But cannabis is a gateway drug, isn’t it? At least that is what people have been claiming, rather bizarrely and with little evidence to suggest as much, for a number of years now. Everyone who has ever smoked cannabis or even someone who has actually researched into the effects off cannabis knows there is very little truth to this bold claim. It could even be said that this stigma of cannabis being a gateway drug is a major opposition and possibly the main reason why cannabis is still not as widely accepted as it should be across the world. Harder drugs like cocaine or crack have completely different effects to cannabis, they also tote nasty physical addiction whereas cannabis does not.

If only there were some facts and figures to back up cannabis and support it in what seems like an uphill struggle against those who are ignorant to it’s true nature.

Well, as it turns out, there is. Researchers at The University of New Mexico have made a startling (or perhaps not) discovery which, as it turns out, adds a lot of weight to arguments against cannabis being a gateway drug.

The study looked at 125 chronic pain patients, 83 of who were enrolled on a cannabis program and 42 of whom were not. Compiling fiver years worth of data, it was found that 28 people (34%) of cannabis users had ceased taking prescribed medication altogether compared to just 1 of the non-cannabis patients (2%).

Speaking on the findings, lead researcher Jacob Miguel Vigil said this, “Our current opioid epidemic is leading preventable form of death in the US – killing more people than car accidents and gun violence.”

He followed this up by saying, “Therefore, the relative safety and efficacy of using cannabis in comparison to that other scheduled medication should be taken by the health providers and legislators.”