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NEW YORK: As more states make it legal to smoke marijuana, some government officials, researchers and others worry what that might mean for one of the country's biggest public health successes: curbing cigarette smoking.Unlike for cigarettes, there's evidence of certain health benefits from marijuana, such as easing chronic pain.At the same time, studies have shown crossover between marijuana and tobacco use. And while smoking cannabis may be less dangerous than tobacco to lung health, pot doesn't get an entirely clean slate.That's according to a 2017 federal report that rounded up nearly two decades of studies on marijuana, research that's been limited by the federal government's classification of marijuana as a controlled substance like heroin.Tobacco and marijuana use can also go together.Creagan, 73, thinks pot benefits people's well-being more than it risks their health, and he expects non-smoking alternatives will reduce the risks. Plus, he figures legal marijuana could replace cigarette tax revenue someday.
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