Tuesday, May 18

4/20: Why are those who smoke marijuana later so hungry?


THC lodges directly in the area of ​​the brain that influences appetite and prompts us to eat.

Foto:
Archivo / Shutterstock

We all know that one of the most popular consequences of smoking or eating marijuana is that it tends to activate certain uncontrollable cravings to eat and in fact they are typically referred to as “cannabis munchies”. The first thing we have to say is that for a long time fans and doctors know that smoking marijuana increases your appetite. The rest is history, since for years various scientists have wondered about the exact cause that unleashes a voracious hunger in recurrent marijuana users. Today we know that it is directly related to the effects caused by active ingredient of cannabis: tetrahydrocannabinol, also popularly known as THC in the brain.

THC is responsible for the “euphoria” that many people experience when using cannabis. It is also the cause of the increase in cravings for “calorie foods” that people experience when they smoke or eat it. The brain is divided into regions: some areas control our mood, while others influence our appetite and cause us to eat or stop eating. It is known that every time we consume a drug it is distributed throughout the body, specifically THC enters the areas of the brain that affect mood and stimulate euphoria. That is why when THC reaches the area of ​​the brain that influences appetite and encourages us to eat, in most cases in excess and foods rich in carbohydrates, fats, sodium and sugars.

The truth is the topic of cannabis is hotter than ever. Currently we know that beyond the typical recreational effects, it is a plant that offers great medicinal benefits; It is not for nothing that many interesting research papers have come to light in this regard. There is an article published in the journal Nature Neuroscience, in which researchers dThey found that cannabis tricks the brain into thinking we’re very hungry, even when we’re full. The group of scientists stated that they were surprised to find that The neurons responsible for controlling our level of satiety, with the consumption of marijuana were activated and promoted an increase in hunger. Based on this, they demonstrated that marijuana is associated with a increased release of the hormone ghrelin, which stimulates hunger.

Cannabis tricks the system central feeding of the brain. And the process is less complicated than we might think at first: the human brain. produces its own cannabinoids which are lipids that help control appetite, mood, memory and the reception of pain. Scientific research has revealed THC stimulates the endocannabinoid system, a complex area of ​​the brain that regulates eating behavior and energy balance and thus often causes irregularities in normal eating cycles. Furthermore, Horvath’s lab found in previous studies that cannabis also plays with cannabinoid receptors in the olfactory bulb, which not only makes food smell and taste more intense, but also affects how much we eat.

But that’s not all THC is not only involved in the release of the hunger hormone, also increases dopamine release and this is how increases the pleasure of eating. It is well known that dopamine is a chemical in the brain that helps control the reward and pleasure centers, therefore it is often related to positive effects to reduce inhibitions. In a way, even though people know what to eat to stay healthy, marijuana causes inhibitions to decrease and it is very normal for them to end up complying with any junk food temptation.

In addition, experts have verified that the effects they are intensified in those who have a few extra kilos The reason? In people who are overweight and obese, the dopamine system in the brain is activated with greater intensity. Also various nutritionists focused on creating healthy habits, confirm that it is a fact that marijuana increases appetite and affects weight. Many people often justify their consumption to “relax” and combat stress, depression and anxiety, however we cannot deny that there is a fine line that will eventually lead to an increase in the intake of caloric and unhealthy foods.

Last but not least it is worth mentioning that Marijuana use in food poses an even greater challengesince edibles can aggravate the effects of THC on appetite and weight. Such is the case of the most popular cannabis products such as cookies, brownies and candies, which not only provide calories and can thus lead to weight gain. PThey can cause spikes and drops in blood sugar, which can increase cravings more intensely.

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