Ten Ways Cannabis Can Revive a Depressed Economy

An economic winter is coming, but don’t worry; we’ve compiled ten ways cannabis can revive a depressed economy. When many people hear “cannabis,” they may think of it as a recreational activity or a medical necessity. And it is. But it’s more than that. So while politicians will inevitably announce “stimulus” and bailouts, the real solution will come from entrepreneurs in a free market. And since Canada has already legalized cannabis, that’s one hurdle out of the way. Next, cut […]

The post Ten Ways Cannabis Can Revive a Depressed Economy appeared first on Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana | News.

If I Can’t Stop the Munchies, What Can I Eat To Stay Healthy?

Stoned snacking, especially late at night, can prove detrimental over time. For example, when I was in my early 20s, I could take down a pint of Ben & Jerry’s or a plate of buffalo chicken well into the early morning hours without feeling it in the morning. Today, when I do those things, I’m in the bathroom for the better part of the morning. Or, even worse, I’m more backed up than the Manhattan bound F train during morning rush hour. In either case, it ain’t pretty.

The long-term effects can be much worse. Unhealthy eating can lead to an array of adverse conditions, including diabetes. Daily side effects include the aforementioned digestion issues and slowed metabolism. 

From gross to potentially life threatening concerns, it’s high time you revise your munchie options. But since I’m a 36-year-old that still snacks like a child, I asked people with more control over themselves about their healthy munchie approach.

Science Behind the Munchies

Before diving into healthy snacking, let’s unpack what causes the munchies. Most know from experience that THC increases appetites. You may also know that THC binds to your body’s CB1 and CB2 receptors found throughout the brain and body. Increased hunger sensations are common during this effect. The past decade has helped us begin to better understand this reaction more. 

Somebody call the band Boston, because those hunger pangs may be more than a feeling. A 2014 mice study found that when influenced by THC, the brain’s olfactory bulb experiences an increased ability to smell food, leading to more eating. Researchers felt a similar effect occurs in humans who consume THC. 

We’ve continued to learn about cannabinoids’ influence on the brain. Additional research has shown that when cannabinoids are injected into the brain, its POMC (pro-opiomelanocortin) neurons nerve cells saw increased activity in cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1R). What’s interesting is that these cells typically produce feelings of fullness. But, as researchers noted, when triggered by cannabinoids, the cells fooled the brain’s central feeding system into thinking that it’s hungry. 

Select research has suggested that humans are hardwired to crave high-calorie food. This desire is possibly connected to early human’s lack of food security. And while some may fear packing on pounds with late night snacks, that might not be the case. There is a belief that after munchie bouts, most people won’t eat again for a prolonged period.

We’re far from finished on researching the brain-hunger-cannabis connection. Expect more research to come in the near future. 

Healthy Snacking Options

How can we satisfy the hunger feelings without putting ourselves at a higher health risk? 

Consumers and health experts provided High Times with dozens of healthy options and approaches. On the snacking front, most seem to agree that a combination of fruits, raw vegetables, nuts, seeds and low-fat dairy is the way to go. These were some of the most commonly mentioned snacks according to respondents:

  • Bananas
  • Carrots 
  • Celery   
  • Cheese sticks   
  • Fruit, nuts and dark chocolate plates
  • Fuji apples with peanut butter
  • Granola   
  • Greek yogurt 
  • Peanut butter 
  • Popcorn
  • Red peppers   
  • Smoothies   

Your options may change depending on preferences or medical conditions. Mary Pryor bases her entire diet around managing Crohn’s disease. Diagnosed in 2013, the condition compelled her to “make the strongest pivot I could do,” for her health. She dropped staples like soy, dairy, gluten, wheat, and certain fruits and vegetables as part of her change. 

She also turned to medical cannabis after a ten-year layoff. 

“If you’re smoking weed, munchies are a thing,” Pryor said.

She switched her snacking accordingly. Mangoes became a go-to. 

“Mangoes are known for enhancing your high,” said Pryor. She credits the terpene myrcene for increasing the effectiveness of the cannabis while producing pleasurable aromas and flavors.  

All-fruit options became the norm as anything artificial went into the bin. She now uses a healthy subscription service to curate monthly snacks. 

Keys To Successful Satisfying Snacking

With our brains pushing for food, it’s likely best we lean in. The key is to do so with the right foods. But sometimes, we want those snacks with empty calories, sugar or grease. Thankfully, there are several approaches to consider.

