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By Ayad Maher.
Does marijuana enhances our pattern recognition ability? Stoners would answer immediately with, YES!
Humans are primarily a visual animal. Our pattern recognition abilities exceed recognizing simple visual images or basic designs. We can identify different types of plants, cars, painting styles of different artists, or even thousands of faces despite the settle changes over time. We also connect those visual patterns to music or sounds.
Cannabis may have an affect on how well certain cells in the eye's retina operate, those cells (retinal ganglion cells), which are located near the inner surface of the eye's retina, collect visual information and pass it to our brain.
A study published in the journal JAMA Ophthalmology involved around 50 regular daily marijuana smokers and 24 people who had never used the herb. The study also confirmed that the participants eyesight was relatively good. The study showed that those who used weed had a delay in how long it took for information to be transmitted from the retina to the brain, however, it's not clear if the herb has any permanent affect a marijuana smoker vision. Read more about the study here.
Another interesting, but a bit outdated, study by the Harvard psychology professor Charles Tart researched the effect of marijuana on our vision. Tart found out that although the vision tends to be "somewhat blurry", but things can be seen sharp in that their edges, contours stand out against the background.
One of the most recognized and common effects of marijuana on our eyes is the Red Eyes. There is a simple scientific explanation. THC tend to lower our blood pressure, and that causes a general dilation in blood vessels and eventually increasing in blood flow through out the whole body, and that includes the blood vessels in our eyes. They also expand and ultimately the Red eyes. One study showed that marijuana used in high doses could have a significant impact on peripheral vision.
Red eyes are also the reason cannabis heals glaucoma patients.
A very well known fact among stoners, marijuana dilates pupils. When you're stoned and take the old flashlight trick from, hopefully, a friend not an officer, your eyes' pupils will dilate, however recover faster from a bright light than the eyes of a sober person.
There is a scientific reasoning behind this, of course. When you smoke weed, the main psychoactive component in marijuana, THC, interacts with our CB1 receptors (neurons) in our brains. This process eventually stimulates the eye's function and increase its sensitivity to light. In other words, when you're high, your brain CB1 receptors notify the cells in our eyes to increase the signal they send to the brain when detecting light. For more about how the main components of cannabis interact with CBD1 receptors, check our blog post THC and CBD, and the Entourage Effect.
In the new study, researchers at McGill University in Montreal applied a synthetic cannabinoid to the eye tissues of tadpoles. They found the cannabinoids made certain retinal cells more sensitive to light, and improved the speed and which the eye responded to even dim stimulus, The Guardian reports. Cannabinoids are the general class of chemicals that can interact with cannabinoid receptors in the brain. The body naturally produces some cannabinoids. Other cannabinoids come from marijuana or other sources. Read more here.
The study included 52 people who had used marijuana at least 7 times per week during the previous month and 24 people who had never used marijuana. The people in both groups were between 18 and 35 years old. The researchers verified the marijuana use by testing the people's urine for THC, marijuana's main psychoactive ingredient.
The researchers tested the participants' vision and found that their eyesight was relatively good, and that no one in the study group reported having any visual problems from using marijuana such as blurred vision, according to the study, which was published today (Dec. 8) in the journal JAMA Ophthalmology. Read more here.
Via Trippy Marx
The U.S. National Institute of Health republished the study to reflect the growing changes in American cannabis culture.
Their aim was to investigate whether heavy cannabis smoking is linked to poor eyesight. It was conducted by sampling some 12,686 men and women from 1979 to 2010. Heavy weed smokers were compared with light marijuana smokers to gauge whether eyesight quality decreased over the duration.
The study found that:
Read more here.
Via Local Headass
Via Pink Natural
Ayad Maher is a Cannabis Industry Entrepreneur, Blogger & Activist. eCommerce Specialist and Owner of a 420 Life Style Website; Monroe Blvd, an online smoke shop; 421Store, and an online CBD store; GoodyCBD.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in January 2016 and has been revamped and updated as needed for accuracy and comprehensiveness.