October 17, 2018 will go down in history as the day that the Y2K bug finally hit Canada legalized cannabis. It’s also getting legalized or decriminalized in more and more locations around the world.
Over the past year, I’ve been asked a ton of questions about this. In particular, people want to know whether I’m “for” or “against” legalization…
But I’m not the right person to answer that. The legal, social, and economic reasons for legalizing weed aren’t my area of expertise. My expertise is within science and health.
We know that criminalizing marijuana simply hasn’t worked. So I guess it’s a good idea to try something else.
And we have to face the facts: in Canada, at least 15% of people are known to consume cannabis. For young people, that number is 30-40%.
Still, I find myself annoyed by the two types of comments I hear most often, namely :
I do think it’s important to speak openly about cannabis. Unfortunately, I hear a lot of sketchy claims going around… so let’s assess their scientific accuracy!
Note #1 : For the sake of transparency, I should admit that I’ve never consumed cannabis in my life, not even a single toke. In general, I don’t really enjoy psychotropic substances (i.e. substances that produce an altered state of consciousness), including alcohol. I assume this doesn’t disqualify me from discussing the topic, considering that I haven’t consumed 99.999% of the medication I work with on a daily basis…
Note #2 : There are certain points that I don’t cover in the comic: driving under the influence of pot; the lack of a legal limit on the amount of THC in products containing marijuana; children or animals becoming intoxicated by accidentally consuming cannabis products; microdosing…This comic is pretty long as it is, so if need be, I’ll revisit the topic another time!
Note #3 : Many thanks to Robyn Penney for the translation!
Posted in Comics
Tagged 5 to 20 cigarettes, acne, addicted, addiction, advertising, advocates, against, age 25, airtight, alcohol, Alzheimer's, ammonia, amotivational syndrome, anxiety, appetite, Arthritis, artificial, asthma, back pain, behaviours, benzene, Big Macs, blessing, burning, calming, Canada, cancer, cancer-related pain, cannabinoids, cannabis, carcinogens, caution, CBD, CBN, Cesamet, CGB, chemo, chemotherapy, chill, chronic, claims, clinical, companies, comparison, concerns, conclusive, conditions, consumers, cramps, creams, criminal, Crohn's, cure, day, decarboxylated, Dementia, deny, dependence, depression, deprived, diabetes, diagnosis, digestive, disaster, dog treats, driving, drugs, effects, efficacy, emotional flatlining, Epilepsy, euphoria, evidence-based, exaggerated, exaggeration, facts, fatigue, fibromyalgia, findings, five, for, genetic predisposition, Glaucoma, grown, habit, HAPs, harm, harmful, harmless, hazards, health, heroin, high, honestly, hundred, Huntington's, hydrogen cyanide, illegal, inconclusive, industry, inflammation, insomnia, intense dreams, irritable bowel, irritants, joint, lab-grown, legal, legalization, legalizing, loss of energy, lubricating gels, magical thinking, marijuana, market, marketing, medical, medication, medicinal, Menstrual pain, mental health, microdosing, migraines, moisturizers, molecules, month, motivation, multiple sclerosis, natural, naturopathy, nausea, neuropathic pain, night sweats, nitrogen oxides, obsession, occasional use, occasionally, oil, openly, opiod crisis, opioids, osteoporosis, over-the-top, paranoia, Parkinson's, pets, pharmaceutical, pharmacology, physical, pills, placebo effect, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, pot, powerful, prescription, prohibition, properties, psychoactive, psychological, psychosis, psychotic episode, PTSD, public health, realistic, recreational, regular, relax, research, risk-free, Sativex, schemes, schizophrenia, school, secondhand, self-medicate, shaking, skepticism, sketchy, skin, skunk, smoke, smoking, society of stoners, solid, sooner, spasms, stone, stoned, strains, studies, substance, substance-induced psychosis, symptom relief, synthetic, tar, THC, THCA, therapeutic, tobacco, Tourette's, toxins, tremors, trivialize, twenty, unlikely, vape, vaporizer, weed, week, wide range, withdrawal, work, years, young
Look like sugar has become public enemy #1.
Some of the newfound concerns are completely justified, but some are not. Actually, it’s become one of these black-or-white craze, where one website tells you to cut all sugar from your diet, whereas another one claims it’s harmless.
And to tell the truth, I’m kind of pissed off about everything we’ve learned regarding the industry in the last few years, so I agree that something has to change.
(And as it happens, I’m especially irritated by the whole juicing fad, which is totally related to this, although most people don’t realize it.)
Obviously, a single comic strip can’t cover the whole subject, but I’ve selected 5 common beliefs that, I think, come from a poor understanding of the core issues we’re facing here.
Nope, you won’t have to go sugar-free (or keto).
But yep, you may have to rethink how you eat quite a bit.
Translated by Patricia Rainville; proofread by Stéphanie Alcaraz-Robinson.
P.S. This comic is NOT AT ALL an endorsement of the ketogenic or low-carb-high-fat (LCHF) diets. Both are ill-advised for most people. Too much sugar OR too much fat isn’t a good idea; that’s the whole point of a balanced, plant-rich diet (e.g. the Mediterranean diet).