Healthy Sweet Alternatives

Samantha Ward, a fitness assistant and trainer at the European American Supplement Sciences Organization (EURASC), supports a munchie menu of fruits, veg, nuts and seeds. When someone is struggling with a sweet tooth, she recommends healthy snacks like honey and fruits. She added that people with sugar addictions may want to use Stevia or another substitute instead. 

Ward and many others recommend drinking plenty of water and eating foods rich in protein and fiber. 

“Protein and fiber can help to keep you feeling full, which can help to curb cravings,” said Ward. 

Or try drinking some water. Zack Squier, a cannabis chef and the founder of Squier’s Specialty Edibles, likes sparkling waters to feel full. He said he likes to experiment with his beverages “adding a few muddled berries or sangria-style fruit chunks to sip on with my drink.” 

Fill Your Plate

In this case, we’re talking less about physically filling your plate and more about eating something that checks all the boxes. When snacking or having a meal, make sure it fills you up. 

Jamie Nadeau, a registered dietitian and nutritionist, suggests having a variety of healthy snacks. But when you want chips or any less than ideal option, combine them with something more beneficial. 

“If you pair those chips with something with protein like a cheese stick or a Greek yogurt, you’ll find that you’ll end up eating less because you’ll be fuller, quicker,” Nadeau said. 

Fitness coach Mitch Webb offered a similar take, prioritizing protein. Compared to sugar and fat, Webb said protein is the most satiating macronutrient. 

He added that protein, “Makes you feel fuller with less food because it suppresses the hunger hormone ghrelin while boosting leptin, the hormone that tells your body it’s satiated.”

Webb said consumers can find protein in a variety of healthy options, including various meats, eggs, protein powders, nuts and seeds. 

Avoid Unhealthy Snacks Altogether

If you’re like me and can’t put down the Doritos, ice cream, soda or what have you, you may need to go cold turkey. If so, you’ll need to work on self control at home. More importantly, you’ll want to do so when buying food in stores, at restaurants or using apps like GrubHub, Instacart, etc.

“I exert all my self control at the store,” said cannabis consumer Jerry Tindall. Like many, he claimed to have “zero self control once junk food makes it home.” 

You’ll have to trial and error your way into finding self-control at the stores. You may just be able to will yourself. Or, thanks to inflation, you may just never be able to afford anything again soon. 

Carly Fisher, a cannabis consumer, author and James Beard-nominated journalist, supports having only healthy food at home to avoid temptation. Those handy in the kitchen may want to follow Fisher’s approach with some healthy prepared meals of your own. 

“I love the air fryer and instant pot because it cuts down on cooking time to make dishes that you might be too impatient to make when you’re in a haze,” said Fisher.  

Today, it’s easy enough to find healthy recipes on popular blogs and social media accounts. Pick which items please your palate and start meal prepping. Or if you’re a stoner with greasy hair and questionable tattoos like me, get stoned and then cook. You’ll feel like The Bear in no time. 

Snack Stoned Wisely

Enjoy yourself how you see fit. But be aware of the toll you may be putting on your body. The weed-alcohol comparison is played out and often overreaching. But in this case, the effects of bad late night eating can be similar to a hangover.

When you’re young, you can pound back whatever you want and barely blink the next morning. But over time, your body ages. All that junk you’ve been putting in there wears and tears the system down. Now, at 30, 40, 50-plus, those same unhealthy options are likely to bite you in the behind—and stomach, chest, legs and various other parts of your body. 

Reduce the chances of excessive wear and tear tomorrow by choosing healthy options today. 

The post If I Can’t Stop the Munchies, What Can I Eat To Stay Healthy? appeared first on High Times.

Thailand & Cannabis Tourism: The 10 things You Need to Know

Heading to Thailand for cannabis tourism? Cannabis cafes and shops have sprouted up everywhere since the government decriminalized the plant as a narcotic last year. But, like most countries embarking on cannabis legalization, there’s confusion and debate about the laws. Especially for tourists. Can you visit Thailand with the intent of being a cannabis tourist? Yes, according to the government. So long as you follow the rules. What are the rules? Thailand’s Public Health Ministry has published an English-language infographic […]

The post Thailand & Cannabis Tourism: The 10 things You Need to Know appeared first on Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana | News.

