Trouble With Spin: The Temptation of Tobacco

Do you spin your cannabis with tobacco? This article will illustrate how you can manage a healthier relationship with weed. How? Kick the tobacco demon.

Spin to Win

Many folks consider tobacco and cannabis to be a match made in heaven. At one time, this even included myself. The phenomenon is global; much like cheese and wine, the two substances make for a dynamic duo. Between 77.2% and 90.9% of European cannabis users apply tobacco in their spliffs, blunts and/or bongs, compared to 51.6% of Australian and 20.7% of New Zealanders.[3]

In general, joints without some sort of mixed herb often struggle to burn with consistency, which only lends to the popularity of spun cannabis. Recently, however, a greater number of smokers and cannabis advocates have called for cannabis users to stick purely to the leaf. So, what makes spinning tobacco with cannabis so dangerous, exactly?

The mainstream public has been well aware for decades now that cigarettes do not promote longstanding health and wellbeing. Though if I were just here to tell you how bad they were, this article would write itself; an increased risk of strokes, heart disease and a laundry list of cancers have crowned tobacco as one of the leading causes of death in the western world.[1] Other ailments include asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema, and mouth disease.[2]

It almost goes without saying that smoking spliffs will increase the risk of experiencing the negative consequences usually associated with tobacco.

Spliff Decision

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What’s really interesting is that the synthesis of cannabis and tobacco forms a different beast in and of itself, which is partly why the humble ‘spliff’ has become such a worldwide phenomenon. Spinning facilitates a unique smoking experience, unlike either of the drugs in isolation. Nicotine is incredibly addictive; it acts upon the opioid receptors in the brain, providing an instantaneous calm, along with a sensation of lightheaded pleasure.[2] [Editor’s note: I want a smoke so badly right now.]

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Tobacco also releases adrenaline, increasing your heart rate along with your blood pressure. Cannabis induces similar sensations; combine the two together and you get a powerful psychoactive that induces an intoxicating muscle relaxing effect.[2] Moreover, nicotine and THC are both known to induce their own euphoric ‘head high’, which only enhances the experience of mixing the substances together.

Mixing cannabis with tobacco will even have you feeling the effects of the weed much quicker, with more THC for the body to absorb.[2] A fascinating study from 2009 found that when tobacco and cannabis were combined together, higher levels of THC were actually available to the body.[4] The study compared the THC delivered to the bloodstream via a spliff and a joint. The pure joint contained 32.70 milligrams per gram, with the spliff containing 58.90 milligrams per gram.[4] These tests ultimately revealed that tobacco increases the vaporisation efficiency of THC by around 45%, on average.[4]

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The Trouble With Spin

Spinning isn’t all fun and games, though. It’s known that cannabis smokers who mix tobacco into their joints are statistically five times more likely to exhibit signs of substance dependence.[3] This is confirmed by certain trends, including the fact that most people who end up smoking spliffs do not stop at just one. They repeat the occasion over and over, perhaps hundreds or thousands of times.[2]

What’s more, the tars and toxins caught by cigarette filters become more available to the lungs in a spliff. Admittedly, it is rare to see someone chain-smoking spliffs in the same fashion as a packet of cigarettes. Nevertheless, continuous long-term use of cannabis and tobacco can lead to nasty health effects, much like the ones we know about from the plain packaging ads.

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In the process of combustion, cannabis also releases its own share of carcinogens. Luckily, cannabis also has potent anti-carcinogenic properties.[2] It probably won’t counteract the worst effects of tobacco, but it will provide some protection to your system… assuming the alternative is pure cigarette smoke.

Spliffs can be a highly pleasurable experience in the right context, but they aren’t that great for you over the long term. If you’re intent on smoking, then at least be aware of the risks.  Pure cannabis is certainly the healthier option – if you’re concerned about that sort of thing. You don’t necessarily need to smoke it, either. Other methods have proven less taxing on the body, including edibles and/or vaporisation.

Finally, if you still want to go with a joint, consider using all-natural papers that lack any mysterious additives.

Stay safe out there!

Mitch

Author: Mitch

Mitch Keys is a young writer from Brisbane, Australia unfolding in a dynamic process of becoming (like everyone else, so don’t go thinking he’s special or anything). He likes being alive.

Mitch
Mitch Keys is a young writer from Brisbane, Australia unfolding in a dynamic process of becoming (like everyone else, so don’t go thinking he’s special or anything). He likes being alive.

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Ozmuth
Ozmuth
2 years ago

Any tips on joint rolling without spin but still having good combustion?

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Joe LaGrasso
2 years ago
Reply to  Ozmuth

A good herbal smoke mix. Damiana and Passionflower are really nice herbs to mix with cannabis.

CoffeeShops in Amsterdam provide mix a lot of the time. Loved rolling fat joints with 0.5g of bud and about the same of the herbal mix. I’ll look to write up an article on herbal mixes soon. 🙂

Joshua
Joshua
2 years ago
Reply to  Ozmuth

Loosely paccked give it some air to burn, maybe leave it out for an hour or so before hand so its drier but thatd cause it to be harsher

Joshua
Joshua
2 years ago
Reply to  Ozmuth

Also other smoking blends or herbal blends. Basically the same as spin but more natural less chemicals and can even have positive health effects or if mixed correctly a different high. You can often find them cheap online. Certain brands will even send it out to you in cigarette or pouch form.

Sandra
Sandra
1 year ago

Watch shitloads of ppl ditch mixing with tobacco the second the price of weed decreases…me & mine have only ever done it to bring the cost down/stretch the bag further.
The simple/obvious answer to this is LEGALIZE IT!!!!

Joe LaGrasso
1 year ago
Reply to  Sandra

Certainly a factor for many people! The trouble is the nicotine gets ya! It becomes harder as time goes on to get off spin due to the addictive properties of nicotine.

If you really want to make your bag go further, look into vaporisers!

Barbaraa Fenocchi
Barbaraa Fenocchi
1 year ago

I was diagnosed of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) in 2012 at the age of 63. I had been a heavy smoker, my symptoms started out with dry cough and shortness of breath, i ended up in the hospital, on a ventilator. I should have known it was coming, but like most smokers, thought it would never happen to me. My COPD got significantly worse and unbearable because of my difficulty catching breath. Last year, i started on a natural COPD Herbal therapy from Natural Herbal Gardens, i read a lot of positive reviews from patients who used the treatment… Read more »

Dean taylor
Dean taylor
1 year ago

I was diagnosed with COPD stage 2, five years ago now. I moved to Wales 3 years ago in the hope my health would improve. I am now 66. I also had a triple heart bypass 10 years ago, which doesn’t help! I often get headaches and migraines and can’t walk upstairs without getting out of breath. Even small exertions sometimes make my breathing bad. I was also going through  cough and start getting really bad aches in my back and chests was directed by a local doctor in Cardiff to use totalcureherbsfoundation.com supplement on my condition which cure me perfectly, i went to pulmonologist and I was told… Read more »

trackback

[…] I cannot deny that cannabis functions as a medicinal herb, for some… but other than some psychological pain I was experiencing, I didn’t have any debilitating health condition which really required it – and I still don’t. Mostly, I just like smoking weed for recreational purposes. It can really hit the spot when I’m hanging out with friends. Occasionally, I even mix my weed with tobacco. (Heresy, I know! But here are some alternatives I’ve been looking into…) […]

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[…] not kid ourselves; there are many Australians who smoke cannabis on a regular basis. A sizeable portion of these people spin their weed with […]

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