The Case Against Rolling Spliffs

It's easy to see the appeal of the spliff (a.k.a. a joint with marijuana and tobacco). First: it's a tradition, and the way many people learned to roll joints. Second, it makes your supply last longer. And thirdly, the combination of THC and tobacco provides a heady, caffeine-like rush unlike smoking cannabis alone.

It's also a super-common way to get high: according to a recent study of 33,687 cannabis users from 18 countries published in Frontiers in Psychiatry, over half of cannabis consumers in Australia, and between 77.2 and 90.9 percent of Europeans, mix their cannabis with tobacco

But the teensy-weensy fraction of a cigarette you mix into in your joint could be amping up the addictive potential of your habit, with health costs that outweigh the luxurious smoking experience.

The study authors "found users who ingest the drug without tobacco are 61.5 per cent more likely to seek professional help, and 80.6 per cent more keen to avoid cigarettes," according to the study. According to the Daily Mail, the results "suggests people who regularly mix tobacco with cannabis are more at risk of psychological dependence on the drug than those who do not mix the two."

In other words, it's possible that you're inadvertently negating cannabis' non-physically-addictive properties when you mix it with one of the most habit-forming substances known to humanity.

In other words - just don't. Roll smaller joints, use a vaporizer or a bong, or pad out joints with a blend that doesn't contain tobacco, rather than government-issued, habit-forming herb.


Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH) isn't the most vocal cannabis advocate on the 2020 presidential campaign trail, but you shouldn't take that as a lack of support for marijuana legalization. Unlike many of the top contenders for the upcoming Democratic primaries, Ryan hasn't filed any of his own cannabis legalization bills.

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