FDA Mulls Over CBD Regulation

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is apparently eyeing new regulations for certain CBD products, with an announcement from the federal agency expected in the coming months. 

The Wall Street Journal, citing agency officials, reported this week that the FDA is “studying whether legal cannabis is safe in food or supplements and plans to make recommendations for how to regulate the growing number of cannabis-derived products in the coming months.” 

“Given what we know about the safety of CBD so far, it raises concerns for FDA about whether these existing regulatory pathways for food and dietary supplements are appropriate for this substance,” Janet Woodcock, the Food and Drug Administration’s principal deputy commissioner, told the Wall Street Journal.

According to the newspaper, Woodcock has “led the agency’s efforts looking at cannabis regulation.”

Reuters reports that, “after weighing the evidence on the compound’s safety, the FDA will decide within months how to regulate legal cannabis and whether that will require new agency rules or new legislation from Congress.” 

The outlet noted that, following the Wall Street Journal’s report on the news, “shares of U.S.-listed cannabis companies were down between 5% and 9% in afternoon trade.” 

CBD products have exploded in the American marketplace over the last four years following the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized industrial hemp production. 

But the products have outpaced regulation, which has caused some state and federal officials to scramble in order to play catch up. 

Earlier this year, regulators in Idaho began enforcing a ban of CBD pet supplements, saying that the state’s “new law did not legalize hemp in every setting or product type.”

“Similarly, Idaho law does not recognize hemp as a feed or remedy ingredient. Safe levels of hemp and hemp-derived products in animal feed have not yet been established under federal or state law. As such, these products are not approved feed ingredients and cannot lawfully be added to or incorporated into commercial feed. This includes feeds, treats and remedies intended for pets, livestock, or any other animal,” the Idaho Department of Agriculture said in a memorandum. 

“As hemp manufacturing begins to take place in Idaho, ISDA is working with new hemp licensees and animal feed companies to understand what is legal in the state. Interest in hemp animal feeds and remedies has grown significantly, and these products are known to be available online and in retail stores. We recognize that some states have adopted laws and rules that allow for hemp to be included in human and animal foods,” the deparmtnet added.

The lack of regulation has resulted in some consumers being duped about the CBD products that they are buying.

A study from Johns Hopkins Medicine that was released in July found that many such products are incorrectly labeled. 

The researchers found that 18% of the products they analyzed contained 10% less CBD than what was advertised on the label, while another 58% contained 10% more CBD than what was listed. Less than a quarter of the products contained the same amount of CBD as was advertised. 

“Misleading labels can result in people using poorly regulated and expensive CBD products instead of FDA approved products that are established as safe and effective for a given health condition,” said the study’s lead author, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Tory Spindle.

“Recent research has shown that people who use CBD products containing even small amounts of THC could potentially test positive for cannabis using a conventional drug test,” Spindle added.

The post FDA Mulls Over CBD Regulation appeared first on High Times.

Trend Sees Brands Pairing Top-Shelf Weed, Fine Dining

We recently wrote about the re-emergence of the legacy weed brand Champelli, for which San Francisco’s Chronic Culture produced an elaborate 5-course Italian dinner for about 40 guests, served with hash-hole joints worth over $100. Champelli’s strain Cassis was infused into salt served with the meal.

Neil Dellacava of Chronic Culture says that events that curate weed and dining are nothing entirely new, citing for example the Cannaisseur Series by Chef Coreen Carroll, which has been running and focusing on culinary and cannabis curated events since 2015, according to their website.

That said, Dellacava sees an uptick in weed related events in general in places like California—a state lacking in legal, recreational public venues for weed consumption.  

Dellacava says that Chronic Culture, his weed event company, started doing culinary events this year, including Champelli’s recent dinner and another dinner event with the brand CAM.

Dellacava says that he plans to now start hosting these weed and cuisine events monthly. It brings together two of his interests, he says.

“I’ve always been passionate about food and weed. Since we got the office space in San Francisco with a commercial kitchen it was a no-brainer,” Dellacava said.

Culinary weed events are more of a trend now, Dellacava says, because weed brands need a way to stand out from the crowded dispensary shelves.

“As stores move more towards a grab and go model there has to be a way to have a more exclusive personal brand experience, especially for the higher priced brands going for the exclusivity model,” Dellacava said.

