Why Does Marijuana Make You Hungry

Whether you’re a seasoned marijuana user or considering trying it for the first time, you’ve likely heard about its effect on your appetite. For some people, this side effect means they expect to snack more than usual. Others worry about becoming so hungry that they eat too much.

Knowing the answer to “Why does marijuana make you hungry?” may ease your worries. Keep reading below for more insight from Cannabis and Glass, Spokane’s largest dispensaries!

The Impact of Marijuana on Your Appetite

Several factors are at play when answering the question, “Why does marijuana make you feel hungry?”

Endocannabinoid System

The biggest reason you feel hungry when using marijuana is its effect on your endocannabinoid system (ECS), which regulates your appetite (among other things). The ECS has cannabinoid receptors that activate when they sense THC, an active ingredient in cannabis.



When THC stimulates the ECS receptors, it increases your hunger levels. THC also increases levels of ghrelin, a hunger hormone that signals the brain when you’re hungry. THC can even make food taste better, which tricks your brain into thinking you’re hungrier than you are.

CBD, another cannabinoid, may reduce your appetite. If you want to avoid feeling hungry after consuming cannabis, look for products that have higher levels of CBD and lower levels of THC.

Dopamine Release

You might know cannabis releases dopamine, but did you know this also factors into the hunger side effect?

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that signals feelings of pleasure to your brain. This makes eating, an activity that many already enjoy, even more pleasurable. It also relaxes you, making you more likely to give in to cravings for things like junk food.

The Impact of an Increased Appetite

The Impact of an Increased Appetite from canabis

An increased appetite isn’t an inherently bad thing. It can be useful to a variety of people. Cancer patients on chemotherapy, for example, experience nausea and loss of appetite. Cannabis is a great way to increase their appetite and alleviate their nausea to get more nutrients into their bodies.

Similarly, cannabis helps HIV and AIDS patients eat and keep up their strength. Some doctors even prescribe dronabinol for this purpose, which contains a form of THC.

Of course, an increased appetite isn’t beneficial if you’re on a weight-loss journey or eating healthy as a personal goal. Gaining weight is a real possibility, depending on how often you use cannabis and give in to your cravings.

However, studies find that, on average, cannabis users have a lower weight and body mass index (BMI). Could this be due to the strains they smoke? The answer to “can certain cannabis strains reduce obesity” might surprise you!

Tips for Managing Your Appetite While Using Cannabis

If answering “Why does marijuana make you hungry?” didn’t help, having strategies to manage your appetite while using cannabis might.

Put Away the Junk Food

no junk food

Even when you’re not under the influence, you likely know that when you have a bag of chips in front of you, it’s hard to stop eating once you start. When you’re more relaxed, you have lower inhibitions. Putting away your junk food and stocking your home full of healthy foods will keep you from overindulging in unhealthy alternatives.

Stay Hydrated

Keeping yourself hydrated when using cannabis can help you beat cravings, especially if you drink flavored water to satisfy your sweet tooth. Keeping your home stocked with water you can easily access is always a good idea.

Consider the Type of Cannabis

Trying different types of cannabis can help you avoid an increased appetite. Some strains of cannabis have less of an effect on your appetite than others, especially when they contain lower levels of THC.

Visit Cannabis & Glass for All Your Cannabis Needs

At Cannabis & Glass, we’re ready to answer all your questions, including “Why does marijuana make you hungry?” We provide excellent service and quality cannabis to our customers at affordable prices.

Cannabis & Glass is the best dispensary in Eastern Washington, with locations in Spokane, Spokane Valley, and Liberty Lake. Before you stop by our dispensary, you can view our menu options online!