Provided by Men's Health The Scary Consequence of Getting High By Cassie Shortsleeve, Men’s Health Smoking marijuana linked to testicular cancer - Health - Men's ... www.msnbc.msn.com/id/48969102/ns/health-mens_health Marijuana: a real ball-buster. In a new study in the journal Cancer, men who reported smoking pot in the past were twice as likely to have certain types of testicular cancer than those who claimed they had never touched the stuff. Researchers compared the recreational drug use history of 163 men with testicular cancer to that of 292 healthy men of the same age and race. The results? Occasional pot use was linked with an increased risk of testicular cancer subtypes called non-seminoma and mixed germ cell tumors, which can both have a worse prognosis than more common seminoma types. Researchers aren't sure why hitting the bong can lead to a hit below the belt, but Victoria Cortessis, MSPH, Ph.D., an assistant professor of preventive medicine at the University of Southern California, speculates that your cellular network--an important aspect of sperm formation--responds to the active ingredient in marijuana called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC could disrupt your hormones. Studies in rodents show that pot smoke has a property that can suppress circulating testosterone, altering normal testosterone formation and sperm production. (Want stronger swimmers? Put down that joint and grab a walnut instead. After all, it is The Snack That Strengthens Your Sperm.) Research on marijuana's negative effects has been mixed. Some studies--including a University of California at Los Angeles analysis of 2,000 people--show no clear link between lighting up and an increased cancer risk. Other research, however, suggests that marijuana can suppress your immune system, increasing your chances of developing infection and disease. Not to mention regular tokers are more likely to experience issues in the bedroom than pot-free people, according to a 2009 study in the Journal of Sexual Medicine. While a puff or two back in college won't hurt you now, remember that pot, like most things, could be harmful in excess. (And it's still illegal--mostly.) People who get high daily are more likely to succumb to a compromised immune system than the occasional smoker, researchers say. (If you've reached Willie Nelson status, you might be harming your body in other ways. Click here to learn How Pot Damages Your Lungs.) ..