Cannabis Trends – Replacing the Binge Drinking Lifestyle with Cannabis
Last year a report from the Wall Street investment firm Cowen & Company showed that in states where cannabis is legal, its citizens reported a binge drinking rate 13% lower than in states where cannabis prohibition still exists. How significant is that statistic? Consider that a report published last year by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) showed that 37 million Americans engage in binge drinking at least once per week. The CDC defines binge drinking as having five or more drinks for men, or four or five drinks for women in a two-hour time span. What’s worse? Those states where cannabis prohibition still exists are experiencing an increase in binge drinking.
For most people, binge drinking = drunkenness, not typically an attractive or stable state of mind. Binging on booze can turn one into a social butterfly for a few hours, but it also has the potential to ruin one’s life, and quickly. Any number of negative and potentially dangerous behaviors can emerge from binge drinking, and typically do. Let’s not forget that morning hangover too. Would something non-poisonous make you feel like you have been poisoned just hours after consuming it? Or make you black out and forget your entire binge? I think we all have an opinion there.
This trend is manifesting itself in interesting ways, even amongst some of our society’s most popular members. Take musician John Mayer for example, who recently conducted an interview with Rolling Stone magazine in which he declared, “I put it [cannabis] where drinking used to go, and the quality of life has gone up considerably. Drinking is a fucking con. How much is enough? Every time I drank, I was looking for some sort of regulated amount. It always feels wrong for me. I always feel like I went overboard.”
We don’t know the extent of Mayer’s drinking habits, but from his comment it is safe to assume he was binging, and not in control of how much he actually drank.
“I always feel like I went overboard,” he said. “‘I said two, now it’s three, now we’re at four?’” “I never had a serious issue with it, but I remember looking around going, ‘this feels rigged. I’m taking a break.’ There’s never an amount that felt like I was succeeding at life. It always felt wrong.”
All of us who have ‘been there’ in regards to alcohol can relate with Mayer.
What About Those Suffering from Alcoholism?
Case in point, former Detroit Red Wings superstar Darren McCarty recently admitted to the Detroit Free Press that cannabis had, in fact, saved his life. How? According to the article, in November of 2015 his blood pressure was “spiking and his liver was about to explode,” a result of decades of abusing alcohol. It was on that day that McCarty had his come-to-Jesus moment. Something had to give. His battle with booze had led to four stays in rehab, civil court battles and the dissolution of two marriages.
“For me, growing up, you were either a jock or stoner, so I never smoked pot growing up, but I’ve been drinking since I was 12 or 13 years old. That was acceptable in the hockey circles, it’s just culturally what was accepted,” McCarty said during the interview. “So I would always say no to pot, until after my first surgery in 1999. I was on all these pills, and it was driving me crazy. And I’m an insomniac, so I can’t sleep, and that had a lot to do with all the drinking.”
A friend had suggested pot as a remedy for alcohol and McCarty took to it quickly. The problem was he didn’t stop the alcohol abuse. He kept drinking to the point of collapse, so his pot caregiver and some friends took his care into their own hands by isolating him and giving him Rick Simpson Oil in fairly large doses. For those not familiar with this powerful cannabis application, talk to us at Canna West Seattle before you buy it and try it.
“I was in a coma and when I woke up after seven days, I didn’t have a physical addiction,” McCarty said during the interview. “I dropped to my knees and said, ‘Thank God’….the bottom line is, I’m not drinking. I’m not doing coke. I’m not doing pills. I’m not smoking cigarettes.”
The choice to replace the alcohol lifestyle with a cannabis lifestyle is not a straight swap. The author of this post can attest to that, having given up alcohol for good in February of last year. Those who make the switch are not likely to live out the social butterfly phenomenon like they could by imbibing booze, but then perhaps the social butterfly thing is just an illusion and in reality, you are actually an annoying drunk.
The choice is yours. Just remember, moderation in all things is the best medicine. Overdoing it, or binging with weed is no better than a booze binge.