At the start of 2022, Emma Guzman of the indie weed brand Fidel’s started her own company called Smoke Good Eat Good, which orchestrates a high-end meal for a group of invited guests that is served with (and infused with) Fidel’s weed.

Shant Damirdjian and Emma Guzman of Fidels, courtesy of Visit Hollyweed

Fidel’s is a high-end luxury weed and fashion brand, best known for inventing the hash hole joint. Guzman says that the Smoke Good Eat Good events help her to market Fidel’s weed while creating an experience around her passions for weed and cuisine. She even sees herself expanding to include other weed brands as well.

Guzman says the business brings together two things that she’s passionate about.

“I started this company out of the passion for food and the plant. I thought, hey I can infuse my favorite foods and make it into an experience where you can smoke good while you’re eating quality food,” Guzman said.

For each event, Guzman organizes a 5-7 course meal that is served with a gift box containing a half ounce of flower and two hash holes.

“In between the courses I’ll go out and give joints while they’re waiting as well,” Guzman said.

So far this year Guzman has hosted three Smoke Good Eat Good events, the most recent being in Miami. Next year she’ll host a Spring/Summer event in Los Angeles.

Natural High Company based in Texas has been running a “Plates and Plants” dinner series that creates what they call “a multi-layered cannabis and culinary experience.” The company targets social equity and minority-owned cannabis businesses.  

“We entered the market in 2019 truly focused on education, normalization, and social equity. Introducing the dinners in 2020 was a way for us to build more community and elevate cannabis the way we see the plant,” said CEO Lori Lord.

Lord said that high-end dining experiences allow weed marketers to reach a more elite clientele.

“Curating luxury dinner experiences allows for the plant to be introduced the way the majority of the more sophisticated consumers of cannabis actually want to experience the plant, breaking the ‘hippie stoner’ stigma,” Lord said. “It allows for the plant to be showcased in an elite light.”

“I’ve always said that food, music, and sports bring people together. Now we’ve added cannabis to the mix, resulting in a very communal organic way to bring people from all walks of life together,” said Natural High Company COO Alycia Hightower.

Natural High Company, courtesy of Visit Hollyweed

Lord and Hightower most recently held a Plates and Plants dinner in Los Angeles on Juneteenth honoring Black Changemakers in Cannabis. It brought together brand leaders and community activists to smoke joints provided by brands like Maven and Clade9, and to eat a chef-curated meal. In 2023 they are also producing their festival “Eats, Beats & Bud,” and will be adding new markets to the dinner series and will be supporting other industry brand experiences through their consulting agency.

Twice this past year Los Angeles-based Bartz Barbeque teamed up with indie top-shelf brand Redline Reserve to offer “all you can eat BBQ” by about a dozen local gourmet BBQ vendors. Attendees were served a large joint containing Redline Reserve’s Super Chief strain, and had access to a dab bar by the brand Cali Blaise on site. The dinners lasted four hours and included music and entertainment.

More recently, the exotics brand The Ten Co. has been promoting their Japanese cuisine-inspired strain packaging with actual Japanese cuisine curated experiences in places like L.A. and Miami. 

The post Trend Sees Brands Pairing Top-Shelf Weed, Fine Dining appeared first on High Times.

How Popular are Cannabis Beverages in 2022

So, how popular are cannabis beverages? With just over a month left in 2022, it’s time to take a step back and analyze sales and consumer data for this product category. Using real-time data reporting from Headset, we can see how cannabis beverage sales have increased by 40% in the US and Canada. But more importantly, we can answer questions like: which beverages are the most popular? What are the consumer demographics like? And which markets are cannabis beverages the […]

The post How Popular are Cannabis Beverages in 2022 appeared first on Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana | News.

Debunking Cannabis Halloween Myths

Another Halloween requires another debunking of cannabis Halloween myths. Particularly the myth that people are handing out cannabis edibles to your children. British Columbia‘s Minister of Public Safety, Mike Farnworth, told parents to look out for legal and illegal edible products. Even though legal products are capped at 10mg and come in child-resistant packaging, Farnworth said, “legal cannabis products can still be attractive to children.” How? Legal cannabis involves rigid packaging and labelling rules to ensure children and young people […]

The post Debunking Cannabis Halloween Myths appeared first on Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana | News.

Researchers Studying Psilocybin as Treatment for Obesity

Building on the growing evidence that psilocybin has the potential to treat a host of serious mental health conditions, researchers are now studying the effects that the active component in magic mushrooms might have on obesity.

