Does CBD Make You Hungry?

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Does CBD Make You Hungry?

Does CBD Make You Hungry?

Worried about what effect taking CBD may have on your appetite? Scared of becoming a slave to crisps, pizza, and chocolate? Well don’t worry, you’re not alone!

One of the most frequent questions we are asked is whether taking hemp supplements will to lead to the famous ‘munchies’ associated with regular cannabis users.

No doubt you know the character from countless examples in movies and so forth. The typically long-haired guy wearing an obscure metal band T-shirt blazing away next to a pile of empty junk food containers…

Well, in all seriousness, it’s a valid question as CBD is well known to have zero physiological side effects thanks to being naturally benign.

But could it cause a psychological impulse to goggle down sweet and fatty foods? Let’s see what science has to say.

Understanding Cannabinoids

Marijuana is known to contain well over 100 various cannabinoids, of which THC (the one that gets you high) and various forms of CBD make up the majority. Note that the oils/liquids that we enjoy have the THC removed for legal and practical reasons – only products containing less than 0.2% THC are legal in the UK.

The question is how these various cannabinoids bind with our body’s endocannabinoid system (yes we all have one!).

Our system is based upon multiple receptors that are found throughout the body from head to foot. When you ingest a supplement the theory is that it binds to these receptors and causes all sorts of physiological effects within the body. The effect of this depends on where there’s a deficiency and could influence anything from mood through to reducing inflammation.

Scientific understanding of exactly how these processes work is dim at best – largely because it has only recently become a focus of research.

One aspect of research which is ahead of the rest has focused primarily on the CB1 receptors and how taking hemp/marijuana may stimulate ghrelin – often regarded as the ‘hunger hormone’.

Generally, this is found within the brain and digestive tract which when released stimulates the desire to eat and in larger quantities prompts a desire for fat and sugar. An even more troublesome aspect is that it also encourages the body to store fat.

It’s believed that THC is the cannabinoid that’s mostly responsible for stimulating the appetite and releasing this excess ghrelin. Considering that all but a trace of this is removed during the manufacture of CBD products, it should mean that the munchies will not occur.

Will Using CBD Products Make Me Extra Hungry?

It’s highly unlikely that you will experience anything close to the munchies compared to regular cannabis users who intake large quantities of hunger promoting ghrelin.

That being said, by far the most overwhelming research into cannabinoids has been focused on psychoactive THC – which is why we still don’t know much about how CBD ‘works’. Remember that there are several dozen other cannabinoids which have barely been examined at all.

It’s important with all aspects of CBD to remember that people are physiologically different. Some people are simply far more ‘receptive’ to cannabinoids than others, which may go some way towards explaining why a very small number of CBD users report experiencing enhanced hunger.

Whether or not the tiny UK legal limit of 0.2% is really enough to stimulate this hunger is seriously open to debate, especially considering that the vast majority of products on the market contain far less than that amount.

Mr Bean Eating

One thing’s for sure – you’re not going to be as hungry as Mr Bean here!

I’m Using CBD – So Why Do I Feel Hungry?

Of course, there could be many other reasons why people are experiencing a more stimulated appetite. Anxiety, stress and all sorts of other conditions are well known to have hunger-pangs as one of their symptoms.

One aspect that may potentially explain why a few CBD users experience such symptoms could relate to the type of CBD extract that they’re taking.

‘Isolate’ CBD is where the manufacturer has taken extra measures to eliminate as much THC as possible from their product – often destroying the vast majority of other cannabinoids in the process.

On the other hand, ‘Full Spectrum’ CBD products look to retain as many of those dozens of additional cannabinoids during extraction as they are thought to aid the efficiency of CBD in absorbing effectively into the body.

It’s an interesting theory, but remember that full spectrum CBD must still fall within the legal THC limits – and once again – usually contains way below that threshold.

The Last Word

Speaking purely from anecdote, we are unaware of anyone who has really experienced munchies that can be explained by using CBD.