While cannabis has long been known for its appetite inducing effects, research is now indicating that it can actually helps with weight loss, can lower BMI and reduce obesity. In fact, states with medical cannabis laws have even seen a 2-6 percent reduction in obesity rates.
So how does cannabis pull off this weight loss trick? And more importantly, how can we harness its power for our own weight loss goals?
Cannabis works to help with weight loss in a few ways. For one, some types of cannabis have special terpenes or cannabinoids that actually suppress appetite.
Cannabis and weight loss
THCV, for example, is a cannabinoid known for its appetite suppressing power. Rather than giving you the munchies, strains high in THCV tend to stave off your appetite. The terpene Humulene has a similar appetite suppressing effect. So those seeking to lower their daily caloric intake should check out strains high in THCV, Humulene or both.
THCV is more common in sativa dominant strains, so try high THCV strains for a more energetic option. Strains like Doug’s Varin and Pineapple Purps have been specifically bred to have incredibly high percentages of THCV. Doug’s Varin has the highest THCV levels with a 1:1 ratio of THC to THCV. If you are looking for a more sedative effect, try high humulene strains like Tahoe OG and Master Kush. For a hybrid with relatively high levels of both try Cherry Pie.
And what about THC? Most of these strains still have high levels of the infamous cannabinoid THC. You might think you should avoid THC because it is the cannabinoid known to induce appetite, but THC has its own weight-loss properties. A recent animal study showed that THC can actually reduce weight gain when eating a high-fat diet. The researchers found that obese mice when fed a high-fat diet and cannabis, had reduced weight-gain compared to the mice fed the high-fat diet alone. So even if THC gives you the munchies, you won’t gain the same weight that a non-cannabis user would.
This same study also suggests that taking cannabis orally might be especially helpful to access the weight-loss properties of THC. Amazingly, the THC was able to alter the gut microbiota of obese mice, transforming it back into a microbiota that resembled the healthy lean mice.
Interestingly, the effects didn’t hold for mice who were not obese. Lean cannabis using mice did not experience this change. This is great news because it means that cannabis can’t be abused by those looking to lose unhealthy amounts of weight. You won’t waste away to nothing from using cannabis, but you can use it to help bring an unhealthy weight back down.
Do you use cannabis to control your weight? Tell us how below.