Posted in Comics
Tagged 25 grams, 25g, absorb, active lifestyle, added sugar, agave, amount, Ancel Keys, ancient grains, antioxidants, beliefs, big sugar, bread, brown sugar, cake, calories, campaign, cane sugar, cavities, coconut sugar, coffee, companies, concerns, craze, cut, damaging, dessert, diabetes, diet, eat, fad, fair trade, fat, FDA, fiber, food, food porn, foods, free sugar, fresh, fructose, fruit, glycemic index, government, granulated, grocery store, harmful, harmless, health, heart disease, hidden sugar, homemade, honey, hunger, initiatives, intake, juice, juicer, juicing, link, magnesium, maple syrup, minerals, molasses, natural, nutrition facts, nutritional tag, obesity, organic, organisms, overconsumption, pharmacies, pharmacy, prevention, prison, processed, raw, refined sugar, rigged, risk factor, ruin, Seven Countries Study, smoothies, soda, soft drinks, soup, sports, sugar, sugar industry, sugar papers, sugar-free, taste, texture, type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, vegetables, veggies, vitamin C, WHO, World Health Organization, yogurt, young
Stress and anxiety are helpful in life.
Imagine you’re hiking in Alaska, and you suddenly find yourself in front of a Kodiak bear that’s fresh out of hibernation and looking for his first meal. You can actually see drool coming out of his mouth, and the only defense you have is a spoon…
…Okay, bad example.
Let’s say you’re allergic to wasps. Stress is what tells you to be careful when they’re nearby. When you see a wasp, anxiety is what drives you to move in the opposite direction. These are normal defense mechanisms, and they’ve allowed human beings to evolve.
However, with evolution, the causes of anxiety changed in modern times: work, family, money, health, and so on. Cavemen didn’t care about all of that… but today, these are the things that stress us the most.
Today I’m going to talk about Generalized Anxiety Disorder, like I did before with depression. Although it’s a really common disorder, few people easily accept it or feel comfortable talking about it.
Note: You might need a little effort and imagination to get into this comic strip… but you’ll definitely appreciate it more if you try to go along with my unusual analogies. Enjoy!
Translated by Ellie Rieber with edits by Patricia Rainville; proofread by Stéphanie Alcaraz-Robinson.
Posted in Comics
Tagged amygdala, anxiety, anxious, back, balance, body, book recommendation, brain, brakes, can't breathe, career, CBT, chemical, cognitive-behavioural therapy, collar, concerns, depression, diagnosis, diarrhea, doctor, electric, everyday life, evidence-based, exaggerated, examined, exams, experiment, family, feelings, focus, GAD, generalized anxiety disorder, get rid of, going to die, health, healthy, heart problems, help, homework, hope, hurting, imaginary, keys, legs, locks, loved ones, mechanism, medical file, medication, metal, missed opportunities, money, muscles, neck, neurotransmitters, pain, panic, panic attacks, prefrontal cortex, prisoner, professionals, psychological, psychologist, psychotherapy, real world, reassuring, restless, self-help, serious, shock, sick, sleep, stiff, stomachaches, stress, stressful, symptoms, tense, test, therapist, thought patterns, tired, uncontrollable, unlocking, work, worried, worries
Initially, I wanted to create a comic about the influenza (flu) vaccine.
My goal was to convince you that this vaccine is effective, safe and essential to modern society. Because that’s what I think.
But by doing this, I would have skipped steps … because before trusting the flu vaccine, you must first trust vaccines.
You’ve probably heard of some public figures’ efforts to limit vaccination in the USA:
But they’re not the only ones. All over the world, tons of people are opposed to vaccines. Many of them are intelligent, highly educated people who seem to know the topic extremely well. Some of them are even healthcare professionals, including physicians.
So, who should you believe? I can easily understand why you’re confused when you hear stuff like:
- “Vaccines cause autism!”
- “Vaccines are released on the market before we know they’re safe!”
- “The diseases we vaccinate against are long gone!”
There’s much to do to put the record straight.
So the flu vaccine will have to wait for another comic. In the meantime, let’s start from the beginning.
Translation by Olivier Bernard, proofreading by Lauren Knight.
Posted in Comics
Tagged adjuvant, allergic reaction, aluminum, Alzheimer's, Andrew, anti-vaccine, anti-vaxxers, attenuated, autism, autoimmune, bacteria, big pharma, boost, breast milk, business, child, clinic, concerns, conjugate, damage, dangers, death, developmental disorders, diphteria, diseases, effective, evidence, evolution, fatigue, fear, fever, flu, flu-like symptoms, fraudulent, Guillain-Barre, headache, heavy metals, homeopathic, immune system, immunity, inactivated, influenza, kids, killed, live, lobby, manufactured, measles, meningitis, mercury, microbe, money, multiple sclerosis, mumps, nervous system, pain, pharmaceutical, poisoning, polio, poliomyelitis, preservative, preventable, propaganda, rare, risks, RRO, rubella, safe, scapegoat, scientific, sensitive, subunit, sudden infant death syndrome, swelling, syndrome, tetanos, thimerosal, thiomersal, vaccinated, vaccination, vaccines, Venn diagram, virus, Wakefield