By Leslie Mcmann, Mashed on May 21, 2023
When it comes to consuming marijuana, one of the most common side effects is the “munchies.” The munchies refer to the increase in appetite that often happens after consuming cannabis. While the phenomenon is well-known, the science behind it is not as well-understood. In this article, we will explore why marijuana causes the munchies — and what happens in the body to produce this effect.
First, it is important to understand that the munchies are caused by THC, the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana. THC interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which is responsible for regulating appetite, mood, and other physiological processes. Studies have shown that THC activates certain neurons in the hypothalamus, a region of the brain crucial in regulating appetite. Specifically, THC activates neurons that produce a hormone called ghrelin, which is known to stimulate hunger.
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