Using marijuana may reduce the chances of getting a blood clot, according to a new report published in Neuropsychopharmacology. University of Texas – Dallas researchers determined that using marijuana improves both oxygen and blood flow. This reduces risks of stroke and blood clots.
Dr. Francesca Filbey was the head researcher on the study, according to Civilized. There were 175 participants, of which 101 were non-drug users. The experiment lasted 60-days. All cannabis users selected for the study said they’d used marijuana 5,000 times or more in their lives.
Dr. Filbey said, “The primary psychoactive ingredient present in cannabis – tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – relaxes arterial walls resulting in lower blood pressure and increased blood flow to tissues.”
She also said, “Past marijuana research has shown changes in cognitive functions such as memory and executive functioning.”
Participants were given MRIs as well as urinalysis testing to determine THC metabolite levels. Those tests revealed that regular marijuana use showed more global oxygen extraction fraction (OEF) and cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen (CMRO2) than those not using marijuana.
An interesting finding in the study is that researchers noticed that the cerebral blood flow at the base of the forebrain (associated with learning) was higher in those who used marijuana.
Dr. Filbey said, “Currently, cannabis is the most widely used illicit drug [in the U.S.]. As it becomes more widely legalized, understanding neurophysiological alterations and its effects on the brain’s health and performance are becoming increasingly relevant.”