marijuana joint and snacks

Marijuana for Appetite Stimulation

By MK Thomson

December 11 2023


Wait! A blog post on how to increase appetite with marijuana? That seems a little strange. Doesn’t marijuana automatically give you the munchies (the nearly uncontrollable urge to eat everything in sight)? Well, yes and no. It’s true that most strains and the components within are historically known to boost appetite, some strains are known to help more than others. There are strains that can help suppress your appetite (who would’ve thought it, right??). However, as the medical applications of marijuana gain momentum, a more nuanced understanding is emerging, particularly around appetite stimulation. Beyond recreational indulgence, certain strains of marijuana have shown promise in aiding individuals who struggle with appetite issues due to various health conditions.

Let’s take a look at the more treatment-oriented strains that can help folks who need a boost to their ability to eat – – some even for medical purposes.

marijuana joint and snacks

Who needs appetite stimulation?

  • Many people are taking prescription medication for specific conditions. Some of these conditions and their medications can have side effects. Some medications can cause a reduced appetite, including opioid painkillers, antidepressants, antibiotics, and medications for type 2 diabetes.
  • Some cancers, such as pancreatic, ovarian, or stomach cancer, can also make eating difficult and also decrease appetite. Additionally, cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy and immunotherapy are all too familiar with the loss of their appetite. This decrease can even be made worse by the change in some patients’ ability to taste (a common side effect of excessive vomiting).
  • Anyone who has done any research on marijuana has certainly heard of the amazing effects it can have on chemotherapy patients. If you’re curious or want to know more, check out our interview with a chemo-compounder at the AdventHealth Porter Hospital in Denver.
  • As the years advance, people’s dietary preferences and digestive systems undergo transformations. An estimated 30% of the elderly population witnesses a decline in appetite, leading to diminished food intake, weight loss, and nutritional imbalances. Some older people cannot chew, swallow, and digest some of the foods they ate in their younger years; this can also lead to decreased eating.
  • The intricate relationship between mental health and appetite is undeniable. Depression often manifests as a disinterest in food, while heightened anxiety or stress can naturally curb our appetite. Life-altering events, such as the termination of a relationship or the loss of a loved one, can similarly contribute to a decreased desire for food. In the realm of mental health, anorexia nervosa is a disease that can literally kill someone’s appetite. Getting a recovering anorexia sufferer is not as easy as just starting to eat again.

So what can someone do to increase their appetite? For more serious illnesses and conditions, it’s important to be in contact with your doctor, and we suggest a medical marijuana doctor. Marijuana can be a very effective treatment for under-eating issues. And what’s even more exciting is that marijuana is contraindicated with virtually no other medication – including chemotherapy.

Appetite stimulation vs. the munchies

For individuals aiming to shed pounds, considering cannabis strains rich in THCV might be a viable choice. Those THCV-rich strains will help (along with the endocannabinoid system itself) induce food cravings, i.e. the munchies. So for those wanting to kick start the appetite, avoid strains with large amounts of THCV. That said, here are some great strains to help you increase your desire to eat.

man with marijuana joint and hamburger

Strains for appetite stimulation (without overeating)

Girl Scout Cookies (with low- to no levels of THCV)

This might sound like a contradiction to our previous post about appetite control, but for certain strains of Girl Scout Cookies (GSC), this über-popular strain is great for stimulating your taste buds IF it has little to no THCV. As mentioned in our previous post, this cannabinoid can actually decrease your appetite – so read the label and let your budtender know. Fortunately the original – and most common – version of the strain has very little THCV, so you should be good. Still, double-check.

girl scout cookie marijuana strain bud

This legendary Indica-dominant hybrid is renowned for its sweet flavor and super high (get it?!) levels of THC of up to 27%. Aptly nicknamed the “Cookie Monster,” cannabis partakers indulge in this strain’s munchies-inducing effects. The sweet, fruity child of OG Kush and Durban Poison, GSC has earned multiple Cannabis Cups and is a favorite for medical cannabis patients with appetite loss and nausea – or just the toker who likes to munch!

Beyond the classic GSC, variants like Thin Mints, Animal Cookies, and White Cookies offer equally appetizing experiences. Just remember to watch the THCV levels.

Head Cheese

Head Cheese, a.k.a OG Head Cheese, is a fierce sativa-dominant hybrid from the combo of the 707 Headband and UK Cheese strains. Containing an impressive THC content of up to 25%, this strain stands out for its potential to induce intense cravings, possibly attributed to the activation of the hunger hormone, ghrelin, during cannabis consumption. Despite its unappealing name, Head Cheese’s effects extend beyond hunger, offering relief from pain, migraines, inflammation, spasms, and sleeplessness. Its pungent aroma and savory taste, inherited from the UK Cheese lineage, make it a tasty strain.

The strain can evoke euphoria, giggles, and an overall sense of happiness, so be prepared to laugh your way to the fridge!

man eating pizza

Amnesia Haze

The super popular Amnesia Haze is a favorite for those MMJ patients battling stress and depression. Despite its distinct aroma, the strain’s appetite-boosting prowess should not be overlooked. Loaded with beta-caryophyllene, it’s a go-to strain for those striving to increase their food intake. This Sativa-dominant hybrid, up to a whopping 22% THC, is not just a yummy tasty treat but it also can enhance your noggin’s functioning and foster creativity.

Its enduring effects and appetite stimulation make Amnesia Haze an unforgettable choice for cannabis enthusiasts. Good for the appetite, creativity, and getting smarter? What’s not to love?!

amnesia haze marijuana strain

As always, lean on your budtender

As always, check with your budtender on the best strains for any condition or effect you are seeking. For health conditions be sure to loop in your medical marijuana doctor on their recommendations – especially if you are taking strong prescription medication. If you are nervous about bringing up medical marijuana with your regular family doctor, let your MMJ doctor know this too. They can help you with speaking with them, or at least what to say.

The bottom line: if you are taking strong medication or have a serious medical condition, always speak with your doctor if you would like to incorporate marijuana in your treatment protocol – as you would with any other change.

Good luck and we wish you the best of health and happiness!