Because CBD and THC are so closely related, many people have the preconceived notion that CBD will affect them the same way THC does. Although these two cannabinoids do share many features, not all of their effects are identical. Take for instance, how each cannabinoid affects the appetite. Most of us know that THC gives you the “munchies,” but what about CBD? Does CBD make you hungry? The short answer is no, CBD will not drive your hunger like THC, but CBD may allow your natural appetite to thrive. What’s the difference you may ask? Allow us to explain.
Does CBD Make You Hungry?
Like we just mentioned, CBD won’t directly affect your hunger, but that doesn’t mean it can’t help you eat if your appetite is lacking or absent. CBD oil may help promote healthy digestion, and it might ease other problems that can affect your appetite. You can think of CBD as an appetite regulator; in comparison, THC is more like an appetite stimulator.
Several years ago, gut health wasn’t a very important or popular issue; no one talked about it much. Today, most of us are aware that there are many factors involved with our appetite and overall gut health. For example, stress, anxiety, discomfort, nausea, or tension can negatively affect one’s appetite. Luckily we all have an endocannabinoid system (ECS) to help regulate these appetite suppressing issues.
Did you know your body is full of special cannabinoid receptors that the ECS uses to monitor and govern many crucial mechanisms? The ECS oversees many important systems like our cardiovascular, nervous, and immune. What does this have to do with appetite? Well, one other system the ECS regulates is your digestive system. When your ECS is working correctly, it promotes healthy digestion, which allows hunger to flourish.
However, if your ECS is not functioning properly, many problems can arise, including digestive issues. Poor digestion or digestive issues can affect the appetite negatively. CBD works by interacting with our ECS (via cannabinoid receptors) and possibly promoting the functionality of it. So, when you think about it, CBD won’t make you hungry, but it may be able to influence the system that helps governs your appetite.
How Does CBD Affect the Appetite?
Several people can attest to the many benefits they experience from CBD. However, there’s still a lot we don’t know about CBD’s full effects on an individual’s appetite. Considering the lack of research and how complex appetite is, it’s difficult to say if, or how, CBD affects hunger.
What we do know is that CBD has made a reputation around supporting balance or homeostasis within the ECS. This equilibrium happens because of the way different enzymes interact with cannabinoid receptors in the system. As we just learned, a healthy ECS promotes balance in the digestive system.
CBD & Nausea
Over 700 reasons cause us to get nauseous and each of them can disrupt the appetite and block hunger. Most anti-nausea medicines work by interacting with certain receptors in the GI tract and brain. Many popular options specifically target receptors that produce and bind with the neurotransmitter serotonin. These types of antiemetics work by blocking the nauseating signal from serotonin release. CBD also interacts with serotonin releasing receptors, and some preliminary studies indicate that CBD may ease queasiness. When you feel nauseous, it is hard to eat, but once you get rid of nausea, it allows your hunger to prevail.
CBD & Tension
Many advocates claim that CBD does wonders for relieving tensions. People with digestive issues commonly experience tension, bloating, and swelling in the stomach. Often these issues are caused by illness or pent up stress and anxiety. If you ingest CBD, whether it’s a full-spectrum CBD oil or CBD edible, it may promote calmness throughout the mind and body. A relaxed stomach provides a good environment to aid proper digestion. Maintaining good gut health is vital since it creates a ripple effect that can help in several other areas.
Several studies suggest CBD acts as a powerful antioxidant. When we digest food, our body creates free radicals that can be harmful. Antioxidants help neutralize these free radicals, delaying and stopping further damage to the cells. Natural antioxidants help promote healthy digestion and healthier cells, which may result in a stronger gut.
The role CBD plays in appetite is complex. However, many positive aspects can come from incorporating CBD into your everyday diet. Full spectrum CBD oils will bring the most benefits because they contain the most cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.
Do All CBD Products Affect Your Appetite?
CBD’s presence has taken the public by storm. Along with its popularity, there comes a common conjecture that CBD makes you hungry. Truthfully, not all CBD products act the same, and some will have little to no effect on the stomach.
Take for instance, topical CBD products, since these do not enter the stomach or even the bloodstream for that matter they probably won’t have much of an effect on hunger. Topical CBD applications are used to target sore areas and minor skin irritations.
We already know that CBD and THC interact with the body in different ways. Although they both come in contact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS), they each have unique ways of doing so. THC directly activates the CB1 receptor, which is linked to mood and appetite, but CBD does not directly interact with that same receptor.
In part, this is why the best CBD products contain minuscule amounts of THC in them. A “full spectrum” or “complete spectrum” CBD product can contain up to 0.3% THC. This amount is far too little to produce psychoactive effects, but it is enough to interact with your ECS, thus providing you with other effects that THC is valued for.
Full spectrum products are viewed by many as superior to broad-spectrum and isolate products. Mainly because full spectrum CBD oil offers the most cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. Therefore they should provide the most benefits.
What CBD Product Best Helps the Appetite?
We already know that using CBD topically will not affect your appetite or make you hungry. But, what about the other CBD applications? How does inhaling or ingesting CBD affect the appetite? Will any of these CBD products make you hungry?
Inhaling CBD brings instant relief to the body (stomach included). The effects of smoking or vaping CBD are short-lived, but they kick in the quickest. When you inhale CBD, it bypasses your digestive system and goes straight from your lungs to your bloodstream.
Ingesting CBD is probably the best option since it actually releases CBD in the digestive tract. Ingesting CBD also offers the most extended effects as it slowly releases as it travels through the stomach to the liver and bloodstream.
A full-spectrum CBD oil will provide maximum relief because it combines all the elements of the plant. When you combine cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids together, they work synergistically to create the “entourage effect”. This term means the effects of all the elements combined are stronger than if you took them individually.
How Much CBD Should You Take?
When it comes to CBD making you hungry, things tend to get a bit complex. So, it’s not precisely how much CBD you should take; it’s more about how it personally affects you. Since everyone’s body and metabolism work differently, each person will require their own optimal dose of CBD to get the best personal results.
CBD dosage is usually based on body weight and personal preference. To provide maximum benefits, some people may require more or less CBD than others. It is best to start with the minimum dose and gradually, over time, work your way up until the desired effects are reached.
For more information regarding CBD dosage suggestions and tips on finding your "optimal dose," check out our dosage page.
Over time, an individual can make several assumptions about CBD’s role in their overall wellness, appetite included. Even though results will vary from person to person, the best thing to do to reap all the potential benefits of CBD is to obtain products from a trusted retailer. Reputable brands like Cheef Botanicals can further ensure you will feel and experience more of CBD’s benefits.
Hopefully, one day we will know the full effects CBD flower and cannabis has on the appetite. As for what we do know about cannabis and the appetite, remember CBD acts as an appetite regulator, and THC acts as an appetite stimulator. Whether used separately or together, they may provide some tremendous effects on hunger.