As a derivative of the cannabis plant, marijuana is a drug with medicinal properties echoing throughout history. It hosts a myriad of effects on the human body, which are then used to treat certain conditions that impair one’s health. One of these major health implications is weight loss as a result of sickness.

Weight loss can be a serious issue. Being underweight as a result of deprivation of nutrients or inability to eat properly results to a reduced quality of life, a sickly disposition, and general weakness. This can even lead to death. Towards that end, medical cannabis (marijuana) can effectively promote weight gain – mostly by stimulating appetite and the desire to appreciate the flavor of food.

. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), one of the more well-known compounds, makes a person feel ‘high’ as well as increases appetite. This compound has led people to associating marijuana usage to the phenomenon known as ‘the munchies’ – a belief that one gains an impulse to eat junk foods and therefore, put on weight more quickly than those who don’t use the drug.

Recent studies have debunked this. A section in the International Journal of Epidemiology published in March 16, 2019 found people who used marijuana put on less weight, on average, than those who didn’t use cannabis products over a three-year time frame – everyone in the study gained weight, but those who ingested marijuana gained two pounds less. Coincidentally, a prior study by the American Diabeters Association accounts that cannabis users have a high percentage of abdominal visceral fat and increased insulin resistance. Strains of cannabis with high to moderately high THC compounds are more likely to trigger weight gain.

THC’s ability to increase feeding behavior is a considerable help to those suffering from life-threatening illnesses (this includes cancer and HIV/AIDs, among others). This appetite stimulation doesn’t translate towards immediate weight gain – but an improvement on the wasting away of bodily nutrition due to sickness. Users will be reminded to keep an eye on their intake of the drug to make sure the THC won’t influence them to eat more than intended.

For people who are to use marijuana to regain lost weight, it is suggested to have a doctor’s prescription prior to drug purchase. This is to ensure that the need to use the drug is reinforced by medical assessment from a professional. It is then recommended to use cannabis strains with high THC to stimulate appetite, then strains with CBD (cannabidiol) to counteract  – it motivates a person into doing a task at hand such as repetitive cardio exercises to stay healthy and fit. Intake is usually via smoke, vapor, a brownie or lollipop, skin lotion or cream, oil, spray, and oral drops.

While the promises of helpful effects are high, one should remain cautious while using medical marijuana. Certain side effects can become health complications if the person using it is caught unaware. In addition, individuals are discouraged from obtaining the drug from any registered dispensary – or using it – without proper guidance from a physician. Regulation is important in staying happy and healthy.

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