Marijuana Less Harmful than Alcohol to Health and Society – American Survey

By @ibtimesau on
A man walks past a mural on a marijuana dispensary near Venice Beach in Los Angeles, California April 1, 2014. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
A man walks past a mural on a marijuana dispensary near Venice Beach in Los Angeles, California April 1, 2014. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

A new survey released by the Pew Research Center has revealed that 69 per cent of Americans believed that marijuana is less harmful than alcohol to one's overall health, while 63 per cent believe alcohol was more harmful to society than marijuana.

Conducted in mid-February 2014 among 1,821 adults, the Pew Research Center poll likewise found the number of people who think pot should be legalised continues to grow. Fifty-four per cent said they want marijuana legalised, compared to the 52 per cent who didn't  favour legalisation four years ago.

The latest survey seem to confirm data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which showed that excessive alcohol consumption is devastating to a person's overall health. Such illnesses include heart disease, liver disease and elevated cancer risks, the Huffington Post said. The CDC said that in 2006 alone, 1.2 million emergency room visits and 2.7 million physician office visits were recorded due to excessive alcohol use.

Each year in the U.S., deaths attributable to alcohol use reach at least 88,000.

There are currently 20 states in the U.S., including Washington, where the sale of medical marijuana is allowed.

Americans surveyed in the poll, at 75 per cent, also believe the sale of marijuana will become legal in the long run across the nation, whether the populace supports it or not.

Another survey released by WebMD on Tuesday said a majority of doctors support legalising medical marijuana. The survey included 1,540 doctors in which 69 per cent of them said it could help with certain medical conditions. Another 67 per cent said it should be a medical option nationwide.

A whopping 82 per cent among oncologists and hematologists said it should be a medical option.

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