtz CEO Yung LB’s Instagram page shows plenty of story posts making fun of the fake Obama Runtz strain early on Wednesday, but ended last night with a full-scale music video shoot for a new song called, you guessed it, “Obama Runtz.”