Whether you’re new to cannabis or you’re a frequent flyer, you probably are familiar with THC. But do you really know everything that it does? It’s the compound in the cannabis plant responsible for getting you high, but there’s more to THC than that. Let’s take a closer look at some varied THC effects on the body.
What Is THC?
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is one of the more than 120 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. When you use cannabis, THC interacts with your endocannabinoid system and attaches to cannabinoid (CB) receptors in your body. This triggers numerous effects, but it’s best known for producing the euphoric high most people associate with cannabis.
How Does THC Get You High?
Most people know that THC gets you high, but how it happens exactly isn’t common knowledge. As explained above, THC binds to the CB receptors. When it does, it unlocks various effects — including the patent high.
THC and other cannabinoids mimic natural endocannabinoids made within your body. As far as experts have figured out, your body makes two: anandamide and 2AG.
Perhaps you’ve heard of the runner’s high. This is the wave of euphoria that occurs after a good jog. The feeling occurs as a result of anandamide binding with your CB receptors. THC mimics this effect, but it often creates a high that’s much more potent.
What Are Some Other Known Effects of THC?
The feeling of being high is only one of many THC effects on the body. When the cannabinoid binds with your CB receptors, it introduces you to numerous benefits.
One of the main reasons people seek cannabis for medical use is to help treat pain. Some studies show that THC activates certain pathways in your central nervous system that block pain signals. While cannabis doesn’t eliminate pain, it does make it much more bearable.
Sleep Onset and Duration
If you’ve ever used cannabis before, you’re probably familiar with the relaxing effects of certain strains. They make you feel calm, at ease, and sleepy. THC is a big player in these effects. Some studies show that THC can help insomniacs to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer, making it easier to get the quality sleep you’ve been missing.
THC can provide an appetite boost that makes it easier for people to take in the nutrients they need to survive and remain healthy. The benefit is particularly useful for those undergoing cancer treatment and those with medical conditions that interfere with natural appetite.
Using cannabis may trigger the production of ghrelin, the hunger hormone. It also makes food smell and taste better, which makes it easier for you to eat. While this effect is often known as “the munchies,” it can be a significant benefit for those who have difficulty eating.
How Can You Properly Harness THC Effects on the Body?
THC gets you high, but it also provides a substantial number of other benefits. It can help you manage pain, anxiety, stress, insomnia, and more.
With a better understanding of THC, you can find products that best fit your needs. Before purchasing a cannabis product, read up on THC and ask knowledgeable budtenders at your local legal dispensary for advice.