Willie Nelson no longer smoking marijuana: ‘I have abused my lungs’

His spokeswoman told The Associated Press in an email Wednesday that Nelson hasn’t given up cannabis, and she points out there are different ways to consume it.

SHARE Willie Nelson no longer smoking marijuana: ‘I have abused my lungs’
Willie Nelson performs at the CMA Awards ceremony earlier this month in Nashville, Tennessee.

Willie Nelson performs at the CMA Awards ceremony earlier this month in Nashville, Tennessee.

AP

Willie Nelsonsays he has puffedhis final joint.

The country music legend and longtime marijuana legalization advocate, still touring at 86, toldSan Antonio’s television station KSATthat for health reasons, he no longer smokes marijuana.

“I have abused my lungs quite a bit in the past, so breathing is a little more difficult these days and I have to be careful,” Nelson said in the interview.“I don’t smoke anymore. I take better care of myself today.” Nelson owns a company that sells marijuana products.

His spokeswoman, Elaine Schock, told The Associated Press in an email Wednesday that Nelson hasn’t given up cannabis, and she points out there are different ways to consume it.

“That said,” she said “Willie does what he wants, when he wants, when it comes to smoking.”

Nelson talked about his long history of smoking, saying he had “mistreated” his body since he was young,growing up in Abbott, Texas.

“I started smoking cedar bark, went from that to cigarettes to whatever,” he said. “And that almost killed me.”

It did not and Nelson, who smoked his first joint in 1954, has becomesynonymous with marijuana smoking. In August, Nelson was forced to cancel six shows on his tour due to“breathing issues.” 

Keeping his lungs healthy is paramount, especially with performing, he said.

“Your lungs are the biggest muscle you have got. So when you’re out there working, you are working out,” Nelson said.

In May, Nelson toldRolling Stonethat marijuana“saved my life, really,”

“I wouldn’t have lived 85 years if I’d have kept drinking and smoking like I was when I was 30, 40 years old. I think that weed kept me from wanting to kill people. And probably kept a lot of people from wanting to kill me, too — out there drunk, running around.”

In his KSAT interview, Nelson said he didn’t care that his health issues have been a constant source of internet speculation.

“I’m here; I’m glad to be here,” he said. “I’m lucky to be here.”

One thing though Nelson won’t be giving up is touring.

“I love the bus,” he said. “This is my home.”

Read more at usatoday.com. Contributing: Associated Press

The Latest
Mervis entered Saturday with 35 home runs this season, tied with teammate Alexander Canario for third-most in the minors this season.
Pyne threw three touchdown passes and Notre Dame finally clicked on offense in a 45-32 victory over North Carolina on Saturday.
John Park, 18, was shot in the chest Saturday in the 5600 block of North St. Louis Avenue, police and the medical examiner’s office said.
A Guardians edge that has been unmistakable throughout the season is how hard they play for their manager.
The 26-year-old was stabbed in the abdomen and taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he died, police said.