Previous research into psilocybin and other psychedelics has repeatedly shown that the drugs may be an effective treatment for mental health conditions including depression, anxiety, PTSD, and addiction. Additionally, a correlational study published last year determined that those who reported having tried a classic psychedelic drug at least once during their lifetime had a significantly lower chance of being overweight or obese.

In a recent study, scientists affiliated with the University of Copenhagen in Denmark conducted an experiment with mice to investigate the potential of psilocybin to reduce food cravings. To conduct the study, the researchers used mouse models of genetic obesity, diet-induced obesity and binge-eating disorder to investigate the effect of psilocybin on body weight and food intake.

Initial results showed that a single high dose of psilocybin or a daily microdosing did not lead to reduced body weight or less food intake among obese mice treated with the drug. Although they did not find evidence to support the hypothesis, they were encouraged by the study and urged further research.

“We were surprised to see that psilocybin did not have at least a subtle direct effect on food intake and/or body weight in genetic and diet-induced models of obesity and overeating,” study author Christoffer Clemmensen, an associate professor at the University of Copenhagen, told PsyPost. “Although we failed to discover major effects of psilocybin on mouse energy metabolism and behaviors associated with eating, we believe that there are nuances of the mode of action of psychedelics that cannot be appropriately captured in rodent models. Importantly, psilocybin was safe and had no adverse effects on the physiological parameters we tested in mice.”

Obesity is Common and Costly in the U.S.

Obesity is one the most pressing health problems in the United States, affecting nearly 42% of adults from 2017 to 2020, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The obesity prevalence was 39.8% among adults aged 20 to 39 years, 44.3% among adults aged 40 to 59 years, and 41.5% among adults aged 60 and older.

Health conditions related to obesity include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, helping to make them among the leading causes of preventable, premature death. The annual estimated medical costs of obesity totaled approximately $173 billion in 2019, adding about $1,861 to the medical costs for each person with obesity.

“Perhaps surprisingly, obesity is a rather treatment resistant disease that shares neuropathological similarities to mental disorders, such as addiction,” said Clemmensen.

“Dysfunctions in homeostatic and reward circuitry can lead to ‘relapse’ in people with obesity, making it difficult to adhere to lifestyle and even drug interventions. Given that psychedelics are thought to enhance the plasticity of neural circuits, it may be that when combined with behavioural therapy, psychedelics might be powerful tools for ‘resetting’ long-held compulsive behaviors. Further, classic psychedelics act on the serotonergic system, and could have a direct effect on food intake by broad activation of serotonin (5-HT) receptors, emphasizing their potential benefits for obesity.”

The researchers noted that despite their value to scientific research, mouse models are not a perfect substitute for human subjects and encouraged further study into the potential of psilocybin to affect food intake and weight.

“The main caveat is translation,” Clemmensen said. “Although animal models in general have been invaluable for neuroscience and metabolism research they might be inappropriate for testing health benefits of psychedelics.”

“I remain excited about this topic, psychedelics for treatment of obesity and eating disorders and I think we should start considering what sub-groups of patients could benefit from this drug class,” he added.

The study, “Acute and long-term effects of psilocybin on energy balance and feeding behavior in mice,” was published last month by the peer-reviewed journal Translational Psychiatry.

The post Researchers Studying Psilocybin as Treatment for Obesity appeared first on High Times.

Five Cannabis Strains to Pair with Ze Bugs

Uh, excuse me? Five cannabis strains to pair with “ze bugs?” What exactly does that mean? When it comes to food and cannabis, a great pairing can make all the difference. Strains like Mandarin Haze can make your Orange Teriyaki Chicken even more delicious. A Girl Scout Cookie strain goes great with… you guessed it, […]

The post Five Cannabis Strains to Pair with Ze Bugs appeared first on Cannabis News, Lifestyle – Headlines, Videos & Cooking.

Microdosing Cannabis – The Keurig of Concentrates

Is microdosing cannabis even a thing? Who wants a single milligram of THC? The THC limit on edibles and concentrates is a common complaint with Canadian legalization. If anything, consumers wish for higher THC concentrations. But there is a market for microdosing cannabis. And a Toronto-based company is filling that niche. Djot, a division of […]

The post Microdosing Cannabis – The Keurig of Concentrates appeared first on Cannabis News, Lifestyle – Headlines, Videos & Cooking.