ASU researcher’s team finds that cannabis use may not cause physical health problems but does increase risk of IQ decline, downward socioeconomic mobility
As states increasingly legalizeAt last count, 24 states and the District of Columbia have legalized the use of marijuana in some form. Four states and the District of Columbia have legalized it for recreational use. the use of marijuana, the debate surrounding its benefits vs. risks wages on. There is still much unknown about the effects of cannabis.
Thanks to the research of ASU assistant professor Madeline MeierMadeline Meier is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology, an academic unit of ASU’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences., though, we are closer to understanding how marijuana affects three key things: IQ, physical health and socioeconomic mobility.
In 2012, Meier and colleagues published a report in the journal PNAS indicating that adolescents who use marijuana for many years show a drop in IQ from childhood to adulthood. This research has influenced public policy, particularly decisions to keep marijuana out of the hands of teens. Now in 2016, Meier answers the question of whether long-term marijuana users are in worse physical health. It turns out that they are not.
Her research“Associations Between Cannabis Use and Physical Health Problems in Early Midlife: A Longitudinal Comparison of Persistent Cannabis versus Tobacco Users” published this month in the journal JAMA Psychiatry shows that aside from having bad teeth, marijuana users have few physical health problems at midlife. For example, marijuana users did not have worse lung function, higher levels of inflammation or worse metabolic health than non-users.
Linda Essig presented a plenary featured session at the annual conference of the Association of Arts Administration Educators (AAAE) in Philadelphia in June.
In addition to being invited to present at the conference, Essig was also elected to serve a three-year term on the association's board of directors.