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The Latest on Smoking Weed

You can breathe a sigh of relief: marijuana won't cause anxiety or depression, new study finds.

Marijuana is a topic of conversation that most people have strong opinions about: Some praise the benefits, while others find no merit to the stuff, be it for recreational or medicinal purposes. Well, here's some fodder for the folks in the first camp to add to their argument arsenals.

A new study published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry debunks previous research that claimed marijuana is linked to depression and anxiety later in life.

For the study, nearly 35,000 U.S. adults were interviewed in the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions once between the years 2001 and 2002 about their marijuana use, then again three years later about the status of their mental health. Certain factors like socio-demographic characteristics, family history of substance abuse, environment, and education were controlled to keep the findings as accurate as possible.

Turns out cannabis use was not associated with an increased risk for developing mood or anxiety disorders, after all.

Discrepancies in previous studies may be explained by varying age ranges, geographic locations, gender, and the number and type of mental disorders assessed, according to Medical News Today.

But this doesn't mean pot should become your latest and greatest way to reduce stress or beat the winter blues. The study also found marijuana use is linked to substance disorders down the road like alcohol abuse and dependence, as well as nicotine use. Don't think succumbing to a hookah session will work, either. Recent research discovered hookah packs 25 times the tar of a single cigarette (and that's not even the half of it).

For those trying to kick the bad habit, find out how to create healthy habits that actually stick, or consider downloading these five effecive quit-smoking apps.

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