Many cannabis users have reported feeling their body temperature dropping after smoking weed. On the other hand, others actually have noted feeling warmer? So, does cannabis have an effect on our body temperature?
The answer is yes. As it turns out, there’s a reason why curling up under a cozy duvet after a little cannabis feels so wonderful. Cannabis has an impact on thermoregulation, or the body’s capacity to regulate its core temperature.
Read on for the lowdown on why cannabis might make you feel more chilled.
Why Weed Makes you Chilled…Literally
This sensation is often described as “weed chills” or “high chills,” although it is formally known as THC-induced hypothermia. The major psychoactive in the cannabis plant is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is responsible for this effect.
Don’t be put off by the term “hypothermia.” We’re not talking about a medical emergency. THC-induced hypothermia is a temporary drop in body temperature produced by the drug. Sometimes the drop is just enough to make you tremble.
If you feel like you’re shaking after consuming cannabis, it’s because the THC is reducing your internal body temperature.
THC may also cause the body to cease generating heat, according to research. This might lead to chilly hands or feet after smoking marijuana.
Cannabis reacts and cools us down similar to how our bodies are affected by spicy food, such as chilies, hot mustard and wasabi.
When the tongue (or any part of your skin) detects heat, it triggers a cascade of chemical responses that alert the body that it needs to cool down.
This response is hypothesized to be mediated by a specific cell receptor known as the TRPA-1 receptor, which is in charge of pain management; inflammation reduction; and body temperature control.
The Heat of the Moment
However, on the other end of the spectrum, cannabis can also make you feel hot.
It varies across individuals and appears to be dosage dependent. Small dosages of cannabinoids, particularly CBD, appear to raise body temperature, a phenomenon known as cannabinoid-induced hyperthermia.
Therefore, certain strains of cannabis might make you feel warm. Particularly CBD-rich strains, which are more likely to raise body temperature.
Cannabis affects more than one type of cell receptor. THC and other components in the plant work their wonders in the human body by binding to cell locations known as cannabinoid receptors.
Cannabinoid receptors have been proven in studies to have a substantial impact on temperature control. Cannabinoid receptors are a subset of the wider endocannabinoid system (ECS).
According to one study of the scientific literature, the active chemicals in cannabis may produce hyperthermia, which is a transitory rise in body temperature, in modest dosages.
The chemicals have the opposite effect in large dosages. Consuming mild dosages of cannabis on a cold night may help your body warm up.
Dose & Strain are Key
Although research is currently limited due to the federal categorization of cannabis, studies show that cannabinoids’ thermoregulation effects are dose-dependent.
The effects of body temperature are determined by the amount of cannabis taken.
If you consume a large quantity of cannabinoids, such as the amount of THC required to feel high, it will most certainly cause THC-induced hypothermia.
If you microdose, or use little quantities of cannabis, it can actually raise your body temperature, resulting in cannabinoid-induced hyperthermia.
Moreover, the effects of cannabis vary depending on the strain. Different strains/cultivars might give you different feelings. A strain’s effects might also differ from person to person.
Cannabinoids concentrations differ between strains. A strain with a high CBD content might have quite different physiological effects than one with a high THC content.
All cannabis side effects, including thermoregulation and blood pressure management, vary based on cultivar and dose.
Beat the Summer Heat with Weed
Remember that, while cannabis can help reduce your body temperature, it should not be your first or only line of defense if you’re feeling dangerously hot.
It is nevertheless vital to realize that taking cannabis in the summer may not protect you from overheating. You must still drink lots of water and take frequent pauses from the scorching heat.
So, the next time the summer heat makes you feel hot and bothered, take cannabis’s cooling down effects into consideration. Get out of the scorching heat, drink some water, and take a few hits; it might be just what you need to cool down and relax.