As the legal landscape surrounding marijuana continues to evolve, more and more people are curious about trying weed in its various forms. And while smoking or vaping weed is still the most popular way to consume it, eating weed edibles is a close second.
But what exactly happens to your body when you eat weed edibles? Here’s a look at the science behind what happens when you consume weed edibles, from taking your first bite to the peak of the experience and beyond.
What Are Edibles?
Edibles are food items that have been infused with THC, the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana. THC-infused edibles can take many forms, including baked goods, candies, chocolates, and gummies.
But while the term “edibles” might conjure up images of pot brownies or other sugary snacks, not all edibles are sweet. Weed-infused savory snacks are becoming increasingly popular as more people seek alternative ways to consume THC.
It’s also important to differentiate between homemade edibles and store-bought edibles. Homemade edibles are typically made by infusing THC into butter or oil, which is then used to prepare various recipes. On the other hand, professional manufacturers make store-bought edibles with access to high-quality weed extracts. They use solvents like CO2 or ethanol to remove the THC from the plant material. This THC-rich extract is then added to the edibles in a controlled manner.
The result is a far more potent and consistent product in terms of THC content than homemade edibles. Homemade edibles are often less potent and more unpredictable in terms of their effects.
How Do Edibles Work?
THC is absorbed into the body differently when it’s eaten instead of smoked. When you smoke or vape weed, THC enters your bloodstream directly and makes its way to your brain, where it binds to receptors and produces the psychoactive effects associated with being high.
However, when you eat weed edibles, the process is a bit different. THC from weed edibles has to go through your digestive system before entering your bloodstream. This is because your stomach acid breaks down some of the THC. So as the edibles make their way through your intestines, more THC is absorbed into the bloodstream.
THC eventually makes its way to the liver, where it’s metabolized into a compound called 11-hydroxy-THC, which is more potent than THC and crosses the blood-brain barrier more easily.
The metabolite goes to your heart from the liver, which then pumps it into the brain. The brain has a higher concentration of cannabinoid receptors than any other organ in the body, which is why THC has such potent effects when it reaches the brain.
The activity of brain cells changes when cannabinoids flood your brain. And as a result, so does the way you feel, depending on which part of the brain is affected.
How Long Does It Take for Weed Edibles to Kick In?
This process can take anywhere from two hours to three hours, depending on several factors such as:
- How much food you had eaten before taking the edibles: If you take an edible on an empty stomach, it will likely kick in quicker than if you had taken it after a big meal.
- How active you are: If you’re moving around a lot, your body will metabolize THC more quickly than sitting or lying down.
- How strong the weed edible is: The THC content of weed edibles can vary widely, from 10 milligrams to 100 milligrams or more.
- How fast your metabolism is: Some people have a faster metabolism than others, so their bodies can process food (and weed edibles) more quickly.
Peak levels of THC in the blood are usually reached within six hours of eating weed edibles.
What Are the Effects of Weed Edibles?
The effects of weed edibles can vary depending on many factors. Including your tolerance to THC, the amount of THC in the edible, and your metabolism.
However, you can expect to feel more relaxed and mellow when you eat weed edibles. Some people also report feeling giggly or happy. Other common effects of weed edibles include increased appetite, dry mouth, and red eyes.
People may also experience paranoia or anxiety when they eat weed edibles in some cases. But, again, this is more likely to happen if you’re new to THC or consume too much THC.
If you do experience any negative effects from weed edibles, don’t worry. They should subside within a few hours.
What Happens After the Effects of Weed Edibles Wear Off?
Once the effects of weed edibles have worn off, you may feel tired or sleepy. If you’ve consumed a large amount of THC, you may also feel groggy the next day.
In general, however, the effects of weed edibles are not long-lasting and should subside within a day or so.
How To Enjoy Edibles Safely And Legally
It would be best always to use safe products and doses when using cannabis. Many people use medical cannabis to relieve symptoms of various conditions. It is crucial to get a prescription from a licensed medical practitioner to know the correct dose for your particular need.
If you are new to cannabis, it is best to start with a minimal dose and increase it gradually as needed. It is also essential to be aware of the legal status of cannabis in your area.
In some countries and states, cannabis is completely legal, while it is still illegal in others. So before using cannabis, be sure to check the laws in your area to avoid any legal trouble.
Edibles are a great way to enjoy cannabis, but it is vital to use them safely and responsibly. And finally, be sure to store your weed edibles in a safe place where children and pets cannot reach them.