Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, has changed his mind and now supports medical marijuana. His shift from con to pro came with a lengthy apology.
"We have been terribly and systematically misled for nearly 70 years in the United States, and I apologize for my own role in that," said Gupta in his CNN article titled “Why I Changed My Mind on Weed.” He adds, “I didn’t look far enough. I didn’t review papers from smaller labs in other countries doing some remarkable research, and I was too dismissive of the loud chorus of legitimate patients whose symptoms improved on cannabis.”
Gupta, an Emory University neurosurgeon who was considered for US Surgeon General in 2009, had written an op-ed in TIME magazine on Jan. 8, 2009 titled “Why I Would Vote No on Pot,” in which he outlined his case against medical marijuana. In it, he claimed to have “steadily reviewed the scientific literature on medical marijuana” and found it lacking. Gupta now says marijuana “doesn’t have a high potential for abuse, and there are very legitimate medical applications. In fact, marijuana is sometimes the only thing that works.”
PROBLEM: “Marijuana use is associated with an acute increase in caloric intake,” goes the clinical jargon for popular lore. Still despite eating more while high (by some measures, over 600 extra calories per day), marijuana users’ extra intake doesn’t seem to be reflected in increased BMI. Indeed, studies have identified a reduced prevalence of obesity in the pot smoking community.