If you’re an avid weed connoisseur, you might be noticing that it takes more to get your engine revving. (Or to shut it down, as it were.)
It’s not your imagination. You’re just experiencing cannabis tolerance in your body.
And it’s very real.
What Is Cannabis Tolerance?
Well, it’s exactly what it says. Your body is literally learning to tolerate THC and it, therefore, takes larger amounts of it to feel its impact.
It works like this. THC attaches to the CB1 receptors in our endocannabinoid systems. These receptors aren’t THC exclusive and accept a variety of neurotransmitters – including those which affect sleep, appetite, stress, and pain. Thus, when THC gets on board, you not only feel high, but you’re impacted by the peripheral effects of those other neurotransmitters bonding.
The body is self-regulating though and will always try to seek homeostasis. So when the system is exposed to THC with regularity or over prolonged periods, the brain jumps in to retract and desensitize the CB1 receptors. The end game? A higher cannabis tolerance.
How It Differs Other Drug Tolerances
With regular use, the body develops a tolerance to any drug that has mind-altering effects. While the impact of all drugs is based to some extent on genetic predisposition, cannabis tolerance is unique beyond that.
Because THC impacts the endocannabinoid system, it’s not dependent on the size of a person. Thus, there’s not a clear correlation between cannabis tolerance and your body weight. So a 280-pound body builder can get as high as (or higher than) a100-pound jockey on the same amount of THC. That’s why the battle cry for cannabis newbies is to go ‘low and slow’.
The Pros and Cons of Cannabis Tolerance
There are some good reasons to build cannabis tolerance.
On the medical side, patients who use cannabis for alleviating pain, inflammation, or cancer symptoms benefit from higher doses of cannabinoids. They’re able to experience the benefits of said cannabinoids without intoxication. This is also useful in avoiding the use of opioids.
Beyond that though, cannabis tolerance is generally a drag. Not only does it diminish the high, but you can no longer depend on your tried-and-true product. That means you have to spend more money trying to find that high.
Plus, there’s also the distinct possibility that in your search for the right amount of THC, you’ll accidentally take too much. This can produce anxiety and panic attacks.
So what’s a person to do?
Try a Cannabis Detox
A cannabis detox is a great way to reset the system. And that means no THC for a while.
Right out of the gate, detox is going to be more effective if you’re not retaining water. Unfortunately, foods high in delicious ingredients such as sugar, fat, and sodium do just that. They also slow your metabolism.
What will help though is a diet that’s rich in hydrating foods like fruits, veggies, lean meats, and leafy greens. In fact, greens can increase your metabolism and help to flush out your system faster.
Be sure to add in some fiber too. The best sources are beans, peanuts, legumes, and whole grains. These are classic detox foods that will also help to stabilize your mood and lend to better sleep. (This is especially key if you’re currently using THC to help you sleep.)
Drink plenty of water and keep your body moving with exercise. And if you’ve wanted to explore meditation, this could be a good time. Schedule some relaxing baths, time with friends, walks in nature, strumming your guitar, or whatever activities you enjoy.
Soon enough, you’ll be able to start enjoying cannabis again as you did in the past.
Want More Great Cannabis Tips?
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