CHICAGO – A new report shows that recreational marijuana users are depending less on alcohol, over-the-counter medicine, and sleeping pills, according to a press release published on Monday. The Recreational Cannabis Consumer report was compiled by the market research firm High Yield Insights, which evaluates consumer behavior based on consumer feedback for marketing purposes.
Marijuana has many health benefits, three of which are relief from pain, insomnia, and stress. Experts also say that marijuana can help people suffering from opioid addiction by replacing prescription painkillers with marijuana.
The report found that more than 20 percent of people using recreational marijuana said that they used less over-the-counter painkillers, alcohol, and sleep aids. Consumers reported drinking 20 percent less beer than before as well as a 21 percent decrease in consumption of other alcoholic beverages.
Recreational pot consumers also reported a 27 percent decrease in over-the-counter-medication-usage and a 22 percent decrease in sleeping pills.
Evidence shows that people over 55 are turning to marijuana as an alternative to prescription drugs. The report showed that more than 50 percent of people older than 55 reported that they were trying marijuana again after having tried the drug before in their youth.
Mike Luce, who has been conducting consumer and market research for 15 years, says that the research data found on people over the age of 55 is an indication of a budding niche within the marijuana industry. Other reports support Luce's claim that the over 55 set is the fastest growing demographic of marijuana consumers.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also reported that people over 55 are one the fastest growing groups of marijuana consumers. Access to legal marijuana along with illnesses related to aging are the main reasons for the growing demographic. Patients report conditions such as cancer, glaucoma, nausea, neurological diseases, and chronic pain as illnesses that prompt their marijuana use.
Marijuana can also save lives, according to Dr. Sanjay Gupta. The CNN medical correspondent recently wrote an open letter to the U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions informing him that marijuana can assist keeping opioid addicts from returning to drugs and can also prevent people from becoming addicts by providing marijuana as an alternative to prescription painkillers.
The report also found a growing demand for convenient pot products such as pre-rolls and edibles.
High Yield Insights plans to release a Medical Marijuana Patient report in the summertime as well as a consumer report compiling marijuana users' perspective on edibles, topicals, smoking, and vaping marijuana.