Marijuana is known to give munchies, but does Cannabidiol (CBD) do the same? Does it affect someone’s hunger, just like how smoking and ingesting cannabis gives you the munchies?
Perhaps you’ve also wondered if there is a correlation between the two. Could a trend toward CBD-infused food lead to weight gain? What about the people who have health conditions like HIV/AIDS, cancer, depression, and eating disorders, that restrict them from gaining weight? This article aims to provide answers to these questions.
Understanding the Munchies
Before we can answer the questions above, first, we need to understand how CBD works.
The Cannabis plant contains over 100 cannabinoids, but the therapeutic and psychoactive effects of a majority of them are still unknown. The two most studied cannabinoids are tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the primary psychoactive cannabinoid, and CBD as we know it. The main difference between the two is that THC makes you high, while CBD does not. And, as it turns out, both of them affect appetite in different ways.
Munchies in THC vs. CBD
THC creates the well-known munchies or cravings for sweet and fatty food via different mechanisms. THC does that by increasing the hormone ghrelin, the one causing you to be hungry. If you have an empty stomach, the more ghrelin hormone you produce. It tells your brain to generate the sensation of hunger, with you wanting to satisfy it. Still, THC can also trigger the production of ghrelin even when your stomach isn’t empty.
THC also hits a part of the brain that controls hunger. Its hunger effects are mediated by CB1 receptors in the brain involved in appetite control. Moreover, THC also boosts dopamine or the feel-good chemical in the brain. THC raises your sense of smell and taste, making you more inclined to eat and giving you more pleasure from doing it.
On the other hand, CBD does not cause the munchies, but it may boost your appetite differently when added to food and drinks or taken as a medicine. CBD can help relieve nausea, calm your nervous system and your digestive tract. When you feel less nauseated, you may eat more. CBD also suppresses pain, and when you feel less pain, you may also have a better appetite. That is why CBD is often used by people with chronic pain, cancer, and other medical issues.
Are Food Trend Experts Onto Something?
Due to the research that found the potential use of THC and CBD in appetite, it can be marketed and used in products in the future. Experts have tapped on the possibility of using THC’s hunger-boosting effect for weight-loss efforts. Since researchers have found out how cannabis can increase appetite, there is a possibility for a product that can reduce appetite, too. Researchers are now investigating how to reduce, instead of increasing, appetite using CB1 receptors.
To sum up, CBD does not give you the munchies, but it can affect your appetite differently. So, you can still enjoy your CBD-infused beer or CBD-infused sweets and pastries without the fear of getting cravings. But remember that you could still gain weight from the beer, pastries, and sweets themselves.
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