Does Smoking Weed Make You Age?

Before you start self-medicating with weed, or before you start to smoke it more often, it makes sense to look into what the long-term effects may be.

By reading articles like this one, you can get into the nitty-gritty of it all, so at least when you light up your next bong, you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into, and you can make the decision clear-headed in full view of the facts.

Does Smoking Weed Make You Age?

This article is going to concentrate on whether smoking weed makes you age, and the role that smoking weed plays in the aging process.

By the end of the article, we’ll wrap up with a section about whether you should continue to smoke weed, and what the alternatives might be (see also “Best Blunt Wraps“).

And without further ado, let’s get into it.

Does Smoking Weed Make You Age?

I’m afraid I have to kick things off with some bad news. There have been a lot of studies on the impact of smoking weed on the aging process (see also “Can You Smoke Weed On Twitch?“). And it’s kinda bleak.

These studies all say the same thing – that, yes, smoking weed does make you age faster. It accelerates the aging process.

To What Extent Does Smoking Weed Make You Age Faster?

Unfortunately, the news gets worse…

Smoking weed does not have a minute, negligible effect on the aging process, but a significant and substantial one (see also “Can You Smoke Weed On Antibiotics?“).

Researchers from the University of Western Australia have found that those who smoke marijuana regularly have a biological age that’s a whopping 11.84% of their actual age, as demonstrated by the stiffness of their arteries.

And what this effectively means is that a 30-year-old frequently, long-term marijuana smoker has the body of a 33-year-old.

The act of smoking marijuana can age you considerably, which can only lead to passing away before your time, if you fail to take action.

And in addition to its aging effect on your arteries, there’s also significant evidence that smoking weed can also age both your skin and your brain health (see also “Can A Dentist Tell If You Smoke Weed?“). Which leads us nicely onto our next couple of sections.

The Effect Of Smoking Weed On Your Skin

Marijuana smoke is high in hydrocarbons, and when these hydrocarbons make contact with your skin, they can damage the production of collagen…

Collagen plays an important part in keeping your skin supple and youthful. It also helps to protect the skin from air pollution. As the body ages, less collagen is produced (especially with the onset of menopause).

And lower collagen production means drier skin, wrinkles and a general loss of elasticity.

(It’s also worth noting at this point that smoking weed can also exacerbate other skin conditions as well.)

The Effect Of Smoking Weed On Your Brain Health

Does Smoking Weed Make You Age?

And that’s not all – there have also been scientific studies that taking marijuana also affects the aging of the brain.

For healthy brain function, you need to get plenty of blood flow to the brain. But in one study, scientists took thousands of brain scans and found that certain factors can cause the brain to age more quickly by reducing blood flow to the brain. 

This study showed that taking marijuana adds 2.8 years of accelerated aging to your brain.

It’s also worth noting at this point that reduced blood flow to the brain has been linked to stroke and dementia.

Smoking Weed Vs Smoking Cigarettes

Admittedly, it is mainly the smoke from the marijuana that elicits the accelerated aging process. So there is an argument there to suggest that smoking marijuana may not be quite as bad for your aging as smoking a cigarette.

However, smoking weed is not the same as smoking a cigarette. Marijuana smoke contains a whopping 33 different chemicals that can cause cancer. And what’s more, it delivers 4 times as much tar to your lungs as a cigarette.

Alternatives To Consider

It is clear that much of the effect smoking weed has on accelerating your body’s aging process comes down to the smoke itself rather than the active ingredients of CBD and THC.

And this means that you may still be able to take CBD (and/or THC) in another form that will not adversely impact your body’s natural aging process.

Interestingly, although smoking weed damages the production of collagen in the skin, it turns out that CBD, a primary component of weed, actually works to increase collagen production (see also “Can You Smoke Weed Stems?“).

This means that if you were to take your CBD in an alternative form, such as in a gummy, then rather than accelerate the aging process in your skin, it can help your skin to look younger for longer.  

You may also wish to consider vapes, tinctures, capsules, or powder.

What To Do If You Believe You’re Aging Too Quickly?

If you’re worried that you may be aging too quickly because you’ve been smoking weed, you should also consider whether the act of smoking the weed is actually making you a little paranoid (see also “Can You Smoke Weed With A Concussion?“).

The most reassuring thing you can do in this situation, is to turn to a medical professional, such as your family doctor, and discuss the issue openly.

And there are actions you can take to help with the effect of your smoking on your body’s aging process. For example, you can stop smoking weed (and cigarettes, if applicable) altogether. You could wean yourself off gradually.

Or you can consider alternative forms of CBD and/or THC, as discussed earlier.

And, you can also consider looking after your health better through better nutrition. For example, healthy foods that contain antioxidants are believed to mitigate the body’s aging process.

This is something beneficial that you may decide to do regardless of whether or not you decide to continue smoking weed.

Wrap Up

So, the question is, whether you want to continue to smoke weed, or to wean yourself off the smoke, and possibly to an alternative form of CBD (and/or THC) instead. 

I would suggest that out of all of these options, the best would be to gradually wean off smoking the stuff and start introducing CBD to your body in another form if you feel you need to.

Zack Finch