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Cannabis Consumers Possess Reduced Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes Per Iranian Study

blood sugar diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is one of the biggest health issues facing the planet today. Researchers estimated that as of 2017, over 460 million patients were affected by type 2 diabetes, which corresponds to about 6.28% of the world’s population.

According to the same researchers, “Over 1 million deaths per year can be attributed to diabetes alone, making it the ninth leading cause of mortality.” The problem is increasing year over year, particularly in Western Europe, and gender distribution of the condition is equal.

It goes without saying that lowering a person’s risk of being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes is very important. Researchers in Iran recently conducted a meta-analysis and concluded that cannabis consumers possess a lowered risk of being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Below is more information about it via a news release from NORML:

Tabriz, Iran: Adults with a history of cannabis use are less likely than non-consumers to develop type 2 diabetes, according to data published in the journal Phytotherapy Research. A team of Iranian investigators performed a meta-analysis of the relevant literature, including 11 surveys and four cohorts consisting of more than 478,000 subjects. They reported, “[T]he odds of developing T2DM [type 2 diabetes] in individuals exposed to cannabis was 0.48 times lower than in those without cannabis exposure.”

Authors speculated that cannabis may possess “protective effects” against the development of diabetes, but they cautioned against drawing any definitive conclusions absent additional studies.

“To our knowledge, our meta-analysis presents the … most up-to-date evidence on the association between cannabis consumption and T2DM,” they concluded. “Given the rising trend of cannabis consumption, and legalization of cannabis consumption there is an increasing need to design prospective longitudinal randomized studies investigating the honest effects of cannabis consumption and providing practical guidelines to manage cannabis usage.”

Several prior observational studies have identified a correlation between cannabis use and lower odds of obesity and adult-onset diabetes, while clinical trial data has shown that the administration of THCV is associated with improved glycemic control in type 2 diabetics. Placebo-controlled trial data published earlier this year reported that the use of plant-derived cannabinoid extracts significantly improves blood sugar and cholesterol levels in diabetic subjects.

Full text of the study, “Association between cannabis use and risk of diabetes mellitus type 2: A systematic review and meta-analysis,” appears in Phytotherapy ResearchAdditional information on cannabinoids and diabetes is available from NORML’s publicationClinical Applications for Cannabis and Cannabinoids.